My Orange Vega

By Mike Johnson

Orange. Thatís why I bought the car. If the Internet existed in 1975, the reviews of ď1974 VegaĒ would be grim. Due to the toxic combination of no experience & supreme confidence, 17-year-old brains are easily fooled.

But the car was sporty, colorful & had just 20,000 miles.

As a rental car.

Which was "driven home" a year later when I had to replace the transmission.

My dad had recognized the flimflam. He refused to cosign the loan. So my boss volunteered.

$74 a month for 36 months. At my $2.10 an hour wage.

But I loved that car.

I think that orange Vega was the last car I ever hand waxed.

I see myself patiently applying black pinstripes to the raised edges of the hood.

Folding down the back seats & affixing orange carpeting to the inside walls.

Which reveals the third toxic additive to the teenage mind, hormones.

That Vega got me from Florida to Minnesota & back twice. Got me a speeding ticket in Madison. Got me a girl out of her Ö (self-edit).

I like to think that car loved me too.

Maybe, just maybe, itís cubed in some junkyard writing blog posts about me.

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