Just A Cattle Shed Full Of Old Cars…

Just another day yesterday at the hot rod show.

Nothing to see but hot rods, bikes, custom cars, and pinup girls.

Nothing to listen to but hot rod rock and roll music.

Nothing to buy except car parts, tee shirts, model cars, insurance policies, wheels, tyres, paint jobs, etc.

Nothing to eat but food and nothing to drink but booze and coffee and choc milk.

Nothing to do but take pictures of cars and talk to car people.

I wonder if today will be the same?

 

The Cut Lunch And The Water Bag

I am getting to be three things in my old age; smarter, cheaper, and more determined. It does not prevent me from being taken advantage of in the first place, but it does prevent a repeat performance. Next week I am going to test myself out in all three characteristics.

It is to be the occasion of the annual big hot rod show at the Claremont showgrounds. A weekend affair, I will go on both days to see different things and to take different photos. I am delighted to be a guest of another car photographer who is a regular shooter for the car clubs…he invites me and it means a free entry at the door. I will also take advantage of the free public transport card that allows a senior to travel on bus and train. Since the photography can be done with the Fujifilm X cameras, there is no film or paper cost either. So far, so good, so cheap!

But the trap for old players is at about 1:00 or 2:00 in the afternoon when you get a bit hungry and wander over to the fast-food stand. The pavilion that houses the show has a contracted caterer there who serves hamburgers, chips, and nachos…no-one else is permitted to do so. there may be a coffee stand up, the other end, but they are bit players, and the caterer is sited near the only bar in the venue.

Needless to say, they clean up with all the hot rodders and their kids wanting to eat at once. Their prices, like their name, suggest the charge of a wounded bull.

Well, this year there will be no more bull. I am going to take my own lunch in my camera bag and buy a beer in the bar. There are plenty of tables to sit down at, and so far in this country you can still make your own sandwiches without government interference. I wish it were possible to do this in pubs as well, but I guess there is a limit to how cheap they will let you be.

It’ll be interesting to see if the days can be as nice as the one spent at the NSW hot rod show a month ago. All I need is a half a dozen new cars to see and it is all worthwhile.

Do Photo Bombers Use Norden Sights?

Work that one out for yourselves, folks.

The featured photo was taken at Rosehill Racecourse during the recent NSW Hot Rod Show when I happened upon what is becoming my show favourite – a small kid being hot rodded along by his Dad.

I’ve seen and photographed this form of transport in Melbourne, Perth, and now Sydney, and it fills me with glee. My own father had a tiny Caterpillar crawler tractor that I could ride in and I loved it. My daughter was put on a battery-powered motorcycle that caused terror on the back patio. It is an honourable tradition. And if you get the battery-powered ones you don’t have to push…

I have to apologise to the Mum and Dad in Sydney – something in the setting of the flash seems to have made it all look like bad science fiction, but at least your boy looks great. I’m not sure who the visitor is, but at least he looks as if he is having a good time.

Did your feet survive the day? I know mine were calling to me by the time I got back to the hotel and they were demanding something to drink! I took sympathy on them. But wasn’t it a good show? I loved the Caddy on the second floor with the sugar skull upholstery – I am going to try to make one in a scale model. Who says you can’t win at the racecourse!

 

Graphics. Beware…

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We are often warned on the television about graphic depictions of violence. The same goes for the cinema – they have that classification thing at the start of the movie. I go for the ones that say “G” and so far I have not been disappointed.

But what of the graphics at the car show? Should we be warned? Does there need to be a sign warning us that it is NSFA…not safe for adults?

As with all questions of art, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In the case of some of these beauties we would also recommend Murine and an a soft cotton pad….

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Hot Summ 15 2 (1)

 

Morning In The Valley

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The sky is blue

The sun has riz

I wonder where the hot rods is?

They is in the Swan Valley at the Cheese and Olive place – doing a charity show for pre-80’s iron. And they is doing a perty good job, too. Here’s a selection of the more colourful ones…and you need to remember that rust is also a colour…

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Events in the valley attract a large turn-out on a Sunday as the place has any number of cheese, chocolate, wine, beer, food and coffee places attached to the farm properties along the Great Northern Highway. A fine day and a car or music event will see the roads packed and sometimes – as today – the amount of trade overwhelms the available parking space. The late comers find that they are just unable to join in. I’ve learned to read the advertisements and arrive an hour before the things open.

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Today I was just that little bit late and found myself nabbing one of the last parking spots in between the sleeping grape vines. It’s a great place, the valley, but organisers need to put their heads together to see if they can overcome the logistics jam.

Practising The Salute

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Ceremony is fading away from modern life – we all seem to meet and greet without the rituals and manners we once used. It is rare to greet someone with a handshake unless they are a commercial representative, and then you need to quietly count your fingers later. Women kiss the air near each others cheeks a lot when they meet, but they may be sniffing each other in the process – or maybe they just have lousy aim when they bob froward. And taking your hat off in a sweeping gesture while extending one foot toward the lady and bowing deeply is actually frowned on in lifts and supermarket checkout lines.

At least there is the military. Whether they are Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marines, they all have their own characteristic form of salute. They drill their members in the correct procedure  – as much for differentiation between services as for military discipline. No recognition is made for left handedness unless their military service has removed the right hand. There are no end of finer points and little laws that concern who salutes whom and how fast they do it, and woe betide the cadet or recruit that fails to get the ritual right.

In some cases it is not even the arm salute. There are little stiffenings, heel taps, and postures that are required for the ritual – and you can be doing a waltz through the army base like Fred Astaire depending on who you meet and what you are carrying at the time.

Fortunately, in the Hot Rod Army there are few of these games played. When George Barris was alive everyone saluted him, but as he is dead it is pretty much left to the others to wave or not wave as it suits them. You don’t even have to use your right hand, or indeed all of your hand, as the opening photograph of a long-serving member of the HRA proves. The salute is quite economical in fingers, and can be done while carrying a doughnut or several Cheezels.

Occasionally you see the double salute when emotions run high. This is a tempting thing to do but you have to remember the instructions from the old Ghostbusters movie – don’t cross the streams…

 

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And thanx to John H. who is patient and who has a good sense of humour…

Dad Power At the Hot Rod Show

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Yay! How cool is this.

I’ve seen the ’34 Ford kid car and the ’32 Ford pusher with the working headlights at the Victorian Hot Rod Show in Melbourne. Now we have a contender for the Dad Races here in Perth.

When you want to run a high-speed patina kustom with four headlights, you need the right components – an Armadale Auto Parts go-faster sticker for the bonnet and something …or someone…with a bit of grunt to push it along. Looks like this boy has the problem solved.

I suspect that the age of small Australians hurtling down steep slopes in home-made billy carts is not dead. Their dads get them started early and it all goes from there.

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Advice to Dad. One day he WILL run the family car into a ditch. Or into your other family car. Prepare yourself mentally for it. Lay in a stock of bumpers and body panels now…