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Here be Mon-stars.
Hiss. 
Games are ruling it:
http://www.107.peugeot.co.uk/peugeot.swf

Juice diet is ruling it also.

Leslie and Chaka's wedding this weekend.

My new website is sort of up. I'm dumping all car-related content there and have a little publishing situation that may result from it. Go here:

AUTOGRAFIK

Not much there right now.

XOXOXO

Cris

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"Bayerische" is Bavarian for...Bavarian. 


Hot, right? BMW Art Car number? The Alexander Calder BMW 3.0 CSL Batmobile. Outrageous. I am not a BMW person by any stretch, but unlike, say, Porsche, which only made a couple cars that I find remotely interesting, I do feel like BMW has made more that its fair share of above-average cars. The 3.0 CSL is one of them.



They made a limited run of production versions of this racer, which, if memory serves me, did battle against the beastly Porsche 935. Hans Stuck was a master of these lightweight cars.



I have no idea what a real street version is worth, nor am I aware of what it would cost to build a replica out of a normal 3.0, but I intend to find out. It will give me an excuse to get in touch with two old friends of mine. First, my friend Matt from high school. He has gone on to become the premiere BMW 2002 restorer in the country. He would know what it would take to build one of these. Second, my man Stefan (from a previous post on a Subaru we own together.) Stefan is also a BMW man...the brand runs through his blood and the last time I was at his parents' house in NH Stefan took me to his dad's "barn" which happened to hold DOZENS of coupes...Mercedes, BMW, etc. Stefan and Matt, I will be tracking you down.

I don't know where a car like this fits into my picture right now...there are too many other projects and cars in line before it...but still, my mind is spinning in odd directions right now...

Big hello to another old friend and fellow car person, Jay Bentley, for getting in touch with me last week. Jay, I'll hit you up directly.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Wagons on the Brain. 
Meanwhile, here in Grand Rapids, things are beautiful. I ate at Arby's last night, something I haven't done since a trip to California six years ago when we ate at one right down the road from Mt. Baldy.

Can't get wagons off my mind. In 2001 Audi brought a car to the Frankfurt Auto Show. It was called the Avantissimo...basically it's what you would consider an RS8 wagon, even though Audi doesn't even make an A8 wagon (or an RS8 sedan for that matter.) 430 bhp (not a lot by RS standards, but we're talking 5 years ago...) and dig that glass roof...



Another "wagon" that ingrained itself in my psyche, that I have to find a pic of, is this hot rod Suburban that Chevy engineers built awhile ago. They put a supercharged engine based around a Mercury Marine 454 block (like what we have in our 26' Chris Craft) in a 2500 and made a couple other tweaks...total beast. I shall look for this immediately.

The feelers are out. We're looking at cars every day. America hasn't given up the fight yet, having brought the Chevy Trailblazer to the fight, but all the ones we have found are roached.

XOXOXO

Cris


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Busy-ness. 
I am going to Grand Rapids, MI, today for an hour, basically. I have done these types of trips before, not often, but I have definitely flown somewhere for an hour. I have been travelling quite a bit this year. Taking the days right before Christmas of 2005 as the start, I have been to:

Chicago
France
Norway (x2)
New York (x3)
California (x5? 6?)
Oregon
Alberta

And now I am off to the U.P. After that, another trip to Vegas, followed by the yearly pilgrimage to Hershey, PA. Can't see much farther beyond that right now.

Married life is good, a couple days in.

Car shopping right now. Need to divest ourselves from the Jetta that has served us slowly but well. It's interesting to contemplate the state of the auto industry, and Detroit in specific, as I'm flying through Detroit while looking for a new car. Detroit has made it nearly impossible for us to "Buy American." thanks to uninspiring cars...indeed there are virtually NO vehicles made in the US that fit our particular bill. Where is the US version of the Allroad or the Cross Country...or even just a US A6 or Passat 4motion wagon? Sure, there's an AWD version of the bitchin' Magnum, but until gas prices halve themselves a V-8 like that mixed with my VT commute simply does not compute. A few months back Car&Driver ran a review of a car from ford that fit the bill almost perfectly...but I have yet to see this car ANYWHERE. I think it was a joke. Anyway, I have been a wagon person since the day...my first car was a hand-me-down Chevy Cavalier wagon and I have long-held this body style in the highest of regards. With the dog and our collecting tendencies at the fore, we are wagon people without a doubt.

Meanwhile in Germany, psychopaths with engineering degrees are building these:



XOXOXO

Cris


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Married. 
We finally went and did it. Ali and I are married. Man and Wife. Legit. Truth be told I had an outstanding time. I had most of my closest friends there and I have to say that their friendship and help surprised even me at times this past weekend.


Bride with Cake - Christian DaBica, 2006

To all my friends: Thanks more than you could ever know.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Updates. 
Have been too busy lately to deal with this thing. Lots happening but we can get into that later.

Sick link to the mythical Brunei Sultanate car collection.

I got a boo boo the other day...



Traveling too much. Was in California again, then NH, now back to NH and then supposedly off to Grand Rapids, then Vegas, then Hershey, then...

I'm missing something...about a thousand things. As Evan would say, MORE AFTER THE DROP.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Monday Monday. 
There's this channel on cable called "Sleuth." They run old Miami Vice episodes a couple times a week. Tubbs has, like, a 26 inch waist, seriously.

Plenty of people out there stirring up trouble with the old, forgotten stuff. Check out some original and neglected sections of the greatest highway system ever created here.

Photos from Mark and Tevis' wedding.

Cris

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Wild Rose Country 
The last time I was in Banff was 11 years ago for a Transworld Snowboarding Industry Conference. People from all the companies, the media, and related industries went there to drink and eat a shittalk.

Now, 11 years later, it feels like deja vu...a pile of industry lurks drinking and eating and shittalking, only now it's not called the Transworld Snowboarding Industry Conference, it's called Mark and Tevis' wedding.

Draplin will probably do some little list that better summarizes the goings on here. The knot gets tied this afternoon. So, as they say in the big city, "more after the drop, son."

XOXOXO

Cris

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Trivial 


I'm in elementary school...this is probably 1982 or '83. I play Little League and besides running around in the woods, building forts, this is basically all I do. BUT I want a BMX bike really bad. Problem is that good BMX bikes cost $700.00 or so and there's no way that my parents are ever going to see the upside of that kind of purchase for me. So anyway, every time I'm at a little league game this kid who lived near the field would come down. His name was John Daviaux and he was a few years older than me and he rode the wickedest most sano Redline Proline ever. White, v-bars, UKAI rims, Elina seat, and I think he even had Flite cranks. This bike was spotless and I coveted that thing in a bad way. John kind of had this unhealthy and narcisistic deal where his image and the bike were intertwined. He was a poser, really. He sat there on the bike watching everyone, smoking, vogueing to be honest. Every once in a while he would ride a wheelie down the street but other than that he never really jumped the bike or did anything bitchin' with it.

A few years back I picked up this neglected frame and fork...they had been painted this odd metallic red with trife stickers spelling out "Red Line" on one side. I brought it back from the depths of this indignity and as of a couple days ago it looks like this:



Last week I was at a client's sales meeting and got to meet Russ Okawa (Canoga Park Cycle Center team manager in the early 70s...the first real BMX team coach,) Dean Bradley (photographer and editor of Action Now,) Bill Nicholson (early midwest BMX pro,) this guy who had the bunnyhop world record at one point, and Perry Kramer (PK Ripper.) It was a gas.

As Peter Hewitt would say "F - BMX."

XOXOXO

Cris

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... 


XOXOXO

Cris

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NH = Better. 
Two things happened recently that reminded me of why my adopted home state of New Hampshire kicks Vermont's ass. First, this weekend was amazing...an archtypical summer weekend that couldn't be beat. Despite half of Massachusetts cruising by in their cabin cruisers, bowriders, and "personal watercrafts" with nary a clue as to the rules of the sea, the sun was out, the water was bathwater-warm, and Ali didn't break or sprain anything. In fact, she did some serious driver's seat time this weekend...a big change from her usual first mate program.

Why couldn't this weekend be duplicated over here in VT? I'll give you one example: On Winnipesaukee there are actually people who still drink the lake water straight from their faucet. Here in Vermont if you drink water out of ANY faucet, never mind one hooked directly to an inland body of water, you'll be feeling the wrath of Montezuma's Yankee cousin.

The second bit of evidence is less objective...I found a photo of a car that I have told many stories about. I officially own half of this vehicle and some day I might track it down and bring it over here. It was an important part of my life for a few months and during one of my "employment-challenged" periods it provided me with mobility that I may otherwise have been denied (Thanks to some crackheads that stole my pickup truck...a story for another time and place.)



This car upset people approximately 2 hours after my friend Stefan and I bought it. On the day I took this photo we were running it at an ice race put on by a BMW club where it was causing no amount of stress due to its obvious non-Aryan pedigree. I imagine it continues to upset either Stefan's neighbors or parents or someone somewhere who lives next to wherever he has it parked. This car represents a fun, simple, very New Hampshire time of my life. So to everyone who I ever talked to about this car...here you go. See, it did exist after all.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Thank God it's Thursday 

New favorite show.

It's like Arrested Development but darker (everyone is a bad guy,) and they swear on it.

I need:

-A line of code that opens links in new windows AND works for Safari.

Dog is back. No idea if he made any friends during his overnight stay.

I was in Dulles the other day and bought a soda. I was suckered in by its label and figured what was inside couldn't live up to its packaging. I was wrong. It was awesome. I had the diet...ask for it by name.

Okay, so dog is back, it's hot out, and another week is gone. Great. And I didn't get to the site update I promissed. BUT...I will say that when I do update it will be with a blast from the past. Something about gopher reports, silly string, and frozen turkeys.

XO

Cris

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nIn 
Today reminds me of an email exchange I had about a year and a half ago.


Me: Is it hot in here?
Vanessa: No, it just sucks.


XOXOXO

Cris

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Our Little Guy 
Wednesday morning this guy goes under the knife..."the unkindest cut of all" as it were...

It's going to be a Hell ride for him and us. Per a conversation with Aaron Draplin, we'll be taking the "leftovers" home with us. Don't worry kiddo, it's like you'll still have your nuts, they just won't be getting in the way any more.

In other news I got a flat tire today, THEN ran over some glass, THEN had a black cat cross in front of the car...some kind of reverse fortune vortex happening.

Updates to the rest of the site soon, like in a day, seriously.

XOXOXO

Cris

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In Search Of... 
You hear people often say "I've always wanted one of those..." Well, there are a few things I have always wanted...REALLY always wanted, and I have slowly been able to check each of them off my list. One of those things, a French Bulldog, was on the list a short while ( a little over two years) and still another, a Yamaha Chappy, was on the list for something like seven years before I got my hands on one. But about a month ago the one item...the actual first item ever...that I have searched for the longest I was FINALLY able to track down: A raincoat.

For over 20 years I have been searching for a Sea Gear raincoat. When I was a kid I first saw the Sea Gear brand in boat magazines and in stores in Newport, RI. The logo was tight, the stuff looked insane, yet I, as a child, had no real need for a $200.00 raincoat. I vowed back then to get me some Sea Gear by hook, crook, or otherwise, somehow, someway...but unfortunately as the years went by, Sea Gear disappeared from the scene, possibly absorbed into the Helly Hansen machine, perhaps just simply going out of business, I've never been able to find out.

Anyway, after years of searching and waiting one of those jackets popped up on eBay in June and I bought it for the princely sum of like $9.09 or something. Of course it came from Newport (which is also where a lot of Chappys ended up) and when I got it it was everything I ever dreamed it would be and more. I'll post pics of it at a later date so you can see what 200 1982 dollars got you inre: rain wear, but for now I'll show you the next thing on my list: A car.



This is actually one of a few cars on my list. Now that I've checked those other things (sorry Rivet, you're right, you are not a "thing") I am moving on some bigger game. This car was built by a guy named Milt Marion. The photo shows it at Indy in 1947 where it was for sale. It's a street-legal car that looks not unlike the two-man Indy cars of the 30s, except much cleaner and leaner and meaner. It's got an Offenhauser engine of some sort under the hood and at the time the photo was taken it was registered in New York. I am going to start looking for this car today or tomorrow or the next day. Everything about it is so right...too right...for it not to still be around somewhere. Car, I shall find you. Colt, any of your relatives have this thing sitting in a barn back home?

And if you've ever heard someone wax on about how it's the journey or the search that's important...screw those people. My life is better thanks to my Chappy, my dog, and my raincoat and it's better because I'm not sitting here obsessing about trying to find those things anymore. Boxes are there to be checked off, not left empty.

Believe it, son.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Welcome. 
Okay, so after almost 11 months of not updating this site I finally sat down and got going on it. Not everything is up and running yet. There are a few sections I want to add and a few things I need to tweak. I will try and update this every day (for my own sake and entertainment, not yours.)

Yes, it is visually ugly on purpose. I went the clean, spare route for over a year and figured it was time to change it up (like anyone's reading this...)

I may even backdate a few entries, diary-style.

Whatever you do, don't scroll right...there's nothing but a bunch of blog garbage there that I don't know how to strip out yet.

XOXOXO

Cris

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Test Post (Picture) 
Ali and our nephew, Sonny. This was his camera face for a while.



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Test Post (Copy_ 
Today is Friday.

"Today is Friday." in bold.

Today is Friday!



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