I’m terribly bad at checking my flist, I think I have it set up wrong, because each and every time I go in there, I’m overwhelemed. So one of my goals this week was to set the filters right, so they made sense. Only that didn’t work out right because I got distracted actually looking at my flist people. Which was lucky in a HUGE way, as it just happens that blacklid is at the top of the list.

As you may or may not know, blacklid won the bid to buy John’s truck, and this week went up to Vancouver (where they are currently filming 3.13 “Ghostfacers.”) She met up with the transpo people (those are the guys who take care of the Impala, the Camero, the Bug, and the Mini Van) and give our boys cool cars to drive!! From her description on her LJ, the car guys were VERY nice and wonderful and cool, and they sound like they are fans themselves, which makes it even better. Plus they went out of their way to help her get everything arranged so she could drive it home. (Check out her LJ for more details!)

She was driving it home this week, and I was lucky enough to see her post and find out that I was on her route home! So I contacted her and we set up a meet right off of I-70, which was on their way home. When I talked to her husband on the phone that day (Friday), I confessed that I wanted to be able to touch the Truck. “Touch it?” he asked, amazed and amused. “You’re going to SIT in it!!” What an adorable man.

So, I got off work early (even though I had just started my new job, but this was THAT important) and drove down to the Bennegans, with my heart in my throat. Not on account of meeting blacklid, I already knew she’d be cool and interesting and fun (even though we had only met on LJ), so I wasn’t nervous about that. I was nervous about meeting Truck! I mean, this is John’s truck and all that that implies. He gave the Impala to Dean at some point, and then bought this thing, which on screen looks and sounds imposing and impressive. When I pulled into the parking lot of Bennegans, there it was, imposing and impressive, streaked with mud and dust from the road and sitting off by itself, like it was a big, bad dog that might bite one of the other cars. I parked right next to it, unafraid, gave it a quick pat, and went inside.

It was easy to find blacklid, because I’d seen a picture of her, but also our fandar was on, she heard me come in, and I could feel where she was sitting. Plus, she had this big smile on her face, welcoming me in. When I sat down, she had her computer and a bag of interesting things to show me, and her husband to help her tell the story of their adventure. First she showed me a poster from “Everybody Loves A Clown,” the one that advertises the carnival? The car guys, apparently, took some of those and plastered them in the garage where they work, just for fun. (They are fans, surely.) Then she showed me a shooting schedule for the day, which, you know, is just throwaway ephemera for the production crew, but for that day, is a vital peice of paper listing who, what, where, when, and how. I can’t imagine being responsible for that!

Alas, she was not able to get autographs from Morgan, Ackles, or Padalecki on the dash of Truck, but luckily, Ackles and Padalecki autographed one of those nice desert pictures for her, which I thought was sweet of them. Blacklid and I had a nice chat about the desert pictures and agreed (as has most everyone I’ve talked to about them) that they seem quintessential to the boys and their story. This is, I think, on account of the pictures show them not pretty and spruced up, or even clean enough for town. Instead, they are dustblown and grim, like their hunting jobs are a 24/7 thing, for reals and for trues. Hard to put into words, that concept, but everyone seems to agree, they fit.

Then blacklid showed me TONS of pictures on her computer of the backlot and all the cars, and different versions of the Impala, including the fact that the original car is named “Hero” and has been retired, on account of the milage on it. The stunt car, with special stuff built in for stunts, is called “Hunter,” and I thought it was so apt that they not only named the cars, but named them the way they did. Like they understood what it was all about and how important it was. Then there were other pictures of the damaged cars (from when it got hit by the semi, and when Dean smashed it up) and lots of cool car stuff, like Bobby’s house (with all the rusty bits outside) and the tow truck that doesn’t actually run. And then the video clip of the Impala making that little jump that they didn’t use, on account of it was too Dukes of Hazzard. (Good call, someone!) And she had stories to tell about having lunch with the crew, and seeing the boys walk by, and then getting a studio tour, with the current filming set still in place, and about what she learned about how hard the boys worked this week. (Don’t they always!!)

We fell into talking about stories and writing and Show and the boys and why Meg had killed Rumsfeld, going on and on like we’d known each other for YEARS instead of having just met. What I also liked was the fact that her husband, instead of just sitting there like most husbands, waiting for it to be over, joined in, with comments and remarks of his own, enjoying himself just as much as we were. Apparently, he got into the show first, and introduced blacklid to it, and they enjoy it together. How nice is that? Everyone should have such a huband!

Then we went outside, we walked up to Truck, which I said was rather like having sex standing up. They laughed at that, and instantly, they opened the driver’s side door, even though there were problems with the hinges and invited me to climb inside. Just like THAT. Problem is, I’m just a girl, and John’s a big man so the fact that there wasn’t a running board probably wasn’t a problem to him, but it was to me. I managed though, pulling on the steering wheel, thinking of his strength and long legs to be able to do that climb on a regular basis. Then, just sitting there (which was like sex sitting down), with that strong, oily smell, and the dust from plastic. I touched everything, there were no limits. I caressed the dash, flicked on and off the dome light, stroked the wheel, the on the floor shift mechanism. Fondled the seat. Blacklid and I giggled about how John (and Morgan) had not doubt breathed the air and other things, and then she said, “Open the box between the seat.”

Obedient, I did this, and then she said, “Open the little secret compartment, and tell me what’s inside.” Well, first there were those little decoration thingys from the Impala that the car guys had given her, but then she said, “No, look….” So I did. At the bottom (in the spot where John kept his secret badges) was a little booklet of paper, stapled at one corner, and with medical tape over that, was a scaled down schooting script for the road scene of Salvation. (!!!!!)

It had yellow hightlights over John’s lines, and it was wrinkled from rain, and smudged from oily JOHN fingerprints. A working script, small enough to fit in a pocket because as blacklid surmised, Morgan wasn’t the type of actor who liked to be caught without his lines. Blacklid knows there was nothing in that compartment the first time she looked, she suspects that the car guys put it in there, just for her. We discussed what the script said about Caleb, because they cut this bit. It has John saying, when he talks about Caleb being dead, “I can’t tell you how many times he saved my life.” Which as blacklid pointed out, makes John’s grief a whole lot more meaningful. Then her husband took some pictures of me in the front seat, and promised to send them to me.

Then we got out to take pictures of us in front of Truck, and in back of Truck, and then she showed me the weapons cache. Only she didn’t just show me, she said, “Here’s the toggle, do it like this, go ahead.” And then she said, “Here, hold your hands like this, NOW you’re doing it like John did.” I mean, it wasn’t her doing it, it was her saying, here you go, have fun, and we both got into the moment, taking off the little chains and putting them back on again, and remarking that in that ep, Sam doesn’t help out at all, but just stands there with his hands in his pockets. (Why? Maybe because John doens’t like anyone touching his truck!) The toggle was hidden, you have to know where it is, plus you have to hold it down while the cache slides open and the lid pops up on its own. Don’t try to help it, just stand back or it will smack you in the head. I got to do this up and down several times, even though I’m prone to get overexcited and break things. I don’t think anything could break this truck! (We also drew devil’s traps on the tailgate, to protect Truck, but then erased them on account of it might upset someone on the road.)

Then she invited me to sit in the Sam Seat, which is the passenger seat. She calls it this because she thinks about Sam and The Dad meeting Dean on that road for the gun exchange. And THEN, she drove me around the parking lot, how nice is that???? She didn’t have to, but she did, revving the engine so it sounded like Angry Dad (any angry dad, because, you know, they rev the engine when they are mad), and took me for a spin. Then, with the engine running and burbling, we sat in the car for at least 15 minutes, while the sun went down and it got quite cool quite fast, and talked about Sam and Dean and The Dad, and different writing styles, and Creation Con, and everything about Show.
This whole time the engine is running and she showed me bits and things, like the skulls head that covers the door lock on the passenger side, and the Tazmanian Devil steering wheel cover (blocked out for Show), and the holes in the floorboards, where stuff had been taken out and put in, and she took the glove and the rock off that had been covering the hole and we both breathed in the fumes like we were taking in the scent of a fine brandy or gourmet chocolate. One of us said, This is why John’s so angry, he’s smelling gas fumes all the time, they must give him a headache!

She was fiddling with her Ipod for a bit, and then she says, “Here, look, there’s no sound but….” And lo, there was the gun exchange scene, with the weapons cache that I had JUST fondled being fondled by The Dad…and we watched the whole thing with no sound, which was cool, because you could really concentrate on their facial expressions, remarking how we knew what they were saying and how cold and wet it looked and how marvelous and FUN, being able to share this with a fan in person, instead of just over LJ.

And this whole time, her husband is sitting outside the truck on the curb, sometimes on the phone, sometimes not. Camera in hand, just waiting. Waiting like the boys wait, patiently, standing by till we were done with our girl talk. And frankly I got the feeling that he wouldn’t have minded being a part of that, but he was giving us our time and that was so lovely of him. So many husbands wouldn’t have. At one point he came over for some chapstick, which we gave him and then he handed it back and one of us dropped it. And blacklid goes, “You got that, Sammy?” and I said, “Yes, Dad,” as I put it back in the glove compartment. It was totally FUN!!!

Then her husband remarked that he wanted to wash Truck, so we trundled over to the self serve car wash, where they put in as many quarters as they had, and he washed while we watched. And remarked whether we would need cigarettes after, as the vision of the black paint coming to the surface as the dust was power sprayed away was a sight for the eyes, and TRUE CAR PORN. The radiator was hot and smoking and the paint had the quality of reptile skin, which while not totally matt, tended to absorb as much light as it reflected, with the water droplets making it look even more like reptile skin. Black on black, tall, the wheel wells came up to my breast bone, with HUGE tires, and a short blocky body that looked like it would hurt the other car a whole lot more than it would be hurt, should there be a collision. And listening to the exhaust, yeah, we talked about that for a bit, the rumble and low growl of it, with the slight pinging/puff sound of the faulty exhaust manifold, like True Fans, and I thought that if any car could be said to have a whisky voice, this truck did. Blacklid thinks the truck is a girl, but I think it is a boy. : D

Then I was about to drive off, and we exchanged hugs and goodbyes, and then I stopped to watch Truck being parked and thought I would stay till they drove off, so I could drive behind those red tail lights for a bit. Lucky for me, the only way out of the parking lot was a right turn, and then you had to get in the left lane to get back to the highway. So while we waited for blacklid, who had gone inside the convenience store, I talked to her husband, who got out of the car, and he seemed completely pleased to talk to me and chat about travel and the dry heat in Arizona and other friendly things. And THEN I got to follow them out of the parking lot, I was looking directly at the tail lights that went blood red as they breaked, he turned on the left turn signal, and they went that way, while I went mine.

I was practically lightheaded as I drove home. I was THRILLED to be able to not only sit in John’s truck, but to touch it and experience it, and mess with it. And amazed and pleased for blacklid’s good fortune and the car guys she met who were SO nice and went out of their way for her over and over again, recognizing in her and her husband true car fans. I’m a car fan of this particular car, and the Impala. (As well as Starsky and Hutch’s Torino, and Bodie’s capri…), but that’s because to me the cars have a context and emotional meaning. This was a happy confluence of two fandoms for her, Supernatural and cars, and the result is that a True Fan owns John’s truck and will fix it up. Not to be perfect, but to run perfectly and have the gritty look and feel as if John was still driving it. Plus she’s going to share the story with us!! And then, she and her husband were SO nice to me, letting me roll in the whole experience, pleased for my joy at the moment, as well as for their own, asking at one point, if I thought they’d taken enough pictures of me for me? And I’m like, how NICE is that? To be worried about my experience over the whole thing, to share as fans always share, with joy in the giving and pleasure in another’s happiness. This is what fandom is, at its essential heart. It was like she was saying, “Here, you want this? Take it, it’s yours.” I only wish that now I had something huge like this, to give, so I could pay it forward.

JDM Rocks

 JDM Rocks