Memories of a 62 Pontiac
Influence plays a large part in determining the kind of person you become, and I think family has the most influence in your life.
The first car I can recall my parents owning was a sliver 1962 Pontiac Catalina. I remember my mom driving my two brothers and I around town in that old car. The cold engine light on the dash was in the shape of an Indian chief head, which we thought was pretty cool. We'd try to guess when the engine would be hot enough to make it go off. I remember on rare occasions when my older brother would let me ride shotgun and whenever we approached a stop, my mom would put her hand over my chest to prevent me hitting the dash. (This was back in the good old days before seat belts were standard equipment, when kids were tough and didn?t have car seats or wear helmets when we rode our bikes.)
I remember one summer night my dad was driving home and threw a cigarette butt out the window. He hadn?t noticed that it blew back into the car, and a few hours later the back seat was on fire. That summer my brothers and I had to sit on a piece of plywood laid over the springs until he could get it fixed.
That old Catalina served our family well until one day in 1969 on a trip back from the grocery store it finally gave up the ghost. It died on the side of the road a few blocks from home, and I still can picture my mom lugging arm loads of brown paper grocery bags with a big red A&P logo on them, crying as she walked. Later that summer she would get a new ?69 Catalina that would create new memories for my brothers and me. I think the influence of that old Catalina is why I grew up to be a Pontiac man.
Over the years I?ve owned a ?69 GTO, a ?75 Grand Am, ?91 Grand Prix GTP and even an ?87 Sunbird. On January 11, 2011 my first grandson Cooper was born. I joked around with my wife that ?I hope he will grow up to be a car guy.? Well, I think I got my wish.
His favorite movie is Cars followed by Cars 2. He owns at least 3 of each of the cars from the two movies and knows them all by name. He has a Lighting McQueen ride-in car and over 100 Hot Wheels (and plays with them all!) and as a Christmas gift in 2012 I gave him his own subscription to a muscle car magazine. When the magazine arrives his daddy has to go through it a dozen times so Cooper can look at all the pictures. Last summer my wife and I took Cooper to his first car show. He was so excited to see and hear all the cars that he couldn?t stop talking about it for weeks afterwards.
Last week we celebrated his 3rd birthday and the majority of his gifts were cars.
When it came time to cut the cake he started to cry and said, ?No cake, I gotta play with my cars? He stopped long enough to blow out the candles, scarf down a few bites of cake, and pose for a picture or two then went back to the living room to play with his cars.
So yeah, family has a lot of influence over the kind of person you become. I can't imagine what family member could have influenced Cooper to become almost obsessed with cars?hummmm??
And of course I have another Pontiac that?s sitting in my garage. One I bought back in 1979, it?s a rare ?77 Can Am. I told my wife the other day that in the future when I get too old to drive Cooper will have another car to play with.
01/22/14 at 05:48:47 PM
by Megan |
Tagged with 1962 pontiac, George's Blog