Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline June 2014

The Steering Column

George Phariss
Left Hand Drive
from our President
Jana and I are getting ready to head back from Indianapolis where the extended family made its annual trip to the 500 mile race. It was another good race this year with Ryan Hunter-Reay winning. As I have told several of you in the past, in the late 90's, I raced a little bit in the open wheel Skip Barber program. During this time, Ryan was learning his trade in this program and I was actually in a couple of races when Ryan raced. I say it this way because Ryan was racing and winning and I was driving on the same track while I thought that I was racing. He was always a very well mannered and also a very fast, successful and aggressive driver. It has been fun to follow him through his successful young career. He is a class person.

Jana and I want to thank everyone that attended the Chicken Drive and made it a success. It was a nice day for a leisurely drive through Lake County, followed by lots of conversation and relaxation. This was a great start of the driving season and Reinout has lots of drives planned for us to enjoy. This should be a good year to get some fun time in our MG's.

Our May meeting was a lively one with the Red Light Doctor on hand to make his presentation. There were lots of questions from the floor and he had lots of answers. I know that if I, or anyone in the family gets a red light ticket, I will be contacting him to determine if there is a chance to contest the ticket. His stated price is only $50 for a video analysis and court accompaniment and there are enough problems with the system and enough people that just roll over and pay the fine without challenge, that the politicians are not interested in fixing a broken system. If you missed it, you missed a good presentation, but you can get some sense of it by visiting his web site, or just google him and read about his successes.

For our June meeting we will have Seth Jones doing a presentation on transmissions. He is bringing his Midget transmission cut-away and will be showing videos of B transmissions and how they operate. This should be a very informative session for those club members who are not attending the NAMGBR gathering in French Lick. Jana and I will be attending the gathering in French Lick, Indiana. We are hoping to have a good showing at the gathering. At this time we do not have a formal presentation planned for July, but I am working on arranging a program.

-- George Phariss     



The Steering Column
Right Hand Drive
from our Vice-President
Finally! It was to be a short move to a new home eight miles away, but it turned out to be a grueling two months to make it happen.

In February Penny & I put our house ‘on the market’ for the second time in three years. A prior listing a couple of years ago did not pan out and we were anticipating a lengthy wait. But we were unprepared for the fast turnaround in today’s market. The house sold in 28 days – now we had to find a place to move into before the closing date.

I won’t go into the anxiety and house searching that took place, but I will say it took all my efforts to keep my sanity and an open mind on the possible choices. We had always planned on down-sizing since our sons had married and moved out and I always wanted a house with a lake view. Of course, a place where I could work on my MGB was always in the mix. If we found a house near a lake, it was too small or did not have a garage; if we found a house with a large garage, the house was too expensive - never the right combination.

Well, we finally came across a small brick ranch in Crystal Lake (near the lake – I can see it from my front sidewalk). It was small but it had a huge 4-car garage! Heated I might add… This was the one for us. The house was ‘old’ (1954) and there were a number of deficiencies that we had to dispute with the seller. The problems were resolved but not after spending a total of 7 hours in in a title company office finalizing the deal with both houses.

To complicate matters further, because of the end-of-month bookings (and following a holiday weekend) our moving company couldn’t deliver our household effects until five days after our closing. We were living out of suitcases at our son’s home in Lake Villa. You don’t realize how many items you use on a daily basis without thinking until you live out of a suitcase! One of the critical items was my laptop. Mistakenly I left it in a case on a table in my office while I ran some errands. The movers packed it in a box and loaded it with 248 other boxes onto the truck. It was too late to retrieve so I had to wait until it was unpacked. Problem was I needed the computer to edit and publish the June issue of Driveline!

Well now you know why this month’s issue is so late in getting into your hands. Maybe now I can get my car on the road and join the CMGC in this year’s driving events!

-- ~~ Victor L’Heureux    

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