VINTAGE PLAYBOY LANGUAGE OF LEGS | THE STUFF OF MALE SEXUAL DELUSIONS

 

the language of legs

Vintage wisdom from the pages of Playboy magazine, 1969. Reading this, it’s no wonder guys are so messed up. Just look at the sexually-charged propaganda we’ve been feeding ourselves for years. The article is actually hilarious in retrospect, and paints a pretty shallow picture of us guys as simple-minded children with one thing on their mind– getting their sticky little fingers on the prize in a Cracker Jack box. The writing is so ridiculously laced with sexual innuendo that no girl sitting in any position would stand a fighting chance against a horn-dog armed with this article. Gotta love what they call the poor gal that doesn’t cross her legs when seated– the “Philanthropist”, she’s comfortable with herself and everyone else…  Keep reading for more laughs, and legs.

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Dillard’s & The Missing CFO | No Answers to the Little Rock Mystery that Will Not Die

 


John GlasgowWilliam Dillard II

 

I remember when this story broke well over a year ago– right from the start a lot of industry insiders were speculating about Dillard’s possible involvement in Glasgow’s sudden, strange and very timely disappearance.  There were just too many ducks in a row that would give reason to believe that Dillard’s would benefit greatly by having this guy out of the way.  There were ugly disputes and alleged threats that scared Glasgow into going as far as installing a wiretap on his phone… there was the letter (below) that Glasgow wrote to coach the new heir apparent (founder Clark’s son) on how to deal with Bill Dillard II, and hopefully straighten things out… then, poof– one dark and misty morning Glasgow’s gone.  

Here we are closing in on almost a year and a half later, and still no closer to having an answer as to what really happened on that early morning drive that ended on a remote mountainside with few clues and no scent trail to speak of.  I have no reason to believe that Dillard’s caused Glasgow any harm– but we’ll all rest easier, especially Glasgow’s loved ones, when there is finally closure to the mystery.

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Crocker Motorcycles | The Tough American Super-Bike that Clipped Harley’s Wings

Crocker Motorcycle

The Crocker was built heavy duty for maximum performance, custom-tailored to the individual rider’s order, and built in Al Crocker’s own facility. Each buyer could choose color, degree of chrome trim, and even gear ratio and displacement.

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Al Crocker founded Crocker Motorcycles in 1936, having spent 20+ years honing his skills engineering and designing bikes for Indian. Al and his former foreman at Indian, Paul Bigsby (who later went on to invent the famous Bigsby tremolo for guitars) knew they had the muscle and know-how to give the competition a serious run for their money. When Crocker introduced their first hand-built speedway racer bikes, they flat-out killed the competition, not just sweeping the boards– setting new standards for performance and quality that far exceeded Harley-Davidson, Indian and everyone else for years to come. They reigned as the baddest bikes around until 1942, when the company folded– unable to support it self due to a slow build time, material shortages brought on by the war, and an economic downturn. Incredibly, only around 100 bikes were produced during this time, but the legend and fervor lives on– with Crocker being among the rarest and most coveted motorcycles in the world to this day.

At the MidAmerica Auctions motorcycle auction in January 2007 in Las Vegas, a 1941 Crocker big tank (equipped with a 3 gallon cast aluminum fuel tank) motorcycle sold for $230,000. At the Gooding & Co. auction in 2006 in Chandler, a 1931 Crocker 61 sold for $236,500. At the Bonhams & Butterfield 2006 auction in New York, a 1937 Crocker “Hemi-head” V-Twin brought $276,500. At the 2006 auction of Bator International in California a 1939 Crocker 61 cubic-inch side valve model sold for $200,000.

Cocker Motorcycle

Crocker introduced motorcycle design innovations that set his V-twin ahead of the Harleys and Indians of the mid 30’s and 40’s. The transmission could withstand incredible amounts of torque. This beautifully engineered three speed transmission coupled with a unique proprietary engine of Crocker’s own design laid shame to anything that dared cross its path.

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So confident was Crocker with this magnificent machine that he offered to refund the full purchase price to any buyer who was beaten by a rider on a factory stock Harley or Indian bike. No refund was ever given.

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The Sons of Lee Marvin | An Iconic Brotherhood of Famous Look-alikes

 

Lee Marvin in his iconic role-- Chino from The Wild One.  Marlon rode a triumph (his own) but Lee rode a Harley.

Lee Marvin in his iconic role-- Chino from 1953's The Wild One. Marlon rode a Triumph (his own) but Lee and his brood rode Harleys. Lee Marvin was 10X cooler and had more natural biker vibe than the posturing Brando-- even though it was his first experience on a bike.

 

I’m a huge fan of Lee Marvin– as well as Jim Jarmusch, Tom Waits and Nick Cave.  If I had the looks, this would definitely be the club for me.  From the website–

Jarmusch is the founder of The Sons of Lee Marvin, a humorous ‘semi-secret society’. Members of the society reportedly include musician Tom Waits and actors John Lurie and Richard Boes, all of whom have worked with Jarmusch on several occasions.  Nick Cave has also “been included”, and John Boorman has been “given a card” as an “honorary member”. (Thurston Moore, Iggy Pop, Josh Brolin and Neil Young have at various occasions been rumored to be members as well.) The entry criterion for the club is that the person must have some physical resemblance or plausibly look like a son of the actor Lee Marvin — as such, women are not allowed to join. The club supposedly meets occasionally to watch Lee Marvin movies together. Its members perpetuate the joke in the media.

 

Jim Jarmusch Tom Waitslee marvin 

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VINTAGE RACING STYLE | Legendary Drivers Crushing It On & Off The Track

An autographed photo given by the great Formula 1 driver Juan Fangio to Harold Cole of New Smyrna Beach, Fl when Fangio made a visit to the Daytona Speedway in 1979.  Love the crazy printed shirts, especially the incredible equestrian horse-bit motif on the left-- very Hermes chic.

An autographed photo given by the great Formula 1 driver Juan Fangio to Harold Cole of New Smyrna Beach, Fl when Fangio made a visit to the Daytona Speedway in 1979. Love the crazy printed shirts, especially the incredible equestrian horse-bit motif on the left– very vintage Hermes chic.

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Sometimes you just strike gold– like this amazing photo series of incredibly stylish race car drivers from back in the day when the world had class.  I wish guys still had enough knowledge of the classics, and confidence in themselves to dress like– well, men.  There’s definitely an equestrian tie-in going on with these two pics– check out driver Peter Gregg (below) wearing classic horse-bit Gucci loafers with his race garb.  Even better still if he actually drove in them. A very ironic, yet fitting homage to horsy equestrianism by masters of raw manmade horsepower.  Gotta love it.

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Peter Gregg and Hurley Haywood drove a Porsche 911S in the 1972 12 hours of Sebring. They finished 5th.

Peter Gregg and Hurley Haywood drove a Porsche 911S in the 1972 12 hours of Sebring. They finished 5th place in the race, and 1st place (in my book) for personal style. via Louis Galanos

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1970 12 HOURS OF SEBRING RACE | STEVE McQUEEN’S BRUSH WITH VICTORY

Steve McQueen at the 1970 Sebring 12 Hour Race drove with his left foot in a cast due to a motorcycle accident. He had to have the foot wrapped in asbestos cloth because the plaster cast was transferring too much engine heat to his foot. His crew is re-wrapping his foot making final adjustments to make it as comfortable as possible.

“Steve McQueen at the 1970 Sebring 12 Hour Race drove with his left foot in a cast due to a motorcycle accident. He had to have the foot wrapped in asbestos cloth because the plaster cast was transferring too much engine heat to his foot. His crew is re-wrapping his foot making final adjustments to make it as comfortable as possible.” –Louis Galanos

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I’ll be the first to admit that any reference to Steve McQueen these days can seem pretty freakin’ cliche. So what.  Seriously though– the fact that McQueen (partnered with Peter Revson) raced with a broken left foot in a cast and came in 2nd to Mario Andretti is pretty amazing in my book.  Throw in some pretty cool insider commentary by the photographer Louis Galanos, and remembrances from others at the race, and you’ve got an amazing trip back in time that combines the best of vintage Hollywood and racing history.

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Steve McQueen screwing around before the Sebring, Florida 12-Hour Race (Tri-X).  You can clearly see that his left foot is in a cast.

Steve McQueen screwing around on a scooter before the Sebring, Florida 12-Hour Race (Tri-X). You can clearly see that his left foot is in a cast. ©Al Satterwhite

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THE SNAKE & THE STALLION | HOW SHELBY KICKED FERRARI’S ASS

carroll shelby cobra

Carroll Shelby poses with his new 1964 production Cobra and his new Cobra race car-- Venice, California. "It's a massive motor in a tiny, lightweight car." --Shelby explaining in a nutshell, the secret to the Cobra's performance.

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When Carroll Shelby decided to leave auto racing in 1960 due to a hereditary and life-threatening heart condition– he never looked back.  Shelby dominated the racing circuit in the 50s, and wasn’t done yet. Knowing that racing was longer an option, he fixed his squinty gaze at becoming a legend under the hood, as well as behind the wheel. Shelby was going to build his own cars, and made it his personal mission to knock Enzo Ferrari off his high horse– who’s imperious, dictator style flat-out rubbed the tough Texan the wrong way. Ford knew they would also benefit greatly from an alliance with Shelby, as they were regularly getting their clock cleaned on the racetrack, and had no answer for Chevrolet’s Corvette in the showroom wars either. Ford soon became part of the rivalry with Enzo, as two unsuccessful buyout attempts of Ferrari during the 60s dealt a humiliating blow to Henry Ford II, and the only place left to settle it was on the racetrack.

Carroll Shelby is shown below with the three Cobra roadsters that would win the 1963 USRRC Manufacturer’s Championship. Venice, California, 1963.

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carroll shelby cobra

The AC Cobra started out as a Ford small block 260 cubic inch V-8 (later 289) wrapped in a tight & light handbuilt British sportscar. It quickly morphed into a beast with a 7.0L 427 aluminum block under the hood, creating an incredible power-to-weight ratio that was just plain sick. Some silly fans actually prefer the earlier, more dainty Cobras-- feeling that the flared bodies, fat tires and aggressive stance of the later 427's comes across visually as too brutish and crass. Well sorry folks, I'm all about the 427 Cobra. An AC Cobra coupe's top speed was clocked at 185 mph on the M1 raceway back in 1964-- an impressive feat for sure, and years before the super-exotics.

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KENNY HOWARD | THE MASTER PAINTER & STRIPER ALSO KNOWN AS VON DUTCH

A young Kenny Howard, self-named Von Dutch, perfects his pin-striping craft.

A young Kenny Howard (Von Dutch) perfecting his pinstriping craft at Bud Ekins' shop, 1965.

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Before the cheesy namesake clothing and accessories line that threatens to destroy his cred forever, there was the self-invented and slightly mad genius Kenny Howard– better known as Von Dutch. He was a real Renaissance man– legendary custom painter, artist, motorcycle mechanic, and a skilled metal worker who hand-crafted his own knives and guns.  He had a strong aversion to money and felt it was detrimental to his art– which makes the clothing line even more of an ironic abomination.

“I make a point of staying right at the edge of poverty. I don’t have a pair of pants without a hole in them, and the only pair of boots I have are on my feet. I don’t mess around with unnecessary stuff, so I don’t need much money. I believe it’s meant to be that way. There’s a ‘struggle’ you have to go through, and if you make a lot of money it doesn’t make the ‘struggle’ go away. It just makes it more complicated. If you keep poor, the struggle is simple.“  –Von Dutch

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Von Dutch (Kenny Howard)

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DUBBLE TRUBBLE TRIUMPH DRAGSTER | BRITISH HYBRID HELL ON WHEELS

Triumph Dubble Trubble

The legendary Dubble Trubble Triumph motorcycle

The Dubble Trubble, built in 1953 by legendary racer Bud Hare, was a beastly Triumph twin-engined motorcycle that dominated the drag strips during the 1950s with a top speed of 142.38 mph.  The dual 40 cu. in. displacement engines were fed through a Harley-Davidson hand-shift gearbox with foot clutch. Only two gears are used– second and high. Totally sick.  Kids– don’t try this at home.

None other than Von Dutch himself painted the lettering on the legendary Triumph’s tank– which explains the 2 dots above the U’s which weren’t asked for.  But then again– Von Dutch was known to kind of do his own thing.

 

Triumph dubble trubble motorcycle

The legendary twin-engined Dubble Trubble Triumph motorcycle

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SOUL ON BIKES & BLACK CHROME | THE HISTORY OF BLACK AMERICA’S MOTORCYCLE CULTURE

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Growing-up in and around Harley biker culture, there was never any talk of African American riders– let alone that may actually have a part in contributing to American motorcycling culture.  It was like Black riders flat-out didn’t exist.  Now finally, their incredible story is starting to emerge through books like Soul On Bikes and the Black Chrome exhibit at California African American Museum. The images and accounts are not just amazing to look at and enjoy– they are also incredibly inspiring.  Many thanks to The Vintagent (one of my favorite blogs) and The Onyx Rider from which many of the pics & stories came.

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East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club

East Bay Dragons Motorcycle Club-- circa 1960s.

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When Sonny Barger formed the Oakland Hells Angels in 1957, a few miles up East 14th Street in East Oakland, a young black bike rider from Louisiana named Tobie Gene Levingston was soon to follow in his footsteps. The two knew and respected each other, and had ridden their Harleys together in the same East Bay neighborhood.

In 1959, Tobie Gene organized the Dragons, a loosely knit, all-black men’s club, one of the first of its kind. The dragon’s earliest incarnation began as an all-black car club and originally stemmed from Tobie Gene’s big brother role to keep his younger brothers and friends occupied and out of trouble. The Dragons became ten strong, including members like MacArthur, Hooker, Tobie’s brothers Joe Louis and Jonas, Baby Joe, Sam and Cousin Rabbit. Tobie Gene became the East Bay Dragons MCs first and only president, still reigning and riding after forty-four years.

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Soul on BikesSoul on Bikes

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