There’s been a lot of speculation among readers and friends that, in the last eight months since moving from metro Detroit, I’ve transformed from a rust-addled, grime-covered, shitbox-owning, junkyard-touring, poor-fashion-having engineer/wrenching machine into something a bit more…hip. More “metropolitan,” if you will. There was the purchase of the BMW i3 electric car followed by the purchase of a nice-condition open-top Jeep (pretty much the same one from the movie Clueless), there was all the caviar I ate at Pebble Beach last year, there are the Birkenstocks currently on my feet, there was that art Gala I attended recently, there was a recent trendy community theater showing in someone’s backyard, there was my recently-picked-up affinity for Açaí bowls, there’s the fact that I just used that weird “ç” just now while spelling “Açaí,” and you could go on and on. I’m basically on an IV-drip of bubble tea, which I’m realizing wasn’t a smart call, as boba is getting stuck in the tubes. Still, I’ve been in denial for a while, but then last week it hit me as I told my friends that I was standing just a few feet from The Rock: Maybe I have gone Hollywood?
I haven’t wrenched in weeks. I’m going to trendy events, eating vegan things (I had a jackfruit taco the other day; it wasn’t nearly as good as a non-jackfruit taco, but it wasn’t bad?), attending hippy-ish craft shows, getting massages (OK, I only got one), hanging out with folks who do “Reiki” healing and who believe in crystalline energy and astrology, considering attending burning man, and on and on. I cannot express how much my life has changed since moving to LA. I mean, check out what my life was like in Michigan:
I know, pretty great, right?! No responsibilities other than wrenching. Cheap rent. Car parts stores everywhere. The greatest junkyards on earth just a short drive away. Truly heaven.
But I have to say, I’m enjoying LA, too. People out here are a bit nutty, so I kinda feel a little less like a weirdo. The off-roading is actually amazing (even close to LA). The traffic isn’t as bad I thought it’d be, and even though space is a bit of an issue and cost of living is absurd — not to mention that the unhoused situation here is unacceptable, and honestly the feral cat situation is pretty horrible, too — I’m enjoying California.
Anyway, let’s get back to The Rock.
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The absurdly handsome and charming actor and former wrestler was picking up his Ford F-150 Raptor R, a 700 horsepower monster that I reviewed a few months ago. It sounds awesome, and just is awesome:
Ford CEO Jim Farley just happened to be there on his EV road trip in a Ford F-150 Lightning, so the two had a chat. The Rock had some nice things to say to factory workers:
You never know who you'll run into on the road… @TheRock picked up his new truck from @galpinford and had a special message for the @Ford + @UAW team back in Dearborn. Thanks, DJ! #BuiltFordProud pic.twitter.com/LZvvIBmUVw
— Jim Farley (@jimfarley98) August 14, 2023
Here he is talking with Jim Farley:
And here’s The Rock signing a technician’s shirt.
The top image shows him taking a photo with technicians.
Though I typically like to meet people, I didn’t introduce myself to The (that’s his first name, right?), as the man was on a mission, and also I had been told by a video producer to step away upon filming that little Instagram clip above. Still, it was cool to see Mr. Rock up close, and to see the joy he brought so many people just by being there and being a decent human being. Ditto with Jim Farley, who seemed genuinely interested in learning more about how things worked at the dealership level, especially in the service area.
Anyway, that was a cool experience. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to finish up this kale salad and head to Goga class.