Being the uncultured American that I am, I look at the various pictures of other tribers (is that a thing now?) on here blasting along curvy and exotically-located European roads in their very own 1957 Alfa and think what the hell did I do wrong with my life and where is MY Alfa? Jealous? Maybe. Pissed-off at my life choices? Usually.
Dammit. I digressed.
My point is this: No matter where you drive, what you drive, when you drive, or how you drive, all of us wound up at DriveTribe for a reason. We all have an insatiable love of all things smelly, mechanical, temperamental, motorized, and that get us from A to B in something more than a mundane manner. (The 1967 Alfa Romeo Montreal in my photo above is a perfect example). And we all have stories of how cars have shaped our lives and played a part in them.
Which is why I was drawn to the Italian Car Fest in Grapevine, TX in 2011. The event is actually held every year and you can check out their state of the art (not really) website at www.italiancarfest.org if you’re so inclined. I’ve been drawn to Italian cars since the early 1990s but, sadly or happily - depending on how you look at it - I have never owned one. I have driven a 1991 Diablo and a smattering of Ferraris over the years. I also got to ride in a McLaren F1 many years ago and the experience was truly…
Dammit. Did it again. Sorry. (I will write about that F1 experience later).
Anyway, the culture around Italian cars is different and yet, at the same time, the same as with any group of car enthusiasts. The Italian car owners at a festival like this are usually rather obnoxious and not very welcoming – especially if you arrived to the festival in anything costing less than $100,000 or if you aren’t a partner in a law firm. They are, however, passionate about their chosen niche in the world of automotive associations and the same can be said for the guy with the 1967 Firebird that belongs to the local Pontiac club chapter. He probably dislikes Mopars as much as the Italian guys dislike French cars…
My point is this: No matter what type of car that you own, want to own, have owned, or will own, we all have stories of how cars have shaped the culture of ourselves – as well as the world’s culture. I hope that Culture of Cars becomes a place to share those stories and create new ones. And it has a funny acronym.