All of this is to say that you won't see any Ferraris or Lamborginis on this list. I've owned one fast car, but the iffy suspension precluded any racing, and there's only one "sportscar" on my wish list. I admit to having mellower tastes, but that's okay.
(all the remaining photos are samples, not my actual vehicles: the photo above is probably the only photo I have of my 73 VW bus)
Jim took me around the neighborhood and we got stuck on one small hill, and I finally got it. He and I drove together a lot, as we we're 11 months apart and he had a knack for doing things like u-turns in the middle of nowhere where a cop was watching. I did most of my Learner's Permit driving with Jim on a suspended license as my "licensed driver" in the passenger seat.
We bought our older brother Danny's baby blue bug to share for 250 bucks, on payments (no interest) as our first purchased car (Dad strongly believed in providing vehicles, but you have to break free occasionally, right?) and my second in a long line of Volkswagens.
We also drove a van very much like this Chevy in high school, and it was not very popular with the parents of my senior year girlfriend. There are many possible stories and comments, but I'll only tell two. First, though, you should know the origin was a small business venture of my sister and her manfriend, driving to Florida, buying seafood off the docks and driving it in heavy coolers back to Cincinnati to sell. That didn't last too long, and my dad bought it from them (before it got repo'd I bet).
Next was one of 2 Thunderbirds, a 2-door that Jim and I drove in High School, too, given to my Dad by the widow of a bar patron. Actually they were both patrons, a cute little elderly couple, definitely from a bygone era. The hood flew open on me twice, but it was fun to drive. Faded green 2 door 67 similar to this:
Next on memory lane are some cars of Dad's that I drove a lot:
What, pray tell, is "my car?" A 1973 VW bus! The vehicle most of my friends of that time period will identify as Dave's vehicle, dubbed the Magic Bus by Doug Clark.
That marked the beginning of a brief era of new cars, however, where I discovered the joys of car payments and air conditioning. My to-be-spouse's family had a very different car philosophy at the time, and her first brand new Camry led to my brand new Tercel, quickly followed by a brand new Corolla in 92 after she traded in for the new bodystyle. That marks a giant mistake in our car history: I should have bought her traded in Camry, it was a great car.
Too many words, time for pictures.
Useful, yes. The 04 has cost us entirely too much in repairs and the process of ditching the 99 and getting the 04 was not pleasant, but the players have realized it was a bad move for several reasons and have made peace with it. Strange to be a non-player in the car buying process for my family, but when the in-laws are feeling generous (if misguided) it is best to step out of the way. It won't happen again, we've agreed (well, my wife and I have!).
That brings us up to date! 18 cars not including the 5 I've had as a married man (and those are all in her name anyway).
***Update December 2012**** The Chrysler Town and Country is gone. History repeats with "you can't drive our grandkids around in that thing, and why wait till we are dead to start on your inheritance, here's a 2012 Toyota Sienna."
Now, those ones I wish I had....