When the cars that we collect today were new, many of us spent our afternoons watching a dance show. It wasn't "Dancing With the Stars" -- it was a time when teen-agers were the stars (the Boomer decade was booming) and a bunch of them from Philadelphia rock & rolled their afternoons away on "American Bandstand."
It was a time when America was in an upbeat mood. Music was loud and wild. Cars were bold, colorful, powerful and flamboyant. The more chrome you added, the more of a statement they made.
DeeJay Dick Clark was the man behind American Bandstand and in his later years he tried to relive the spirit of that era by opening the '57 Heaven Museum in Branson, Mo.
Today life in America is different. I'm among those who think we need some of the spirit of the '50s back again, in order to turn things around. And although the passing of Dick Clark a few days ago was one more sign that a great era could fade into history, we're thankful for the car collectors who are struggling to keep the Fabulous '50s spirit alive for all time.
With growing acceptance of what they call multi-culturism here, collecting "finmobiles" may be an "AMERICAN LAST STAND" for the things that made America's culture distinctive, unique and great.