Great thread, I loved reading the stories. People are endlessly fascinating. My first interest was when I was probably at age 4 or maybe even 3. I was born in '50 and the family moved in early summer of '54 to a summer cottage (water pumped from the pond up to a tank behind the house, outhouse, kerosene lanterns) while my dad built the new house. Before we moved, I remember a metallic blue '53 or'54 Ford convertible in the neighborhood with a white top, wide whitewalls, skirts, lowered in the rear for sure. If I added spots, nosed and decked or Continental kit I'd just be guessing but in any case, it rang my bell. Around the same time, I was on my tricycle when the neighbors across the street pulled in their driveway, not with the grey 4-door Nash bathtub but with a pinkish Studebaker Lowrey coupe. Wow. Dropped me in my 3-wheeled tracks. So my dad got the new house built, I started riding the schoolbus in '56 and passed a house every day with an orange (!) '40 Ford Coupe that may have had a Cadillac engine. This guy always had nice cars. his next was a white '58 Corvette. At some point there was a shitbox black '49 Ford that he bought from the school janitor that went missing for a while and then showed up in a deep metallic green. No matter what he drove, the look was always just perfect. The same went for his house and yard. In junior high there was a silver grey'50 Chevy coupe with a Hilborn-injected Buick, straight axle, radiused wheel-well, M&H slicks that 3 guys campaigned. No goofy lettering or decals, all business. Summer of '64. I'm 14 and by now I'm like a lot of the rest of you with the bicycles, lawnmowers, gokarts, power tools, the 110-volt buzzbox welder the old man had kicking around that he never figured out but I did (thank you Popular Mechanics) and somehow the guys my age that I was closely associated with ALL knew what 2 hands were meant for. My brother was 2 years older than me and there were 2 guys next door the same ages. My dad had a gas/repair station after the war and did all the car and house repairs with all the attendant tools. The guys next door's dad was an aircraft machinist with all his tools and knowledge so between the 2 households, we were unfucking stoppable. When we became Boy Scouts we'd go to the Jamborees and compete against all the other troops and never even gave a shit about any of it and come award night we were more surprised than anyone. We were such a bunch of screwups they HATED giving us anything, much less everything. Proud member of the Beaver Patrol, I am. Saving the best for last. Late summer of '64 ( by now the guys next door had a '35 Ford pickup in their back yard with a stuck clutch and frozen flathead that the Beaver patrol applied their best abilities to, is there a Flathead merit badge? Should be) I'm on my Hercules about 1/2 mile from home and in the middle of an intersection, stalled with no one around, is the REAL DEAL. Grey primer, red rims with Port-A-Walls and chrome lugs, no hood, 2 Strombergs, Offenhauser heads, with acorn nuts, scavenger pipes, raked, black T&R interior, suicide knob, front plate held on with coathanger, '39 Ford Coupe. To this day it's the best hotrod I've ever seen. I've seen nicer but not better. There wasn't a single thing about it I would call "nice" but I would call it "perfect".