COTD: Original DIYster edition

Back in the early days of the Internet, long before anyone had ever heard of Tay Zonday, let alone gotten a tattoo of him, the online was a largely nerdy place where high-order brains gathered to conduct business in relative secrecy.

If an Internet denizen looked hard enough, he might even find the guy who developed the sequential taillights on his car, as Snapoversteer recounts, all story-time like:

Gather 'round, young uns, and listen to a story of the good old days thousands of years ago before Sigourney Weaver. My roommate in college had a '67 Cougar that had been lightly restored and looked fantastic with the small exception of not having operable sequential taillights (the lights illuminated but all at once). In the days before the great Redneck Enrichening of the '90s, before the coining of the term "resto-mod," before great bloated, white idiots ran the prices of old American iron through the roof and made kings of those douche nozzles at Barrett Jackson, there weren't half a dozen aftermarket suppliers of every old car part in the known universe. There was no eBay; there were no forums. How the hell do you fix the sequential taillights on a '67 Cougar in that land before time?

You use something almost no one had heard of at the time: the internet (there was no web to speak of, and it wouldn't become a system of tubes for another 15 years; there wasn't even any porn on it!). Most all of the users were either still DOD or academics. So there was no way to search for "67 Cougar taillight" like I just did to find the cheap replacement controller in the picture. My roommate instead had to network with a bunch of engineering professors around the country until he found the electrical engineering professor who worked on his own old Cougar and who sent the wiring diagrams from which he had to build his own circuit.

Then he was killed by a saber-toothed tiger.


Share This Story