Friday, February 24, 2006

One Enzo Down, 398 to go!

If you're not familiar with the Ferrari Enzo, it's one of the most famous production cars in history. First showcased at the 2002 Paris Auto Show, the entire production run of 399 was sold out almost immediately for a mere $670,000 each! Chump change.

Until the recent debut of the Bugatti Veyron 16.4 (1001 HP from a quad-turbo W16 engine) the Enzo was the fastest production car ever to be built. If you ever have a chance of seeing one, congratulate yourself. It doesn't happen. The owners very rarely show these cars to the public, much less driven them on the street. On the street? That brings up an interesting philosophical debate that I'll leave for other blogs: Can you get insurance on a $670,000 car, and would anyone rich enough to purchase one actually buy the insurance?

Darwin Award winners come in many shapes and sizes, some very wealthy. Let me nominate a 2006 candidate...Swedish mobster Stefan Eriksson. You see, Mr. Eriksson thought it would be a lot of fun to try out his 660-HP super-exotic Enzo by racing a nearly-as-fast Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. On the street!

With only 617 HP and and an extra 700 lbs, and although undoutedly more comfortable as a daily driver, the 200-MPH SLR is no match for the 220-MPH the hands of a competent driver, which is exactly what Mr. Eriksson found out recently.

After topping out over 200 MPH, according to witnesses, the Ferrari skidded out of control and slammed side-ways into a slightly less-expensive telephone pole (which, sadly to say, did not survive the crash). The car split in half, was completely destroyed, but Mr. Eriksson was saved! Woohoo!

As strange as the crash was, the story told to police was even more bizarre. Apparently, according to Mr. Eriksson, he wasn't even driving his own $670,000 Ferrari at 200 mph on the street. Oh no, he was just a passenger. The even less competent, real driver was actually a mysterious German named last name.

Here's the big shocker: Mr. Eriksson's blood-alcohol level was above the legal limit at .09. Check out the pictures.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


While the rest of us are meandering around in relatively cushy lives complaining non-stop about trivial matters (gas prices are up 20% in 5 years, the market has only increased by 10% over the past 18 months, and the timing of the traffic light closest to your office seems to always be against you when you're late), there are a scattering of very young angels hidden among us that we rarely acknowledge. How much we could learn from them!

Meet Emily. She's a darling 9-year-old whose best friend is a cat named Pippy. She loves America, Christmas, Disney princesses, and Jesus. She's much like my own 6-year-old daughter. Except for one thing: Emily has cancer.

While I'm obsessing over my son's delayed potty-training, my cat's incurable vomitting habbit, and way too many door dings on my beloved car, Emily's attending regular testing and treament sessions. Her parents are experiencing anxiety the likes of which only the unluckiest of us parents every encounter. They're pulling their hair out, can't sleep at night, and are in a permanent state of worry over the future of their little angel.

But Emily takes this all in stride. Such youth and innocence. She probably thinks this is a perfectly normal part of life, something everyone endures. She doesn't even seem bothered that she was dealt such a poor hand. The rest of us are running around with a three-of-a-kind, two pairs, flush, or a full house and envious of the 5-of-a-kind the guy down the street was dealt. Emily's stuck with a 9-high and is putting on what the rest of us would call a "poker face". But for Emily, it's not a show. Her faith in God assures her that everything will be ok. She might not get the 4-0f-a-kind, but she doesn't care. Because she knows that what's important is to just make it to the next hand. And with God's grace...she will.

God bless you Emily.