Monday, January 24, 2011

The Southun Shade Mechanic

Not too long ago, I owned a 1960 MGB. It was a great car but had a habit of needing almost constant tweaking. One night in particular, I lost the ability to use the gas pedal. While I was standing there, miles from home, checking out the problem and trying to find a way to fix the dang thing with all the auto parts closed, a man stopped and asked if he could help. I told him that what I really needed was some baling wire. Amazingly, he had some. I restrung the gas pedal's cable with the baling wire and was on my way in no time.

What this little story illustrates is that there is a long history of what is known as the "Shade Tree Mechanic" (or STM.) The STM is that guy who repairs cars right where they sit, no need to tow it in, or even have a roof. AND for the sake of argument, we'll allow that the STM can also be found working at night, sans "Shade."

The 'STM' is both a good mechanic and is also a crafty inventor - much like my above example, restringing a cable with a length of baling wire.

When I first moved to Tennessee I met a guy who was the quintessential STM. He owned a car repair business but rather than a brick and mortar building, he had his business in a big truck which he brought to your location and made needed repairs. A true Suthun 'Good Ol Boy' he could just about dismantle my car blindfolded with a glass of sweet tea at his elbow.

That big truck had a distinctive sound and I got a kick out of the fact that he parked it in the shade of the only big tree in my front yard. Over the years, I've lost touch with him but during those few years I knew him, he was practically on speed dial.

These days we own a 10 yr old 4WD Jeep. As it gets older, more and more problems abound. For the most part, I take the car to someone qualified, but sometimes I can do the work myself (and blog about it to no end...I am nothing if not self important.) Even with those repairs bolstering my personal ego, I still yearn for the sound of that big truck as it came down the street and parked in the shade of my big elm out front.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

It's a brand new year, in a brand new decade in a somewhat new century. I've been thinking a lot about my blog and want to get some more followers and commentators so I'm going to turn to those who were here first.


You, you loyal reader you. (Bubba, I know you read this weekly, and even daily, so you're at the top of the list.)

What I need to get is more readers. So, let's all take a moment to comb through all the past Marvinator posts and pass them on to your friends, relatives, neighbors, coworkers, grocer, lawyer, banker, modest acquaintance...are you getting the idea? Post it on Facebook, Tweet it on Twitter, put the link in the signature of all your emails.

Is that enough? No, of course not. Along with all those tweet and emails, you have to sell it. Tell everyone how funny it is, how readable and yeah, how handsome I am. (Bubba, not a word!)

Ok, friends, let see how many new readers we can get this week.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Invention Innovations - 3 Wheeled Genius

The other day as I was leaving work, I saw this really great little car. I am really drawn to those little 2 seater sportscars and the like, but this was even more incredible. It only had 3 wheels. Yeah, only 3 wheels. I didn't have time to get a photo, so I came home and scoured the internet looking for something close. The photo above is as close as I could get.

The idea of a 3wheel car is intriguing. Shorter turning radius? Gotta be. The only problems I could foresee could be in carrying home lumber and bricks from the hardware store, and maybe carrying my surfboard. Not a lot of call for surfing here in the Mid South, but bricks and lumber? You betcha!

Not to change the subject, but in one area of Tennessee, believe it or not, it is illegal to change a 4 wheel car into a 3 wheel car. Why? I have no idea. Why did I need to post that? I have no idea. I just have been carrying that around with me and needed to get it posted. So, there ya go. It's posted.

I also have been wanting to post this other picture of a Suthun Home Made 3 wheel vehicle and feel now is the time.

Now this vehicle could drag home the lumber, and even have room for the surfboard! Look at it! It's a Suthun Dream! HUGE diesel engine, Low Rider Cowbell, Skeleton Steer Head on the front, John Deere Paint Job, Over-sized Tires and even a Personal Head Rest, just like they have in the dentist's office.

(I'll wait while you check that last bit out....head rest.
Ok got it? Ready to move on? Good. )

Ok, so anyway, this is a great ride, and I wish I had the talent to create one of these things. At least it was created from scratch and won't be found illegal by any strange laws.

I love the south. If anyone finds one of those 3 wheel cars for sale, be sure to let me know.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Years In Nashville

Well, it's another New Years in Nashville and I'd like to take a moment to wish you all a spectacular Suthun New Year. I wish you all the great Suthun Friends, and Suthun Fried Foods and a Suthun Bubba neighbors you can handle, too.

This year, Nashville went all out and had a huge celebration in downtown. Right on the water's edge where the flood roared into town last May. Music, beer (oh yeah, lots of beer) and people gathered to watch the New Year ring in with style.

Perhaps the main thing about this celebration was the moment in which the New Year rang in. Up in New Yawk, they've had this huge glass ball drop to signal the entrance of the New Year. In Nashville we had a big Guitar.

The night started at sundown and temperatures were in the 60's so folks were able to enjoy the evening without having to wear a heavy coat. Dominated by live bands and entertainment provided by the Hard Rock Cafe just across the street, the evening was incredible. By midnight, the crowd was festive, rowdy and completely ready to ring in the New Year.

It was a heck of a year for Nashville, jewel of the south. We can only expect great things for the coming year, both for my Suthun Neighbors and for you, my faithful readers.