Enough of VW hippie buses and the counterculture. What we need is an antidote, the polar opposite of the VW bus: genuine Detroit iron, slathered with some less genuine vinyl applique. A Buick Roadmaster wagon, an All-American icon, will do the job nicely. These aren’t exactly common in Eugene, but one of our more prominent citizens drove one of these before he died; in fact this might be his very car. And who might I be referring to?
Ken Kesey. Yup, the last time I saw him and his wife Faye tooling through town, he was driving one exactly like this, although I don’t remember his having lost its front fender wood. How utterly perfect and fitting, for the original Merry Prankster to be driving a big Buick woody.
Let’s not forget the underlying message of the Pranksters: don’t take things so damn seriously, because things are not always what they appear to be. Or my (adopted) version: just because you think it doesn’t make it true. Anyway, maybe Ken just liked the big cushy seats and a nice soft ride. Probably some of both.