Sunday, November 26, 2023

Let's Give a Big Hand To Negative Nancy!!

We have had, let's say, some difficulties (FAMILY) lately and we've been dealing with that, which by no means excuses my absence, though it sure saps the will to write Charming Vignettes. Things are improving though, so here I am, and there you are.

Thanksgiving was great! Another culinary triumph thanks to The Biker.  (FAMILY) behaved. Good thing too. (FAMILY) might have gotten an Atomic Swirlie had that not been the case.

And nobody wants an atomic swirlie.       


 It's the oddest thing, but as I get older, the more I miss the 1970's.

Thing is, I hated the Seventies when I was in the Seventies. New furniture was photo finish over chipboard. Granny squares rained down like fallout.  Nobody needed a Bicentennial Toilet, Couch or Bedroom Set, but Sears sold them. Disco existed. People wore denim jumpsuits. Then there was Nixon, 'Nam, and the Chevrolet Citation. 

Yet here I am now, and here comes someone driving by in a Pinto, and I'll get this warm fuzzy and think 'Aw, that's nice.'

And I'm wrong!



OK holy shit this whole THING just came to mind. It's one of my pet rants. ____________________________


YOU KNOW          

Dear God what a piece of garbage the Pinto was. The marketing campaign was garbage. The design was garbage. The engine and drive train were garbage. No, those were worse than garbage. They were proof that there Is No God and that large corporations don't give a shit if you die in flames.

 I'll drag you out of this car and kick the shit out of yWHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU CAN'T FIND MEXICO DAVE  

 Looking into the engine compartment of a Pinto was appalling. Everything under there, from the thing that held the battery in place to the plastic tape covering the wiring was noticeably, glaringly cheap. 

Driving a Pinto felt cheap, too.

As soon as you started the engine the thing filled with the smell, and the sound, of plastic. As the thing warmed up the smell got stronger and more little plastic voices joined the choir, rattling, buzzing, boinking, ticking. The plastic window cranks would go 'ddddddddddddddddddddddd' unless you jammed a twisted-up napkin in there. The plastic door locks would tweedle themselves up off their pegs until the plastic threads wore out. Then they'd just split and fall off.

Stone stock and trashy as the day it was made. Just looking at this pisses me off.     

Go ahead. Adjust the timing. Change the plugs. Won't matter. The whole car juddered in time with with the engine stroke, just like a tractor. The windows thrummed.  The mirrors jiggled. You could sit there waiting for a light and watch the screws that held on the window trim ka-deedling out of their holes. 

Put your foot all the way into a Pinto and all that would happen is a mild increase in speed, which is not the shit you want when you are driving in Seattle traffic. Or any traffic. Luckily this meant you wouldn't be doing any high-speed braking because the brakes were...class? class?  


The brakes were garbage.

The engines were atrocious. All the components were made using with the shittiest materials Ford could get away with. This was known as 'reducing weight for better fuel economy' and Ford did it because 'lower prices mean more people can afford Today's Ford.' And just think - once Todays Pinto burned your parents to death and you inherited, it would be a lot easier for you to buy Tomorrows Ford.  Circle of liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii


I have brought this subject up in the past and I always get people who pop up with I/my dad/my mom/my whoever owned a Pinto and it was super groovy,  God how I miss that car, I wish I still had it, I had my first date/cardiac event/Yankee Candle party in that Pinto - or my very favorite of all time, the proof that someone is really using those critical thinking skills, the statement that covers all sins:  "They were great little cars for the time.


THEY WEREN'T.       


*  Why The Ford Pinto Was One Of The Worst Cars Of All Time (

                          The Pinto Memo: ‘It’s Cheaper to let them Burn!’ | The Spokesman-Review

                          The Ford Pinto - The American Museum of Tort Law (


  1. I hear ya. Where did the simple days of carefee and fashion go? Pinto's...not so much. Just give me a nice vintage Citroen and I'll be happy. Meanwhile after eating, huh, well several helpings at Thanksgiving Dinner, I finally got back into my regular pants again. So that's a plus.

  2. A friend had a copper brown one we drove from Houston to Austin and which we called The Turd.

    1. I know exactly the color you mean! One of the Pintos we turned was that same babyshit brown color. We cracked on the heater for the first time and it blew out a rats nest the length of my arm packed full of rat shit. The only thing in that car that worked consistently was that heater fan, come to think of it!

  3. I know nothing about cars but I am with Mistress Maddie, there is something adorable about a vintage Citroen. Did Starsky & Hutch drive around in a Pinto ? Well you can't get more 70s than that
    I used to live in the 70s but am very glad that I don't now. There was a hell of a lot of bad stuff along with the good that we now miss.

    Nice to have you back we missed you.


    1. The DS21 convertible was a sexy little car! I had to look up the Starsky and Hutch car though- they drove a Ford Gran Torino. And I thank you for your kind words. It's good to be back!

  4. I have encountered a twenty something some years ago in Baltimore who thought that the 1972 Ford Torino was the high mark of the automobile. "Just look at all those body creases!" he exclaimed.
    Yes, just look, indeed.

    1. Oh, those body creases! That's practically the Stagflation signature. Save on sheet metal, make 'em square!

  5. Well, I've lived with a few Fords...'73 Mach 1 Mustang, 2 fully restored Mustang notch backs ('65 and '66) then another 73 Mach 1 restoration and heard arguments on 351 Cleveland v 409 Windsor and just about every other classic that came off the Ford floor. Have I mentioned The Man likes Fords?

    1. Oh mercy I have heard those very same arguments. My dad was a Ford man and the Biker is decidedly NOT. We've had three Pintos and a shitpile of miscellaneous Fords. Me, I'm all about the '68 Pontiac Grand Prix with the hidden headlights and the 442. What a car! Walnut trim, leather interior, stealthy, sleek and sexy! Pass everything but a gas station!!!