Saturday, January 24, 2009

Life is an '89 Cadillac

There are entire websites devoted to songs about Cadillacs.  One of these sites even lists bands named after Cadillacs (Caddydaddy's latest count was 11).  

As for me, I didn't full appreciate the Cadillac (because it's not a car, it's a Cadillac) until I met Willie.  And then three years after that.  

Willie's '89 Sedan de Ville was the car in which he got continuously pulled over on the West side of Chicago (for being a white guy driving a Cadillac in a non-white neighborhood).  It was the car that landed me (and not Willie) in handcuffs after Willie and I got pulled over in Uptown (for being white in a Cadillac while driving on Wilson Avenue).  The cop's search of the car was cut short, however, when they spotted an actual drug bust opportunity not 20 yards away.

Willie's '89 Sedan de Ville was the car that made you look two feet taller since the interior fabric on the roof had come detached and hung lower and lower each month.

It was the car that Willie liked to joke was older than his students.

But, most impressively, it was the car -- and I mean Cadillac --that made it from Chicago to North Carolina in 14 hours straight last summer when everyone said it couldn't.  Even though Willie had to refill the oil every 180 miles due to a leak, even though he had the windows rolled up (and no A/C) so that he wouldn't lose any aerodynamic-ness,  and even though I was on-call to come get him if he broke down between Chicago and Indianapolis, the Carolina blue Caddy brought him home safe and sound.

Sadly, the state of North Carolina does not respect such feats.  Willie's '89 Sedan de Ville, with it's rusted bottom and broken tail light, and lord knows what else, would not pass inspection.  After sadly accepting this fact, Willie had trouble just giving his beauty away.  Finally, Habitat for Humanity agreed to take it.

I'm glad I wasn't home to see it carted off yesterday.  The Cadillac looked good parked in front, hanging out with my blue Fit, and I miss it already.  Here are photos of the Caddy's last moments with us:

(You can kind of see the low-hanging ceiling in the center of the car.)

See that truck parked up ahead?  Luckily, that's Willie's, too.

And although it's not a Cadillac, having this toothpaste green Ford truck parked out front is not too shabby.  Although I don't know how to drive it yet, my dog sure looks good riding in it.


Claire Just Claire Like Cher said...

Oh noooo, I'm missing the Caddy too -- please pass along my condolences to Willie as well. But hell yeah, I'm liking the truck! Can't take Caddy's place, but it's coooool.

Ridiculous, right, that it couldn't pass whatever these tests are -- what about tests for what a car really means to people, for what it has been and still can be. SUVs driving all around with exemptions because they're trucks, and yet -- with the Caddy still running -- it's a no-go? Shame on them.

But Habitat will show the Caddy the Humanity it deserves, as you both have. And you'll always have the stories of police pull-overs to fondly remember. Sigh. I'm feeling quite sad now, and must go listen to some blues for the blue Caddy. These people...they just don't understand. (So did Illinois' "Air Team" accept the Caddy, and NC wouldn't? What-ev-ah. Grrrrr.) Much love and support XO

SteveG said...

That's a cool old truck! I've sometimes thought that my next car should be a neat old pickup like that.