How did it start for you?

Peter Spielman

How it started (and continues) for me:

I’ve enjoyed watching, playing with, and drawing pretty much anything with wheels ever since I was a child. When the first Corvette was introduced in 1953, I convinced my grandmother to buy me a model of one for my 11th birthday. I was hooked on Corvettes there and then – I credit the car’s lines, grille, hubcaps with knock off spinners, mesh chrome headlight protectors, and every single part of that model kit, the experience of assembling it, and the hope that someday I’d be able to own a real Corvette.

In high school and college, my “car guy” buddy and I would watch “Route 66” on TV, visit the various local Corvette showrooms and while there maybe even sit in a Corvette if we were lucky. We’d collect Corvette catalogues and magazines, visit the local drag strips, and let our imaginations wander thinking about “the day”.

My first “day” came in 1975. The car was a new white t-top coupe with saddle interior. I like surprises and what better surprise than to show up at home with my new Corvette and tell my wife “look what I just bought!” For the first 20 minutes, she growled louder than that car ever did, but she quickly accepted the fact that we were now a Corvette family, and she enjoyed driving it as much as I did.

As our sons got bigger, the Corvette was replaced with a more practical car. Still, I always admired, appreciated, loved looking at a sharp Corvette, and wondered when the next surprise might happen. In 1998 our sons were out of the house and on their own, so I arrived home with my new torch red / oak / oak convertible, and again my wife growled, but only for about 5 minutes this time. It was June, she simply said “let’s put the top down and go for a ride,” and that was that.

In the spring of 2006, a good friend of mine who had recently purchased a C6 coupe asked me if I would like to drive it to see how it compared to my C5. After doing so, I easily convinced myself that it was time for me to make a vehicle change. When I told my wife about the ride and my plan, she replied “go for it!” So in June of 2006 my oldest son and I made the trip to Bowling Green, Kentucky, took the factory and museum tours, picked up my machine silver convertible and drove it home.

The two things that come to mind most often about my Corvette: 1) whenever I get behind the wheel, I’m a kid all over again and 2) when researching my ’98, the auto magazine’s description of its acceleration as “Lift-off at Cape Kennedy” – you just can’t beat that!

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