Press Talk: Time to -30- the Prelude

By Lou Brancaccio, Columbian Editor



Eight years ago my 1986 Honda Prelude — already beaten and battered — was stolen out of my Salmon Creek driveway.

I thought that would be it for my relationship with the lean, mean, red machine.

Surely it would end up someplace in Atlanta, stripped down for parts or maybe at the bottom of a lake.

And even if by chance it was recovered it likely would be beyond repair.

But surprisingly the PD (Prelude Dream) was recovered and it was salvageable.

Still, I wondered back in 2005 if it was worth putting the needed money in it to get ‘er fixed.

Somewhat reluctantly, I did.

Today, however, as you read this column, I am shopping for a car.

The oil is leaking, I can’t keep power steering fluid in it, the tires are worn, the speedometer gave out, the mileage thingy doesn’t work and there’s one red light on the panel that never goes off.

I bought it new. But now … it’s time.

Back when it was stolen I wrote a column about it all. Today, to pay homage to my beloved car, the following is a shortened and edited version of that column, written through the eyes of my car:

o o o

Who the heck are these guys! Chief! Are you up there? I think someone’s trying to steal me. Can you hear these punks? No, no, no, don’t break the window. The Chief never locks me. Get in if you must, but get out. Chief! Help!

I thought Quail Park was a good neighborhood. Salmon Creek was supposed to be a nice place to live.

Do these guys have no respect? You’d think with the top cop in Clark County living down the block, these punks would at least be a little cautious. I guess not.

Gawd, no!!!! Not the screwdriver! Stay away from the ignition! No, no, no!

o o o

I must have passed out there for a minute. But I’m hurt. Bad. Ripped the ignition right out. What punks. Chief! Are you coming? And what’s that bike doing in the back seat? And all that mail? Those CDs and that BB gun? Holy … these guys are using me to steal stuff.

Chief! Where are you? I’ve been through stories on tornadoes and wildfires and earthquakes and hurricanes and blizzards. Remember that January blizzard we went through? I got you to work. OK, OK, I couldn’t get you home for four days, but don’t hold that against me.

I know I’m old and battered and ugly. But so are you! Are you coming to nail these guys, Chief?

Wait a second, they’re pulling over. In Woodland, no less. And they’re running. Wow. Left behind half the loot they stole. I bet they figured out that you know people who know people.

Or maybe it was just fear of the cops.

o o o

Home again! Home again! Don’t think I’ve ever been towed before. That was rough. Very rough.

Chief, great to see ya! Did ya miss me? I missed you! But I have to admit, I’m beat.

Honestly, I don’t know how much more I can take. Working for you, Chief, has taken a lot out of me. I’ve loved every minute of it, but this newspaper stuff can … wear … you … out.

Now these punks have crippled me.

What do you think, Chief? We’ve had a good run. Is there another story or two in me? Or is it time to say -30- and … call it a day? Chief? You’re not saying much.


Lou Brancaccio is The Columbian’s editor. Reach him at 360-735-4505, or Twitter:

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