What could be more fun than spending a Sunday afternoon digging through the contents of junked cars in a search for heavy metal cassettes, silverware, Magnetti Marelli electric motors, V12 intake manifolds, or pornography? Searching for those things (and even more harebrained items) in order to win a Gerald R. Ford Memorial Pardon Certificate for your 24 Hours Of LeMons team, of course! That's what happened at a certain East Bay self-service wrecking yard yesterday…
After a great deal of
beer and fried food swillage brainstorming, the Chief Perp produced a list of items and associated point values. Naturally, we left a lot of wiggle room for hair-splitting junkyard lawyers who wanted to debate the finer points of prescription meds and cloisonne-versus-paint. I really wanted the BMW 750iL's intake manifold to hang on my living room wall, so we gave such manifolds a 100-point value in the hope that some team would do all the work of pulling one for me.
First, we figured we'd establish an "office" in the junkyard; here's the Chief Perp and Judge Loverman removing the doors of an Econoline for enhanced ergonomics. Welcome to LeMons Scavenger Hunt Headquarters!
Whoops! Looks like another junkyard patron left a surprise inside! We abandoned the Econoline, moved a couple rows over and picked out a nice clean Aerostar instead.
A dozen or so teams showed up and the lists were distributed. Teams had one hour to gather as many items as they could, then meet up at the headquarters Aerostar.
The participants fanned out and began rummaging through gloveboxes for insurance cards, tearing up the pair of Italian cars (a Fiat 131 wagon and an Alfa Spider) for Marelli motors, unscrewing hoseclamps, and so on.
Though we didn't have such things on our list, this 1957 birth certificate from an Air Force base in Alaska was one of the coolest items found.
Time's up! Everyone gathered around for the accounting, and those junkyard lawyers started making their cases. We'd brought a 12-volt battery pack to test the analog clocks, at which point the participants learned that a functioning junkyard analog clock is a rare find indeed.
Hoseclamps and silverware were very common finds (2 and 10 points apiece, respectively), with some teams approaching the 150-clamp mark.
Several teams vied for the 100-point "Best '24 Hours Of LeMons' Written In Emblem Letters" award.
As far as items to be installed on a team's race car went, this "Orgasm Donor" license plate frame inspired a great deal of envy. What a find!
The overall winners? Thanks to their realization that Oldsmobiles were bristling with cloisonne badges (40 points for each cloisonne badge from a manufacturer no longer sold anywhere), Team Huey Newis And The Lose came out on top with 375 points… and then they were awarded a 5,000-point bonus for finding a Mendocino County court docket chronicling the most awesome Christmas Eve DUI bust ever; Judge Loverman tells the whole story over at Autofiends. The NorCal contingent of Team Porcubimmer came in second, and Team Cant Am (back in action with a new Volvo 242T and looking for a trophy in honor of fallen comrade Court Summerfield) took third place. All three teams got the aforementioned Gerald R. Ford Memorial Pardons (present one to the LeMons Supreme Court when you get black-flagged and avoid horrible punishment), and Team HLATN gets an extra-special prize: pole position at the Arse Freeze-A-Palooza, also know as the I Love Pole Award. Sure, pole position is completely meaningless in a 24-hour (actually more like 18-hour, thanks to Communistic noise regulations) endurance race, but it's a badge of honor!