The move American Graffiti paid tribute to an era when gas was cheap, cars didn’t need to go fast to keep from overheating, and most teenage interaction occurred over the rolled-down windows of hopped up hot rods and family sedans -lent by dad only for the Friday night post football game trip to the malt shop . While that mid-fifties to early sixties period was the golden age of driving with no particular place to go, the pastime is still practiced today by a dedicated few each Friday or Saturday night, despite stratospheric gas prices and city laws discouraging it. And some of you must surely be out there among them.
For years I would drop the windows on my ’66 Mustang and cruise Whittier Boulevard on Friday nights. Hell, I had three-inch pipes and a set of Thrush mufflers put on the car specifically for that! I had a Pioneer underdash FM/cassette unit that was permanently set to KNAC and could pump out enough sound to attract the chicklets I desired. I haven’t been back there in a coon’s age, and today my cruising is spent more on rally-style events like the Lighthouse Avenue run in Monterey, and, having traded in my muscle cars with their big radiators, for British sports cars that tend to lose their cool at crawler speeds, maybe it’s for the best. But what about you, are you a Woodward veteran? Do you call Van Nuys boulevard home? When American Graffiti comes on TV do you reverently watch it to the end credits then jump into your chariot of choice and ply the main drag of your own small town U.S.A.? Image sources: [chatterboxdrivein.com]