Thursday, August 2, 2007
I've been saving this Batmobile for quite some time. This is my Cub Scout Pinewood Derby Batmobile. Note the racing numbers, this wasn't a show car it was a fast running little machine. I'm not sure if all my readers are familiar with the Pinewood Derby, so here's a brief explanation. You start with a block of wood, pine to be exact, that have two spots already carved for axles and a roughed out cockpit area, some nails to complete the axle assembly and four plastic wheels. Now you can stop there, or you can carve the shape of any car you want, you just have to remember that the more you carve the more you reduce the running weight of the car. That said you are allowed to add weight in strategic areas to help increase your chances of coming in first down the long wooden, ramp like, track. There are all sorts of rules and regulations, cars have to weigh in, you can't push them, blah, blah, blah. So you are left to work inside the confines of the Pinewood Derby Track Rules.
I was probably entering my Batman phase as this Pinewood Derby Monster was created, and yes I did have my Dad's help on this. Who else was going to help me carve batwings and smelt the lead for the weight, right? I had to sketch out the shape of the car on the block, my Dad supervised my use of carving implements, and I ponied up some decals from my plastic Batboat at the time. I show up on race day with my Batmobile under wraps, I figure a grand reveal was in order at weigh in. I take the cover off and place it on the scale, perfect, it wasn't over, it was right on. Then one of the Scout Masters makes a comment about receiving help on this car. I wasn't shy, I said with pride that my Dad helped me realize this dream car (in not so many words). That is when it started, I was grilled for what seemed like a life time on how much help I was given, and it was immediately decided that the Batmobile could not be entered in the show car category. I was heart broken, I had actually worked on this car with my Dad, it wasn't like I had him do the whole car. The winner was a block of wood that looked like it was dipped in ugly. ( I think they were trying to teach me a lesson, never trust a jerk ass Scout Master is what I learned). I apologize if any of my readers are Scout Masters, I'm sure they all are not jerk asses.
I was allowed to run in the race portion, because apparently they expected parents to help put wheels on and such. Well I can truly say revenge is a dish served swift and cold. The Batmobile dominated the competition, block car after block car fell, until the Dark Knight's ride was the last car standing! First Place Baby! In my mind I was avenged and I could hear the fanfare playing as I strolled up to take the trophy, take that and stick it in you pipe, jerk ass! That's How I Roll!
Flash forward to now and I'm walking down the hobby isle at Hobby Lobby and what do I see? Not one, but two kits that let you upgrade your pinewood racer to Batmobile status. Now I don't know if any of my readers have ever wandered down the pine wood derby section of the local Hobby Lobby, but if you do you are sure to notice these new kits to modify your little pinewood racer along with weights, decals, pre-carved bodies, and a ton of accessories. I always thought about picking them up and trying my hand at it again, but it always seemed like cheating to me, plus I have the one true Original Pinewood Batmobile!