QOTD: What Was the Worst Car at Your High School?
Those of you who follow my Questions of the Day (so, 100 percent of the B&B) may notice I’ve been on a bit of a nostalgia kick lately. Asking you about your formative driving experiences or your first-ever car ride has generated some great stories. We all have old memories locked away in the memory vault, so we may as well drag them out and dust off a few.
My question today is about your teen years. More specifically, the high school ones. Such a variegated parking lot of treasures, rust, and Best Buy sound systems. Which ride sank to the bottom of the barrel as the worst in your high school parking lot?
The Ford business coupés, malaise rectangles or teal boxes of your youth (depending on your generation) that sat sweltering in the sun until the mid-afternoon exodus five days out of the week. I know you remember. Vehicles of varying quality, gifted by dad or bought with hard-earned savings from behind a greasy grille.
Having the right car can add substantially to your coolness, which is undoubtedly one of the most important things in life when you’re between the ages of 14 and 18. I [s]didn’t have the right car[/s] was nearly famous, as I was in a five-cylinder, light blue Audi 5000 S built in 1987.
However, our examples today should be the wrong cars. And I don’t want any of you to say the Trans Sport above is an example of uncool, because it’s awesome, and could only be better if it were an Oldsmobile Silhouette. Fact.
My uncool memory comes from the brand with the red arrowhead, though, and it was even the same color.
This is a pretty close facsimile of the biggest piece of crap in my high school parking lot. A circa 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix (just a couple of years old at that time). The owner had put $50 plastic spinners on the wheels, tinted all the windows black, and added numerous go-fast glue-on accoutrements from Autozone. Underneath the car, red neon lights and a loud exhaust completed the package.
The owner of this glorious motorcar would arrive at school 15 to 20 minutes early every day, park at an angle in the back of the parking lot (taking up two spaces), and blast his poor taste in rap music through the aftermarket speakers at maximum bass. You could hear the car vibrating from across the lot, and the owner would brag in class that his “…system is so loud it vibrates the buttons out of the dash!” Our lockers were near one another, as our last names were close alphabetically. I heard about this Pontiac often, which made it even worse.
Undoubtedly, it was the worst car in my high school’s lot, simply because of what the owner had done to it. Let’s hear your stories about the worst heap in your high school lot.
[Image: RM Auctions, Inc.; roadsmile.com]
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- MaintenanceCosts Timely question as this happened to me just this morning. The answer was "my kids were engaged in a stupid fight in the back seat." I was trying to drive and keep them from killing each other at once, and I cut off a pedestrian in a crosswalk while making a left turn. Thankfully I wasn't close enough to create serious danger, but it was a jerk driving move.
- Dave M. "81 million supposedly". Landslide according to some statisticians.
1963 Dodge Dart four-door.
1968-1972, upscale neighborhood in So Cal, private Catholic School. The teachers generally drove worse cars than the kids. I think there was a zoning ordinance that you couldn't drive a crappy car if you lived in the area (j/k). Truthfully, the kids that came from working class households didn't have cars. The "worst" cars weren't that bad. A '59 Impala Convertible that, looking back, was really in mint condition. A '69 Nova coupe with a six banger and that semi-automatic Powerglide. A '62 Chrysler 300 Coupe that I'd love to have today. But the prize would have to go to the kid that drove his hand-me-down '54 Chrysler New Yorker. Had a Hemi... and he still has it, but now restored to it's former glory. I had a '70 442 W30, and it wasn't the nicest car in the parking lot by a long shot.