Photograph caption dated February 23, 1955 reads “Posing with custom, are, from left, Wally McIntyre, president, Stylers of Van Nuys, and George Weinstock, secretary-treasurer. Sleek showpiece is ’48 Olds with unaltered engine but complete customizing, including ‘Frenching’ (recessing) headlights, ‘shaving’ (taking ornaments off) hood and ‘deck’ (trunk), new upholstering and rungs, choming windowsills and painting dash to match general color scheme (Mandorin (sic) red and white).”
The chrome, metal, motor and wheels crowd gathered at Bob’s Big Boy, as they do every Friday night, to partake of a parking lot full of old restored cars.
One old man had an old crank shaft Model T and was showing a crowd how to turn the engine on.
There was a very long purple Cadillac, and more than the usual collection of mid 1960s Chevys.
Fifty-two Fridays a year, vintage autos and their lovers gather here; even as we fall deeper into the 21st Century, our hearts are stuck in place in a country and century that no longer exists.
From Neat Stuff Blog
2009 has been the year that the American auto industry was temporarily rescued from its deathbed by an infusion of Federal money and the “Cash for Clunkers” program.
And this year has also seen the return of cruising on Van Nuys Bl., which was once the heart and soul of the auto culture parade in Los Angeles.
Ironically, it has been the needy dealers who gave. Thanks to the empty lot generosity of defunct Rydell Chevrolet and the newly resurrected Van Nuys Cruising Association, literally hundreds, if not thousands of vintage cars and restored vehicles are now congregating and parking near the corner of Burbank and Van Nuys Boulevard.
In Ralph’s parking lot, 4&20, the Mobil station, and all along VNB north of Burbank to Oxnard, there was an enormous and enthusiastic collection of car lovers and their cars.
Culturally, these events may be nothing more than big car love-ins. But one could not help but notice the American flags, the overwhelmingly white faces, the fat and freckled faced ladies in the lawn chairs, the crew cuts and blue eyes, the NRA, POW, McCain/Palin and Marine insignias, the smiling LAPD officers… the subconscious nostalgia for a San Fernando Valley that exists no more. This was on the night that Obama spoke his big speech on health care, and one wonders who in this crowd might be grumbling dark thoughts about the coffee complexioned leader of the free world.
But all that is nonsense. Pure speculation. This is all about having fun, isn’t it?