Well, shit, I been meaning to write this one for a long time, and I promised it to a friend a while ago, and repeated that promise since then.. that I'd do an entry about my car. I love my car. The friend I made that promise to... Car.
I named my car Car, and also Cat, and Sister, as in - "let's go, Sister."
I bought it on Feb 29, 2008, an eclipse. It only has a birthday every four years, but man, it's a good one. We made a deal when we got together - "I have fun in you, and you run like a top." So far, so good. 2002 Honda Civic. Four door, easier to get stuff in and out. Sport front end handling. No shit. I could list some speed records here, in BC and Ontario, but that would not protect the guilty...
Car has been a constant companion through what has turned out to be one of the biggest periods of transformation of my whole life. Car is always ready to go, always ready to hit the road.
Car and I have had some wild times, from commuting to my 12-14 hour a day job in TO from Port Hope, in winter, ripping up the 401 in snow tires and machine-revving tension, to the great drive across Canada, to California. California. The best of all the driving days (so far) was the day I entered Cali the night before. I camped beneath the silent redwoods, got up early and set out for the little place I'd rented in Berkeley. I had time, so I decided to take highway 1, which splits off from the 101 and follows the coast, starting at drive-through-tree Park, through Fort Bragg, and rejoining the 101 at Cloverdale. This is one of the best pieces of road in the world.
It was a weekday, no idea which one. A middle one. Roads were pretty empty. I'd learned to really enjoy driving winding mountain roads, and I was single with no dependents. My only family, my brother, I knew would prefer I live my life than save it up for some vague later thing.. so, I said to myself (and this road is nothing but turns, with yellow caution / "slow" signs..), "I'm going to push it on every single corner, and if, at the end of this road, I've slid at least a foot or two on every single one - I know I've done it right."
Let me explain a bit. I had cooper tires on. They have hard walls. I know, I know.. they are not a high-end tire. I get it. But I have Pirelli's now, and I think I liked the Coopers better. The rubber is harder, and I just developed the habit of sliding around corners. It's fun. When I first bought them they had sharp edges. I was then living in Trenton, ON (shithole), and working in Peterborough (yup), and those little country roads - sheesh.. I had some fun. Scared the bejeesus outta some farmers, that's for sure.
There was a 60 degree corner I took every day, with a little gravel on it, and that was the first time I got a foot or two of drift on a corner. Pretty thrilling. After that I drove on gravel roads a bunch to take the sharp edges off.
So, two years later, those tires were perfect for corner-sliding. And I actually found them safer cause you could feel the slide, there was nothing sudden about it, there were no edges left on 'em at all. So I pulled over at the junction of Highway 101 and highway 1, and that's where I said it.
I've never been a big drug user, but that must be what hard drugs feel like - your whole brain's lit up - for six hours straight I drove without pause, motor revving, downshifting, accelerating into the turns. Fuck. It felt good. Car.
Thank you. I couldn't take this down until I had honoured you.
For the times, they are a changin.
Or.. we're a stolen Cadillac, racin' for a road block in the distance..
Car. Thanks for the adventures, those I've told, and those I will never tell. More to come. xo