Bob Dylan said, "The times, they
are a'changing". That's
still true after all these years,
even in the VW hobby. While
it used to be fairly rare to see a
girl showing a car, it's getting so
that there are more and more of us
out there. It's not equally
split yet, but give us time.
Guys show cars, girls show cars, and
everybody has fun. Usually.
Unless you're trying to convince people
that the car you're showing is really
YOURS. Ever had this problem?
Probably not, unless you happen to
be female and your car is a 1959 Single
Cab pickup. I can relate to
that one too.
guess Vernon and I have quite a reputation
now. I didn't mean for this to
happen, it just did, but now that it
has I'm not sure it's a bad thing.
What the heck, it might open doors for
Transporting ladies all over the U.S.
The most fun I have at shows is sitting
there, with my back turned, listening
to the comments. Some will already
know about him. Some will have
heard of him, but not of me! A
few will have never seen him before.
But the comments! "This is
the truck a CHICK did." "I
wanna see THIS one. Her dad bought it
when she was a kid." "NO
WAY,MAN!!" And it goes on
like that. That's the fun part.
It's great being a novelty and I enjoy
it. I suppose Vern enjoys it too,
but it's hard to tell. He wears
the same bland blue face to every show.
Unless you can see that tiny smile there,
see? Right there, yep!
Bugs and ladies get along very well.
Buses and ladies are a little more
rare. But how many of you can
think of TRUCKS that are owned and
loved by those of us of the female
persuasion? I'll be not many.
I, myself, can think of only three
right off the bat: myself, a
friend of mine and her bus, Wilbur,
and a woman from Sacramento who dotes
on a '63 Deluxe. But for the
most part, women and Type II's just
aren't generally thought of as a common
Being a sort of non-conformist, I
get a certain weird kick out of having
a restored single cab. We're such
an odd sight at shows and parades
that we're the topic of lots of discussion,
Vernon and I. "Oh, how
CUTE! Her husband let her drive
his truck!" or, "Hey,
look, she's got his truck here!",
and the ever-popular, "Tell your
husband he's got one beautiful truck
You can imagine how well that last
one goes over with me, the one person
brave enough to venture into the depths
of Vernon's cargo hold, wire wheel
and Rustoleum in hand, to scrape away
the years of decay. Me, myself!
HAH! I'd like to see one guy
brave enough to do THAT! And
this guy wanted to give my husband
credit for this? Hmmm. I can understand
where all this comes from, mind you,
but I don't have to like it.
Slowly, Vernon and I are educating
our public. Woman CAN have trucks
and buses if they want! They
can help make them as beautiful as
the guys do with theirs! They
too, can know the fun of restoring
a car! My husband Rob goes with me
to almost every show and event.
Once there, he makes himself scarce
for one reason or another (I personally
think it's because he doesn't really
like VW's), and leave me to answer
the questions that are surely to follow.
I don't mind, really. If buses
ladies are hard to understand, imagine
how a single cab TRUCK and a woman
get treated. I know, most women
wouldn't CHOOSE a single cab to restore,
if they wanted a VW they'd probably
pick something "cute" like
a convertible Ghia or something.
Even a Model A. Or a Thing.
Yes, even a Thing would be less an
oddity in the hands of a woman.
Well, in all honesty if I were going
to choose a VW to restore, I probably
wouldn't choose a single cab either.
MEN might want one, but a woman?
But, it didn't work that way - I didn't
choose Vernon, HE chose me.
The rest is history.
I think it was at one of Vernon's
first appearances as a complete truck
that I got a sample of this strange
behavior that men exhibit sometimes.
A guy came up to me while I was cleaning
and polishing, and wanted to know
now long it had taken my husband to
restore this truck and how much money
did he invest?? HUH? What
the heck did he mean by THAT crack?
My husband? Vernon and I had
been friends for 6 years before I'd
even met the man I married!
And, all told Rob had invested countless
hours supporting me and this massive
undertaking, but hadn't invested a
single dime of HIS money in it - Vernon
was all mine! Didn't I look
like a Truck Person? It took
me a minute to realize that after
seeing me (being a woman-type person
and all) and seeing Vernon (being
a big blue truck-type vehicle and
all) that NO, I did not look like
a truck person and this guy just assumed
that Vernon belonged to a MAN.
In all fairness to men, we can't blame
them for this attitude. Vernon
and I do look odd together.
Part of this problem is my own appearance,
I think. I'm fairly tall, blue
eyed and very blond. In short,
not the classic example of someone
most folks would expect to see standing
next to a restored Type II, unless
she were wearing a neon bikini and
was draping herself seductively over
a fender. Well, since Type II's
don't have fenders, I suppose she'd
have to find a Deluxe sunroof bus
to lounge around or over. You
get the idea, right? But to
see a Blonde Person, on hands and
knees with a dirty rag, cleaning the
grass off her tire treads - well,
it's just more than some can comprehend.
Too strange to contemplate.
I'm no radical feminist but neither
am I one to sit back and let others
bask in MY glory! After all,
hadn't I helped on a lot of
the work? Hadn't I color-sanded
Vernon's hide with my very own hands?
Hadn't I worried and cried and despaired
over him? Sure, yes, I had!
But that was no reason to rip the
guy's lips off for asking a question!
People needed to be enlightened, not
It didn't take long before I grew
to actually enjoy the extra attention
Vernon and I got at shows. Once
I told them that Vernon was indeed
MINE, most people were very friendly
and interested in our story.
There seemed to be a few people who
were too shy to ask the obvious.
I didn't bother them, I just left
them alone and they figured it out
for themselves. There were also
a few guys who didn't seem to believe
me when I told them Vernon was mine.
Even they don't bother me much anymore
- I just smile sweetly and wonder
why these guys think I'd even be cleaning
a truck that wasn't mine. Some
thought it was funny - HER, and this
truck? HAHAHA! You've
gotta be kidding! Well, I think
it's funny too - we really are an
I've had guys want to argue with me
about what is correct and what is
not. Women NEVER say a word
about this, but for some reason, a
few guys have a need to find SOMETHING
on Vernon that isn't quite right,
isn't STOCK. I decided when
I began this project that the point
of it was going to be to make Vernon
as nice as he could possibly be, and
to make him the way I wanted him.
Not necessarily the way he was born,
but BETTER. He actually turned
out pretty much bone stock as it is.
But, the interior is my version of
what a Deluxe single cab would have
looked like, if VW had built one.
Instead of the gray cardboard door
panels, Vernon's are upholstered to
match the seat, which is a tasteful
gray tweed with gray vinyl trim.
He has a gray AutoTex headliner, which
matches the panel around the rear
window. I did it this way because
it made ME happy, not so that it would
conform to what he was supposed to
have. Too, I wanted him reliable
so I could drive him to shows and
parades. (He's been trailered
exactly twice in his entire life,
and not by choice) His old vacuum
advance distributor was giving up
the ghost, so I replaced it with the
more reliable centrifugal advance
model, the .009. Ditto for the
coil, which was replaced with a Bosch
blue coil. Those two items are
the only non-stock things on the engine,
yet they still catch some eyes.
I had one guy who felt it necessary
to point out to me that these did
not occur naturally on a 36hp engine.
I had to then explain that yes, I
knew this, and there was a reason
I'd done this.
One young guy (is my age showing yet??)
wanted to argue that my front bumper
wasn't correct. To tell you
the truth, when I got a front bumper
for him (Vernon had a set of weird
aftermarket bumpers at the time) I
only knew I wanted one of the "plumber's
delight" type - blade, bow, and
overriders. I had no idea there
were different kinds! Luckily,
I ended up with the right thing -
one that slants down on the ends.
This guy insisted I had the wrong
one; since Vernon was a '59, he should
have had the bumper that ends in a
point on both sides. I make
a point of not arguing with someone
if I can help it, especially if I'm
not sure I'm right. But in this
case, I'd just been told that what
he was talking about was an earlier
style - '58 and earlier. I told
him this, yet he persisted. I forget
how this drama ended - it's been a
couple years - but I remember something
about ignoring him. When I wouldn't
argue about the bumper, he tried to
pick apart Vernon's paint. Dove
Blue? Nah, this can't be Dove
Blue since it should be a bit more
GRAY if it was Dove Blue.....................this
looks more like Fjord Blue to me.
Yeah, right, whatever. The guy
was clearly looking for ANY reason
to find fault with Vern. I doubt
he would have gone to this extreme
if Rob had owned the truck.
Or, maybe he would.
Most people are so nice, and interested,
that the Fun People far outnumber
the UnFun People. In fact, the
main reason I have such a good time
showing Vernon is because I get to
talk to them about my favorite subject!
Get me started and I'm hard to shut
up. Secretly, I get a big kick
out of all the extra attention we
attract. I don't take him to
shows to loudly proclaim for all to
hear that Vernon is MINE, and a MAN
didn't have a thing to do with it.
No, as a matter of fact, quite a few
men had a LOT to do with it.
Without Rob's support, I probably
would have given up long ago.
And, the ones directly responsible
for returning Vernon to his former
glory were ALL men. But women
seem to love Vern too. They
usually let the guys do all the talking,
then upon finding out he's mine, they
turn to the guy and say something
like, "Well, SEE? I told