MY OLD YELLOW CAR
THREE FUTURE GREASE MONKEYS FROM FLOYD
Jack Rutigliano, Gil Giradin, Kenny Joseph at Bellport Auto Mechanics School September 1962
If you hit this page without having read the page My Old Yellow Car first , it won't mean as much, for some pretty amazing stories are revealed back in part one, not to mention so is my Old Yellow Car! The car in the pic above is obviously not yellow, nor is it mine, it's just an old '39 Chevy sedan we got to practice on in Mr. Eugene Massucci's first year auto mechanics class and it's a far, far cry from what my old yellow car was.
What's going to follow here is a tribute to real friendship that through the amazing power of the internet was reunited after 40 Plus Years of zero contact and one amazing photo I had never seen before. But as I said that's all covered back there on MY OLD YELLOW CAR so I strongly suggest if you haven't seen it yet...click on it.. I will wait for you to catch up. For the rest of you and you "Indubitably" know who you are....Please Read On!
SORRY WRONG NUMBER
It all started March 17th 2006 with a phone call from one Maggie Rutigliano of Hemet, California a woman, I have never met but who's smoky and quite sexy voice (no there's no hanky panky going on here...internet has plenty of that stuff if you want it, just look elsewhere please) I had only heard her speak unbenownstly and very briefly a few months earlier when I found myself in possession of a database that allowed you to look up names and phone numbers of hard to find people even those that are unlisted. Of the several old friends I hadn't seen nor heard of in many many years, there was one on my list I wanted to contact named Jack Rutigliano or Rut as he was known back in the Beach. We were real tight from about the 8th grade on till he left school and joined the Army and I often wondered how life had treated him.
Anyway back in January I thought I had found Rut living in a town of Hemet, California. The last I heard of his whereabouts was from his mother Gertrude in 1965 when I called her asking when his wedding day was. (Jack was engaged to a girl from school) WELL KENNY ! GERTIE SAID, The wedding is OFF!!!!, he has married someone else & moved to California ! ...... I could tell by her tone that she was pretty ticked off at him for abrubtly changing course....I didn't know what to say to her then as I was only 18 and had not accumulated the wisdom of consoling tidbits like "Life Is What Happens ...While Your Making Other Plans" and it would be the last time I ever spoke to the late Gertrude Planz Rutigliano , who could power shift her '56 Dodge with the best of them and get rubber in 2nd gear. She was a gutsy lady...but I digress...So I called this number I had in January and asked for Jackie only to be curtly told by a woman on the other end WRONG NUMBER.... and so I crossed it off my list.,.... Who was to know that he was using his proper Christian name John instead of Jackie or Rut. Well what happened next is detailed in My Old Yellow Car and if you haven't read it yet it's the last time I'm going to mention it.....
So here I am really jazzed that Jack and I have recontacted each other after 40 some years if only via e mail and the phone...when the phone rings on St. Patricks Day afternoon and Maggie says very sweetly" Ken.... This Is Maggie , John's wife......What are you doing March 30th? "............well it just so happens that date was sort of implanted in my mind and I blurted out ... "I'm having a colon-oscopy that day.... why?" ....... "Oh that's nothing" ...she said , they give you a little joy juice and it's over in a flash.... what time are you scheduled for it morning or afternoon? "The Morning" I sheepishly answered....wondering why she was asking......when she said "How would you like a visit that afternoon from Jack?" I said " I'd love a visit from Jack, but that might not be the best day for him to drop by" She then said there was a only small window of opportunity for him to visit before he had to return to work (he was recovering from a torn rotator cuff...it's tough to get old I tell ya) and that he could be there in Nashville March 30th about 5 PM..... ( she had already checked flights & he wasn't even aware of it yet as it was going to be her suprise to him) She then sealed the deal by saying "You know you are the only person he ever talked about from his childhood in Mastic Beach... I was flabbergasted.... and wasn't thinking too clearly when it finally hit me ...Hells Bells ..... I Can Have A Colon-Oscopy any old day of the week ....How Often Does An Opportunity To Have A Visit Like This Come Along!!! I told her I'd call her right back ... I then called the docs and rescheduled "my procedure" for mid April.... well enough of this old fart medical ailment stuff.... onward
MARCH 30TH - APRIL 5, 2006
So there I am at the Nashville Airport terminal wearing a Pat & Mike's T Shirt and holding a "Mr. Indoobatdly" sign up. (It was just one of the many colorful expressions Mr. Massucci used to say in auto shop). No need too though as I could pick Rut out of the crowd and vice versa. And suddenly 40 some years just vanished in an instant as we cut up all the way back to my house like a couple of teen agers. For as good as I thought my memory was , Jack reminded me of things long buried, but all too good to stay that way. Especially our adventures with cars in them and under them. He also told me that I was his choice to be his "Best Man" had he gone through with his original wedding plans. I had no idea he was going to ask me, nor did I know that I was the guy who got him to go to Auto Mechanics school, a trade that has served him well for all his life.
Jack stayed with us for a way too fast week..... But we had some really great times...... Lot of laughs , Lot of memories, and I got to be Nashville Tour Guide for a bit...... I have headed out for California twice before only to wind up in London and Colorado (closer) both times. Third time just might be the one! I think the pics that follow will tell you the rest of the story that a splendid time was had by all..... weather was perfect and we didn't freeze our asses off like we did in Mastic Beach on Christmas Day of 1960. After all I couldn't afford to..... as I still had to get that colon-oscopy!
WILD IN THE BACKYARD & ELSEWHERE
Settling In and Calling Home
"Yeah Maggie.... he's just as crazy as he ever was"
AND HERE IS PHOTO PROOF
Actually it takes a confident and stable mind to suggest we don my Pat & Mike Texaco Helmets
The Weather Was Picture Perfect Most Every Day. The Dogwoods Were In Full Regalia
On Saturday We Headed To Downtown Nashville
ON BROADWAY....... JUST A WEE BIT DIFFERENT THAN NYC's BROADWAY
AND WHERE DID WE GO FIRST?
WHY TO A CAR MUSEUM OF COURSE!
But not a " normal " car museum.......