I do get feedback from my readers, but after the submission of my previous article I received feedback from one of my publishers. It turns out that they were immersed in “a good story” and I stopped too soon. By the way, I think my publishers shield me from the bad feedback, so thanks guys and gals.

There is more to the story about the ’58 Volvo, my first car. The spoon in the tire was only the beginning. Once the car was safely home, the cleaning process began. At the time the car seemed ancient to me, but currently I own and drive vehicles on a regular basis that are much older than the Volvo was at that time. 

The interior of the Volvo was in good condition and only needed cleaning. The body was straight and no dents, but within a few weeks I proceeded to paint the exterior. It was originally a light cream color and I went with a slightly darker shade, a sand colored tan. Just a little more depth to the color and was remarkably similar to the color of the exterior of the ’46 Ford that we came across on a Tuesday Breakfast Run.

The car was a wallflower at the dance. It didn’t fit in with the muscle car trend of the early ‘70’s and pre-dated any classic car enthusiasm. That didn’t keep it out of the limelight. It was unique and drew it own share of attention, even acquiring a cameo in the yearbook during my senior year in high school. All of the queen candidates, for some high school event that has a queen, had a group picture taken with them framing the Volvo. It was unclear if the car was standing in line with them as a player for the upcoming dance or they were just soothing the feelings of a homely friend that couldn’t get a date.

My buddies seemed to like the car also. They would often suggest that I drive and seemed quite pleased to be riding in the car. Now I know that you are thinking, “Sure, they were just letting you buy the gas and drive them around!” That went both ways! I had ridden with them plenty of times and this was a time when $3.00 would fill the entire tank on the Volvo and that was making the purchase at Parmley’s Store at Smack Out. Probably not the most economical place to purchase fuel, but Terry Shepherd and I stopped there so he could fuel me up on a day that I was hauling him around.

It turns out that I was considered a bit of a nerd in high school. Actually, “a bit of” is a huge understatement regarding the sentiment held by my schoolmates. So, there we sat: a high school nerd with a weird car, that in turn has weird events happen, like getting a flat from a table spoon and you all wonder why I have voices in my head!

-Paul Richardson is the proprietor of In Sane Marketing Solutions. He writes a weekly column, The Horse I Rode In On, for The Neosho Daily News and The Aurora Advertiser.