One night in June 1977, my next-door neighbor Conrad launched me to a good friend of his who labored for Bally Sneakers. He requested me if I used to be keen on coming with him on Friday to work on the warehouse in Manhattan to assist do stock. He instructed me if the supervisor preferred me, he would supply me a job for the summer season.

I landed the job and obtained paid twice as a lot as I anticipated. This was excellent as a result of I used to be decided to start out my senior yr in highschool proudly owning my very own automotive.

I knew I wished a Mopar. I discovered a 1966 Dodge Coronet 440 with a 318-cubic-inch V8, bucket seats and a console. It was pale crimson with a crimson inside and had a valve faucet within the engine. The man was asking $300 however would take $250.

I wished that automotive, however my dad steered I hold trying as a result of he felt I might discover one thing higher. I checked the paper each evening and at last discovered a 1967 Dodge Coronet 500 with shiny crimson paint, a black inside and vinyl high, A/C, and bucket seats. As an alternative of a console, it had a buddy seat. It additionally had a quiet engine; the man wished $200.

I made a decision I couldn’t dwell with out the console, so I instructed my dad I used to be going for the ’66 Coronet. The factor was, I wanted to borrow a couple of bucks from my dad and mom, so the choice was made that the ’67 Coronet can be financed, the ’66 Dodge wouldn’t. I wasn’t too comfortable, however when my dad defined his reasoning, he was proper.

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The tradeoff for the console was getting a automotive that didn’t want engine work and a re-paint, plus it had A/C. It was additionally $50 much less, which was a substantial sum in 1977 for a young person, so we went to go get the automotive.

Ten years earlier, Mr. Okulewicz had purchased the Coronet new from Memoly Motors. We arrived to see the automotive sitting in his yard with no plates and all of the DMV paperwork neatly typed.

We drove the previous Dodge house and I had my first of many Mopars. I spent the summer season engaged on the automotive doing brakes and front-end work and put in a brand new set of Goodyear Energy Cushion tires. I tuned it to run like new.

I additionally detailed the automotive and actually had it shining. I had the cash I borrowed all paid again by the tip of the summer season and ended up driving to my first day of senior yr in my actually cool Dodge.

After my job at Bally Sneakers was completed, I discovered a job as a inventory boy at Schonfeld Decorators. It was half the cash, however it will hold me on the highway. I spent the day after Thanksgiving utilizing the boss’s 1976 Dodge Coronet Crestwood station wagon shifting objects between the Staten Island and Brooklyn shops. There was a variety of stuff and I needed to make about 4 journeys.

I considered what would occur if I wrecked the bosses’ automotive. Luckily, all went properly, however I obtained rear ended and pushed into the automotive in entrance of me on the best way house from work. My shiny Dodge was totaled.

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I drove it with the trunk tied shut till I settled with the insurance coverage firm. I had nearly $600 within the automotive and got here out with $234. I offered the automotive because it was for $100.

My mother stated no extra V8 automobiles! So I changed that Dodge with a 1968 Pontiac Tempest. It was a bare-bones automotive with an OHC6 engine. It had an automated transmission and a limited-slip rear. I paid $200 for it, and it ran rather well. I didn’t do a lot to it, and after graduating highschool, my dad and mom gave me my mother’s 1971 Pontiac Le Mans, so I offered the Tempest.

I’ve since owned principally Chrysler and Common Motors automobiles and some Fords. Again in these days, all you wanted was $200 to get a very nice automotive. Oh, how instances have modified.

— Michael Gorgia, Staten Island NY

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