Local, Seasonal, and Special

Why is everyone smiling?

As you probably know, E.g. and I went to the weekly Kingston Peninsula market on Saturday. It’s much like our provincial capital’s market, without the disadvantage of being in Fredericton.

The market has two locales about a quarter-mile from each other. We found everything we needed at the first locale, and nothing at the second. But we did find this:

Any guesses?

Nope. Not a Corvette.

Not a Ferrari.

This shot will help:

Yep, it’s New Brunswick’s own native child, the Bricklin.

For its brief existence, this car was the darling of the province. Parts were made in Minto and assembled in Saint John.

Not only did the two auto plants provide jobs to New Brunswickers, but the car itself was exciting: shark gill vents, low-slung chassis, buttonless bucket seats, fibreglass/acrylic body, five vibrant colours, and these:

Gull-wing doors. More space-age than those of the later-built DeLorean used in Back to the Future, the Bricklin’s hydraulic doors opened at a touch of a button.

That is, they did if you’d driven the car on the highway for half an hour and warmed the engine. If  you were simply going three blocks for a carton of milk, they might not let you out.

The sweet-tempered owner, who has had the hydraulics problem repaired, opened the door and encouraged one of us to sit for a picture. He’d acquired the car only recently, and is still loving all the attention it garners. (See first photo for evidence. Woman holding bread is a longstanding friend of his.)

The Bricklin company had manufactured fewer than 3,000 vehicles between 1974 and 1976, when financial difficulties forced its closure. Most of the cars were sold in the States; for the new musical, “The Bricklin: An Automotive Fantasy”, the props crew had to purchase one in Florida and drive it all the way to Fredericton.

E.g. and I are taking her parents to see the musical this coming Saturday. It has gotten rave reviews, and promises to be a lot of fun.

The only disadvantage is that it’s playing in Fredericton, where probably no one would dream of opening their driver’s door to let me pose.

12 Responses to Local, Seasonal, and Special

  1. eyegillian says:

    Fredericton is not that unfriendly. It’s just that there’s lots of university students and government types — an artsy crowd — and perhaps they think Saint John is a bit redneck on the blue collar side. From what I’ve seen in Saint John sometimes, I’d be tempted to think the same.

    By the way, here’s the link to the Bricklin musical: http://www.bricklinmusical.ca/. Check out the clips from the soundtrack at the bottom of the page!

  2. S. Le says:

    Brilliant fun! I’m showing this one to Husband! He’s a real “car guy.”

  3. S. Le says:

    Oh, and everybody’s smiling ’cause of that fab looking bread you bought!

  4. lavenderbay says:

    Sorry, Eyegillian, that was just a little underdog rivalry bubbling up from my newly-adopted hometown. The entire province has had a long, hard struggle, and there’s room for everyone to celebrate some nostalgia for the “character and panache” (Car and Driver, 1975) that was the Bricklin.

    I thought you’d like it, S. Le, after seeing that photo you posted of a Dashing Young Couple from the 70s. Thanks for wanting to show it to hubby!
    And the bread’s good too…

  5. Jayne says:

    Oh, I love it !
    Reminds me of the Eureka sports car kits that were made here in Melbourne.
    I reckon the Briklin would have rocked the Back to The Future movies a whole lot better than the DeLorean 😉

  6. lavenderbay says:

    Thanks for the link, Jayne! The slideshow does reveal a lot of similarities in styling. I love the spaceship nondoor doors!
    And yes, it was a pity the Bricklin didn’t make the screen test.

  7. Have fun at the show! Sounds like a good night out.

  8. lavenderbay says:

    I was sure you’d love it, Tony! It would be like Henry’s awesome big brother, wouldn’t it?

    We’ll be attending the “matinee”, Barefootheart, but same diff — especially as it begins at 17 hundred hours. How late do theatre people sleep in, anyway? 🙂

  9. S. Le says:

    I told Husband about the car before I showed it to him and he said, “OH, a Bricklin!” He’s a genius at cars! Scratch that. He’s just a sodding genius!

  10. lavenderbay says:

    Well, of course. Look who he married! 😀

  11. S. Le says:

    *blushing*

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