Female cab driver during World War I (Library ofCongress)
The deadline for the current book project is actually February 1, 2015. However, as we will be in the Netherlands for almost half of January, the self imposed deadline is December 31. So, most of yesterday was spent in the office ensconced among shelves filled with books, towering piles of newspaper reprints, reference materials in various forms from post it notes to print outs and boxes of materials from the book I wrote about Checker some years ago.
As the overall theme for the work is the violent evolution of the American taxi industry from 1899 to present, in the boardroom as well as on the street, mayhem and malfeasance have been a near constant companion for the past few months. However, as this is the Christmas season, there has been ample opportunity to escape the darkness and brighten the mood with the occasional foray into the lighthearted madness that is going to any store in America during this time of the year.
This book is a bit of a deviation from recent projects that centered on Route 66 and adventures on the road less traveled. However, it is also a return to my roots as for a full decade more than ninety percent of my published work centered on the American auto industry between 1885 and 1940.
A primary regret during the infancy of my career as an author was the fact that I did not record the fascinating stories of the men and women whose lives intertwined with the automobile during this period. I suppose this would be one reason for the enjoyment derived from reading the stories compiled by David Dickinson in The Old Car Nut Book series (available on Amazon.com).
However, these books do more than preserve tales of cars and often misspent youth in decades past. They are also a time capsule from an era when youth and the automobile were inseparable.
If you have a car nut in your family, a crazy uncle who loves telling tales of hot rods, deuce coupes, and street racing in their ’58 Chevy, these books just might be the perfect Christmas gift.
As we are on the subject of Christmas gifts, Gary Cron of Baby Boomer Radio surprised me with a visit and a gift of a set of Route 66 bar glasses. Sir, thank you.
Each and every Christmas, I find myself amazed by how quickly the years has passed. It seems as though my dearest friend and I were just celebrating our first Christmas together and now our son is making traditions for his family.
Well, its time to get back to work. I hope each and everyone of you can take the time to enjoy this most unique season, use it to reflect on years gone by, and the possibilities of a year to come.