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Car Chase

What do you want for Christmas (part three)?

By Steven S. Brooks Published: December 23, 2009

OK, we've talked about the old cars of our dreams and the new ones we aspire to. Now it's time to wish for car stuff. You know, things that have a chance of actually fitting under the tree. When I say car "stuff", a lot of people's thoughts immediately go to tools. Wrenches, ratchets, creepers, lights, etc. are all very cool but, due to my limited mechanical skills, are never high on my wish list.

Also, "stuff'" to me does not mean swag. NASCAR t-shirts, Ferrari driving shoes, Porsche fanny-packs and pre-frayed Ford Truck baseball caps all have their place but they don't qualify as "stuff".

True car stuff is cool first and, if it serves any purpose at all, its function is secondary.  A perfect example is the drag racing "Christmas Tree" clock on my desk. Press the red button and you are immediately attacked with the raucous sounds of a dragster revving its powerful engine as the yellow pre-stage lights are illuminated. More revving and, now, tire squealing happen as the burn-out and staging is accomplished and the staging lights go on. Then, all of the sudden, you are encompassed in a fury of sounds as three yellow lights lead to the green "go" signal. As the sounds fade off into the distance, the bottom red light goes on to signify the end of the imaginary race. Oh, in addition to these amazing functions, there's a microscopic, innaccurate thermometer, a totally useless barometer and a clock that only loses about four minutes a day. This ideal example of car "stuff" could only be made more perfect if it puffed some appropriate smoke.

The variety of great car stuff out there is absolutely amazing. The best place in the area I've found for these gems is Summit Racing's flagship retail store in Tallmadge. It's a good idea to take the spouse and kids along to browse with you so you can be surprised on the big day. I've dropped some hints for the supercharged V8 gas barbecue grill this year. What "stuff" are you hoping for?

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