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Folks Of Interest Mother's Day the Old Car Way

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by J.Ukrop, May 8, 2020.

  1. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
    Posts: 1,095

    Staff Member

    J.Ukrop submitted a new blog post:

    Mother's Day the Old Car Way


    Continue reading the Original Blog Post
    enloe, 302GMC, Okie Pete and 10 others like this.
  2. Bluedot
    Joined: Oct 26, 2011
    Posts: 306


    What a timely, appropriate, and well written tribute! My Mom "graduated" 9 years ago at 92. She always loved driving, and had some pretty cool cars ('57 Fairlane and '58 Impala convertibles among them), but was not into the hotrodding thing. No one in my family before me was into hotrodding or even older cars in stock form. Without it being in my genes, it took only a curious look at a "little book" on a drugstore newstand in 1958 to hook me for life. Though my Mother (and the rest of the then family too) never understood this hobby, she tolerated it. (Not everyone liked the smell of Testor's glue and rattle cans fumes wafting through the house in my model building days.)
    Our son, now 49, is as obsessed with hotrodding as I am. His wife and mine both tolerate the time and money spent, and do have an appreciation for the results of a finished project. We are a couple of lucky guys.
    Joined: Oct 19, 2006
    Posts: 61


    My mother was into the car hobby, probably by default in the beginning. Dad was into cars , dated her in '49 Ford convertible and later a '55 T-bird. Her daily driver when I was in grade school was a 1964 Grand Prix 2dr. hdtp. , 389 tri-power. She knew how to prop the choke open and get it going when it wouldn't start. She would drive dad's '67 big block Corvette coupe sometimes, to the store or maybe Sears ( it was just a 3rd car back then). I got plenty of support and encouragement growing up, and building cars. Other than the occasional , "does it have to be that loud" (strange coming from someone who drove big block side pipe car) they never complained when I took over a bay in the garage and filled the driveway with projects. Both mom and dad are still car people, avid AACA members, and still have that big block coupe along with several other muscle and antique vehicles.
    loudbang and J.Ukrop like this.
  4. Very well-written tribute to your mom! Thanks so much for sharing. My mom was always supportive of my car stuff and likely even helped fuel it. When I was a kid, my folks both drove late models...but my dad’s car was an L82 4-speed Corvette and my mom’s car was a WS6 4-speed Trans Am. My mom drove Trans Ams, and 4 wheel drive pickups up until just a few years ago with the last one being a WS6 convertible. She always supported me and even let me pretty much run my own business out of the attached garage on our house painting cars in high school. Looking back on that, I am somewhat amazed by it. I remember the house regularly smelling like paint fumes. :D She also never asked many questions when me and my brother would show up at home after midnight in my brothers Chevelle with slicks and making lots of noise. :oops:
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  5. Awesome. Your writing always cheers me up.
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  6. 2935ford
    Joined: Jan 6, 2006
    Posts: 3,292


    A car for my mom (rest her soul) was to get her from point A to B and back but.........she always wanted "one of those porthole Tbirds." :)
    loudbang, J.Ukrop and Automotive Stud like this.
  7. bbobster
    Joined: Apr 14, 2006
    Posts: 11

    from Oklahoma

    I had no idea GMC had a V6 available in '61. Looks like a nice truck!
    loudbang and J.Ukrop like this.
  8. silverdome
    Joined: Aug 23, 2007
    Posts: 530


    My mom, who's in her 80's, although not a Hot Rodder, definitely had and still does have a lead foot. Go granny, go granny, go granny go. She likes her cars red and sporty.
    loudbang and J.Ukrop like this.
  9. topher5150
    Joined: Feb 10, 2017
    Posts: 1,783


    My mom got into cars by association. Every car my dad had was a classic and when they got married in the late 70s they used his 65 mustang in all the pics. Fast forward a few decades after my dad died, my grandpa who bought the car from them, decided he was getting to old to manhandle the ol pony and it's sitting in mom's garage again

    Sent from my moto z4 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
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  10. Rolleiflex
    Joined: Oct 25, 2007
    Posts: 922


    My Mom has always appreciated the cars that we celebrate here on the HAMB.

    She gave up her carport for rebuilding cars and having car parts in our bedrooms.

    My Dad, brother, and I were always wanting to look at some rusty relic, dilapidated gas station, go to a car show, drag races, and all manner of automotive related nonsense. And to her credit she willingly let us.

    One of the funniest memories for me is in the months leading up to the first time I could race in the high school drags. She told me in no uncertain terms was I going to race my car.

    This continued up until the morning of the drags. As I left for school she told me to have a good day and to be careful at the track. She knew permission or not my Dad had planted seeds that could not be held back.
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  11. Well my mom has always supported it. She grew up racing go karts and motorcycles as my uncle raced as well. My parents were in a car club with my grandparents when I was born so it was inevitable the car bug would get me, lol. She never complained much about all the model cars and magazines I would bring home growing up as a kid.
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  12. My mom got my dad's 64 falcon ranchero in the divorce. It was the only new car my dad ever bought, 260/4 speed. My mom sent me a letter while I was in Germany saying she traded the ranchero in on a [gasp] 68 VW squareback. She never appreciated HP or LBS/FT of torque.
    She never said a word about the string of 50s cars I owned but she loved my 64 'vette. 64vette2020.jpg
    enloe, loudbang and J.Ukrop like this.
  13. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
    Posts: 1,095

    Staff Member

    So I got an email from my friend Patrick Knight of Kentucky and he asked that I post his reply here. Here's his Mother's Day story in his own words...

    My mother came from Barbourville, KY, she probably never saw a hot rod or a racecar in her life until she met my dad . She adapted very well to the automotive scene with dad and his interests, when he was racing oval track at the local Sportsdrome Speedway I grew up in the stands with her at three years old and she had her own membership card to the Kentuckyanna oval track racing Association in 1952 .

    When I worked at Bluegrass Dragway in Lexington, Kentucky, she and dad were always were regulars and learn to enjoy drag racing , then when I worked the staging lanes for an NHRA at Indy they were always in the stands watching all the classes.

    In the '60s and '70s dad followed NASCAR and was a big fan of Richard petty mom also liked him and became the Kentucky state chairman for the Richard Petty fan club. As a result we were invited to go to Talledega to Richard's birthday party and mom got to make a lap during pre-race in a winged car , while dad and I and my brother could only watch from the stands she was on top of her game that day.

    Mom was there supporting all of my automotive antics whether it was a street rod a Corvette or my '62 Chevy. She even sponsored my first oval track car ......with two rolls of dimes for my first tank of gas and then she told me she wanted her name on the quarter panel just like NASCAR so the name of the team became Betty Boop racing her first name being Betty.

    But the best story on mom was when I bought my first Miller 225 buzz box and was trying to teach myself to weld she came out to the shop and moved me over , picked up the lead and laid down the prettiest weld I had ever seen , it turns out that she was a welder for Reynolds aluminum during the war and was quite proficient.

    Happy Mother's Day mom I know you're looking down on us and enjoying it.

    Patrick Knight

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  14. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
    Posts: 1,095

    Staff Member

    I was in the same boat, but yep, it's a stock V6 with plenty of torque. And thanks! Lots of hard work in that machine. We love it. I plan to shoot a full feature when I make it back to Michigan again.
    loudbang likes this.
  15. tombstone
    Joined: Jan 15, 2006
    Posts: 307

    from sk.canada

    1F3CC834-2C39-4D6F-97E6-BDBDE7992102.jpeg FADD4C57-5F69-43FA-BFC7-EE3FDDE28051.jpeg My mom always supported my hot rod addiction . We, me and my sons , would always pick her up for Mother’s Day in one of our hot rods, and take her for a cruise before brunch . However her favourite ride was in my old roadster, especially on CANADA DAY. We would go for a ride in the country before cruising the park , where she would practice her best “ Queen “ wave to the locals . Mom left us four years ago at 96 , her last ride through the park , still waving and laughing was at 95 . A great Mom !!!
  16. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 3,991

    from Berry, AL

    My Mom has never been into cars that much, they were just a way to get from here to there. After the old man died, she traded her Ford 500 in on a new Escape. When my sis and I were looking at them for her, one thing she stated, she didn't want a blue one! The old man loved blue, so that's what color most of his vehicles were. We found her a gold one, that suited her fine.

    Mom was the one who taught me how to drive in a 67 Ford Custom 500, and she taught me how to drive a manual transmission in a 71 Chevy C 10 pickup. She has never said too much about my taste in cars, sometimes commenting on them being too loud, but never anything about how they looked. She likes my 47 Lincoln, I hope I can get it together before long and give her a ride. At 82, she still drives herself to town every week, and is in better health than a lot of 70 year olds.

    My hats off to all the Moms that put up with our hoodlum hot rod ways!
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  17. loudbang
    Joined: Jul 23, 2013
    Posts: 27,594


    My mom RIP was great. when I was 15 "built" my first on the road car a 55 Ford more door from a wreck that I installed a front clip from another junkyard donor. Since I was too young to drive it on the road yet she drove it to the MVD to get inspected, with me riding shotgun, shifting her first on the floor mystery shifter I had installed.

    Got to one notorious intersection that was on a steep grade and first try stalled, second try another stall, she was getting frustrated so I piped up with "mom you got to give it "MORE THROTTLE" well shit you would have thought I was driving because she revved the crap out of it and dumped the clutch resulting in a nice 20 foot one wheel burn out but we got going LOL. She was bright red at that point and said don't ever ask me to drive this again LOL.

    Her garage was always full of my projects and she parked outside in the snow with her daily. Thanks Mom miss you dearly.
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  18. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 4,276


    My mom is about as tall as your grandmother. Barely clearing 5’2” and she was proud of it. (“I am the tallest of all the women living here in our Westside Long Beach neighborhood.” She was at 5’2” and did not let me NOT acknowledge it, either… ) “Five foot 2 and eyes of black, she was funny and as sharp as a tack…” I did take my mom to the neighborhood grocery store in the 1940 Ford Sedan Delivery ONCE. She had to go to the store and the 58 Impala was gone with my brother.

    So, she relented and told me to take her to the store. We shopped, and drove home without any incidents, except for some comments about her clothes smelling like an old car. I did not notice anything, but for someone who is a fanatic about cleanliness in our house, she was up in arms about the smell. What smell? Geez, it is an old car. She was lucky there was even a car to take her somewhere.

    Her claim to fame is that she always like my friends’ hot rods and cruisers, when they came to visit. They stayed because my mom could cook like no other and always welcomed my friends with tons of excellent foods. Some exotic and some, just a pile of roast beef sandwiches on Wonder Bread. She loved cooking, but could down a grilled cheeseburger from our local Golden Star hamburger place just down the street. She always welcomed my friends, girls and guys, with open arms. If they were nice enough to bring home, she was nice enough to be a great host to those teenagers.
    A year later, my brother had his surf van, I had the sedan delivery and the 58 Impala. By this time, my mom paid to have an “automatic transmission” installed in the Impala instead of the column 3 speed. She said that the stick shift was too difficult for her. She did not say what kind of automatic transmission. So, I got one installed by a little shop in Torrance/Gardena area and that was OK with her. Some of her friends lived in the Torrance/Gardena area and any mention was associated with her friends…

    The shop was the new C&O Stick Hydro Transmission shop. They had just started a few months earlier and was recommended by our automotive expert in L.A. My mom was clueless as to what kind of automatic was being put in place of the stick shift transmission. But, if it was recommended by my dad’s friend in Los Angeles, then it was as good as gold. As long as there was no clutch pedal, while she could start and drive away with the turn of the key. Well, now, she could drive the 58 Impala by herself.


    The moral of this story was that my mom hated hot rods, drag racing cars and anything that made loud noises. (her lawnmower with a home made scavenger pipe exhaust was a doozy…) But, the 58 Impala with the newly created “automatic transmission” was just fine for her. Of course, the bench seat was always moved as far as it would go forward. I have to say, it was a sight to see and hear her roar away from our driveway to go grocery shopping. The only other places she would drive was go to the outdoor mall in Lakewood 7+ miles East and going West from our house, the Del Amo Shopping Center 9 miles away. Those trips included stopping at her friend’s houses along the way.

    Over the next few years, she drove the Impala just about everywhere, weekly and got really good at driving and handling the big sedan. She actually liked driving it more than my dad’s big Buick Roadmaster. My friends always got a huge laugh when they saw the Impala with my mom driving, while sitting so close to the steering wheel. But, the Impala still sounding the same, with the powerful, modified 348 motor. A real "Little old lady from the Westside of Long Beach...etc"

    Mother’s Day dinners? The 58 Impala always stayed home as we all went in our dad’s big Buick Roadmaster to dinner somewhere. Despite my mom not being my dad’s mom, he was just the driver of the Buick limousine to the restaurant, (sometimes I drove the big Buick and they sat in the back seat) But, usually, my dad paid for all of us, including the tip.

    When those restaurants, with the cook top dining right in front of you and the guests, popped up, nothing could hold my mom back from going. It was her time not to cook and enjoyed the “stuff” grilling right in front of us. Luckily, my dad knew the owner of one of those restaurants and we always got good seating(and extras) for the Mother’s Day dinners. Thanks, Dad…

    It has been 22 years since she bought a condo near us in the OC at age 80. She got to see and walk through it, but did not get to move in as things happened. So, if I want to be like my mom's age, I have a few more years to go...

    And, thank you, Mom…

    J.Ukrop likes this.
  19. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,332


    Joey, that was a great write up.
    Today my mom asked me to go pick up my grandma in the 55 Chevy, because granny says it was the most comfortable car for her to sit in. Her legs are not that reliable anymore at the age of 98. But she sure loves to cruise the backroads and watch the fields and woods during this spring time. She is still very sharp and had a lot of stories to tell about this and that while we were going through little villages. She had tears in her eyes when we brought her back home because she was having so much fun today... Me too, and my mom ( 66) aswell.
    198 years in a front seat, go figure...
    IMG_4140.JPG IMG_4143.JPG
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  20. mom wanted to meet the guy in the cool green coupe. the rest is history. 12470811343_6815961f41_c.jpg
    enloe, J.Ukrop and loudbang like this.
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 7,978


    My Mom drove everything I've ever owned when we still had her. She even drove my OT 700 HP bracket racer, but just around the neighborhood a little bit. She test drove every restoration we completed too. Into cars? All in.
    Baumi, J.Ukrop and loudbang like this.
  22. guy1unico
    Joined: Aug 30, 2006
    Posts: 838


    Great story Joey!
    My mom was super cool as well. Dad was a Jag and Healey guy one at a time only. When I had 2 cars in my stable he thought I had lost it. My Mom did not care and loved them all and the shows. She passed in 2012 but it seems she is with me all the time because of her presence when she was here.

    mack and duece.jpg
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  23. Nostrebor
    Joined: Jun 25, 2014
    Posts: 927


    Such an inspired story. Thanks for sharing it!

    My mom has always had a thing for little euro cars, so we had Triumphs, Opels, that Ford Capri from the early 70's... At 7 years old I could speed shift a TR7 from the passenger side by listening to the rpms as she would lift with no clutch as she drove. We had the timing down. We would just go out and cruise sometimes, listening to the Eagles on the 8-track, and look for a road with too many twisty corners to saw through. I did my first legit four wheel drift cruising with my mom. Even now she insists on V8 power at a minimum (she has moved on to Ford trucks, as she can no longer climb out of a little car), and loves to make them "stand up and go"!

    She worked overtime and sacrificed all through my childhood and teenage years so my dad and I could play with old cars, and at the time I had no idea she was doing that. I knew we didn't have much, but we always had enough, and there was always a way to move that project forward, or buy that tool, or whatever. She was always there to make that happen. She tells me that she could hear me coming for miles before I got home when I was trying to beat curfew. I never considered that when I was 16, I just burned down the road trying to save some hyde from dad's wrath. I guess I should have made that truck a bit quieter.

    Even now, she takes great interest in what we are working on in the shop, and looks forward to a ride and perhaps getting a chance to "make them stand up and go!"
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  24. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
    Posts: 1,095

    Staff Member

    macs cars Picture 425.jpg
    Side Note: While writing the original article, I wanted to somehow incorporate a shot of this car but couldn't find a good one in time. Yes, it's a little late. Here's "Mother's Budget," a flathead-powered Deuce five-window built for G/Gas competition. Photo by Richard "Mac" McKinstry
    enloe and loudbang like this.

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