Tuesday, December 24, 2013


"Thirty two." A pair of majestic words that conjure the utmost in iconic hot rod imagery. The grace, elegance, and startling speed of the Greyhound. And as of today, "32" also represents the SGE Nation. 

Meet Bob - the thirty second SGE Member! In a mere four years, the SGE Nation has inexplicably swelled to over thirty members, and last week, Bob vaulted us to Deuce status! We are now thirty two. With Bob, we are theoretically wiser, numerically larger, and consequently, stronger. At a glance, Bob is already one of us: Graying, visually impaired - yet stylish, with a large and colorful "G" tattoo'd on his left shoulder. Thanks for your dedication and willingness to represent, Bob! We're honored. He wears a hat and wears it well. And that's all I know about Bob. Perhaps a day will come when we all meet face-to-face - an SGE convention of sorts. On that glorious day, we will all get our left shoulders tattoo'd just like Bob's, in a show of solidarity (the "G" obviously stands for Gosson). Until that day, we have Christmas. It will have to do...

 As per SGE tradition (established in 2006), we kick off the SGE Christmas party with the annual posting of William Motta's classic painting that we've been calling "Christmas Present Race". It's immortal - like a fruitcake (half life: 150,000 years).  Hey, that race car driver bears a striking resemblance to Bob! You don't suppose...


Yeah, it's Christmas again. Personally, I get the whole Christian deal about Santa driving the snakes from Iran - that's a pretty cool story. And the part about surrounding yourself with despised family members and obnoxious friends even makes some kind of twisted sense, from an entertainment standpoint. But I just can't understand why these holiday gatherings have to be held while we're experiencing the absolute worst travel conditions of the year. Sure, everyone wants to celebrate Louis Chevrolet's birthday, but why couldn't it just be acknowledged in winter via Black Friday sales, then celebrated in summer, when traction is good and we can wear T-shirts and sandals like Jesus intended? This simple change of date could save drag racing. Imagine the Christmas Nationals, with a Santa starter at the Christmas tree and a crack team of track elves, doing their thing at a northern strip equipped with cool dense air. Everyone would run their personal best up there, making for the happiest Christmas ever! Just a thought.

Then there's the gift giving. Again, I can see why the department stores initiated this tradition shortly after the (insert favorite war here) war ended - it saved our economy. But jeeze, that was years ago. Times have changed. This may sound crazy, but maybe we as a race have evolved to the point where giving immaterial gifts would be more meaningful. You know, like good deeds and stuff? This topic was discussed at the latest SGE staff meeting, where it was unanimously agreed that we should set the pace with our own example. It is in that selfless spirit that we waive the cover charge to our company Christmas party and invite the entire SGE Nation (starting with Bob) to join us in honoring the original intent of this most sacred holiday.

It was Santa Claus himself who taught us that a cool gift can bribe people into doing good deeds. And thanks to our recent partnership with the esteemed Hazard Fraught Tools Corporation, do we ever have some last minute gifts for you! In fact, that's exactly how we're kicking off this year's HOT RODDER'S GIFT GUIDE (just like in Hot Rod magazine)!!!

You're welcome. But now you owe us, big time! (Images courtesy of Hazard Fraught via Motormouth Ray)

You elitists who desire a snootier gift to give (in hopes of making yourself look better to giftees who couldn't care less) are in luck, as we have you covered, too:

Five genuine NAPA ratcheting endwrenches for $20 ! Best of all, the crowned tops are welded on, so the wrenches are useless for the rest of the year! "Sorry Hon, I can't fix the wash machine until I get a rollaway full of Snap-Ons. Those decorative wrenches that Larry got us for Christmas won't work on our metric washer, anyway." Again, you're welcome. But your tab is growing... (Image courtesy of NAPA via Motormouth Ray)

Then there are those extra special people in your life to whom you want to give only the very best. What if we told you of an affordable gift that is worth its weight in gold and will only appreciate as the years roll by? Sound too good to be true? Well then, you must not have seen THESE before:

And they're all from CarTech Inc - a name America trusts! Available for $29.95 (or less), wherever money is accepted, around the globe. (Images courtesy of CarTech Inc)

So, you gambled the Christmas budget on a street race and are in jail for the holidays? Again? Don't sweat it. We can bail you out of the stress mode with our clairvoyant predictions of  2014's hottest sellers! It's a gift, so to speak...

It hasn't even been publicly released yet, but the Gosson Bros. Racing Library's first contribution to America's great tradition of publishing greed has already been declared a masterwork by Oprah, Ellen, Cher, and Bono - and they only saw the mimeographed single-page press release! We plan to completely flood the market with these puppies, so expect a spam tsunami soon. (Image courtesy of Gosson Bros. Racing Library)

Longtime racing pal Jim "Little Big Man" Lindsay just released his first novel! He claims it's fiction, but Jim is a drag racer, and you know how they are... Meet Jim in person and have him sign your copy of "Little Bastards" at the 2014 Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona, California from January 24th to the 26th. Order yours today at www.jimlindsayauthor.com

Legendary Northwest photographer and all-around trad gearhead Peter Vincent just released his amazing The Bonneville Salt Flats, for those in need of really fast eye candy. Go to www.petervincentphotographer.com for a closer look and find out why this book is racking up celebrity endorsements like this: 
Yes, that's noted novelist Jim Lindsay and renowned racer/fabricator Marty Strode, ignoring a big buck customer car to savor Peter's stunning photos. 

Sick of visiting relatives and need to get the hell away for a while? Here's your ticket out. Go to motordolls.com and snag a copy of Lori Bentley Law's new novel. The Motor Dolls plot is a high velocity who-done-it, guaranteed to get you arrested for speed reading. This is the very definition of a page turner, as it has pages that turn and everything. A must read for aspiring escape artists! (Image courtesy of Lori Bentley Law)

For those with no time or aptitude for reading, here's a downhome video that won't kill much time while amusing you with the familiar tale of a group of friends building a hot rod and taking it to Bonneville for a shot at the USFRA's 130 MPH Club. The build and ensuing time trials are offered with a grassroots level wink-and-grin that anyone can relate to. If you've never crunched salt, this makes a good primer. Contact Ratrod Ray on Facebook, or just drive to his house: It's a block off of Rogue River Hwy southbound, in Grants Pass, Oregon (look for crusty cars in driveway). (Image courtesy of Ratrod Ray)

Okay, those are all swell gifts and all, but in the end, does anyone even remember what gift they got last year? Of course not. Because they were celebrating the REAL meaning of Christmas: It's perfectly socially acceptable to drink like a whale on national holidays! While I don't indulge myself (mostly out of respect for Bob), even I can't deny that the signs are everywhere:

Naturally, we also have the hot skinny poop on this year's elite A-list social gatherings, where there may be a two drink minimum, but no maximum whatsoever! Picture yourself here:

Fun for the whole family at Crested Butte, Colorado's Santa Ski Crawl! The big news at this year's drinking and skiing event is an attempt at the World Record for drunken Santas blasting down one of the country's fastest ski runs! Imagine the hilarity! And it's affordable, too: Only $25 for admission to the pub crawl through downtown Crested Butte (and a free Santa suit!), and $20 for your lift ticket (if you're still wearing some of your Santa suit). As mentioned above, nothing is more traditional than being cold and uncomfortable at Christmas. And what could be more chillingly awkward than swooshing through steaming piles of Santa vomit at certain-death speeds in sub-zero temps? Well, since you asked... (Photo via Motormouth Ray)

This is where we're headed for Christmas! The annual SantaCom event launches from New York City's East Village. A shared Twitter feed guides revelers from there to Manhattan and Brooklyn, where "Rudolph Dance Offs" are contested by those still standing. City fathers have been getting so much heat over SantaCom that this year's event could very well be the last. 

Police even issue these handy guidelines to every Santa participating in SantaCom. Nice. Over 37,000 would-be Santas follow the Twitter feed, and most pop in for at least a drink or two. Below are some random shots of the randomness.

Bob? Your gun has a matching beard?

(Photos via Motormouth Ray)

As it turns out, our imbibing embedded reporter (and now ex-SGE staffer) failed to notify us that the Santa Ski Crawl and SantaCom events both took place on December 14th (so sorry you were witness to this debacle, Bob). SGE and its affiliates worldwide not responsible or liable for airline ticket purchases or lodging reservations made in connection with these events. Women advised not to consume alcohol if pregnant. Use at own risk. Men pregnant and otherwise are absolved of any responsibility or other expectation if using alcohol or otherwise. Your mileage may vary from EPA estimate. Not to be used as flotation device. This product recognized as a carcinogen in laboratory testing. Professional driver on closed course. Do not attempt.

What's missing from these events? Challenge. Any drunk Santa can fall down a hill, or stagger across town. So we came up with THE SGE BORDER-TO-BORDER FAST SANTA CHALLENGE: A winner-takes-all, open jackpot race (entrants contribute what they want to the purse) from the Canadian border to the Mexican border, to be contested by drunk Santas next year, from Christmas Eve to New Year's Eve. All Santas (in bright red costumes and white beards) are required to stop at secret checkpoints to have their blood alcohol levels checked (must be over State limit, with bonus prizes awarded for each point over those numbers). Only the car's owner may drive the car (one owner per car). Car may carry unlimited number of passengers, but must also carry a 350 cubic foot bundle of illegal "Christmas Presents" and a full size (and fully illuminated) Christmas tree, strapped to the car's top. Several valuable bonus prizes have already been donated by anonymous sponsors. At press time, we have four confirmed pre-entries, to be piloted by "Santa X", "Bad Santa", "Santa Pod" and "Santa Anna". First one to Mexico wins. Since I don't drink, I'll be the designated non-driver and will be shooting photos and taking notes to post on the blog.  I can't post any more details here for obvious reasons, but can assure you that Christmas 2014 will be a very merry trip on the Polar Express - for SGE readers, anyway.

We can't vouch for how serious these first three (tentative) entrants are. None have contributed to the jackpot, as of this writing.

But we can tell you that these last four are as serious as a revoked driver's license about the competition. All of them have tossed surprisingly healthy dough into the jackpot, which they each fully intend to pocket. Don't worry about your exposed mugs, guys - you'll be unrecognizable in Santa guise at 100+ MPH.


The following is a public service warning of the dark side of a white Christmas. Beware these freaks of nature. They are extremely dangerous and are not to be trusted.

Bob? Is that you?

(Images via Motormouth Ray)

Some friends of SGE who asked us to pass along their Christmas wishes to you...

Kristin Kline

Chadley Reynolds

Sadie Floyd

Maria Panova

Steve Scott and friend

Faith Granger and Lucky

Dave Wallace Jr.

Raoul Duke

This Guy (sorry, Bob!)

Our friends at the Golden Dragon, SGE's official office-away-from-the-office.

And, of course, the entire folded-arm SGE staff:

Motormouth Ray




OTHER BELOVED CELEBRITIES WHO SHARE LOUIS CHEVROLET'S BIRTHDAY: (December 25th): Sir Isaac Newton, Humpherey Bogart, Sissy Spacek, Rod Serling, Cab Calloway, Jesus Christ, Anwar Sadat, Robert Ripley, Nellie Fox, Pud Galvin, Karl Rove, and Carlos Castaneda. Some badass Capricorns...


Mawy Chwismuh! We hope your hangovers are cured by next week. Because we're all meeting back here for New Year's Eve!!! With Bob!

As per SGE tradition (established in 2006), we close the party with the annual posting of H.L.Condiment's classic "Why palm trees should not be decorated for Christmas".



Every proper hot rod garage is equipped with at least one cabinet where we keep "the good stuff". You know, those special items that we don't even allow dust to touch. Motormouth Ray is no exception. But on Christmas Eve, Ray's cabinet doubles as a secret hiding place for the family's presents. Do NOT peek into such a cabinet, as you just might discover a secret that you'll wish you hadn't seen - for the rest of your life. (Photo by Motormouth Ray)

And yes Virginia, we even have special Christmas squirrels for you "good" boys and girls. Perhaps you'll discover these treasures under YOUR tree in the morning. It could happen... Or you might find a crazed rabid squirrel that scampers straight up your arm to your jugular veins when you reach under the tree. You just never know. Good luck!