The Goat That Launched A Million Muscle Cars | Pontiac’s Legendary GTO


John Delorean Pontiac GTO

John DeLorean led the charge behind the GTO– the car that put him on the map forever and started the American muscle car revolution (pictured here with a Pontiac Firebird). Folks at home, don’t attempt to adjust your screen– DeLorean really was that big, measuring in at a little over 6′ 4″.


My stepdad and I didn’t see eye-to-eye on a lot of things, he was crazier than a… well, let’s just say he was wound pretty tight.  He was a mean, swearin’, rough-lookin’, physical s.o.b., and needless to say– the neighbors didn’t bother us much.  He’d keep empty coke bottles rolling around in the cab of his pickup, and if he didn’t care for someone’s driving– wham!— he’d blast ’em with a bottle.  And this is back when Coke bottles were glass.  His signature look was long dark hair tied back with a faded bandana, a crazy long beard, and even crazier eyes hidden under dark aviators.  He had a 50 lb. dumbell that he’d do curls and rolls with until his tattoo-covered forearms were the size of hams.  He was a machinist with arms and hands that were already hard and toned from wrenching all night on the graveyard shift.  He was just a tough mother.  If he had a soft side in there, he never showed it to me.  That would be weak– and he didn’t do weak.

Aside from all that nonsense, there was one thing we did share a love for– fast cars.  He was a GTO man.  GTO “Judge” to be exact– he loved his “Goats” as they were called back then.  He’d tell stories about his old Goat he had as a kid, and when I was about 13 he got another– a ’69 GTO Judge with a souped-up 455 cid V-8 and a 4-speed manual tranny.   I remember riding in that car, trying to control my laughter as it hopped like a crazed rabbit– the car had so much freakin’ power it couldn’t keep up with itself.  That GTO was the best thing he had goin’ for him in my eyes.  That and his Harley.  I wish he hadn’t sold it, but there was an ultimatum on the table– either the Harley and GTO went, or mom did.  They went, mom stayed– but eventually they split-up.

I couldn’t help from thinkin’– man, that’s gotta burn some.







The 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge-- the ultimate American muscle car.

The 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge– the ultimate American muscle car. The GTO moniker was stolen from you know who– Ferrari.


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Evel Knievel | Childhood Hero

Motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel poised on his Harley-Davidson.  1971


Daredevil motorcyclist Evil Knievel in mid jump over a row of cars.  March 1971

Pictured above is daredevil Robert “Evel” Knievel on his Harley davidson, 1971.

If you were a boy growing up in the 70s, then this guy was probably at the top of your hero list.  Man, one of the best Christmas gifts I ever got as a kid was the Evel Knievel action figure and motorcycle that I’d launch across the room- off ramps- down the stairs- off the porch- wherever.  I completely idolized him.  And how great was the white leather stars-and-stripes stunt suit?  He was like an awesome combination of The Fonz and Captain America.  

The other cool thing about him is that Evel Knievel never backed out of a jump, never made excuses, and never showed any fear.  He had to know some jumps were going to end badly- didn’t matter.  If he said he’d do it, he did it.  He had 433 broken bones during the course of his career to show for it.  

Sadly he passed away on November 30, 2007, but his legend will definitely live on for a long time to come.  

I found his classic jumps on YouTube today and introduced him to my boys.  The verdict was– Whoa, awesome!