Dead Horse chapter 1 Mack


Dead horse is a story about a car sitting in the weeds waiting for someone to come and save it. It seems to have some appeal to me to restore a classic car and all that it entails.

The year was 1969, we were at war and we were at peace and love. The Beatles were rock gods and AC DC would wait 6 more years to storm out of radios. Mack causally liked the Beatles and wasn’t at war or peace. He was consumed with racing and AC DC would have to wait for Bon for almost five more years.

Mack smiled as he drove home. He tried to stop smiling. It was making his cheeks hurt. The light turned red and he eased the car to a stop. He slid his hand around the large wood wheel and admired the small horse astride the tribar. A crack of thunder caused him to jump. He looked around startled and saw a brand new hugger orange Camaro. It cracked it throttle again goading the poor Mustang. Mack didn’t smile. He looked the Camaro. It’s a Super Sport with that much attitude. The Camaro had a black hockey stripe down the side. There was a pair of chrome vents in the hood and a 396 emblem at the back of the fender. Mack nodded to himself and thought, yep, there was the badge and the stripe with the chrome vents in hood. Mack bet the Camaro was  figuring on three hundred and ninety-six cubic inches vs. a potent but much smaller two hundred and eighty-nine cube competitor.

The light burned red and teased the Camaro into frenzy. Mac put the car in first and covered the brake and clutch with one foot and the other was on the gas. He started slowly spinning the rear tires to create a little friction heat. He stopped a little is good and a lot is a big greasy burn out. Mack brought the engine revolutions per minutes up to 3,300. If Mack raised the R.P.M’s any more, the car would break traction and spin with any less and the car could stall on the line. The cross traffic light changed from green to yellow and then to red. Mack counted one, two, and popped the clutch as he dropped the hammer. The light turned green as the Mustang rocked back on the rear axle planting the rear tires.

The Camaro must have watched the side light, because the cars left as one.  The Camaro used its torque to pull a fender and start pulling away. If Mack lost much more, it would become impossible to take back. Mack flipped the clutch with left foot as he grabbed second. The Mustang stretched out its legs and walked off and left the Camaro. Mack was massaging his cheeks damn they were cramping.

It was way against the odds for a two eighty-nine to do that to a big block Chevy, Mack thought, as he pulled in the barn.  The long rectangular tail lamps flared then went out as the horse went silent in the barn. He stroked the flowing roof line down to the spoiler and shut the barn door. He said “sleep tight” and barred the door. He walked to the house rubbing his cheeks.

The next morning he was blocking up the car. He drained the gas and water with much care. He stowed the hood, spoiler, and tires up to protect the fiberglass and rubber from time. He shrouded the car in a heavy tarp closing it off to the world for much longer then he expected. As he left the barn, he flipped a white letter on the tarp. It fell open as it landed on the tarp.

It was a form letter with blanks penciled in accordingly. Written in pencil were the words: Mack Hill, 300 Mill st., Carol, Ca 93301. There was a crest with an eagle on the left upper corner and an address stamped on the right side. At the top, it read in large bold letters: order to report for physical examination and at the bottom it had Feb 18th, 1969 or today, however you call it.

New 1969 Camaro SS 396  approx 3,775.00 Today approx 24,692

Used 1967 Mustang Fastback approx 2350.00 Today approx 32,275

to be continued

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Filed under Short Stories, Todays Stories, Uncategorized, writer

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