Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Birthday Digital Layout - for my Dad

Today is my Dad's birthday. Happy Birthday, Dad!!

My dad loves cars, especially VW bugs (in all their many variations), dune buggies for off-road racing, and (of course, he's a guy) fast sports cars. He has owned many cars over the years so for his birthday I decided to make a collage of photos of just some of those cars.

The top left photo is from the 50's and shows my dad holding a jackrabbit that he'd shot while out hunting with a friend. In the background is his VW bug which, if the photo were in color, you see is dark green with with red tires. How awesome is that?? The top right photo is an iStockphoto of a "new" beetle, red, exactly like one he owned some 7 or 8 years ago.

In the middle is a photo of an apple green de Tomaso Mangusta sports car. Although this is a photo I found on the internet (I didn't have one of my dad's own car handy), this is exactly like the car he owned in the 70's. I remember it well. In fact, for all I know, this may be the actual car my dad owned that's now owned by someone else. In my Internet research I found that only 200 Mangusta cars are still out there, and how many could there be that color?

Third row: on the left is a red Classic VW that currently sits in my dad's garage. It's a 1968, and is in close to original condition, including the skinny steering wheel with the horn in the center, and those funny little wing windows that you crank open with a little lever. My dad just this year acquired it from "a little old lady" who only wanted him to give her what she'd originally paid for it in 1968.

The other photo is also from the 70's. My dad was big into off-road racing in those days, along with my brother, Steve, (that's the two of them in the photo). The dune buggies were built on VW chassis, had roll-bars added, and were pushed full-throttle over dirt roads pocked with holes and rocks. A very bumpy ride that required the wearing of kidney belts and left the riders covered in mud, dirt, sweat, and grins. My dad and brother were a tough bandido in those days.

Bottom row, on the right-hand side is my Dad's bright orange VW with flames painted on the side and a souped-up and satisfyingly noisy engine. I got to drive this car for awhile during my first year in college (in the 70's) and enjoyed the attention I got wherever I went.

Finally, bottom left-hand is my dad posing in front of the Brubaker Box, aka the Automecca Sports Van, a vehicle originally dreamed up by a guy named Curt Brubaker, and then taken in hand by my dad who worked to manufacture and sell them either fully built or as a kit. You can read more about it here. And if you scroll down to the photo of the "Volkswagen Greats" magazine article entitled "The Automecca Sports Van . . . or the Brubaker is Back?" you'll see a photo of my dad, Mike Hansen, just to the right of the title.

I guess you could say my dad's had a few cool cars in his day . . . !

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I remember seeing the Mangusta at church, on Broadway, in Redondo Beach. Also a poster of the Brubaker Box; an idea that was ahead of its time. I guess that was the better part of 40 years ago. Still waiting for the return of the Penny Market. You could get a handful of great candy with a few coins dug out of the couch cushions! Always thought that both Mikes were cool.