Vintage Pin Up: Gene Pressler

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The Stout Scarab

Say what you want
about this beast —

It was the world’s first
production-made mini-van,
and inspired by the
engineering genius of
Buckminster Fuller
and his Dymaxion Car.

And interestingly enough,
the Stout Scarab’s design
motto was :
“Simplicate.
Add Lightness”

Developed in 1932 by SAE
President William B. Stout,
the car went into limited
production in 1935 on a tiny
factory line in Dearborn,
Michigan.

Those rear-wheel drive
Scarabs were equipped
with a rear-mounted
Ford flathead V-8
engine producing 90
horsepower — driving
a three speed manual
transaxle that could
get the thing moving
up to about 75 MPH.

No fenders,
no running boards,
cab-forward design,
6 passenger capacity
(but with only two
access doors, one driver
side, and one mid-body
on the passenger side )
and an aerodynamic
Deco-inspired look
and form made the Stout
Scarab more than the
average novelty car
in the mid-1930’s —
but it’s expense
(about $85,000
in today’s money)
put it out of reach
for most consumers.

There were perks to
those who could afford one –
the interior included a
folding table and seats
that could be re-arranged
at will, with plenty
of space even allowing
for a portable office or
a sleeping area if required.

Stout stopped producing
the Scarab as World War II
approached, but made
one more after the war
with the help of the
Owens-Corning Company –
– The Scarab “Experimental” –
which was the first car
with a fiberglass
body and a pneumatic suspension.

And no matter how ugly you
might think the Scarab was ,
you do have to admit,
it was aptly named.

!! HOY !!

You Got Me Sticky

I don’t drink it
a lot anymore….

but when I was
a kid, boy, did I
have a yen
for soda pop.

I wasn’t allowed to
have it, usually
(it’s ‘bad for your teeth’)
but every once in a while,
we as a family would
get ourselves invited
to my great-uncle Frank’s house –

— and his eleven kids had no
such draconian dental health
decree hanging over them …

so I could practically drown
in the stuff over there –

when my parents weren’t
looking, anyway.

And drink my fill,
I surely did.

So much so, that now,
I barely can tolerate
the stuff.

Maybe the substitution of
HFCS (high fructose corn syrup)
for sugar is part of the problem..

– but truthfully, I just don’t
need all those empty calories,
anyway.

Despite being in the gymImage result for vintage soda poster
five days a week, my weight
has started to challenge me
a bit at my age, and the
trade off between a bottle
of soda pop and an extra
hour of cardio hardly seems
worth it.

(Exception:
if you’re a Southerner,
try to find some
Blenheim Ginger Ale
– the one with the red cap —
— I highly recommend it —
assuming you love
ginger, like I do )

It’s also true that a lot of the
really cool soda brands that
I liked are all gone now…

Hell, as a teenager,
I even liked the
original Fresca.

Remember old Coke in
those 6 ounce bottles ?

Cold as the iceberg that
sank the Titanic .

Ahhh…..
man, that was good.

Yes, you can still get original
Coke in 6 ounce bottles
(with sugar and not HFCS )
— in Mexico.

Interesting.

It tastes like you
remember it, too.

I won’t bother meditating 
on why such a thing
is such a thing.

Just another reason to look
forward to going back to the
Yucatan, s’all.

(Don’t forget the fish tacos
and the pretty señoritas. )

Anybody remember
the old fable about how
you could get a cheap
high off an RC Cola
and aspirin?

Nope.
It doesn’t work.

But the making a rocket out
of a 2 liter bottle of Diet Coke
and Mentos really does —
— stand way back, jack !!!

I hope you don’t mind getting
sticky soda all over everything.

Ah well.
Sticky ain’t always bad, right ?

!! HOY !!

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