Register now to get rid of these ads!

Definition of a Hot-Rodder...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by espo35, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

    The white-haired man was bent over his work table, intently focused on the fabric he was sewing. I immediately was reminded of Geppetto- the carpenter who created Pinnochio in the Disney movie. Not wanting to interrupt him, I stood there watching. He looked up from his work and noticed the rear seat-cushion under my arm.<O:p
    &#8220;Pontiac, huh&#8230;56 or 57?&#8221;<O:p
    <O:p

    Right away, I knew I had come to the right place. Having spent the morning going from one upholstery shop to another, being alternately high-balled and smirked at by kids barely older than my paperboy, I had almost by accident found Rogelio&#8217;s Customs tucked away off of Monterey Road, just South of Morgan Hill, California.
    <O:p

    &#8220; 56&#8221;, I answered, amazed. <O:p
    <O:p

    I was even more amazed when my phone rang later that afternoon.
    &#8220;It&#8217;s done.&#8221; said Rogelio. And it was done&#8230;.beautifully, for one third the price the paperboys had quoted me.<O:p
    <O:p

    Rogelio Cevallos is a car guy. His shop is a car guys&#8217; shop. Chopped hot-rods, 70&#8217;s muscle cars, &#8216;30&#8217;s pickups, antique toy cars and memorabilia fill every nook and cranny of it. He&#8217;s the real deal. At 70 years old, he&#8217;s seen it all: the different eras of cars come and go, kids staring wide-eyed at a &#8217;59 Caddy turn into family-men parallel-parking Hyundais. But here, in his shop, time stands still.<O:p
    <O:p

    Rogellio came to the United States from Mexico when he was 19. On the way home from the airport, his uncle drove him to the San Jose AutoRama where Rogelio saw his first hot-rod&#8230;.and thus began a love-affair with cars that has now lasted a half a century.<O:p

    I feel shame for San Jose. This past weekend, the San Jose AutoRama came back to San Jose after a 30 year absence. No stories in the newspaper&#8230;.no stories on the local news&#8230;..nada. Just an old hot-rodder with a passion who single-handedly brought back an institution&#8230;.an old hot-rodder named Rogelio.<O:p
    <O:p

    The hot-rodders showed up. The cars were beautiful, the event well-staged. First class all the way. Great people with great cars having a great time. All because one 70 year old hot-rodder gave a shit. <O:p
    <O:p

    And San Jose didn&#8217;t&#8230;and I am ashamed for it.
    <O:p

    This Spring is when I met Rogelio. He had to cut our meeting short so he could drive his wife to the doctors. The next day, I dropped off my dash and seats from my T-Bird for him to upholster.<O:p
    <O:p

    The day after that, his wife passed away.<O:p
    <O:p

    Rogelios&#8217; eyes sparkle when he talks about his late wife. While his passion for cars is clear, his love for her is much, much clearer. He plans on giving half of whatever proceeds he makes on the AutoRama to the leukemia foundation, the disease which claimed Julia. He starts to talk about maybe starting a foundation in her name but stops himself. I can tell that is his dream, but he is a humble man&#8230; with humble words. <O:p
    <O:p

    Here, in the heart of Silicon Valley, an old man works to make sure a legacy survives&#8230;that a fire is lit in the heart of some little boy or girl at the car show just like the one that was started in him so many years ago. At 70 years old, with a broken heart, this man pulled off something few of us could on our best day. I guess that maybe he really is like Geppetto&#8230;helping little-boy dreams come to life.

    <O:pAnd I, for one, am damned proud to know him.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010
  2. 30 Buford
    Joined: Nov 4, 2007
    Posts: 391

    30 Buford
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Good Story, thanks
     
  3. tooler
    Joined: Nov 25, 2009
    Posts: 5

    tooler
    Member

    How do not respect a man like that. Cool story, thanks for sharing
     

  4. Thorkle Rod
    Joined: May 24, 2006
    Posts: 1,392

    Thorkle Rod
    Member

    Great Story, makes me wish San Jose was closer.
     
  5. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,159

    Tman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks for the story. Sounds like you met one hell of a guy.
     
  6. Gigantor
    Joined: Jul 12, 2006
    Posts: 3,825

    Gigantor
    Member

    That was and is fantastic.
     
  7. HuskyV8
    Joined: Apr 30, 2010
    Posts: 534

    HuskyV8
    Member

    I must be near you...I'm in Morgan Hill too. I'm guessing you're right off Central Avenue. I recognize the Pontiac...I've driven past it several times. I used to live on Central too.

    It's sad to hear about his wife. Sounds like her memory will live forever in him....and to those he touches.

    Nice to know there is a place close by and that it's run by a good man. I used another place in town and was not impressed with the work. Actually had to take it back for a redo.

    Next time I go by I'll honk at ya.
     
  8. Bigcheese327
    Joined: Sep 16, 2001
    Posts: 6,691

    Bigcheese327
    Member

    The passion for cars in some folks is amazing. And I have to respect any craftsman with that kind of talent and dedication, car-related or not.

    Thanks for sharing.

    -Dave
     
  9. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,851

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks for sharing...
     
  10. wow, great story
     
  11. Rogelio Cevallos is quite a man, that is one heck of a moving story, and you are one heck of a writer. You have to have some of the same qualities to recognize it in someone else. God Bless him, and you, and thanks for sharing.
     
  12. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

    That's me! His shop is in San Martin, just past the gas station, next door to the chrome shop.
     
  13. clockwork31
    Joined: Sep 28, 2010
    Posts: 439

    clockwork31
    Member

    Very well written, great story, thanks for sharing.
     
  14. RoryShock
    Joined: May 5, 2010
    Posts: 75

    RoryShock
    Member
    from Western TN

    Sounds like you met one hellava guy. Great story.
     
  15. Rudy J
    Joined: Sep 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,485

    Rudy J
    Member
    1. Austin HAMB'ers

    Wow, great story. Thanks for sharing!
     
  16. wetatt4u
    Joined: Nov 4, 2006
    Posts: 2,146

    wetatt4u
    Member

    Life is short .
    We need to take a minute to just say Hello to someone like your new found friend.

    I hope he keeps busy with work and all his friends stop by to keep his mind busy.

    If you would,
    tell him Hi from me the next time you speak with him....

    Let him know that their are people out here that care.....

    God bless you and him....
     
  17. Great story and well written, I was moved. Hope the Autorama earns a lotta dough for the charity!
     
  18. Weasel
    Joined: Dec 30, 2007
    Posts: 6,693

    Weasel
    Member

    My screen has gone a little blurry - great tribute to a fine hotrodder.
     
  19. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

  20. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

    Yep, he's definitly keeping busy...already planning next years' show. Sooner or later, someone will show him this thread and you will have said "hi" for yourself! There are good people in this world, that's for sure. Funny how so many of them love cars.....yourself included.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2010
  21. RCPromotions
    Joined: Nov 3, 2010
    Posts: 13

    RCPromotions
    Member

  22. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

  23. fifTsix
    Joined: Jul 26, 2008
    Posts: 486

    fifTsix
    Member
    from TEXAS

    This world needs more people like Rogelio Cevallos! Cool story!
     
  24. thats the definition of a man. a real man
     
  25. rockable
    Joined: Dec 21, 2009
    Posts: 3,616

    rockable
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    God bless you, Rogelio!
     
  26. Great story. All too often we are in such a hurry that we don't stop to get to "know" people. We all have a story, it helps if someone stops long enough to hear it. Your seats will never be looked at quite the same now that he has done them.
     
  27. hotrd32
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 3,534

    hotrd32
    Member
    from WA

    Sounds like Tito....the old man who did mine...
     
  28. espo35
    Joined: Jul 16, 2010
    Posts: 310

    espo35
    BANNED
    from california

    You're right. I guess in a way, we tell our stories through our cars. We can appreciate the blood, sweat and tears behind a really cool chopped-top. You can't buy it in a catalog...it comes from the heart. Good call! I expect nothing less from a hot-rodder from Bobby Murcers' hometown.
     
  29. big bad john
    Joined: Aug 11, 2010
    Posts: 4,727

    big bad john
    Member

    .....Thanks for sharing a great story.........
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.