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One-Year Anniversary Celebration
Feb. 8, 2007


The anniversary cake. The inscription along the bottom reads "Happy Anniversary California Reflections."


With a big smile on his face, Lynn delivers the body of Bugsby to Bay Area Media Blasting on Feb. 8, 2006.
          

Yes, it has been a long time that Bugsby has been off the road. In was in January of 2006 that Lynn begins his serious freshening of the 1924 Kissel Speedster he calls Bugsby. In early February of 2006, he delivers the body to Kevin Schell to begin the refinishing process. After all the paint is removed using a plastic-media blasting process, Kevin and Lynn examine the body and agree on a plan for refinishing the car. Their original schedule calls for the work to be completed no later than July, 2006.

But as observed by the great Scottish poet Robert Burns in "To A Mouse, On Turning Her Up In Her Nest With The Plough" (1785), "The best-laid schemes o' mice an 'men Gang aft agley" (the best laid schemes of mice and men go oft astray). By March, 2006, Lynn learns from John Lewis that the rear deck on Bugsby is not of original Kissel design. The rear deck was cut off Bugsby sometime around World War II to transform the one-time sporty car into a utility vehicle. When Ron Griffiths preforms his original restoration in the early 1960's, he needed to create a new rear deck as the original structure had been lost. In the end he modifies the metal from a 1940 Chevrolet roadster, creating anomalies that Lynn is beginning to notice.

This important revelation puts a serious wrinkle in Lynn's plans. Thankfully, Kevin is also interested in the historical accuracy of work and is willing to discuss a change. Lynn and Kevin come to an agreement to rebuild the rear deck to be closer to the original Kissel design. Unfortunately, this represents a significant expansion of the restoration efforts and Lynn internally kisses goodbye to the original completion schedule.

Still, one year is a long time to wait and Lynn begins to think of what he can do to mark the anniversary, perhaps giving a gentle nudge to the project. He certainly doesn't what to antagonize Kevin who has invested a huge amount of his own energy and effort in the project. How about a little anniversary celebration, Lynn thinks. So he begins to make plans in late January, 2007, to purchase a cake with a suitable inscription. Lynn hopes that everyone will receive his expression with a sense of humor.

          

Lynn provides Safeway with this colorized version of a Kissel Speedster image that he bought on ebay. This picture epitimizes Lynn's ideal outcome for his restoration efforts.
          

The breakthrough comes when Lynn discovers that the local Safeway supermarket will decorate a cake with an image of his choosing, transferring it from any suitable print. With growing excitement, Lynn orders a cake that will bear the image of a complete Kissel Speedster.

          

Andrew of 30-Minute Muffler (left) and Kevin Schell (right) participate in the anniversary celebration.
          

Lynn lets it be known at Kevin's shop that he will be bringing some dessert at about 1pm on Feb. 8, but he gives no reason for this event. Kevin wonders what is afoot, but doesn't press Lynn for an explanation. Kevin later claims that he guesses the reason for Lynn's mysterious plan at about 10am in the morning of the day of the celebration.

All the members of Kevin's three business, plus workers at other businesses in the complex, plus some random customers and passersby partake in the celebration. Lynn thoroughly enjoys himself and thinks that others do, too.

A couple of spontaneous jokes surface during the celebration. Kevin comments "it's amazing what efforts a shop owner needs to go through these days to get customers to bring in cake!" Later Lynn quips aloud "I wonder what we should do for the second anniversary celebration?!"

Lynn thinks that the anniversary celebration was a success. It helped to shine light on his desire to continue to make progress on completing Bugsby and contributed to a sense of friendship and community with Kevin and his staff.

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Copyright © 2015 Lynn Kissel
Last updated: May 24, 2009