Corvette - Friday, August 21, 2015

Chevy Corvettes are one of the most recognizable, beloved cars ever to hit the streets in the United States, but they almost disappeared right after they first appeared.  Back in 1952, the prototype for the Corvette piqued the interest of many Americans.  Veterans of World War II had seen European sports cars and wanted something similar in look and power.  The Corvette was GM's answer; however, its first few years were a little rocky.  Only 300 cars were produced in '53, with few of those reaching the general public.  1954 was Corvette's chance to reach out to the public ... unfortunately, they were unable to keep up with demand, and technical issues brought the cars some bad publicity.  Chevy was going to call it a day.

And then, the Ford Thunderbird came out.  The popularity of the T-Bird was almost immediate, and Chevy was all of a sudden unprepared to throw in the towel.  They improved their Corvette, making it more reliable and increased production.  Unexpectedly, Ford added more doors to their T-Bird and veered away from  the sportier look.  Corvette had less competition and a definite advantage, giving them time to earn the loyalty of a clientele that has not given up on them since.  Of course, there's always room to advertise, and Corvette has certainly done that.  Here we have a neon sign that may have helped some fence sitters make a decision to buy the great American sports car!  (It's on display in our Toy Box, tantalizing our visitors forevermore.)
QUESTION:  Which of the following is not an example of an American sports car?
A)  Mustang
B)  Viper
C)  Ferrari
D)  Camaro
ANSWER BELOW

50!  Thanks to Dwight D. Eisenhower, 34th President of the United States, there are fifty states in the United States.  Today in 1959, he signed the document making Hawaii the (current) final state.  The tropical paradise is 2,467 miles from its nearest state (California), strategically located deep in the Pacific Ocean.  When it was attacked in 1941, precipitating American involvement in World War II, it was considered a territory.  The description of "five-oh" to identify police officers is familiar to most Americans because of a popular, and rebooted, television series called Hawaii 5-0, about the islands' police force.  The "5-0" really just describes the state's entry into the union.

THE COUNT!  If you love music, there is no better birthday to celebrate than that of Count Basie, born today in 1904.  The Red Bank, New Jersey native learned how to play piano as a young boy and became so proficient he dropped out of school to perform - playing accompaniment at theaters to silent film before getting into jazz.  Soon enough, he was leading his own big band, which he did for half a century.  Now, he is a musical legend!

QUOTE:  If you play a tune and a person don't tap their feet, don't play that tune. - Count Basie

ANSWER:  C)  Ferrari.  They're Italian.