Sunday, October 31, 2010

[Weekly Whimsy] A Word On Rides

Welcome to Weekly Whimsy! An authoritative address on accessorization, accessibility, adaptation and admiration of automobiles among afficionados in our armada of acolytes.

[I adore words, just in case ya didn't know. On to today's topic!]

(No, you're not seeing double. This is posted over at iHOP as well.)

Come along and ride on a fantastic voyage - Coolio, Fantastic Voyage 

There's something both fascinating and fabulous about any form of locomotion with a motor and wheels. The appearance of any kind of vehicle seems to turn certain brains to mush, reverting them back to their four
year old selves. I've seen it countless times, mostly in men, but a few of the women I know fall victim to it as well. It's especially pronounced when the motor is especially powerful, or is encased in a fancy or
visually attractive package. Throw a Lambo out, and -wham- instant stupid.

I'm personally turned into a blithering idiot by vintage muscle cars. I'm an absolute nut for the Shelby era cars, but have a serious case of lust for pretty much any long hood setback power car prior to 1969. A prime
example is this luscious hunk:

um.... droool... I'm supposed to be writing a blog entry... damn... Blink... back to the thought at hand...

This general fondness for machines and go-fast has a tendency to creep into popular culture. Who doesn't remember this?

Many gaming experiences have gone through some sort of vehicle-related trauma, some funny; some ridiculous. I recently played in a D20 Modern Miami Vice setting with detectives in partnerships; my “partner” Tim had an endless and morbid tendency to use cars rather than weapons. The night wasn't complete without a car being totally demolished at his hands. His coup de grace was dropping a bulldozer onto a cigarette boat from on top of a cliff, setting things into a fiery inferno. A good friend played in a Star Wars game where he “piloted” the ship into the docking bay, causing damage and mayhem along the way. I know I've heard countless other more than slightly amusing but yet mortifying stories involving various forms
of transport and the exploits of their handlers; most too ridiculous to recount here.

Perhaps the best examples of vehicular obsession I've seen are in 40K. Thor over at Creative Twilight has a bad case of Kult of Speed; Sandwyrm and Dethtron have hard-ons for mech; and some of the best conversions I've witnessed are machinery.

While they feature a large part in many armies, for the most part, jet packs and air bikes are left as is:

It's the wheels that get the conversion love. Examples include this figure, which I think my CSM playing friend will like:

(Said friend wants to convert at least one of his attack bikes into a trike- I think the chopper will give him some inspiration)

Then there's Kamui's brilliant and grungy battle wagon: (Seen at Creative Twilight)

And this breathtaking ork trukk by JB (seen at TheBack40K)

While I'm no expert, I do love talking about cars & trucks. A lot of times I don't understand the language, but I understand intent. I do have a little knowledge- I worked at a gas station which generated a small amount of information required for the job; and I help people sell their cars through advertising, so I have learned a lot of short cuts and more than a few hard and fast rules according to make or manufacturer. It's in the talking that I learn the most.

Asking questions to my friends often brings out their passion and energy for the vehicles in question. I completely enjoy watching a face light up, and seeing a normally quiet or introverted guy break out of his shell to tell me all about his latest modeling trick or the way he scrounged for bits to make something “just right”.

I've had a blast discussing and sharing some of the engines that make my heart race. I hope you've enjoyed the ride... {wink}


  1. Back in the day, before you could buy all of these nifty conversions, I needed an Eldar Vyper. GW didn't make one jet so I took two jetbikes, cut them in half, slapped them together, and slung a shuriken cannon underneath.

    I've had several cars over the year. One of my favorites was a 68 Camaro convertible that I was trying to restore. I had to seel it in 82 when i lost a job.


  2. Well, cool ont he Eldar conversion!

    I didn't know that about the Camaro... I only knew about the Ford.

  3. Another wonderfully wicked weekly whimsy there Loquacious. While my link to vehicles is largely practical (a to b please) I did do a few laps in an Aston Martin Vanquish a few days ago... Wow. Just... Wow.

  4. Although I've heard the stories before, the d20 Modern anecdote reminded me of the Combat Yugo that my group made back when we were playing Top Secret SI . . .