Henrietta, Texas, 1949: If you drive north out of town, the road curves clockwise around the dam of the water reservoir, and after a sharp left turn crosses the bridge. This is the place where a car-owning teenager must determine how fast he can drive around that corner.
In my high school years, Wayne Klein’s souped-up 1955 Mercury held the record. In the movies, all teenagers have souped up hot rods, but the average teenager knows nothing about motors, and doesn’t know how to change the oil, much less how to “soup up” a car. Besides, what does soup have to do with it?
Wayne’s car was actually souped up, because his father had souped it, and it ran like a bat out of hell, so Wayne could drive that curve at 55 miles an hour. Since the posted sign says “25”, this was a wonderful accomplishment. And, unlike unfortunate Beckham Guthrie Jr., Wayne wasn’t even killed.
Now, if you chose not to take that left turn, and [Read more…]