Fuel-injected childhood dreams

by John Espino

It’s Friday, but not an ordinary Friday by any means. It’s actually a day that I have waited for most of my life. I’ve never kept it a secret that I’m somewhat of a nerd and a child at heart. Today, both of those traits are in for a treat as I use up a half day of vacation and split work early to catch a showing of Speed Racer! Yep, the show that gave me the automotive bug when I was just four years old is finally a movie!

I’d have to say I’m kinda lucky that my parents didn’t really pay too much attention to me as a kid. There was TV, right, so why interact? No hard feelings; after all, I wouldn’t be who I am today if it hadn’t been that way. I had great playmates and teachers: Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock, Johnny Sako and his Giant Robot, several Japanese super robots, Spider-Man, Batman, Ultraman, and Speed Racer.

I wanted to be Speed, drive the Mach 5, and come home to Trixie. It was from that one show that I developed my love for the art of the machine and for the simple pleasure known as driving. From that show I was given the urge to learn what made a motor vehicle live and breathe and to appreciate the rumble of an engine mixed with the sweet siren song of a turbo. It was a major force that formed an excitement in me that I want to instill in my five-year-old son. I am proud that on the rare occasion when I bring my son to the office that he gets excited to see what we’re working on, and then he asks to see the engine. I couldn’t be happier to answer all of his questions and explain in detail how things work. He’s a sponge, and he wants to know about it. It’s a kick when I hear him talk about his Hot Wheels and whether they’re supercharged, turbocharged or all motor.

So today I get to experience a part of my childhood and share it with my boy. Not only will I be taking a half day, but so will he because I’m pulling him out of preschool to see the movie with his old man. I want him to learn to appreciate this art of the machine that I speak so fondly of as I did when I was his age, and I can’t wait to see what kind of vehicles he will help usher into the world when he grows up.

A very cool “mock” review of the Mach 5…

Don’t forget to see the data sheet on the Mach 5 (Pssst…don’t look at the MPG!)…

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