Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Vintage Volkswagens - Seattle Style

Over the last few years I've been hitting car shows regularly, usually with my 16 year old son in tow. We shoot a ton of photos and compare pics later, which turns out to be just another excuse for great father and son time. Nothing wrong with that I say. My son can also now kick my ass using Lightroom for editing. Kids are funny that way.

My gear head car interest is all over the map, but falls mainly on vintage cars. From Italian models from Ferrari, Fiat, Lancia, Alfa Romeo - to Porsche 911s and 914s - to Datsun Zs and 510s - and plenty of other examples. As the years go by, I have less interest in most new cars, the old stuff much more interesting. 

Mixed in with all this, include air cooled Volkswagens. I get a kick out of the VW scene, since it never seems to die. It just moves between generations morphing along the way - from perfectly restored vintage models to rusty rat rods, lifted off road rigs to slammed and cambered, patina to perfect - it's all there. Many different variation on the basic VW theme.

I've shot hundreds of VWs at various Seattle area events and awhile back started posting 'em to various VW Facebook pages, just for fun. What's the sense of having photos ferment on your hard drive? My take on things anyway.

Via my posting, one Facebook page contacted me, Bugbus.net, asking if I'd like to be an Admin on their page - meaning I can post whatever desired and it remains on the main Facebook feed. Bugbus.net is a European based classified site for vintage VWs and parts. No money involved with any of this for me, but they have sent me a logo hoodie and other goodies as thanks. I've posted a fair amount of VW photos on their site over the last two years, all good fun.

I also recently created a Instagram account to post my VW photos. Been interesting watching the followers slowly increase, though still laughably small compared to some accounts. If interested, you can find it searching Instagram for Vintage_VW_Spotter. There also a few Porsches included, the free bonus. Call now, operators are standing by.

Below are some examples of VWs floating around the Seattle area, just a taste of the creativity and local scene. Feel free to make up your own captions...

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Late to the Party - Courtney Barnett

Always cool to discover new music - even in my advanced age - and even if you're a bit late to the party. While flipping through the TV channels recently, noticed Courtney Barnett on Austin City Limits. Thought it was pretty cool and watched the entire gig, noticing one of the songs I dug hearing on KEXP months earlier, but not knowing who it was. Turns out that was 'Pedestrian at Best', off her 'Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit' album.

Afterwards, did a little Google searching and found this earlier show recorded live by KEXP. What she's doing is cool - lyrics, song structure and guitar playing wise. Mixture of twangy alt rock, with some great energy infused.

I dig it, maybe you will too. Give it a go.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Doors Close, Doors Open

Break out the hammer and WD-40. Time to chip away the rust on this frozen blog and portion of my brain that allegedly enjoys writing. Listen closely and you can hear the cracking and groaning across the Internet, last post nearly a year ago. Life is busy, morphs and moves on.

After a series of misadventures, I find myself unemployed after 15 years with same company. Considering I wasn't exactly digging the last year or so, probably a good thing in the long run. Interviews and poking at possible jobs in progress, looking forward to something new. Having a few weeks off to clear the brain also not a bad result of this opportunity, though loss of income certainly a concern. Hopefully, something cool on the horizon.

On the bike front, been getting out sporadically on the 29er. At times solo, other times with my 16 year old son, the former semi-serious racer. Me on the now 5 year old bargain Sette hardtail that still works for old school me. With 80mm of fork travel and 72 degree head angle, outdated compared to modern trail oriented bikes currently on the market. Feel free to snicker at the 120mm stem and bar ends while you're at it. Son Ian piloting the Santa Cruz Bronson we picked up last summer, great bike and worth considering if you're so inclined.

To finish off this post on a cool note, pictured is a friend of my son with the vintage '97 Specialized FSR he purchased off us a few months ago. I picked it up from coworker pal quite awhile ago, thinking someone on my former junior high mountain bike team would be interested. That never happened and the bike collected dust in the garage.

After loaning the bike a few times to my son's pal to share rides, his dad came over and bought it for him. It's since been used almost daily, with occasional visits to the Stevens Pass mountain bike park. The kid is digging riding and that's all that really matters.

It doesn't matter what you ride, just ride.