This morning has been busy, so apologies for a late and perhaps truncated Cold Start, but don’t think that I’ going to leave you hanging! We need to contemplate many things about this image from a 1979 Ford Fiesta brochure. There is, of course, the car itself, which I feel like I always dismissed as a Rabbit knockoff when I saw these things on the road as a kid, but now I look on them with more appreciation. I also think it’s worth noting the calm focus of the driver there, wearing what I can’t tell is either a huge bow or some kind of hood, but mostly I can’t stop looking at that dude in the suit reading the newspaper, because he looks so tense and nonplussed I’m afraid he might explode at any moment.
I mean, look at him:
He’s either reading something he his not a fan of at all or he’s thinking about something that’s making him seethe and that newspaper is just the stand-in, absorbing the simmering ire. I bet that thing is seconds from being wadded up and flung in the gutter.
Look how tidy these cars were! Especially with the little and probably almost useless Euro-spec bumpers. Sure look good, though. On the top picture, note the little body-colored three-lobed fuel cap. Why do I like that so much? And this is such a fantastic green color, too. Also interesting is how they seemed to have attempted to match that picnic basket contents with the clip art of the picnic basket found there: some apples, a big salami, a baguette. At least it seems like they did? The guy casually talking with his church-rec-room-couch-fabric pants there is holding an apple, at least.
Anyway, let’s get out of here before newspaper guy finally snaps.
The Fiesta was a very fun, lightweight car. The one I had in college could do amazing FWD burnouts, and new tires cost twenty bucks.
It also got 35 MPG on the highway without even trying. I once filled the tank with five bucks, when I found gas at .749 per gallon. Good times! It was probably a death trap in case of an accident, but so was every other economy car at the time.
Newspaper guy is clearly a spy about to make a handoff of stolen secrets in that briefcase, he’s just tense.
Fiesta lady looks like a bride already in her wedding dress and veil, for some reason backing into a parallel parking situation she could have easily drove straight on into. That’s far too much space!
He’s reading about the plucky little league team that is still playing in that field right in the middle of his luxury condo development site.
He’s tense because he’s been waiting for her to show up! She’s finally here but damn if she can’t park that tiny car!
Perhaps he’s reading his horoscope and Mercury is in retrograde. Or some news of a Meteor tracking perilously close.
Or he’s traveling and didn’t wake up in time to hit the Continental breakfast.
Because it’s Thursday and he only finally got the Monday paper.
Also – to me it looks like she’s about to pull out into traffic and waiting for it to be clear. If she were reversing into the space she might be looking the other way.
30+ years later she might just be timing whether her Fiesta’s PowerShift transmission will let her slip into traffic, or just slip.
To me it looks like she’s a bride that decided she was about to make a huge decision and she’s getting the hell out of there now. Dude is pissed because he’s reading about the failure of the Mustang II after buying 5 of them.
She’s about to make a huge mistake. Damn you morning brain and lack of an editing function!!
Maybe the guy is angry because his newspaper consists of a single sheet rather than multiple sections.
And to me the Fiesta lady appears to be waiting for a gap in traffic so she can leave. If she were parallel parking I think she would be looking toward the curb.
Ayatollah rejects increasing oil production to 1978 levels? Godamnit, I might be forced to buy one of those crappy foreign hatchbacks like what that lady is parking, I’ll give up my Cordoba when you pry the keys from my cold, dead hands
Not sure what’s up with Johnny Bench or the Lady in the Red Fiesta, but that kid in the background looks like he’s getting ready to go all Werewolves of London.
It is just me, or the green one comes with the rear bumper pre-crooked from factory? No need to wait for your first fender bender!
Forget the guy with the paper waiting for the bus. Let’s hitch a ride with the Fiesta driver. In the mid 80’s, I owned a 79′ Blue Fiesta with air conditioning!! I loved that car. Great Kent series engine, lots of aftermarket parts to make it a runner. It was all good fun, until a Plumbing truck made a left in front of me on Rt 9w in Alpine.
It just occured to me — with those colors and the ‘Fiesta’ name, was Ford trying to create some partnership with Homer Laughlin China? 😉
A highschool friend drove one of these back in the ’80s. It was a manual and his parking brake didn’t always hold like you’d want so it was easy for us to move it around the parking lot when he wasn’t looking. On at least one occasion there were enough of us around to pick it up and put it in a nearly impossible position.
Ah, good times.
The most likely reason is usually the correct one. He’s constipated.
It was indeed a Rabbit knockoff, and a shitty one at that. My mother had them (1976 and 1980) at the same time that my best friend’s parents had Rabbits. Those MK 1 VWs were downright luxurious compared to the Fiesta.
My first car out of college was a 79 Fiesta S bright yellow with Black stripes. At my first post college job one woman called it the bumblebee car. US cars had huge bumpers which hung out from both ends. I pushed one side of the front one in until it rested on the body in a fender bender. Before I sold the car I “fixed” the bumper by chaining to a tree and putting the car in reverse pulling it out. Loved that car.
The plaid-pantsed guy’s stance + big salami and big baguette in the picnic basket = someone told the art director to make the ad super sexy.
You could probably still fill it with leaded gas, too. (Looks to be a Spanish speaking country?)
And nobody on the shoot could be bothered to straighten the bumperette on the Transit Van up ahead. It’s your brand, people!
Maybe that’s what newspaper man is so steamed about.
And speaking of him, what’s going on with the masthead of his newspaper?
“No, Garfield, some of us DON’T like lasagna!” (wads up paper)
Church rec room fabric pants, Perfect
Junior Bacon Cheeseburger III?
Those pants, WOOF!
I had pants like that as a first grader, my first pair of bell bottoms, circa 1969. They were still around 10 years later? Who was wearing them?
People who just out of touch and hadn’t set foot in Caldor in 10 years