Thank you for reading The Autopian! If you’re seeing this text it means this content is for official members only. If you want to experience this automotive goodness, please consider supporting us by becoming a member. Thank you very much!
David, you have a life and what is a growing web site, enjoy the changes and variety it offers. Get back to wrenching, when it suits you. The more eyes you have upon you the harder it is to please them all, don’t try to, there is madness in the comments.
THE FROGS, grieved at having no established Ruler, sent ambassadors to Jupiter entreating for a King.
He, perceiving their simplicity, cast down a huge log into the lake. The Frogs, terrified at the splash occasioned by its fall, hid themselves in the depth of the pool. But no sooner did they see that the huge log continued motionless, than they swam again to the top of the water, dismissed their fears, and came so to despise it as to climb up, and to squat upon it..
After some time they began to think themselves ill-treated in the appointment of so inert a Ruler, and sent a second deputation to Jupiter to pray that he would set over them another sovereign.
He then gave them an Eel to govern them. When the Frogs discovered his easy good nature, they yet a third time sent to Jupiter to beg that he would once more choose for them another King.
Jupiter, displeased with all their complaints, sent a Heron, who preyed upon the Frogs day by day, till there were none left to complain.
What’s that all about?
Oh great? It’s you.
I still say we leave the internet for no raisin.
What was the point of that story?
You mean moral of the fable?
When you seek to change your condition, be sure that you can better it.
All writers, journalists and bloggers, television stars, athletes, etc. have a public persona because it’s the nature of the profession. No matter how many articles we read about you over the years, we readers may think we really KNOW you. Here’s the truth, we DON’T. We see what we want and project the rust.
You are your own person and you can write about whatever you want in whatever phase of life you are in at that time. It’s that passion that brought all you guys here in the first place. That’s what makes you interesting to us.
If some readers don’t like a theme, an article or particular story of yours, don’t sweat it. That’s our problem and NOT yours. Do you think Picasso changed his painting style because he thought that’s what people wanted to see? No! he did it for himself.
Ask Jason how many different styles (periods) Picasso went through in his lifetime and you’ll some extreme differences.
You’re a professional. You just do you and let people project what they want.
We see what we want and project the rust.
A Freudian slip: when you say one thing but mean your mother. 🙂
That comment was garbage and David simply should have ignored it.
DT you take care of you first. I don’t care what content you write as long as you are happy. A writer can replace the subject but you can’t replace the passion or energy. You do you, not what people want of you. That’s how you get burnt out.
If the readers want more articles about people suffering slow painful death working on Jeeps I’m sure you’ll be able to find some new writers to join the fold and help the site grow. Not volunteering I sold my YJ thank you very much.
Much love. Hang in there. -AP
I first interacted with David (IIRC) on some Project Slowdevil troubleshooting, and have always enjoyed reading his stuff.
Even back then, people were grumbling that there was too much crapcan/rust/questionable-repair-related content. Now others are grumbling there isn’t enough wrenching. There will always a different grumbling group.
Being a superannuated flatus, I’ve managed to learn a thing or three. One of those is to be happy in what you do for a vocation: the weeks are very long if you’re not.
Another is to be happy with the person you see in the mirror – not necessarily visually (I have a face made for radio) but ethically, morally, etc. You know, in the ways that really count.
The other thing boils down to this: be good to those around you.
FWIW I think our David is doing fine on all three counts. (Not that other staffers aren’t – JT and Mercedes come to mind as well. Even our Goth uncle seems all right.) People evolve, change, and – ideally – grow. Otherwise, what’s the point?
Oh, and a fourth thing: welding IS a superpower.
Plus welding is fun
I borrowed a welder so I could set up my 13yo grandkid for some desired welding. The kid layed down some very impressively good welds, welding 1/4″ rod (formed into letters) onto a baking pan (thick to thin is a challenge) and the kid did better than me. I burned through on my only example weld, and the kid only did once out of 20+ welds. Where I borrowed it from is closed for the weekend. Looks like I need to look around to see what I can weld over the weekend.
When all you have is a welder, everthing looks like metal pieces needing permanent affixing.
Leaving aside everything else mentioned in the article and the comments, my sincere belief is that after Project Cactus Mr. Tracy kinda needed a sabbatical from wrenching.
I suspect there’s lots of great wrenching content in David Tracy’s future, but let him find his new stride and get to it his own way.
Besides it’s torches and pitchforks if Jaws and Mango stop showing up on the front page.
We get plenty of Torches already… Who would take the role of pitchfork though… Adrian?
I’m curious to see who David passes the torch… er… wrench to.
This is why the majority of the readers were opposed to David’s move to LA.
Also if there were truth in advertising…
“See David and Jason’s new site, the Autopian! All the craziness you’ve ever wanted from these two crazy auto enthusiasts without anybody to stop them! Oh, and David’s going to quit wrenching.”
Dave has gone hollywood!
Maybe a fun compromise could be Dave goes around to the greater LA area and finds people working on fun unique projects. Throw in a lost cause someone wont give up here and there for some spice and well….Theres a whole lot of unique, off the wall wrenching for people, but Dave gets to go home to a house without 50 cars and have a real life finally.
You all are doing amazing, and I am digging everything you all do. This reminds me of old Howard Stern listeners, some will come out and bash him for being soft, selling out, etc. but he has evolved and become one of the greatest interviewers and show hosts ever on all mediums.
You all continue to evolve and grow together, and this site too, will continue its rise to the greatest automotive and etc. site ever.
I don’t come to the Autopian for staid articles about wrenching some bygone relic of mainstream nostalgia. I subscribe to the site for the sheer f-ing lunacy of a bunch of dedicated weirdos pursuing their passions for cars. That includes salvaging hulks from the Outback, getting trench foot while vagabonding in Europe, shower spaghetti, and yes even cats that colonized a project jeep.
David writing glowing articles about a quality and overlooked car is welcome enough, more so because he writes with the wonder of a wild fur trapper who stumbled into civilization, marveling at having a ride that actually works and isn’t a tin wash basin with wheels and a plastic crate for a seat.
“ he writes with the wonder of a wild fur trapper who stumbled into civilization”
That is a great line!
Great comment too.
Hey it is your site. You can’t make everyone happy. I certainly don’t expect to be asked my opinion or have you change for me. It is enough you read consider and respond but do what you think is right.
David admitted that he had to change some aspects of his life for his own good.
He be good now.
You try moving across the country and start a business. Let’s all give him a big break, his articles will be back.
And he has kitties to look after.
As much as I like all of Autopian, followed some of the writers from Jalopnik as well,
I cant really afford the subscription to here. I am in a nursing home on a limited
budget. Even the cloth membership is too much for me. $5.00 would be possible,
but it would cut into my Diet Coke and snack budget. So many sites now want paid content. I just cant afford all of them. The only “small site” I pay for is “zip ties and bias plies” on you tube.
There’s nothing wrong with that! One of the things I love about how they run things here is that the vast majority of content is NOT paywalled. If any of us is in a position to pay for a subscription, they can. If they’re not, that’s fine too. (Also, maybe someday they’ll introduce a $5 tier and call it “old milk crate” or something…)
The simple truth ,in almost any work place, is when you take the step up to management your priorities must change.
You can’t do your old job and your new one simultaneously and satisfactorily.
Trying to do both will make you a bad worker and a bad manager.
You have new priorities and now must trust in your employees and your abilities as a trainer and mentor.
Sure, you can fill in for them or do the job yourself on occasion, but not full time.
Trying to keep up with your old pace of crazy shenanigans would make the Autopian as a whole suffer.
You’ve got a great staff.
I think you’re headed in the right direction.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy…
*,-_ +_= th, in…
I figured he was just expanding his repertoire. Even Dylan went electric.
Well, people are never going to love, or even like, everything you do.
I think it’s damn refreshing you’re branching out a bit. Let the haters hate.
Plus, the pool of women who would appreciate being driven around L.A. in a rusty non-A/C equipped Jeep has got to be EXTREMELY low relative to those that would happily be driven in an i3.
On a smaller scale, I got some similar heat for selling a couple of my ICE performance cars and buying a Tesla M3P. Some of my car friends just couldn’t comprehend me going to the “dark side”.
All I could say was; ” There’s a whole world out there, technology and performance wise.” “Once you’ve hit that particular automotive meth pipe, you just can’t go back.”
“Once you’ve hit that particular automotive meth pipe, you just can’t go back.”
Indeed. Now if we could just get variants of such things that are mostly analogue with minimal tech BS, that are low mass, nd that are all about being built with “performance wise” in mind. Because that would be the logical evolution of enthusiast vehicles.
IDK, man. Wanna help make a NLA bushing for a 411 so I can Gamble it this month? ABG. Come do silly hooptie things in the sweaty hellhole.
Even Ian Fleming had to go write Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
I did not know that. You learn something new everyday.
When I was younger, I wrenched out of necessity and because I was a cheap bastard with a healthy dose of mistrust that anyone else would do things right.
Eventually I got newer cars and wrenching was limited to oil changes, which I still didn’t trust anyone else to do (and, let’s be honest, I was still a cheap bastard).
Then I bought a PHEV and my wrenching was limited to an oil change every 2 years.
During Covid, I thought, I need something to wrench on because I miss it, so I bought the MGB. It didn’t disappoint. The difference is, I’m not wrenching on it under the pressure of needing to to get me someplace.
Life changes. The I3 was your move toward being able to wrench for fun instead of out of necessity. Other life changes I hope are making you happy. You have plenty of projects waiting for you when you are ready.
14 years later, this is still me.
This is it. Have the reliable daily so you never have it impact the shit that matters to you. Then you can have the project where you have no pressure, so you can ensure it’s done right, and not “good enough for right now, I guess.”
In my wrenching days I called my reliable daily an enabler car. It enabled me to get to work when I wasn’t done wrenching in time.
Those days for me are probably gone. I have the tools & knowledge still, but not the passion. That being said, I completely appreciate what DT has and will accomplish. I’m nowhere near his level, but game recognizes & respects game.
Really DT at your age and time in your life starting a business I think you are right where you need to be.a reliable dd and whatever to work on in time. Frankly scoring that I3 deal was one of my favorite stories.
You pretty much summed it up perfectly. Wrenching for fun is a lot better than feeling the time pressure to make your daily driver ….continue to be a daily driver.
Hear, hear! Wrenching in my 40’s isn’t as fun as it was in my 20’s. Plus life just sort of gets in the way anymore.
Yeah, and as you get older there’s just certain parts of the vehicle that I’m just not going to contort my body to fix anymore. That and realizing that (everyone) should reach the age where they put a rough $ estimate on their own time. That’s something I didn’t quite understand until my free time started becoming more scarce.
When the engine on my CC bit the dust a few years ago, I needed a new daily driver. I was tempted, so tempted, to buy something a little older, maybe a Mercedes diesel, a Volvo 240, or even something a bit more recent like a Volvo V70R or a B5 generation Passat wagon. While some of those are basically reliable, they’re still going to need work to keep them going. In the end I settled on a 2014 Sportwagen TDI. Low miles, and four years of Dieselgate warranty. Nearly four years later and not a single issue. I’m so thankful I went the newer and more reliable route. Besides, I’ve got a 1972 Super Beetle to keep me wrenching perpetually.
I bought a 12′ PHEV Prius to replace a 98′ tdi as a dd.
All maintenance has been routine: shocks/struts/springs all around, brake pads & disc’s on front & new pads on rear. 3 out of 4 new hubs/wheelbearings, replaced all fluids, air filters, upgraded to led headlights, 1.5″ lift to stop occasional bottoming out on driveways + help (slightly) w/ heavy snow.
I’ve done all maintenance myself bc of a mix of satisfaction of DIY + make sure it is done right.
The hubs/wheel bearings were the only jobs which were a pain in the ass due to difficulty getting the old hubs out due to rust w/the hub carriers.
Ive found it Surprisingly fun to drive + averages 60-70 mpg around town in mostly highway/interstate driving.
Long distance is around 45-50 mpg. As such it has been used quite a bit for road trips often with 4 people, the car definitely ends up fully loaded.
It’s nice to only have to worry about maintenance items. Funny you mentioned a lift–the wagon was lowered when I got it, so I’ve had to replace the horrible aftermarket sway bar from the previous owner and all four endlinks. But god it looks good low. Plus the usual pads and rotors, and a few other miscellaneous upgrades (Audi short shifter, HID lights, and obnoxiously loud Hella horns to keep the brodozers from running me over).
I bought a 12′ PHEV Prius to replace a 98′ tdi as a dd.
What’s that like, losing 86 feet of length in your daily driver?
(2012 = ’12, 1998 = ’98. Yes, I’m a pedant, but details matter, goddamn it! Apostrophes replace that which is removed – think about how contractions are structured.)
Will there be a test on this? Asking for an ignorant friend.
I did enjoy the stories of his journeys in rusted buckets of trash. I predict that it will come again. Moving across country, setting up a new site from scratch takes a lot. I think what David is experiencing is what a lot of us do which is how do we work on cars when we do not have a garage. We can’t really have a project car in an apartment complex parking lot.
The only way I will lose faith is if I see New Balance and Jorts. Then I’m out.
I have also loved reading and watching the videos of David, Torch and Beau going to Car Week and wished there was much more video content from that. It’s a nice and different perspective from some people that really feel like they are passionate about this stuff and enjoying themselves.
Besides, the whole Ute epic as amazing.
Maybe next year you guys look for a Coucours d’Lemons car to compete with and film that. Show Wayne and Dodi up.
Agree on multiple points:
New Balance + Jorts = OUT. Do not pass go, do not go to Moab…
Lemons car is clearly the next step here. DT wrenches, PG drives while JT eats spaghetti-OS in the back seat.
IDK, have you seen Jeep folks? Y’all laugh at Corvette People, but Jeepers are not immune to the jorts/NB combo.
Here in Wisconsin there is far too much jort/NB. Usually it’s guys with watermellons for heads and bellies that dun-lapped over their belts…
I was at Wendy’s getting breakfast and up rolled a Corvette meet up. No joke that almost all had jorts and literally all of them had on NB, mostly in white. T-Shirts tucked in with big ol bellies over their belts. The wives were dressed nearly the same with the exception of the bellies and their shorts were the elastic waist band type. If I saw this scene in a movie, I would think its BS. It was nice they were all getting together over something they all enjoy.
hell yeah, live that life, Corvette folks
FWIW I was never into the Jeep content because I just don’t care for them, but I still read the articles. I like wrenching on just out of warranty German moneypits, but everything you write is entertaining and informing even if it’s not up my alley. Write about whatever you want, man. This is your website. #teamcattopian
Cheer up David. You taught me some interesting things about sex work recently. That’s gotta count for something.
Keep it in context, man. Don’t let some internet rando calling himself Stink E. Jones ruin your day. Look at all us other randos with ridiculous names who post positive things about your current state of evolution! At the core, you’re still one of the nicest human beings on the planet, your love for all things automotive still shows through strongly and you’re also an excellent writer. So what if you’ve got a few cats in your life and can occasionally eat a sandwich without simultaneously ingesting petroleum products. I’m just happy to be along for the ride with you and the rest of the Autopians.
David, You’re doing just fine. Life dictates much of what we do, not the other way around.
Yeah, but maybe throw the annoying “stick to the issues” crowd a bone once in awhile to shut them up – maybe write a consumer advice article comparing different clothes dryers from different manufacturers to see which is the best at dealing with motor oil dyed clothing
I keep volunteering to ghost write such articles for him, but alas they just make fun of me on Slack instead of jumping all over my amazing offer.
User name computes. You need a good car name. Something like Jolt Speed.
Crank Shaft I be.
Surely that would be an article about which manufacturers’ dishwashers do the best job on transmission parts?
I am serious, and I did call you Shirley. 🙂
(that doesn’t work as well in text…)