From time to time, the topic of "how to attract young people to the Model T hobby" comes up on this forum. And I'd better repeat, right now, that even tho' I just mentioned the "Model T" hobby, this is, indeed,.... way, way off topic!
Anyway, it occurs to me that we have a huge problem in that, more and more, us "old folks" are losing touch with "youth" (and to me, at my age, anyone under 40 constitutes "youth") and we are losing touch with youth, partly because it is becoming harder and harder for us to communicate with them verbally by means of the plain, old ordinary verbal conversation that us "ol' timers" are used to.
Lately, it has become obvious to me that I am falling way behind in the area of modern vocabulary. I'm going to try to get in the habit of saying "like" in at least every other sentence when conversing, and I'm not sure why, but I think if I try to preface sentences by saying "hashtag" once in awhile, it might tend to hold the attention of a youthful listener. In fact, while it seems to be really "cool" to say "hashtag this", and "hashtag that" as much as possible, I'm even gonna' try to be really cool by verbalizing a few "asterisks" and uttering an occasional "ampersand" in my conversation once in awhile!
Anyway, I'll try this with some of my 16 grandkids and 10 great grandkids and I'll let you know how it goes! Might even hit one of my sons or daughter-in-laws with a "hashtag" sumthin' or other too; as I've been told by a couple of them that,..."dad,... you need more to do!" By now, anyone reading this would probably agree with that, right? Later,......harold (:^) (:^)
Like, I agree #Grandpa Harold! Like, maybe lets text @MTFCA to them once in a while, include, like, some pics, and videos and like text them on nice days to see if it'd be cool for them to you know, like go on a #Model T tour!
Harold, in all seriousness, you're right on! I just couldn't resist. #
One other communication strategy for you: Even when you are within inches of them, don't bother with verbal communication. Send them a text message.
I've wondered if eye contact among young people is considered too intimidating.
As a middle school teacher I had a "Like" and "Um" list. For each 20 infractions in a week got you 200 jumping jacks. Worked amazingly well. Parents loved it!
It is a wonder the USMC can recruit a single soul these days.
In order to talk to them, they'd need to speak softly and look at their boots.
I can hear the DI now:
"Now, like, is this your, like, idea of a, like, squared away rack, you worm ?
Like, you unf@!ck this mess, like right now, before I, like put a, like, boot so
far up your axx, like, you'll be, like tasting leather, like until you, like, die ! Do
you, like, read me ?"
Jay Leno addressed this a few years ago. The issue is that our Ts are not by modern standards, driveable on modern roads. The reality is that they are 35 mph cars that require some skill to drive. There are only a small number of young folks who will think that this is fun. Having to carefully choose your route so as to not be a rolling roadblock - thus (pardon me) pissing off the very people that we want to please, may well be a PIA to most of today's youth. They have very different life experience then do most of us. I occasionally watch HGTV and see potential homebuyers that are all upset because the design of the bathroom sink isn't exactly what they want. I'm happy to have indoor plumbing. A handful will become interested in really old cars. Most will not.
Harold, you're right? But there's one modernism you didn't cover? Don't forget to inflect every sentence like a question?
You got it John. It's not a car it's a wagon with a motor in it. The cheapest Go-cart you can but is about 80% safer by virtue of needing to wear a helmet (usually) and a roll bar which is built on almost all of them. Any classic car that can't be updated with the all power options and more engine HP is not in the running. In a lot of cases their right.
If you want a quick and easy way to get younger kids introduced to old cars, look for a local Cub Scout troop leader, they are always looking for an interesting activity to participate in.
I have entertained several over the years and depending on the time of year, rides are really enjoyable for both myself and the scouts.
BCG has got it. You likely won't reach the 10-and-up crowd, but if the
youthful mind is poisoned early enough, like seeds, they will "take" in a
few of them that have an outlet to grow that way with. When they meet
that guy down the street with the old car later, they will have that interest
in there somewhere and just might run with it.
Recently I hired a vet through the VOTF program. He had a beast of a
street racer Mustang and everything he owns is all about horsepower and
speed. When I told him about the TT, his first comment was about putting
some giant engine in it. I laughed and said "You just don't get it".
A couple months went by and I blew the head gasket in my daily work
truck. One of my guys was in the shop doing the repair, so we were forced
to take the TT, because it involved ladders and tools that would not fit in
his Mustang. We did not get far before he began to "get it", but when we
arrived is when it really gelled.
I had explained the whole "chick magnet" vs. "man magnet" thing to him,
but it didn't sink in. But when we rolled up and the designer (my client) and
the homeowner (her client) got a look at it and were all over it, all became clear
to him. Both of these gals are painfully good looking and after we left I asked
him when the last time he had women like that crawling all over themselves
to get near his man magnets.
The prosecution rested.
It is nice to see that you all are getting it! You need to talk in our language to, you know, like, make us understand the #ModelT.
Brass Car Guy - I saw you're selling a 26 in the Classifieds. Hopefully you can find a younger person to sell it to. Seems like a reasonable price to get into the hobby. I'd pick it up myself if I had the funds to afford it right now. Having a Touring would be so cool!
Burger - I get the same thing with my T - people always want me to put a huge motor in it. One of the fellow T-ers I met during the Old Car Show at the Henry Ford refers to it as "Life in the slow lane." I find it very relaxing to be bopping along and just enjoying being out and about!
By the way, thanks to everyone that I've come in contact with. I've felt very welcomed and found that many people are extremely helpful without any reason other than to keep everyone's car on the road. Keep that up and I am sure that my generation will come around and get involved.