Saturday, February 20, 2010

It's That Time of Year Again

Yesterday was the 7th anniversary of when I lost my Dad. I was struggling with a new way to remember that anniversary on the blog and I ran into this today over at my favorite guilty secret site, The Borderline Sociopathic Blog For Boys.

Dad built me a track like this back in '66 for Christmas. It had 3 lanes, banked turns and 10 foot straight aways. I don't want to think about the hours he put into that track with only a circular saw and a Black and Decker jigsaw. Every screw was driven by hand; no battery operated drill drivers back in the day.

The whole track is 4 X 12, so it takes up a chunk of room, even more when you need to leave a couple of feet behind it to get around back to reset the cars.

I got 4 cars with it. 1/25 scale size- yeah, its a big track- and if I remember correctly 3 of them were Ferraris (yeah; just like the one above). A Red one, a White one and a Blue one. The fourth was an open cockpit racer, with the driver exposed. In those days you didn't buy a car off the shelf either. You bought a kit and assembled the car body like any plastic model kit. I can imagine how he felt the first time I hit the gas on one and instead of turning in the corner it sailed right off the track and into the concrete basement wall, then fell 3 feet to the concrete floor.

But never a cross word about it. He decided to make it a father/son project to build 'grandstands' around the turns. He and I spent a Saturday cutting pictures of people out of magazines and gluing them to a piece of cardboard that went between the side of the track and some dowels drilled in to the base.

No more flying cars, but forevermore the driver in the open racer was headless. It didn't seem to affect his driving ability, and we had lost his head in somewhere in the basement anyway.

What the Hell; it wasn't MY head.

My friends and family and I enjoyed that track for years. One day soon- as soom as I have the room for 48 square feet of racetrack- I'm going to fix it up, drag the cars down from the attic and enjoy it again.

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