Dating and Driving Italian

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For whatever reason, I’ve always been one of those people who likes horns. I don’t need them to be all fancy, a simple air horn will do, just not one of those wuss-ass beep-beep horns. I tried to tell our product guy at Kia Motors that the world would think SO much more highly of our bottom feeder import cars if they had an air horn vs. a beep-beep. As one of the marketing guys, I couldn’t think of a better way to create a substantial first impression with a buyer. Who doesn’t get in a car and honk the horn? Heck, American muscle was built on a horn that could make a semi take notice. “Paul, couldn’t agree more but you will never get it passed the Koreans.” Harrrumph.

When I bought my ’66 Porsche 912, the first thing I did on the freeway was honk the horn. Ah, good old fashion dual air horns. The car even has air horn grilles to let the sound resonate beyond the confines of sheet metal. Beautiful. Much to my dismay on Saturday night, out with my good friend Ern in Laguna Beach, I tried to honk the horn. Nothing. Hitting it harder didn’t do much. It wasn’t so much that it didn’t work, it could have been a loose wire or possibly a fuse. It was worrying about what might have caused a fuse to blow, an entirely different problem than pushing a wire back on.

Sunday, we lifted the hood. Lose wire on the windshield wipers solved the other problem that night. Yes, believe it or not, it was sprinkling at the beach. We are even having thunderstorms today. But a check of the fuses, pulling the horn cap, checking wires left me puzzled. Checking again didn’t solve the problem nor did it the third time. Today, got in the car and the horn fired right up! What changed? I don’t know. I don’t really care at this point. The horn works and as my other friend Will pointed out, you just never knew with my ’69 Alfa what you were going to get on a date. Not that I was on a date with Ern mind you… although… he did buy me drinks. Anyway, Will said you’d think you were impressing the girl only to have the car come apart at the seams before you got her home. Which brings me to my astute wife who said upon hearing the news of my broken horn, “why did you have to honk it in the first place? Were you not driving carefully??” Imperceptible pause on my part… of course not honey. Ern saw a hot chick driving next to us so we had to honk to get her attention. Nothing against Italian cars, I love all equally. But I’m so glad not to be dating and at this particular time, to be driving German.

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