Communication Builds Our Community

Check Out this 1957 Chevy Bel Air

"Out on the streets of a runaway American dream. At night, we ride through mansions of glory in suicide machines. ...We gotta get out while we're young ', we were born to run."

Song: "Born to Run," Bruce Springsteen, 1975 Album: Born to Run

Prefacing Florida Pickers (FP) with song lyrics provides a theme and a tune to replay in my mind while writing. I manage an antique and vintage vinyl shop so this is a perfect way to showcase some of our great music for sale in the shop.

I selected Springsteen's "Born to Run" because I wanted to talk about a 1957 Chevy Bel Air that belongs to my friends, Marty and Linda, in Lake Alfred. The car runs, but hasn't been on the road in years.

If you recall the movie, American Graffiti, it's hard to forget the scene when a young Harrison Ford (Bob Falfa) flips a Tri-Five ('55, '56 or '57) Bel Air in a drag race, and a feisty Cindy Williams (Laurie) drags herself out of the wreck and proceeds to admonish Harrison with a verbal onslaught of both words and fisticuffs. If you haven't seen the movie be sure to catch it sometime. Ron Howard (Steve), Richard Dreyfuss (Curt), and Wolfman Jack (himself), the mysterious late night radio DJ who spins the flick's soundtrack, also starred in the motion picture among others in an all-star cast.

The longer Marty's car sits in his garage the less chance it will ever leave his property at least in the near future, much less pass by "mansions of glory." Certainly "suicide machine" relates to the Graffiti video scene of the disastrous race incident.

In truth, or at least in theory, all cars were built (born) to run. Some, more than others, it seems.

When I post or advertise vehicles by their owners the reality is every day they're online and don't generate calls and offers the prices are either too high or no one really wants them. Usually that means I let the ad ride, or I become proactive as I did when I consigned the 1956 Thunderbird that was the topic of a past FP column to a dealer friend of mine in Sarasota. That was a good move since it did sell and ended up finding a new home.

Based on that success I decided to take the opportunity to call other classic car dealers, and found a dealership, Streetside Classics, in Lutz, to potentially place the car on consignment where it can be viewed, driven, appreciated and eventually, sold.

After emailing some photos of the '57 Chevy over to Streetside I called Marty and on learning that he was amenable to the arrangement, I set up an appointment for Marty, Linda and I to drive it over to Lutz next week for an appraisal of the Bel Air.

Based on how that works out I will repeat the same routine for my customer, Judy, in Port St. Lucie with the goal of consigning her 1982 Mercedes 380SL and getting it out of her garage and in the hands of a new owner.

I finally get to take a test drive in one of my Florida Pickers items listed for sale.

As Bruce would say, "I gotta find out how it feels...I want to know if love is real."

UPDATE on the 2003 Miata.

After lowering the price over $1,500 to $1,999 no one seems to be the least bit interested. Although I don't do the negotiating with others' vehicles I can accept or reject offers when it's my car. I can't go any lower on the asking price since I have to leave room to haggle.

I have three autos in mind for my next car. It appears the Mercedes SL is out of the running for now, but the Audi is still an option plus a VW advertised locally that may be a suitable replacement. More on this developing story as it unfolds. I knew this one wasn't going to be a cakewalk. Hard to let it go. Unlike the other posts we have history.


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