Category Archives: V&R Stories

#JustDrive

Tweet Photo by Randy Stern Who are you? Are you an enthusiast? Are you a person who wants to be an enthusiast? Do you have the best car in the world? Or, do you have the bets car you can … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: Repping The Job in a PT Cruiser

Tweet Remember the concept of gainful employment. You might be experiencing it right now. You could be in an employment situation where you are performing duties that are not in your job description. Maybe you like doing these tasks…or, not. … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: Going on Tour With The Chorus

Tweet My van, their buses. All photos by Randy Stern Hitting the road on a concert tour? Why, of course I did! When you’re a musician or part of a musical group, it takes the proper logistics to pull off … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: Licensed for Adventure

Tweet It has been 37 years since I first obtained my driver’s license. This laminated card with my photo, stats, restrictions and endorsements has been my passport to the world. Well, maybe just one country – albeit one huge one. … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: The Last Train Home

Tweet NOT the last train home… – Photo by Randy Stern Nine years of living in the San Francisco Bay Area taught me a lot. Among the lessons I learned being a Northern Californian involved making the right call when … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: A Pivotal Moment in My D.C. Life

Tweet Photo by Randy Stern As Easter approaches, we are reminded by the many ways the world celebrates it. Whether we wake up to express our faith or to follow other traditions identified with that date, Easter symbolizes the possibilities … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: Ode to the Hero in the Jaguar V12

Tweet Photo by Randy Stern Currently it is January here in Minnesota. There is snow on the ground, salt on the roads and rolling across those roads is a bleak selection of cars. You have blob-shaped quasi-all-wheel-drive crossovers, the occasional automatic Teutonic sports … Continue reading

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V&R Stories: The Last Ride of The Taurus

Taurus_Sandstone

Twenty years ago, I had the opportunity to drive my first Ford Taurus. It came as I rented the car for the weekend as I had tickets for a San Diego Chargers game down at Jack Murphy (now Qualcomm) Stadium and my employer’s holiday party. It was a daunting task to drive from Reseda to San Diego and back in time for the party in Woodland Hills, but I was up for a challenge. Besides, this would be the first time I would drive between two major cities.

After piling up the miles on that first trip, I was impressed with Ford’s breakthrough family sedan. Impress enough to welcome it again a couple of months later when I had to drive up to the Bay Area to retrieve some items from my late father’s estate. For the amount of travel I have done between both Northern and Southern California, a Taurus helped me achieve my first ever trip between the two areas from behind the wheel. Interstate 5 through the Central Valley can be a lonely highway, but that 1987 Taurus GL was a true traveling companion.

During these past two decades, the Ford Taurus became the car that was my ticket to adventure. I never owned a Taurus to get the full experience of the car, but I had driven more of my share of them to rack up some wonderful times behind the wheel. With the exception of the SHO, I may have driven every version of one of the best products Ford created.

The “jellybean” shape struck a chord with consumers looking for a family sedan that stood and performed admirably. On December 26, 1985, the Taurus, along with its twin the Mercury Sable, arrived at dealerships to a hungry public. In turn, they had one of the best new car introductions in Ford history selling as many Tauruses as they did in the first year of the Mustang in 1964. Continue reading

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V&R Stories: The Homecoming

There used to be a time when waking up at 3:00 in the morning to head to an airport was effortless. That was before I turned 40. Luckily, I was able to rise to the occasion and be ready for a delayed SuperShuttle. No surprise. My experience back when I lived in Northern Virginia prepared me for late SuperShuttles who have problems finding homes in nice, quiet residential areas.

I was already nervous. The SuperShuttle showed up late and I was on my way. That was fine. My nervousness after six years of not flying anyway was slowly calming down. As I did not need to check luggage through with a carry-on and my satchel, my next task was to tackle the Security checkpoint. Did I have to take off my shoes? No. Did I have to take off my belt? Unfortunately, yes. But, I forgot to put my cell phone on the conveyor and I got grief about not taking my iBook out of the sleeve. Ok, fine! You win! I will admit that it wasn’t as bad as I thought now that I have gone through the experience for the first time. I’ll just have to better prepared next time. Continue reading

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Happy 2017!

Tweet Oliebollen, American Style – Photo by Randy Stern It is sunrise on a new year! Welcome to 2017! What should we expect from the fresh new mark on the Gregorian Calendar? The expected, perhaps? Or, maybe, the unexpected? Either … Continue reading

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