Last Minute Christmas Gifts?

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    Wandering around western Queens, and living nearby the borders of Astoria, Sunnyside, and Woodside as I do, my path routinely crosses a section of Northern Boulevard which hosts several car lots and multitudes of automobile based businesses-repair shops, filling stations, car washes, etc. A particular concentration of this industry is found in the area between Steinway Street and Northern Boulevard’s intersection with Broadway. This is “the Carridor,” as I call it, and you can spot some amazing rides awaiting a buyer around these parts.

    Pictured is a 1966 Ford Mustang, lovingly cared for, and sporting the sort of style which defined the industrial supremacy of American auto manufacturing in the 20th century.

    From Wikipedia: “The first-generation Ford Mustang is the original pony car, manufactured by Ford Motor Company from 1964 until 1973.”

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    I’m not sure if this wonder, and yes it was indeed parked in front of a fire hydrant, was for sale or had already been purchased. A lot of these hot rod cars are coming through the car lots to get detailed or have some new gizmo installed. This is a Viper GTS, incidentally, and it reminded me of the sort of plastic model kits which I slaved over in childhood.

    Luckily, the folks over at revell.com have a viper model kit on sale for those of us with lesser means and lowered expectations.

    From Wikipedia:

    The Dodge Viper (renamed ‘SRT Viper’ as of MY 2013) is a V10-powered sports car, manufactured by the Dodge division of Chrysler. Production of the two seat sports car began at New Mack Assembly in 1991 and moved to its current home at Conner Avenue Assembly in October 1995.

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    My bet is that this is mid 1960s, quite possibly a 1965, Buick LeSabre Custom Convertible which I spotted on Northern Boulevard a few months ago, here in Queens. For more on the storied history of the redoubtable LeSabre automobile line, check Wikipedia.

    The car was painted black, which magnified how badass it looked.

    Gangster, in fact.

    Aside from high volume sellers like Major Auto World, there exists a loquacious group of classic car dealers and mechanics in the Carridor. There is also a large operation near Astoria Boulevard that offers older and more esoteric “classic” vehicles, displaying an inventory which is a wonder for area wag and young enthusiast alike.

    By “classic,” we are generally referring to pre 1972 era vehicles. Essentially, cars were built heavy and fast back then, and burned through gasoline in a manner that did not anticipate the rise of OPEC and expensive fuel.

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    An amazing hot rod Corvette parked on 44th Street nearby Northern Boulevard.

    Upon observation of this well appointed automobile, I began to gibber and jump about with acrimony over the fact that it will never be mine. Nothing could be more ridiculous than the idea of me behind the wheel of this thing, but still.

    It is high time that I have a midlife crisis, and this car would fit the bill for my last grasping attempts at youthful abandon. I would call it the Mitchmobile, and would be heard loudly and atonally singing “na na na Na Na, Wax-man” whilst touring the northern bank of the Newtown Creek at a thousand miles per hour.

    Have a merry one, Queensicans.

    Newtown Creek Alliance Historian Mitch Waxman blogs at Newtown Pentacle

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