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Friday, May 23, 2014

Jason and his Grandmother, parts 3176 - 3179

 3176. It was not that I had no interest in cars, it was just that my interest was of a different sort than Jason’s. It just so happened that my association with Jason was taking place in 1957, which was an important and pivotal time in the evolution of the American automobile, and it was impossible not to notice it. 

 3177. At that time the new models came out in September. September was the beginning of the school year, and at the same time signified the advent of new car styles. This introduction of the new models was a subject of intense interest for boys in the seventh grade. All the dealerships were lined up in a row on Main Street. As the new models arrived we would go to those dealerships without fail, and examine the new models with a critical eye.

 3178. It was obvious that something radical was happening even as far back in 1953, but it was impossible to tell what it was or where it was going. Colors became more pastel, and more often two colors were used. The chrome on the sides of the cars that in the past had always been a straight line from front to back, began to lose its way and wander off in peculiar directions.

 3179. By 1955 freakish shapes began to appear like the first signs of a serious disease. Bumps appeared that would later metamorphose into fins, and extra shapes on the chrome bumpers which would multiply and enlarge. By 1957 the disintegration of style was completed leaving us wondering if the changes we witnessed were planned, or had come about by accident.

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