Did AutoWeek's Mark Vaughn Give TTAC a Piston Slap?

Sajeev Mehta
by Sajeev Mehta
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did autoweek s mark vaughn give ttac a piston slap

I received a love note from (former TTAC scribe) Frank Williams that was more than a little irk-inspiring. Frank still reads AutoWeek, but that’s not a big deal: he noticed that Senior Editor Mark Vaughn’s column on the print rag is called “Piston Slap.” Or to put it in his own words:

“I don’t know how long he’s been using it, because this is just bathroom reading material that I toss as soon as I finish so I don’t have any back issues to look at. However, I’ll bet your use of the title predates his. Sounds like the making of a snarky blog to me.”

Damn straight it does, Frank. Then again, perhaps Vaughn’s column predates my 14+ month odyssey into the world of Automotive self-help. And I came up with the name myself, thank ya very much. Course I don’t know who grabbed this name first, because I’m fairly ignorant on most mainstream print media. But maybe the Best and Brightest can help. Does anyone have AutoWeek back issues that show us when Vaughn used the “Piston Slap” name in his column?

My guess is someone owes me an apology, but perhaps I spoke too soon. In any case, this ain’t over.

Sajeev Mehta
Sajeev Mehta

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10 of 31 comments
  • Steven Lang Steven Lang on May 18, 2010

    Well we all know I was the first person in America to come up with the phrase, "Hammer Time". I also invented the funny little pants for that rapper who came from Oakland.

  • Willman Willman on May 18, 2010

    Actually it was I awhile back who first copywrote & trademarked the term "Piston Slap" here on TTAC, before it Mysteriously turned into the title of a column; just a few days later... -It was back in the days when we all learned to not be on the same roads as Jack Baruth and his Phaeton. -Somewhere around February 27, 2009 when Ed posted about the MCE-5 in "The Rabbit and The Hare". So if anyone should be at all upset about this copyright-infringement bogartage it should be ME!!! :D . That being said, I am not in the least upset. If anything, this column is so good and provides such a large & quality source of fixit info & community discourse that it Deserves a little flattery in the form of imitation. I think a lot of people had always wanted something like a VwVortex without the yobbos, and ttac has done it. . Sajeev however, still owes me royalties. ;P

  • Nicodemus Nicodemus on May 19, 2010

    Bluff well and truly called me thinks.

  • MarkVaughn MarkVaughn on May 19, 2010

    Sajeev, Turns out there's a website called pistonslap.com that predates both of us, even your impressive 14-month tenure. So if you really meant what you said above, "I will rename my column if published proof surfaces," then I'll look for the new name soon. Mark Vaughn mvaughn@crain.com

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    • Nicodemus Nicodemus on May 19, 2010

      Older than that. The first edition was 1954: http://www.thornleighcarclub.org/tcc.net/images/content/65_0.jpg Either way, Sajeev needs to eat some humble pie and re-name the column in deference to the erstwhile aussie car club:-)