Holden FX

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I knew a farmer who had one of these, I couldn’t believe what he put in it – chickens, hay bales, fence posts. No way to treat such a lovely car. Or maybe that’s just the townie in me, maybe the country folk do do that? I should take a drive in the country some time and see what I can see. I hear it pays to keep your windows up to keep out the country smells. Worse than that, I hear you get cow pats stuck in your tyres – that would make a fine mess of the carpet in the garage. That always put me off leaving the city limits but I shouldn’t be so narrow. To be fair, we do have a TV that has sunsets and waves lapping on the beach, tweeting birds, fish tanks, you know the sort of thing. I’m sure I can select a rural scene and it would be much cleaner than the real thing …. wouldn’t smell. I don’t really need to see what they put in their cars anyway, there’s bound to be a story in the Sunday supplement some time, I’ll keep an eye out. 

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HT Premier customised

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This is a recent commission from a customer in Australia. He sent me the photo of this lovely HT Prem, owned by his cousin then passed on to him. They both remember the car fondly and now have a print each to hang above the mantlepiece. This was a case of adapting an HT I had already created, adding the ‘Jellybean’ mags and matching the colours to a colour chart from 1969, which I found online.

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Holden HG Premier

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We met in 1997, it was love at first sight – when we started getting around together someone said to me, ‘you have to be rich or a mechanic to have one of these’. I said ‘nah, don’t worry, we’re in love’. It all went swimmingly to start with, but then those little things started chipping away, a bit of rust here, a little rattle there. Eventually it came time to take a ‘Break’. We’ve taken many breaks since those early days; my Prem goes and spends a few weeks with its mechanic, or its paint and panel friend, sometimes the auto-electrician. For me it’s just a bit of time out, get some exercise walking up to the shops or the bus stop. Sometimes I contemplate the carless life … life without Prem. Find myself a nice little e-bike, something not so complicated – OK I’ll say it, something less needy. But then comes the phone call, Prem’s ready to come home again. We have a wee drive and a bit of a chat, I rest my arm on the windowsill and think out loud ‘What a lot of nonsense, an e-bike indeed’.

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Holden HG Premier

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In 1910, yeah I know that was a long time ago but bare with me, a bunch of locals at Lyall Bay started a surf lifesaving club – they called it Lyall Bay Surf Lifesaving Club. No, stick with me, it gets better. Being rather pleased with themselves, they thought it a good idea to have a demonstration day and show Wellington just how clever they were. Demo-day arrived and the surf was pumping (normally a good thing for a surf lifesaving demonstration day). The teams and routines had all been agreed with a nod and a wink. Five minutes before hitting the surf, the club captain (we’ll call him Ted because his name was Ted) lost his bottle and pushed another clubby (Neil) forward. Clubbie Neil didn’t like being pushed so pushed back. The two went hard at it in front of an enthralled crowd until Neil had had enough and stomped off. He only stomped 50 metres and stopped, stamped his foot and declare ’Sod it, I’ll start my own club and I’ll be boss’. And so it was, Maranui Surf Lifesaving Club was born (one assumes ‘Neil’s Surf lifesaving Club’ was rejected) and Captain Neil never went out in pumping surf again. The two clubs sat side by side quite well on the whole, but when a dispute broke out, they would go up the beach to the ‘Bend’, and with gloves on, sort it out. The Bend became known as ‘Gloves’ and when the dispute was unable to be sorted at Gloves, they moved further up the beach to a spot known as “Gloves off’. No dispute went unresolved.

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1969 Holden Monaro

Ever found yourself in a guitar shop, mentally spending thousands of dollars, imagining which half dozen guitars would look best mounted in a row along the living room wall. OK, bedroom wall. OK, study wall. OK, maybe not actually on the wall and maybe not half a dozen. One maybe – if it’s a big birthday. I have heard there’s a convincing argument for pitching it as a ‘bridge’ over the mid-life crisis, but further than that I can’t comment. A photo of a Strat, in a quiet frame, on a wall, somewhere … preferably in the house may work. It’ll keep the dream alive at least and perhaps leave the crisis negotiation open for that discreet yellow Monaro. Just thinking aloud.

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