All posts tagged: Cars

The Birthday Incident: Turning 40 in a Parking Garage

My friend, Andrew, an artist in Los Angeles, was grouchy on the night he turned 40. He did not like the aging process. To cheer him up, I made reservations for a small birthday dinner at his favorite restaurant and invited three of his closest friends. Andrew, being a control freak, insisted that we all meet outside his apartment complex at precisely 7 p.m. and then he would drive us to the restaurant. He was proud of his driving mojo and only trusted himself to get us to the restaurant in time. Getting together for dinner in Los Angeles can require as much precision as a military operation. Friends live far apart, and traffic is always bad. Sandra drove from Pasadena, picking up Hiroshi downtown, while I drove from Redondo Beach, picking up Brian in West Hollywood. We all converged on Andrew’s block in Silverlake, parking our cars near his apartment complex. Part One of the mission was accomplished. The metal security gate to Andrew’s garage creaked open and Andrew appeared, driving his 1996 Honda …

Drive-Thru World: A Never-Get-Out-Of-Your-Car Road Trip

Editor’s Note: This piece was originally published in the Philadelphia City Paper in 1993. Caveat: we were four snarky 20-somethings spending the day in the car in Philly and New Jersey. Since then, Six Flags Great Adventure no longer has the drive-thru Wild Safari, MAC machines are called ATMs, there are cell phones and Shelly and Roderik are still married. A few edits have been made for clarity and brevity — this sucker was long.  Three friends and I — Dave, Shelly and Roderik — decided to seek out all the things you can still do, in and around Philadelphia, without getting out of our car. It should be noted that one of our participants, Roderik, is a native of Holland, where they don’t do drive-thru. “It’s a very American thing,” he informed us. For entertainment in those dull moments of highway ennui, we brought Star’s special issue: Inside the FBI Secret Files, a Yes & Know trivia book with secret decoder pen, a Bugs Bunny magic slate (the kind that erases what you’ve drawn …