#1 By: Mark Frauenfelder, October 5th, 2013 18:43
#2 By: Halloween Jack, October 5th, 2013 21:55
This should go without saying, but the idea of someone letting just any old dude have an Olds 442 for a $150 deposit ($866.21 in today's money) is just hysterical.
#3 By: Larry Stewart, October 5th, 2013 21:56
Let me recommend the movie Vanishing Point.
Barry Newman works for a car delivery service and is supposed to drive a Dodge Challenger from Colorado to San Francisco...
#4 By: Scooter, October 5th, 2013 23:32
#5 By: Lyle Hopwood, October 6th, 2013 01:03
Is that Charles Platt, the New Worlds author? One of the formative influences of my life. (Not in any way related, but when I first came to the states in 1989, my first car was a '70 Corvette. An astronaut car. I was living the dream.)
#6 By: Vinnie Tesla, October 6th, 2013 09:57
He forgot to mention which of the men he encountered on his trip were good-looking. Hopefully there will be a postscript at some point that will address that crucial issue.
#7 By: chgoliz, October 6th, 2013 10:45
Oh, no, it was very common. I used to do drive-aways during the breaks in college. It was cost-prohibitive for most people to ship their cars (via truck and/or train), so getting some young kid who was looking for a cheap way to get from point A to point B to drive the car for you was the way it was done.
I never had such a hair-raising adventure myself, but I do have stories.
#8 By: Richard Pusateri, October 7th, 2013 01:15
I also drove a car for transportation in 1971. My friend, his girlfriend and I drove somebody's junker (not a 442) on a milk run from L.A. To Salt Lake City, and the only excitement was stopping in Nevada State highway police office to register the car, per federal regs. We were pretty scruffy looking hippy-types and after doing our paperwork, the Nevada trooper looked us over and out of nowhere apropos of nothing suddenly informs us smuggling drugs in Nevada will get you the death penalty. I think my friend was able to say "Oh." And we were glad we were not smuggling drugs.
#9 By: Charles Platt, October 7th, 2013 02:45
Au contraire, I described the male staff of AAACon as looking like failed real estate sales people. Surely, not very flattering. Perhaps if they had been female that would have given you more grist for your mill.
#10 By: Charles Platt, October 7th, 2013 02:49
Lyle, it is the same Charles Platt. Hard to imagine being a formative influence on anyone's life, but if it was positive, I will happily take the credit! If you ever wish to make contact, go to makezine.com, search for my name, and the first hit should be the author page with an email address on it.
#11 By: Beanolini, October 7th, 2013 05:13
My uncle (who lives in the UK) did this several times in the 1990s (in his mid 30s) as a cheap way of taking a road trip across America. I'm not sure of the exact financial arrangements, but I was under the impression that they paid him reasonably well.
People are certainly paid for it in the UK- they're called 'trade plate drivers'. If you see anyone by the side of a motorway trying to hitch-hike while holding red and white number plates, it's a trade plate driver trying to save on their return journey expenses. They get picked up a lot more readily than scruffy hippy students, in my experience.
#12 By: bryan, October 7th, 2013 09:12
I just spotted my copy of Free Zone this weekend. Gonna recommend it to The Little Lady™ when she’s done with grad school. Pretty cool to see you out in the real world, and thanks for all the words!
#13 By: Lyle Hopwood, October 7th, 2013 21:48
Heh, nice to hear from you, Charles!
#14 By: Mark Frauenfelder, October 10th, 2013 18:43
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