Guest Post: A Time For Us and Ours

 

shelby charger

I’ve been watching with great interest as the photos from Jalopnik’s recent ‘Radwood” ‘80s and ‘90s car show come trickling out over the internet.  I’m happy to see that, after years of being overshadowed by the cars of the earlier decades, cars of this era are finally getting some love.  As a member of Generation X, I feel a special kinship with these cars and it’s not just because they were the cars I drove and/or lusted after back in the day.  No, it’s because I have, over the years, come to realize that when I look at these cars I am looking into a mirror.

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Dave Grohl Is Not A Rock Star, And Other Observations Regarding Limp-Dicked Automotive Writers

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Earlier this year, my friend Amanda and I ambled down to the Gateway Film Center on the Ohio State campus to see Sound City, the Dave-Grohl-directed ode to a Los Angeles recording studio and its history. Gateway’s a great place to see a movie because all the people there are half my age (and two-thirds of Amanda’s) and plus you can order a double shot of vodka there. Good times.

As documentaries go, Sound City is pretty okay-ish. If you have a decent background in rock history, you’ll shake your head at some of it — as an example, a major percentage of the film is devoted to Fleetwood Mac’s decision to record their Buckingham/Nicks reboot record there, but the facts that the Mac hated the place and that they consciously chose the Record Plant for the considerably better Rumours is conveniently forgotten. But there’s plenty of interesting footage and interviews and performance footage.

Still, the longer I sat there with my vodka in hand, the more something bothered me — and it wasn’t until I was firing up the 993 to exit the parking garage (after a sobering interval, mais bien sur) that I realized what that something was.
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Just To Put This Auto Journalism Business In Perspective

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Today, Jalopnik’s Matt Hardigree announced his intention to disregard manufacturer embargoes, and I offered some commentary on the matter. I support Matt’s actions, although in an era where very few people are capable of recognizing anything other than a braying binary declaration of total adoration as “support” I doubt he’ll thank me for it.

I’m slightly frustrated with our industry this week for other reasons, however. I’m depressed that Jalopnik harvested 664,000 clicks out of Paul Walker’s death — but I’m even more depressed that Doug DeMuro made a deliberate attempt to raise his profile on the back of Paul’s death with a spectacularly uninformed statement, only to walk it back in the most pansy-assed and low-profile manner possible fewer than forty-eight hours afterwards. There’s nothing quite as cringe-inducing as the combination of naked ambition, a desperate need to be liked, and a paralyzing fear of saying anything at all worth remembering, all in one person. As stupid as the CGT statement was, I’d have respected him for standing behind it, or for admitting he was wrong. But I’ve learned the hard way that if you wait around for the average dude to do something worth respecting, you’ll wait a long time.

At least I can take comfort in the relative insignificance of automotive journalism. We may be idiots, we may be cowards, we may be openly for sale to the highest bidder in an auction where the largest sum mentioned wouldn’t purchase a new Camry, but at least we aren’t very widely read. Want proof?
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