School Days. Episode Three Painting Cars.
When I was five years old, I had a small group of friends that I hung out with. At that time, I was living with my parents and my grandparents on Hargrave Street. Like most kids of that era, we were always looking for cool things to do. As the only form of technology that we had the 1950s was television and the radio, all of our group activities would have to come from our own resources. Sometimes we would learn a new game, such as hide and go seek that one of my little buddies would teach us.
One morning my little buddies and I were having a hard time coming up with something interesting to do. In other words, we were bored. We decided to walk down the back lane to do some exploring in the hope that somebody would come up with a great idea. Behind one apartment block was a parking lot. It was not a modern parking lot like we would see today. The lot was not paved, didn’t have yellow painted lines and consisted mostly of dirt, gravel and crabgrass. We could see four or five cars parked in the lot. Cars made in the 1950s were a thing of beauty. If anyone owns a custom model today, their automobiles are probably worth a lot of money. To the right of the parking lot was a thicket of bushes and trees. Some people would throw their refuge and other discarded items into this area.
When I was five years old. I already love cars. Chrysler, Plymouth, Ford and Chevrolet made some awesome cars in those days. I already owned a collection of miniature model cars that we called Dinky toys. These small models were not made of plastic. They were built from solid metal. When I played with my toy cars, they could withstand a lot of punishment. That must be why older folks today will often say, they don’t make them like they used to. The actual cars that our parents drove were also built in the factory much sturdier and much more reliable than the cars we have today. The great thing about those old cars were that they didn’t all have the basic design like modern cards today.
When we watch cars drive down the street today, is often difficult to distinguish between a Honda Accord and a Ford Fusion. Both these cars have the same basic body design despite being manufactured by different companies. Not so with the Ford, Chrysler, Plymouth or Chevrolet from the 1950s. These models of cars all came with their own unique design. I was already dreaming of the day that I be old enough to own and drive my own car.
While I was almost salivating over a Ford Thunderbird in the parking lot, I noticed an open can of white paint. Next to it was a broken off piece of board approximately the size of a 12 inch ruler. The piece of wood had jagged edges from where it was broken off. I picked up the wooden stick in one hand and grasped the ring handle of the white paint can. A great idea darted across my mind. Wouldn’t the Ford Thunderbird to my left look great with a wide horizontal strip of white paint right across the side of it?