Back when Eisenhower was still president, Chrysler would tempt America's dewy youth with custom-made comic books about the wonders of the military industrial complex. Let's explore one of them — "Things Even Dads Don't Know About" — this Father's Day.
Yes, the wonders of the modern age spill out for young Bill Weaver of Detroit, whose enlightenment comes courtesy of wise Mr. Otis, who isn't in the least bit creepy as he takes his young ward through a panoply of mid-century manufacturing. Rockets! Air conditioners! Industrial solvents and bonding agents which in no way will damage our stout watersheds!
And the cars. The majestic Imperial. The distinctive DeSoto. The "gingerbread-free" Dodge Dart. While those lusty Italians of the modern era turned to a foul-mouthed Michigander for their "Imported from Detroit" ad campaign, back in 1960 the word was all about the new Simcas "imported from Paris." America was bound to j'adore these small cars.
Later in life, after 'Nam and a couple of marriages that made him miss 'Nam, Bill Weaver would still hearken back to his one bright day, the smell of velour and tang of hot leaking oil still pungent. Mr. Otis face and those be-finned beasts was no longer distinct, a dot-screened blur of color on his own brown pages. But what Bill Weaver longed for more than the factory or the fins, was the joy of revealing the world to his father, who taught him in return how to be part of the quick, the strong and the quiet, and whose ashes Bill Weaver kept in a hollowed-out Mopar carburetor.
Flip through the comic book above.