Freedom ²

Freedom for a teenager in America meant a car. Everyone had a dream car. Mine was a 1968 Mustang, fire engine red with a V-8 and 4 on the floor. I never owned one. I test drove one, used, in 1974. My dad wouldn’t co-sign for me to get it, thinking the car too old to be reliable and perhaps recognizing the gleam in my eye and the lead in my foot.

But when it came down to it, any running car would do. My best friend had a 1963 Ford Galaxie. One friend had his mother’s Dart. My girlfriend at the time had a Vega. It was the mobility that mattered.

I ended up with a 1973 Mazda RX-2. It looked exactly like this one, same metallic blue 4 door sedan. A 2 rotor Wankel engine, developing torque and horsepower way in excess of other motors the same size. I didn’t want the car when I test drove it, until I was rolling down a freeway ramp in third and stepped down hard to accelerate into traffic. After that it was just fine. I stopped caring what it looked like. Like the Raleigh bike in the previous post, function meant more than looks.

It had other features that proved their worth over time. It had reclining bucket seats, a decent radio, and lights in the dashboard.

Freedom ².

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.
–Mahatma Gandhi


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