Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Funkengroovin Wednesday

On Friday, 9 May 2008, the Boss Man and VB planned on going to the Maadi Car and Taxi Market, but changed our minds. We ended up at Stars City Mall (required shopping detour), with a pass through the Nasr City Car Market, on the way home. It was the first market Friday after the
new taxes were imposed, not just on fuel, but also on car licensing fees, based on engine size (among many other taxable items). Was the market packed? Yesiree Bob! In the past, you might find cars for sale parked along the street (in addition to the two lots), but on this day, they were triple parked along the street, with barely two lanes open for regular traffic. Smoking cars, with engines afire were being pushed; others with detached / broken bumpers hanging out the rear windows, could be seen trudging their way up the strip; every conceivable ailment was in plain view, while rarities hid amongst the moving disasters. Everyone was looking for a deal: everyone was looking to get out from under the new tax. The main strip turned into a quasi parking lot itself.

Below, scenes from our short little visit.

(Below: Dang! Just missed a passing Bus!)

(Below: VW Bus Taxi, near Nasr City. Get a load of that rear end.)

(Below: At the Car Market, along the strip - Checking under the hood.)

(Below): A Zastava (aka Fiat) for sale, in the small lot. If you blow this up, it looks like he's giving VB the finger, but in the next photo he was laughing. Unfortunately, that photo wasn't a good car shot. The Boss Man says, the Zastava "makes a VW Bug look like a fucking race car."

(Below): Traffic - the market literally took over the street - it's a virtual parking lot. The traffic cops are too busy looking at the cars for sale, to actually make any effort to conduct traffic.

(Below): As we were leaving we spotted a VW Bus on the other side of the road - wonder if it's on it's way to the car market?

(Below): On the way home - the view must be better up there. Besides, VB's thinkin' that looks like a garbage collection truck, so they're probably better off where they are.


May 21, 1901: Connecticut Sets First Speed Limit at 12 MPH
"The very word automobile was a new entry in the English language. When Connecticut passed its speeding-driver law, it was less than two years since the first use of the term in a major U.S. newspaper. Cleveland Plain Dealer reporter Charles Shanks used the French word automobile in a series of articles starting May 22, 1899. The name soon caught on, replacing the backward-looking horseless carriage."

Go Green -- Buy a Used Car. It's Better Than a Hybrid
"As Matt Power notes in this month's issue of Wired, hybrids get great gas mileage but it takes 113 million BTUs of energy to make a Toyota Prius. Because there are about 113,000 BTUs of energy in a gallon of gasoline, the Prius has consumed the equivalent of 1,000 gallons of gasoline before it reaches the showroom. Think of it as a carbon debt -- one you won't pay off until the Prius has turned over 46,000 miles or so."

Hobby starts where job ends for bug-loving county man
"NEWMANSTOWN — Theo-dore S. Axarlis always liked playing with cars. Not the toys; the real ones, and especially Volkswagens.
At 46, Axarlis is still playing with them. He is nearing the end of a two-year project to refurbish a 1980s Volkswagen Beetle for his sister." (More info and photo at the link.)

Is there hope for brands we'd like to see come back?
"A tiny number of hard-core loyalists not only doesn't mean a whole lot when reviving a brand, it might be a problem because those people do remember," Walker writes. He cites VW Beetle purists who didn't like new bug."

Volkswagen's Public Polling Pays Off
"Last month, VW unveiled a key element in the buzz-building campaign, a 3,685-square-foot interactive billboard in New York's Times Square. It pictures the bug parked behind his microphone, alongside the headline "The people want their voice to be heard." VW is the first brand to utilize the interactive technology of the ABC SuperSign, which allows a two-way dialogue with passersby via SMS. Using their cell phones, pedestrians text their yes or no responses to the poll questions appearing on the sign, and through WAP technology, their texted votes are recorded live on a news ticker."

"It's what the people want" has certainly attracted consumer attention. At press time, there have been a total of 977,983 votes and 77,113 polls collected. Up to 500 poll questions run live at any one time."

"The interactive Times Square billboard also caught the attention of the media, including the hosts of The View, who spent about five minutes discussing the poll on the show."

Cottage - and car collection - fit for a king
"The former adviser to a Bulgarian tsar is selling his original Stirlingshire home - which comes with a right royal fleet"

"He is offering to include a collection of more than 10 classic cars when he sells his house in Stirlingshire. Not only that, but the next occupant of North Mid Frew could also take over Drysdale's wedding car business, not to mention his classic car tours of the Trossachs.

The cars include a 1932 Rolls Royce, a BMW Dixi and an Austin Seven - as well as a VW Beetle and a Citroen 2CV. But, tempting as the classic car collection might be, his wife Pat insists that it is the house that is the real star of the sale."

Flyin’ along
"Bug racers run their ride for diabetes cause" (More info and photos at the link.)

Volkswagen Beetles to gather at June Bug Jamboree
"A swarm of VW Beetles, buses and buggies will descend on the Ozarks as GROOVE --General Registry Of Ozarks Volkswagen Enthusiasts-- is sponsoring its 14th annual June Bug Jamboree.

The jamboree will be held on June 6-7 on the grounds of American Legion Post 639, 2660 S. Scenic Ave. Registration starts at 6 p.m. June 6."

My Favorite 'Volksrod'
"THE OWNER: Frank Bryan of Escalon
THE CAR: Based on a 1965 Volkswagen Beetle
WHAT SPARKED THE INTEREST: "The September 2006 issue of Hot VWs featured a 'Volksrod' on the front cover, and I was hooked," said Bryan." (More info and photos at the link.)

Busy pre-running begins Saturday in Mexico on rugged 441.15-mile race course for 40th Tecate SCORE Baja 500

Unorthodox pickup forgot to be functional - 1961-1964 Chevrolet Corvair Pickups
"Since the Corvair so slavishly copied the VW car's configuration, it was not surprising that when Chevrolet entered the light commercial vehicle market VW had virtually to itself, it would follow the VW formula. The Corvair 95 (for its 95-inch [2,413-mm] wheelbase) passenger and utility vans looked uncannily like the VW Bus and Transporter." (More info and photo at the link.)

VW van makes Road Trip! in Cordova a little different
"We acquired a 1973 VW van and brought it to the Pensacola store, added more clothing lines and had to think of a name other than Peace Frogs," said Robinson. "We settled on the name, Road Trip! and created a 'road' down the center of our store underneath the VW van." (More info and photo at the link.)

Everybody Wants To Rule The World

Another edition of Road Trips, Road Food and TV is on it's way.

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