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January 08, 2012


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Thank heavens this pic doesn't show more of the two super ugly Plymouths in the foreground.

Just noticing that the cars seem to be parked by 'backing in' to their spots....was this the way we had to park back then? (I sure don't recall that...but then again, I wasn't the driver!)

A lot of 64 and 63 Chevy's in this picture.

Plog, yes, that was the way Americans parked back in the 50s and early 60s.

It was part of the Civillian Defense training program that when someone was taking their driver's test that they be able to not only back into a parking space (in order to facillitate swifter mobilization of the populace), but that the driver be able to drive the car in reverse at high speed for 500 yards.

This last part was done to train motorists that, in the event of an invasion by Godless Commmunists from either the Soviet Union or China, they be able to knock down the invading hordes using the bumper and trunk as an improvised battering ram.

You didn't use the front of the car because of the possibility that one of the invaders could put a rifle round or two into the engine block.

President Nixon, in 1969, placed a moratorium on back-parking when he was informed, through a German GSG-9 scientific report forwarded by Willi Brandt, that your average North Vietnamese soldier was no taller than 5'5" and could be run over and eliminated using nothing heavier than a VW Beetle.

It was just an observation for SOME of them ...perhaps there was a parking attendant for the first row of cars....on further zooming in, there are a lot of cars parked front-in first.

Well, the story I was told was that if the nuclear bomb went off, the electro-magnetic pulse would temporarily immobilize the cars. So if they were parked front-end out, you could "duck and cover" inside it like a mini-shelter and still be ready to greet the air-raid wardens when they came to give the "All Clear."

@SelenesMom-yes, an EMP would immobilize ANY device using stored or generated electricity. While the Civil Defense put forth the idea that a car would serve as a mini-bomb shelter, give as how a nuclear detonation would vaporize glass and melt steel, the official hope was that the cars would serve as caskets, be occupied by their owners, and the remains could be identified using license plates or VINs.

@PLOG-those cars parked illegally would have recieved citations and the violating parking attendant terminated from his position.

The design of the automobiles in the mid to late 1950s, and early 1960s, with the oversight of members of the Eisenhower administration DOD staff, was subtly, but specifically made with the purpose of an anti-infantry offensive weapon.

Would YOU like to meet a set of tail fins on a '57 Chevrolet or Cadillac coming at you at 60 MPH?

The design of the '57 Chevy Nomad was made with the undisclosed option of up-armoring the rear hatch as a pintel-mounted, crew-served .50 cal chain gun would be placed in the rear cargo area aft of the split fold-down/lift-up rear bench seat.

anyone seen those stupid parking spaces they have near the downtown Safeway? They are angel parking spaces you must back into.

@Greenbar -- Where do you see '63 Chevys? There are likely a few on that lot, but in that first row we see, left to right: '64 Chev (off the left edge), '62 Buick, '61 Chev coupe, '64 Chev, '61 Chev 4-door, '62 Chev, and a '59 Chev (off the right edge). Definitely a lot of GM products on the lot that night.

I love how entertaining this blog can be at times.

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