Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline February 2013

George Phariss The Steering
Column
Left Hand Drive

By the time that you read this, provided that no catastrophic event prevents our travel, Jana and I should be in Australia. This is one of those lifetime trips that I have been wanting to do. Jana has been reading up on all of the fires, heat and critters there that can hurt you, so I know that she is a bit anxious about this trip. We updated our cell phone so we can still keep in touch, but man that is not cheap! I just wish that we had something like ďmagic jackĒ for the cell phone. We do plan to use Skype and FaceTime as well as texting to save on the calls and keep in touch, however. Of course the time change will be an issue, as it is tomorrow already over there. So I guess that tomorrow does sometimes happen today. We should be back for the swap meet, but will miss the Annual Club Business Meeting in February.

We will be keeping our eyes open for MG's as they are a popular car down there and they have several MG clubs around the country. Of course they also drive on the wrong side of the street so they will be right hand drive.

I wonder if they will show NASCAR races there? I always enjoy watching the Daytona 500 and following Tony Stewart. Dave Novak told me about an interesting racing series there where they are not afraid to swap paint. Jana and I will have to check that out. So many things to see and do!

The February Club meeting is the annual Business meeting and awards presentation, so it is important that you attend, if you are able to. So mark your calendars, it should be a good one.

In closing, I would like to thank Dino for the great job that he did last year as our club President. He was very active and had tremendous support from Lisa. Another great thing about it for me, is that he is a nice shoulder to be able to lean on when I need advice. Of course that is a real strength that our club has, there are so many people that jump in and help out when someone needs help!! And yes we also have some fun doing it!

-- George Phariss      

 

John-Paul Brossard The Steering
Column
Right Hand Drive

Iíll preface this monthís blurb with a word of thanks to all the past and present CMGC officers and staff for the terrific efforts and successes in advancing the Club to where it is now. I joined the Club in summer 2006 when I bought my MGB from a former member, so Iím still relatively new to the Club. However, I commit to doing my best to carry on, in true Brit tradition, in my new capacity as Club VP, and to support the efforts of Club President George Phariss, the officers, and you the members.

I was thinking back over coffee this morning to when I first was aware of the MG marque. In 1958 I was 8 years old, and a young man who lived in the same apartment building had a bright red, impeccably kept and polished TD. I remember staring at it every time he parked it. When I asked what it was he pointed to the MG badge and said it was an MG. About the same time, someone around the corner acquired an MGA, and to me it was the most beautiful and fascinating car Iíd ever seen and I told myself one day Iíd have one. Later when I was 11 or so, my father often drove his bossís MG Magnette for business trips. I was in awe of the leather smell and burled walnut, and an MG that sat four people!

Well, turn the clock ahead twelve years to 1971 when I was a student at Loyola (Montreal) and I bought a 1956 MGA. With some acceptable bondo work and an el cheapo paint job it looked alright, though was never really reliable. My girlfriend and I just became used to push-starting, or stopping by the roadside for repairs, flat tires and so on. But we did have fun until winter. AAAAARGH! When it would start, I drove the A through the Montreal winter and snow which was as cold and miserable an experience as one could have, but I kept the stiff upper lip in true British tradition. I wore a WW2 RAF Irvin jacket that had previously belonged to a friendís dad, a former WW2 navigator in a Lancaster bomber. That jacket is the only thing that kept me from freezing to death that winter. I sold the A the following fall, and bought a used 1998 Austin Mini Cooper which I had for 4 years. Great car! I miss it, as I do my í71 Triumph Bonny which I sold just before my daughter was born. Thatís my British vehicle experiencesÖ

So onwards and upwards with my (reliable and pretty) MGB. Now retired since 7 months and with more discretionary time, I look forward to the 2013 driving and events season, and meeting more of you out there at these events.

Carry on!

-- Joel-Paul Brossard    

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