You are probably asking yourself “What do you mean I don’t own my car? Of course I do, I make payments or paid it off!” That is true. I won’t be talking about banks, insurance, local laws or monetary ownership of your car at all. Your car, huh? Why not fix that stupid part of the dash you always hated? Or paint it the color you really wanted? You might say “I don’t know how to do it professionally” or “Well one day I want to…” That second thought is my issue. One day you might what to what; sell the car, give it your child or you feel it will become a collector’s item (if it isn’t one already)?
If you love cars, usually, you LOVE cars and they are a main focus of your life. Why let a general society view of cars dictate the direction of your passion? If a seemly average person had their car scratched by a kid they get mad because it now makes an unfavorable impression upon them to their peers. Will cost time and money to repair, also affect the resale value. It is not because they love their car, it is because the car is a tool, that to them is now broken, resulting in anger and blaming a child for clumsiness or ignorance. If you love cars and your car is scratched, that child just hurt your child and you go into a blind rage, which you have the right to do, but if you really do love your vehicle what is the real damage? If it is because the resale value of your car and what it might be “worth” to a theoretical future buyer, or because it was perfect. It probably wasn’t your car getting damaged even if you pay for the gas and plates; you are just a custodian, taking care of an object for others to enjoy at your expense.
Take a look at your hot wheels collection, still in the package aren’t they? Why the fuck are they still in the package? Is it because one day they will be “worth” something or will be impressive to someone? Worth something and impressive to who? Not to your, your kids, or peers, since they will never touch them. If you truly own it, what is it worth to you, what is its value to you, what would you do with it? That’s the only person’s opinion that matters. Die cast cars in packages sitting in a glass case on a shelf, not able to be touched by you or anyone else. Something you stress when your wife vacuums the room. All because these .99 cent objects could be worth $1.50 in 20 years? If that is your goal that is fine, but I think most of us want to interact and share the joys of motorsport, not the smug and stressed over protective side of motorsports. By trying to reserve these metal works of art for the future, we turn ourselves into that grumpy old man who looks at children as a threat to his paint. Not a future hot rodder trying to explore his own journey into car life.
Can I play with those toys downstairs Mr.? Can I sit in your car? Or if you have a do not touch sign by your car at a show, why the hell do you even enjoy cars? Your car isn’t perfect; if you love it, you know every intimate problem with it; the squeak if the rear seat is folded or the dirt behind the door jamb you can’t get at. You don’t get mad at those problems because you enjoy the car and maybe it even came with that character when you bought it. But now this new scratch is a major problem, if you love something you will respect every story with it won’t you? Especially if received under use. You can fix it if it really bothers you that much, so that is a problem borrowed from general society car ownership, and if you can’t fix it, you should probably learn. Learning on your own car is one of the most enjoyable experiences I have had so far, besides letting people rev my car up, or taking them for a spin.
It is my car; I own it and can do anything I want. Goodbye Mr. Back seats. Crap I hit a garbage can, oh well time to learn how to pop a dent anyways. Brake booster is leaking? Pull it apart and find out why, not just buy a new one. If a Kid at the car show wants to touch my car he can go right ahead; strap himself into the racing seats, hell, lay on the hood if he wants as long as he is respectful and self-aware. Sharing your passion is important, the next generation is just as important. You may scoff at people who don’t drive their cars saying “they don’t enjoy them” or “cars are meant to be driven”. Although you share a lot with that guy whether you like it or not, he doesn’t drive them because he loves them so much he doesn’t want to risk someone else damaging it or putting more mileage on the ODO. It removes the object from the community and the joy of the ownership along with it, all because what the car might be worth to someone else in the future. Well same goes when you tell a kid he can’t touch your car or you get mad and stressed over things with your pride and joy. Instead of portraying your thoughts about cars, you instead portray only your actions and words of trying to protect something. Instead of what is important, sharing your passion, wisdom and having fun with these pieces of metal!
If you completely disagree with me that is alright. You can keep taking overboard care of that stress pile sitting under a cover in the garage half the year you call a release. Hopefully one day someone like me might get a hold of that pristine 1986 Porsche 911, that was babied its whole life, But instead I floor that flat 6 at every chance I can get, take it shopping, take sweaty little kids with their skateboards for a ride of their life and inspire them to have fun with these infinitely beautiful and complex machines. I own my car, not the next person or even my future self. I have this beautiful experience in my hands today, not a second to waste. If it ever does transfer ownership, the next person won’t care as much about how it was used as I would think, society doesn’t care as much as we think. 80% of kids say nice car whether it is a rat rod or a matching numbers Hemi Cuda, but the car you hear run and get permission to touch will make an infinite more positive memory. It might make someone love the ricer burner they sat in a lot more than all the perfect 350’s behind glass.
P.S. Matching numbers, who actually values that in reality, is it because it is rare? Have you ever driven a 56 Chevy? That shit is bumpy, loud, uncomfortable, and slow as hell, who wants that? Give me the Chevy that can run 9’s with air conditioning, over the; matching numbers, glove touched, childhood crisis, someone will pay $1 million for because they are trying to relive the past, before they sold their soul for money, any day of the week.
**EDIT** I feel some people are having a hard time, due to my paragraph structure, finding the point I’m trying to convey and misinterpret it with ignorance. I will work on my writing skills and in the mean time give a TL;DR:
The message I was trying to convey was, keeping things safe from danger is impossible, trying to, hurts our passions with over protective and negative behaviors borrowed from non-car society, when sharing and understanding will make our passion grow exponentially.