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You know one of the most difficult things about launching a new book is promoting it. Now I suppose if you are a mystery or romance writer you go to a haunted house or séance or camp out at a local bookstore, invite your coffee klatch and you have a built in audience (I am sure I will burn in hell for the previous comment). But for us car types? We have ready-made places to find an audience of like-minded people too. They are called car shows and here in Dallas, we have a great monthly event.

Called Cars and Coffee, it is an open house for anything four-wheeled (and some two-wheeled stuff thrown in for good measure). The local BMW dealer Classic BMW hosts the event in their oversized parking lot. When I reached out to you all asking for venues to promote the book, someone suggested C&C. I thought it was a good idea to check it out.

Like any adventurous long time forum user, I dove right in and went to the site, signed up and posted straight away. Turns out the first one was coming up, as they happen the first Saturday of every month. The C&C site said they go from 8AM – Noon, so I thought I would get there by 7:45 and get a spot. Calling my friend Brad (fellow CS driver and the owner of one of the best garages ever!), I asked him if he wanted to bring his CS along to, but he declined, due to his work schedule. He also warned me to get there by 7:20 at the latest to get a primo spot. Owww, I would have to alter my departure plans.

No worries, I headed out about 6:30AM and got to Classic BMW by 7:15. Turning in my eyes were greeted to a feast of four-wheeled eye candy. There was every flavor for your enjoyment: Corvettes by the dozens, Mustangs and Camero were stacked deeply next to each other. Like Cobra’s? Oh they had ‘em, originals with Carroll’s signature right on the dash to incredible replicas from the likes for Factory Five. Quickly scanning the scene, I looked for the tell tale sign of P-Cars and I spotted a few at the very back. OK, let’s head that way then…but off to my left I spotted about six already lined up…ahhh, this would be my row. I pulled in the row and backed into a primo spot.



You know you are in the right spot, from the moment you pull in; people come up to you and start asking questions about your car. Yep, my kind of folks! The entire row quickly filled up (mostly with Porsches, but a few other strays) and within 20 minutes the row was full. But cars kept coming in, hundreds of them, it was crazy. Suddenly there was a roar and an actual Spyker (from the Netherlands) came slotting in. It was surrounded immediately by dozens of people, cameras already out, taking photos…the driver not even got out of the car yet. It is an interesting looking car, lots of glossy black lacquer paint along with stainless steel trim, scoops and detailing. It was for sale too, a 2009 C8 priced at the aggressive Internet price of $142,000. I did not see anyone whipping out their check books.



Back on the Porsche row, they kept on coming in and with no more spaces, cars were simply parked in the row itself close to one side and when that filled, cars continued to park in the row, filling in the other side. I would say that there were more than 700 cars at the event. It was pretty cool, with all the high priced autos edging closely to each other, nobody freaked out, they simply gave hand signals to help park. Very civil. By the time our row filled out there were several 911 Carrera’s, Turbo’s, GT3’s and a brand new 911 GT3 RS 4.0 (it was the star of our Porsche row for sure). The other Porsche owners roamed the row, checking out each other’s ride. I got a lot of positive comments about my Artic Silver exterior, Terracotta interior CS. Several people even posed by it for photos. Very cool.



I took a long walk around the event and found a lot to love: BMW 3.0CS, BMW M1, BMW 2002 tii, several Jag XK-E’s, Lambo’s and Ferrari’s and a surprising amount of DeTomaso Pantera’s. But the star of the show (for me anyway) was the brand new Lambo Aventador. It was white, the same color as the one recently tested on Top Gear. It was awesome! I want one…of course in the 1/18th scale range, but I still want one. I also understand it was for sale too. I did not ask the price. If you have to ask…





On the domestic side, as I already stated, there were Corvettes galore, really it was mind boggling how many show up. It seems the entire North TX Corvette nations shows up. If you are into muscle cars, there is basically one (or more) of everything. It was really a feast for the eyes.

And did I mention that I was peddling my book? Yes, but because of an editing glitch, I cannot sell the first run, so I am giving them away for a $20 donation to one of the two charities I support. Since this one is in TX, I was collecting for Operation Enduring Support (www.ourfreedomisnotfree.org ) an organization that provides specialized equipment and training for our troops deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. I took the last 7 books of the initial run and gave them away (for a donation) within minutes. It was pretty cool, everyone wanted me to personalize and sign it.



I will definitely go back and you should too. They are scattered throughout the US. Go to their website ( Cars And Coffee )and check out the forum, C&C events are popping up all over. Besides there were only three Cayman’s there, we were a scattered group. Man, we need to represent!!

And on that exhaust note, see you next time.
 
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