The Challenges Of Talking Cars With Your Parents

There are tons of car enthusiasts you there who inherited their auto obsession from their folks, learning to wrench in the garage or going to races as a kid. Then there are the rest of us who are the first car nerds of a family, and things can get confusing.

Today everyone chimed in to say what was the first car they ever rode in. So Frankenbike666 went to call his parents to be sure, and encountered some typical non-car-person difficulties.

I just called my parents to ask. I'm going to have to get a list of cars they had before I became aware of them. Both parents were on the phone when I called, and they're both in their late 80s.

Me: I'm trying to find out what car you brought me home from the hospital in.
Dad: Why do you want to know?
Me: I'm replying to an article on an Internet blog. That's sort of an Internet Magazine.
Dad: (laughs) OK. We brought you home in a Pontiac.
Me: Do you know what model and year?
Dad: It was cheap. And it was a four door.
Me: Any idea what year?
Dad: I think 1950. It was an old piece of junk.
Me: 8 years old was a piece of junk? Mom's Celica is 30 years old and your Avalon is at least 10.
Dad: Older than that. Cars in those days weren't made to last. Some did, but most became rusty junk in a few years.
Me: So was it a Chieftain or a Streamliner?
Dad: Who remembers such things? Who cared? I bought it used and it was cheap. I remember it had a stick shift.
Mom: It didn't have a stick shift. I couldn't have driven it if it had a stick shift.
Dad: You learned on a stick shift.
Mom: Not very well. I remember it had an automatic.
Me: If it was a manual, was it a column shift or floor shift.
Dad: Those days it would have been a column shift.
Mom: It wasn't a stick shift. I know that for sure.
Dad: I just remember we bought it because it was cheap. I'm sure it had a stick shift.
Mom: It didn't have a stick shift.

I'm guessing it was a Chieftain. I think my dad would remember if he had something as different as a Streamliner.

Hey, that went better than the time when I tried to explain why Citroëns are cool.

Photo Credit: Pontiac via OldCarAdvertising