Here’s The Thing: Once a Car Guy, Always a Car Guy
My name is Alex Buckler. I am the son of an ex-professional top-fuel drag racer, and I am an avid automotive enthusiast.
Ever since I was a young boy, I was obsessed with learning. My mind’s potential to retain the embarrassing girth of automotive knowledge I have amassed over the years began with Pokemon. As a second grader, I could tell you every single thing about every single one of those little animals, to the point where my dad was concerned. It wasn’t until the Playstation came out and games like Need For Speed entered my world that I became fascinated by the howls of bellowing V12’s and the squeals of four square feet of highly engineered patches of rubber holding on for dear life as these monsters hurled around the countryside. So I began to do research concerning horsepower, 0-60 times, and prices. My parents were divorced, and about the time my mother married my step-dad and moved us to another state, I had begun connecting with my father through our Joy of Machine. Being a product of the age of carburetors and slide-rules, my dad was always amazed by the wealth of information I accumulated through reading on the computer.
As I spent more and more time with him under the hood of project cars, the mental note-taking continued. Not only was I learning about my father through stories and advice birthed from prior mistakes; I was formulating a mental blueprint for the inner-workings of these magnificent companions we call cars. At the age of eight, I was saving for my first car.
I have a strong feeling some of my future articles will be inspired by life experiences through working on cars with my dad, learning from my previous cars, and the fellowship I have shared with members of our vast community. Therefore, I will fast forward to today.
I am a 23 year old, Gear-head. I am currently working towards two masters degrees: one in Biblical counseling, and the other in Christian education; all while teaching in Texas. I have been married for a year, and have the blessing of a wife who supports my passion, but still keeps me from making the stupid decisions. The third car I’ve ever owned is my current one. Ever since I understood the rivalry between the nimble Mitsubishi Evolution and the rugged Subaru STi I wanted a dog in the fight. After years of waiting and working, we sold my Miata and finally purchased a Dark Gray 2015 STi. I’ve owned the car for a few months now, and I plan to call this car a mate for many years to come.
My love and knowledge of cars has prevailed through time and trials. There have been times where it has helped me meet new friends, has allowed me to help a stranger in need, has put me into debt, has lost me a girlfriend, and has brought me and my dad closer together despite everything. Jeremy Clarkson summarizes my sentiments beautifully in an interview with Eric Bana: “It’s what non-car people don’t get. They see all cars as just a ton-and-a-half, two-tons of wires, glass, metal and rubber. That’s all they see. People like you or I know, we have an unshakable belief that cars are living entities. Not like a Toyota Corolla obviously… You can develop a relationship with a car. And that’s just what non-car people don’t get.” Its this intrinsic ability to have a relationship with a car that makes us who we are. Its why once you become a car guy, you will always be a car guy.