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Barbara Terry interview with Shawn Marion

Shawn Marion has played in the NBA since 1999 – for the Phoenix Suns from his rookie season until he was traded for Shaquille O’Neal (along with Marcus Banks) to the Miami Heat in 2008. He is currently playing for the Dallas Mavericks. Shawn is a four-time all-star and won medals in both the 2004 and 2008 Olympics. He is called The Matrix because he is known as one of the most versatile players in the NBA today; in fact, twice in his career – in ‘04-’05 and ‘06-’07 – he was top five in rebounding and steals in the NBA. He was the first person to accomplish that feat since The Admiral – David Robinson – did it in 1992. While he’s known as a gamer on the court, off the court Shawn is an avid car collector.

What was your first car?

Buick Park Avenue, 1996, gold, four-door.

Did you buy it with your own money or did your par­ents buy it for you?

I bought it for $1,000 back in college at Indiana, at one of those little, you know, those car places – little shop, like a little lot.

Like a little tote-the-note type place.

Yeah, yeah. Saw the lot, had a little car out there and I test-drove it. I guess my coach took me because I didn’t have a car. I had a little bit of money. We found one.

How many miles did it have on it? Was it a little on the rough side?

It had enough. That’s why I paid $1,000 for it.

How long did you keep it ?

I had it for a year and a half, possibly two years.

Where do you think that car is now ?

Actually, I shipped it to Vegas when I went to college. That was my car. I had, maybe, two months out there in Vegas. Come to find out, I was trying to do right by having it serviced, but they didn’t really service it when they said it did. I heard this ticking and it blew up.

Did it overheat?

Actually it didn’t overheat. What happened was, after they said they serviced it and they didn’t fix it, I kept on driving it. I had it checked again and the guy was, like, ‘Dude, it’s gone. It’s just a matter of time until it stops going.’ So I was, like, just keep it then. He impounded it and took it to the impound.

What all do you drive now?

I drive a variety of cars. I drive a ’71 Cutlass Supreme; I just had that redone. I drive a 2008 Maserati, a 2006 or 2007 Mark LT, a 2004 760 BMW, 2006 Mustang GT…

What color do you like when it comes to your cars?

I like white. Most of my cars are white except my Maserati. That was my 30th birthday gift to myself, so it’s yellow. I was going to get white, but went yellow instead.

What other cool cars do you sport around in?

What else do I have…a 1966 Lincoln Continental GT,’70 Chevelle. I’m missing something. How many is that?

Wow…l lost count.

Oh, an H2 Hummer. That’s in Chicago with the Mustang. The Dodge Magnum’s in Phoenix. That’s it, those are my rides.

What cars are you going to show us today?

’71 Cutlass and my Maserati. I would do my Lincoln, but the Lincoln’s not here. It’s at the arena.

How old were you when you first learned how to drive?

Twelve or 13.1 spent a little time in Arkansas with my fam­ily on farms and stuff. My uncle used to let me drive pick­up trucks and tractors and stuff. That’s where I learned.

And how old were you when you got your driver’s license?

Fourteen.

Fourteen? Was it a hardship license?

Yeah, it was a hardship license.

Can you drive a stick shift?

Yes I can. I used to drive a Porsche Carrera.

A 911?

Yeah, a 911.1 had a brand new one, right when it came out. A 2006-2007, right around there.

Those are nice. Nothing drives like a Porsche 911.

I love a Porsche. I’m thinking about getting another one. I’m going to get a turbo this time – a white on red one.

What type of music do you listen to while you are cruising?

I listen to a little bit of everything. It doesn’t matter who it is – alternative, variety, pop, whatever.

What about H?

That’s rap.

A little bit of Luther Vandross?

Luther’s all right, you know. I guess it depends on what kind of mood I’m in. I listen to a little bit of everything, though. Luther is kind of chill. Maybe I will listen to him when I have a girl around or something.

Yeah, Luther is a little bit of baby-making type music.

Yeah.

Do you get a lot of speeding tickets?

I’ve had my share.

Is there a points system here in Miami, or do you just hire lawyers to take care of them?

I don’t hire lawyers for anything. There was a points sys­tem in Phoenix. Here, it’s a point system as well, but I had an out-of-state license, so I just paid the fine. Once you’re here so long, you have to get a Miami license. Now I have one, but I haven’t gotten a ticket as of yet.

Knock on wood. Do you find that when you get pulled over, you’re able to talk your way out of the ticket?

(CHUCKLESI Interesting. I got pulled over because my Maserati didn’t have the right exhaust system on it. So I got pulled over for my car being loud.

What kind of exhaust? Flow Master?

No. I have one of those on my Chevelle. This one was cus­tom-made for my Maserati, but it was loud. Real loud.

Okay, so you modify your vehicles. Do you modify all of them? Do you get larger rims, low-profiles, new exhaust systems on all of them or leave some of them alone?

For the most part, I love my music, so I might put a sub­woofer in all of them. And I definitely have iPods hooked up in all of my cars. The only one I don’t have it in is my Maserati, but that’s because it’s new and they haven’t come out with a system to hook it up to yet. Hopefully, they will soon. Pretty much, I put larger rims on my cars, not low-profiles because the streets are really bad and the more you hit bumps and stuff, you have a tendency to get flat tires with the bigger rims. If I do put low-profiles on, I don’t put big rims on to make sure I have enough white­wall showing to have cushion in the car. I don’t like to change the rods out. If you go too deep, you’ll mess up the rod.

What’s the top speed that you have driven in a vehicle?

Maybe 115 or 120 in a BMW.

You will have to ramp up the speed when you get the turbo Porsche.

Not on the highway. That’s why I got rid of the Porsche. Even in my Maserati, it makes you want to go fast. It’s, like, you do 80 miles an hour, you don’t even feel it.

When you sit down in the driver’s seat, you go, ‘Yeah’…You get that umph.

Everybody thinks when you get in a fast car, you’re on the Autobahn. You just go for it. Plus, I’ve seen a lot of bad accidents.

Speaking of accidents, do you wear your seatbelt?

Sometimes. You know what. I’ve been in a couple acci­dents, nothing crazy, but you definitely need to wear a seatbelt. I think I’m restricted by them when I’m in my seatbelt. If I crash and I can’t get out. I’m going to be mad.

All right you obviously like speed and flash. Would you ever own a hybrid?

Yes I would.

A basic Prius or something like a Tahoe Hybrid ?

I’d go with an SUV hybrid. I don’t have any room for one now, but if I had another house and enough space for all my cars, I’d have one – a Lexus, maybe. There’s so many coming out on the market, you would have your pick. It just depends on what you like and what you want.

When you were a kid, did you ever have that certain dream car?…

A Saab.

A Saab was your dream car? How old were you at the time?

A Saab. I thought it was the hottest car. You remember a Richard Pryor movie called Moving?

Yes I do.

He had a Saab in that movie. It was fast and the dude took the car, with the split personality, and floored it and tore it apart. I wanted a Saab. I don’t know what it was about that car, I just loved it.

Do you have a dream car that you haven’t pulled the trigger on as of yet?

A couple cars I’ve wanted have come out, but they cost too much. I can’t see myself spending that much on a car. Cars are the worst investment you can make. I love them, though. I try to be reasonable. I definitely want a Ferrari. I’m going to get one in my range, though. I’ll be responsible. I have to get one that fits me. I have long legs and a smaller torso. My legs are really long.

How long are your legs?

They’re long. I’m six-foot seven.

You say you like to make your own statement with your choice in cars. Have you ever looked at a team­mate’s car and wanted what they had?

Maybe I have. It was a BMW. One time, one of my team­mates had one. I got one when the 760 came out. It drives better than the 745.1 put the 22s on it and kept the thick walls on it, and it rides unbelievably. I love that car. I’m never in that car. I put 14,000 miles on it in five years.

And I bet it is a white exterior with a tan interior and chromed up.

Yes it is. They changed the body style on it this year for the first time since I bought that one. I remember when I ordered it, though. I ordered it during the summer. I ordered it in downtown Chicago and it came in right before the season started.

When you first were signed, you mentioned the BMW. Was there another car that you spoiled yourself with?

That I bought with my NBA salary?

Yes.

I bought myself an Escalade.

But the real question is, what size rims?

The first set was 18s then. That was hot, but that was what everybody had.

Factories were 17, or 16?

Sixteen, yeah. It wasn’t long before I had 20s and then I got the 22s. Then 24s. I didn’t go past 24. That’s as far as I went. I’d never go past 24 in a car. They cost too much and they mess with the ride. It’s a pain to get them fixed. Like, some of these rims I have on my Benz. I had a 600.1 loved that car, but I sold it. I went through rims left and right on that car. I had Lorenzos on there and, man, they cost. Every time I bent the rim or broke it, I had to replace them. It cost $2,500, so I was, like, ugh…

Do you prefer cars, trucks or SUVs?

I like trucks.

Why are trucks your choice?

All of my family has had trucks. I wanted a truck, too. You can do a lot of stuff with pick-up trucks. You can haul stuff. You can pull stuff.

How many cars do you think that you’ve owned from the get-go?

I have nine. Now, let me see if I’m forgetting one. No, 15. Right around 15. Two Escalades, Park, Jeep, Benz, Porsche. No, two Porsches. So, 16.

Have you ever been involved in a car accident ?

Yeah, but never in my own cars.

So you only wreck other people’s cars? CHUCKLES!

I had demo deals. Now, if you want to count those…

Okay…

I had a Chrysler and I had a GTX. When it first came out, it had TVs. It had the 20s on it. It was nice.

Sounds like they really hooked you up.

I had those two cars. I had a Durango, a Chrysler 30. Now, if you’re asking how many I bought since I’ve been in the league. I’ve bought more than that because I bought my family some, too.

What are your plans after basketball? Have you thought about it at all? I don’t want to push you into retirement but I am curious.

Yeah. I want to travel the world when I finish playing.

What places have you traveled to so far?

Where do you want me to start? Australia, South America…Brazil, Greece, Istanbul, Turkey, Suri, Montenegro, Italy. I’ve also been to Germany, we went to Paris and London this pre-season. I’ve been to

Barcelona, Spain. I’ve been to Saint Tropez. We went to Nice. We drove up to Monte Carlo. I’ve been to Kuwait. Oh, I’ve been to the Virgin Islands, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico.

Out of all the cars that you’ve owned, what has been your all-time favorite car?

All-time favorite? I love my BMW.

The 760.

Yeah. I love that car. All my cars are different and I love all of them.

You love them all in different ways.

Yes. I love my old-school, though. There’s nothing like an old-school muscle car.

I do agree, there is nothing like a good classic ride.

Those are the only cars that maintain value. All my old cars, I can get top dollar for. All three of my old cars have matching numbers. They have the same engine in them. I just did some modifications to them. I did some body work, of course. I upgraded the brake sys­tem to a custom disc break system in my Lincoln. That thing is big. They all have a custom disc brake system in them. Those interiors are originals restored, but to my liking. I get attention in my new cars, especially the Maserati because it’s yellow. But those old cars turn heads, too, everywhere I go.

Everyone loves classics. You’re into a whole other demographic, at that point.

Yeah, classics hold their value. You can go buy an old- school muscle car and put 30 or 40,000 in it and you have a collector’s piece. You can hold it for 30 years and pass it through generations. Even if you only hold it for five or six years, you can get all your money out of it – especially if you do it the right way. That’s the thing I learned. Cars are cool toys. They’re fun, they’re expensive habits. I drive my cars, too. I run them hard. I don’t take them to shows and put them away. I have them insured to drive them every day. –

Shawn had a really great personality, and he knew how to work the camera. He was loose and ready at our photo shoot, used music, danced, was cute and funny, and we got some great photos. When we arrived at his house, Shawn, his college buddy from Indiana and his cousin Craig Carter Ialso Shawns publicist) were watching the Miami Dolphins play on one of his big-screens. We also found Shawn to be one of the biggest Cubs fans around.

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Barbara Terry interview with Ed Too Tall Jones

Ed “Too Tall” Jones Is a legendary defensive lineman from the 1970s Dallas Cowboys teams. He played with the world-famous America’s Team version of the Dallas Cowboys under Tom Landry and was in the NFL for 15 years, interrupting his career for one year of professional boxing, where he went undefeated. Along with “Mean” Joe Greene of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Ed is probably the most recognizable defensive player of the 70s, an era wherein most defensive players remained anonymous. At six feet, nine inches, Ed was a bit too big to hide and too much for most offensive linemen. He’s a former Super Bowl champion and a three-time Pro Bowler, who is only credited with 57 sacks, but they didn’t record sacks until midway through his career. Unofficially, he had 106. Either way, he put the fear of God in many an NFL quarterback.

I started with the usual questions and let Ed go. I didn’t have to prod him or guide him, just ask him questions and listen intently. What was your first car?

My first car was a 1948 Chevy. I used to watch the old gangster movies, like Elliot Ness, and I saw that car and absolutely loved it. There was a guy in Tennessee that was an antique collector and I talked him into let­ting me buy that 1948 Chevy.

Where do you think the car is now?

I would give anything to know, and in fact, I would try and buy it back…(he chuckles)…I sold it when I fin­ished college and had it all during college. When I graduated, I bought a new Cadillac Eldorado that I thought was just the most beautiful thing. Then I sold the 1948 Chevy.

What color was it?

It was solid black.

How old were you when you first learned how to drive?

I grew up on a big farm in Tennessee and I learned how to drive sitting in my dad’s lap, driving a tractor. Then, when we would get in the car, I would sit in his lap and drive, being as we lived way out in the coun­try. We were, like, six miles from the city, so he would sit me in his lap and let me drive. The first time he trust­ed me on my own, I was, probably, 14 years old.

What is your favorite color combination with cars?

My favorite color combination would be a two-tone – black and grey.

I wondered what such a gentle man, who endured such a rough business, listened to when he drove. He grew up on a farm, lived in the South. What was his soundtrack while he drove around this big country?

What kind of music do you listen to when you drive?

Blues. I grew up listening to the blues.

Do you sing along when you are driving?

No. I do not torture myself to death.

Most interesting thing that you have done in a car.

Most interesting thing that I have done in a car?…ummm…(CHUCKLE)…l have always wanted to know what it feels like to be behind the wheel at 150 miles per hour, so I did it once. It was just a few years ago that I was driving to Houston for the NBA all-star game. I go to all the NBA all-star games – I am a big basketball fan. I go with a group of friends and most of them still live in Tennessee and Florida, so we were going to need a car in Houston. I took my SUV, which is consid­ered the fastest SUV on the road. I left early in the morn­ing and I waited until I got on some good freeway. There was not a car out there, and I am a very safe driver. I got it up to 150 miles per hour, and once I got to 150 miles per hour, I got off of it and I was satisfied. Never want to do it again.

I took a guess as to where it was. Being from Texas, there are only so many places you could get away with driving that fast.

Was that on 1-45?

Yes, 1-45.

What type of SUV?

My Mercedes G55. I have been on the Autobahn in Germany and I had my limousine driver…I was over there doing some promotion work and we got on that thing. I was in the back seat and it was the most uncomfortable I have ever been in my life because he got it up to 165 miles per hour. I do not like it unless I am behind the wheel.

So you felt that you were not in control?

Exactly.

Tell me about your Chevy truck that we are going to shoot some photos of today.

Earl Campbell is a friend of mine. I was in Austin a few years ago, and he had me over to his home for lunch and I saw his Chevy truck. He is a member of the Chevy Club and his truck is ranked number four in the country. When I saw it, I said that I would give anything to see number three, two and one. He told me that number two belonged to his neighbor and he called, but the neighbor was not at home. Earl Campbell has been trying to buy the number two truck from his neighbor, and his neighbor told him that Earl would have to give him his bank account, his home and his truck.

Earl said, ‘Ed, if you are going to get into this whole Chevy Collectors Club, you are going to need to buy you a short- bed with five windows.’ I looked for one that was not already fixed up because I have my own ideas and I want to do it myself. I found one two years ago and I have been putting together different ideas of what I want to do with it. I have been going back and forth on the ideas because I really want to make it right and totally different than any other out there. I think I am close to putting it all together.

Tell me more about the Chevy truck, and do you plan on entering it into the Chevy Club contests? Do you want to compete with Earl Campbell’s Chevy?

I have narrowed the restoration down to three different ideas that I think are all absolutely fantastic, but I want to see the number one, two and three rated trucks because I want mine to rank right up there so that it can be in the top five when restored.

What year is it?

It is a 1951.

What year is your Mercedes SUV G55?

It is a 2005 – the last year that Mercedes made the G55. They only made 300. They are not making them anymore, other than for military lieutenants and sergeants. They bul­let-proof them and send them to war. I just thought about the uniqueness of buying something that is the last year that they will manufacture it. Mine is number 113 and, for me, being six-foot nine, there is plenty of head room, plen­ty of leg room and, even though I drive the speed limit, I like knowing that it is the fastest SUV on the road. Just in case.

How many miles does it have on it?

Probably less than 20,000. Where I live, I am centrally located, so I am never on the highway much. The furthest I have ever driven was to Houston. That is what I drove to the all-star game, and I will never do that again. It is short runs to the airport and the golf course, so I am never on the highway more than 10 minutes.

What was the first car that you got when you first got signed in the NFL?

That was 1974, and I bought a 1974 Cadillac Eldorado. I thought it was the prettiest car in the world at the time. I kept it two years. I love keeping cars a longtime, but I kept it for just two years because it really wasn’t a good car. Cadillac makes good cars, I am sure, but this was perhaps a lemon. So, I traded it in and bought a 1976 SLC Mercedes that I kept for 11 years. I love keeping cars a long time.

How many cars do you think you have had since you were first signed by the NFL?

Six…including what I have now.

Wow. Compared to many athletes I’ve Interviewed, that isn’t very many. He must really develop a love for, and take care of, his vehicles.

What has been your all-time favorite?

My favorite all-time was a 1957 Chevy that I have always loved – even when I was a kid – and I still do. My second favorite that I bought was a Silver Shadow 2 1980 Rolls Royce. I thought it was the cutest and nicest body in the world, so I kept it until it was totaled. I would still have it if it had not gotten totaled.

Oh no, how did it get totaled?

I had some lady friends of mine that wanted to use it for a bachelorette party. They took it out and the lady that was driving it – the one responsible for it – dropped every­body off. She stopped off to get some cigarettes, was pulling out of the convenience store and a vehicle speeding caused her to hit the gas. Being as that car was so fast, she hit a pole. Anytime you damage the front end of a Rolls Royce, it is no good anymore. It will never be the same.

The frame got bent?

Yes. It was totally damaged, so that was it. It was a bronze color. At night it looked black, but during the day it was a bronze color. It was absolutely beautiful. I loved it. Miss that car.

A Rolls Royce, Cadillac and Mercedes SUV – what Ed had was stylish and powerful. He is a big guy, so there’s a prac­tical need for room and horsepower.

I know that you were attached to your Rolls Royce, but let’s say that you could go out and buy any car in the world today. What would that car be?

I have my dream car; my dream car was my 1957 Chevy, which I had for 20 years. I got tired of convert­ibles. Every time that I would take it out, it would be a beautiful day and people would recognize me in it. I am one that never likes attention. When I first got it, I did not care and I loved the attention that it attracted. But I do not anymore…No, now I am trying to hide. So I said, rather than just let it sit in my garage, somebody could use this car. I shipped it to Tennessee so that friends of mine could drive it. If I get the right offer, I will sell it.

I knew that Ed also likes motorcycles, though, admittedly, he’d have to stick to a big bike to support his size.

I hear that you have a Harley. What model is it?

I have a 1992 Soft-tail Springer. When I bought it, they did not have the TV motorcycle shows where they customize. Being six-foot nine, it looks like the bike is riding me, you know what I am saying? So, if I had heard of those cus­tomizing shops at the time, I would have had one custom- built for me. What I did was, I had a guy in Kentucky that was known for his paintwork for hot rods. Also, I had it shipped from the factory in Milwaukee to Kentucky where they took every piece loose and chromed everything that they could chrome. Then they put all of these different paints together where it was a colorful bike because I got tired of hearing people say that they got hit, or this person pulled in front of me, or I did not see you. I said, ‘If you do not see this coming, you must be legally blind.’ I wanted something very colorful to take out on beautiful days with friends. I have several friends of mine who are Harley col­lectors and I like to just joyride with them sometimes.

What colors do you have on your Harley?

My Harley is maroon, fuchsia, yellow, teal – a splash of color – but they all tie together. I spent an entire day with the family that painted it, putting colors together.

Were you ever influenced by another teammate’s choice in cars?

Early in my career, I used to envy my teammates’ cars, being as they had all of the hot cars – the Porsches, known as the fastest car on the road and all of that. I would love to drive that, but I couldn’t fit in it. One of my teammates bought a car that I absolutely loved. I used to watch the TV show Route 66.1 tried to buy a 1966 ‘vette, but could not fit in it because the dash extends out. So the owner of the 1966 ‘vette said, ‘Ed, do not ask me to take out the back seat and do all of this drilling.’

Raise the roof…

Yes, but one of my teammates had one. I used to envy my teammates’ vehicles that I would love to drive.

Well, it is obvious by his size that “Too Tall” fits, but why was he too tall? Tall, yes, but what made him too tall?

Tell me how you got the nickname “Too Tall?”

First day of practice in college, I walked into the equip­ment room and the trainer gave me the longest pair of pants that he had. They hit me above my knees. He shook his head and said, ‘Wear these, stay out of contact drills and we will have you a pair made.’ I walked on the field and a guy who played forthe Cleveland Browns did a dou­ble take and said, ‘Hey, do you know that you are too tall for football?’

That is a great story.

I am glad that something started, because I had been called so many names. I’m glad that everyone settled for one.

Was Tom Landry your coach your whole career with the Cowboys?

Tom Landry was my couch for 14 years and I played with Jimmy Johnson for one year.

So you did play for Coach Jimmy Johnson?

Yes, I did.

In that one year with Jimmy Johnson, it was with Troy Aikman, Michael Irvin and Jay Novacek.

Yes.

You also played with Lee Roy Jordan?

Yes. The best leader I have ever played with, the best j vocal leader. He knew how to get under everybody’s skin I in a positive way.

How many years were you with the Dallas Cowboys?

Fifteen years. I hold the record for most years and most games.

You signed directly with the Dallas Cowboys?

The Cowboys traded in 1973 with the Houston Oilers for Toby Smith and Billy Parks, which made me the first overall pick. This blew me away at the time because, during that time, the first overall pick was always the quarterback, running back – the guys that play the glamour positions. To be a lineman, to be the first one chosen, who did not even have a high school career, I thought it was just absolutely amazing.

It is, because you are so outstanding.

Well, I try to be. Either that or I fooled them. □

I can honestly say that Ed possesses a heart the size of Texas. He was hospitable, congenial, courteous and kind. He kept us relaxed and smiling the whole time we were at his house, and afterwards he insisted on taking Catherine “the photographer” and I out for a Texas-size steak dinner. He even gave us his season tickets to the Cowboys game the next day, and incredible seats they were!

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Barbara Terry interview with Bruce Jenner

Bruce Jenner went to two Olympics in his track and field career – in 1972 in Munich Germany, and then in 1976 at the Montreal games. In 1976, he won the Gold medal for the decathlon, a grueling 10-activity track and field event. Post-Olympics, he became a celebrity in the United States, getting that Wheaties box I remember, receiving endorsements and appearing on television shows. In 1976, he was declared the Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press.

What was your first car?

Boy…Nobody ever bought me a car. I have a tragic story.

At what age did you learn how to drive?

My dad taught me how to drive in Tarrytown NY, in a grocery store parking lot. I was 15, turning 16. He had a little convertible Austin-Healy Sprite; you know, those little bug-eyed Sprites they have. It was red with white stripes. It was a four-speed. That was probably three months before I got my license. Of course, I snuck it out a few times when he wasn’t around. We lived in an apartment complex and I drove it around the apartment complex and never got caught. The day I got my license, my dad sold the car.

Ouch, that was bad timing.

Yes. When I got home from getting my license, all excited, my dad said, T sold the car today.’ I was dev­astated. Actually, about a month ago, I was driving past a used car lot and saw a little bug-eyed Austin- Healy Sprite. I wanted to go in and buy the thing, paint it red and fix it up, just so I would have it. That was a pretty tragic start to the car world for me. My dad would let me drive a Ford Falcon station wagon when I was good, only when I was good, so I never had a car when I was young.

When I was 18 and had about six months left in high school, this friend of ours had a 1954 Cadillac hearse in the backyard and he wanted to get rid of it. He says, ‘I’ll give it to you for $150.’ I snatched that baby right up. Now, I do have to admit, coming back from a party one time, I think we had 24 people back in the hearse. It was my record.

(LAUGHTER)

Yeah, 24 people back there. We still had the rollers in the floor!

Nooooo!

We were coming back and we decided how many people can we get back in the hearse, and we got 24 in by the time I slammed the back door shut. Halfway home, somebody back there had to get out; they were going to get sick. I stopped and everybody came piling out right before this guy loses it. I rebuilt the motor – took the motor out and rebuilt it – all the gaskets. I rebuilt it myself.

How many miles do you think you put on it?

Not a lot. I didn’t have it that long because this friend of ours had a ’56 Ford Fairlane, which was the coolest. I would love to have that car today. It had new tires, and he was going to trade it in on some new car and they were only going to give him $275 on the trade-in. We were, like, that’s ridiculous, so he said he’d sell it to me for $275.1 bought it-two-tone salmon color with a blacktop, convertible. It was really a cool car. It’s a classic car; it would probably be worth $50,000 today if it was fully fixed up. I bought it for $275, had it for a cou- ple of years, until I went to college, and I sold it for $350.

There you go!

I was ready to go into the used car business.

Interesting story for you. This story made it on Paul Harvey. Here goes…l competitively water-skied that year- when I was 18 or 19-the year I had the Ford. I had driven it to Richmond, Virginia – from Connecticut to Richmond – to go to a water ski tournament I was competing in. My freshman year in college really didn’t go all that well. I had knee surgery from football (January 2,1969). I didn’t know if I was going to play sports anymore, didn’t know what I was going to do. I had missed a lot of school, so my grades sort of sucked. And I’m thinking, do I go back to school or not after the knee surgery.

So I’m in Richmond the summer of 1969.1 thought, since I had the knee surgery, well, you know, the draft, they had the draft back then. If you weren’t in college, they put a target on your chest and shipped you off to a lovely, tropi­cal country – where a lot of my friends had gone – and I thought, well, because of the knee surgery, I probably won’t pass the physical. I was thinking, ‘What am I going to do this summer?’ This friend of mine that I was staying with – in his house in Richmond during the winters – went to Cyprus Gardens, Florida, and skied in a show. He called the guy and says, ‘I got Bruce and we’re going to come down.’ They offered me a job. So I’m sitting there that morning and I remember I’m driving this ’56 Ford and I’m heading to the freeway, and I have my water skis sticking out the back and I had the top down. What do I do? Do I go south and head for Cyprus Gardens and get out of school, water ski all winter and be in the show, you know? Sounds like fun when you’re 19, right? Or do I go north and work with my dad, then go back to college?

I’m driving this little ’56 Ford and I’m almost down to the entrance to the freeway and I just don’t know what to do. Which way do I go? I’d never run a decathlon at this point – I’d run track and played football and played other sports, but I’d never run a decathlon before. So, as I’m getting closer to the freeway, this car pulls up on my lefthand side. To go south, I’d either have to slow down or pick up speed because he was sort of blocking my way south. But the freeway going north was wide open, and this car was right there…l sat there like this and I was thinking, ‘You know what, let’s go north on the freeway.’

All because that car was sitting right there to your left?

Yep, all because that little car was sitting right there. It was like the final thing, you know? I decided it was the right thing to do, go back to college. Then, the next year, I ran my first decathlon, so.Jt’s kind of a good car story.

It was the right decision.

It was a great decision. As Paul Harvey said, ‘Now you know the rest of the story. He went north. He went back. He entered the decathlon!’

(LAUGHTER). So, what do you drive now?

A 2007 Escalade. I had a 2004 Escalade and I traded it in with 175,000 miles on it. I carpool and that car runs all day long. This car is a 2007 and it already has 60,000 miles on it, driving kids around! I did win a car last year; I won a Mercedes, playing golf. Of course, my wife got that. The only other thing I have is a Harley.

Harleys are nice.

Harleys are very nice.

What model?

It’s a 2007. It’s a very unique Harley. They only made five like the one that I have. It’s technically a V-Rod, but it’s an upgraded version that supposedly Porsche designed. A friend of mine is a real big car guy. I mean, he has ware­houses full of cars, and Harley called him up and said they ‘have this bike, you wanna buy it?’ So he bought it. He took pictures of it, put it in his garage and it never moved for eight months. Then, one day, I came in and it was covered up, and I said, “What’s that?’ He lifted it up and I said, ‘Ooooh.’ I had a Harley, but I sold it a couple years ago and I’m kind of itching to get another one. With the gas prices the way they are, it’s kind of the smart thing to do, right?

Yeah, but to buy a Harley, you really do not need an excuse!

I looked at it and it had 12 miles on it. He’d never driven it. He says, Well, I haven’t driven it, but I got the bike and…’ I said, This is ridiculous. You have this beautiful bike and you’ve never driven it? Sell it to me, I’ll ride it.’ So he sold it to me.

What is your favorite road trip on your bike?

To the golf course to play golf. Yeah, how’s that? If I don’t have to carpool, I’ll just fire up the bike and go down to the club, and hit golf balls and come back.

Tell me more about your racing career. It sounds interest­ing.

I raced for what was known as IMSA – International Motor Sports Association. I raced in the GTO Class. (GOT PICTURES AND SHOWED THEM TO ME) This was my car. I raced that for Ford. I was a factory driver for Ford for 10 years. I was a factory driver for Ford Motor Company for about five of those years. I found this young kid – his name was Scott Pruitt – on a go-kart track, and Scott was, like, 13 times National Champion. He even won world champi­onships in karting. We became good friends and I told him I wanted to help him get started. He was, like, 23 at the me, and I told Ford I wanted to get Pruitt in the car with. This was 1985. He drove 10 laps and put it on the pole. He’d never driven a car that big and that heavy. The two of us, in ’86, we teamed up for 7-11 in this car and we basically won everything. We won 24 hours in Daytona, Sebring, we won seven races that year. We just ate ’em up. Scott won Driver’s Champion and I was runner-up. We had a great year.

People do not understand just how much goes into racing and getting sponsorships.

You gotta go do the track all day long, then you have to do the media, then you have to do the Ford stuff. You have to entertain clients. The list just goes on and on and on.

You’re worn out before you even get behind the wheel.

That’s the only time you get any peace and quiet. You throw the helmet on and everything shuts down and you go, ‘Yeah, now I’ve paid for it. Let’s go and do it.’ That’s what I did for a living. I just kind of got wore out. Scott was moving on. He got an Indy car ride at that time. So I just slowly, gracefully, bowed out. Then, when I met Chris, I had a few races, raced a couple offshore boats and did some fun stuff. Just decided to get out of it. Picked up more kids.

If you have never pulled the trigger on that dream car of yours, what would it be?

I have that story. Nineteen seventy-six – the year I won the games – was the first year that Porsche came out with the Turbo Porsche. I was driving a $175 VW Bug. That’s what I did when I was training. I drove this ’63 Bug to the track and back. Six months before the games, I signed this deal with Adidas. I made no money for the games; I couldn’t make any money. I lived on, like, $10,000 a year. I had a $145-a- month apartment and I trained. That’s what I did. I trained and ate. But I always had a fascination for cars. I signed this deal with Adidas six months before the games to wear their shoes. They couldn’t sponsor me, but they could sponsor my track club, and kind of filter expenses through the track club. It just so happens, I’m the only member of my track club.

Wow, that sounds complicated.

Very complicated. I signed this deal and got $6,000. I thought I was rich. I’m thinking, I was making $70 a month in the insurance business – as a draw I took out of this insurance business my friend covered for me – just so I could live. Then, six months before the games, I have $6,000. I’m thinking, I get$170 a month and I only spend $400. So I bought this brand new 914 Porsche, green in color, the only new car I’d ever bought – for $5,600. My payments were $98 and I’m thinking, how am I going to pay that?

Yes, but the purr of the engine makes it worth it!

Yes, it’s the purr. So I got this little 914 Porsche. Well, low and behold, right after I buy this little 914 — my first new car ever – what does Porsche come out with? The first Turbo ever. I see this thing and I’m going, ‘Is that the coolest car ever.’ I go into the dealership and check it out and I’m thinking, man, look at this thing!

You were picturing yourself in it. Cruising down the freeway.

I’m thinking to myself, if I can pull the games off, I will get that car. If I can do it, I’ll find a job. Don’t know if I can find one, BUT, for 12 years of my life, I’m buying that car. Done deal. I cut the picture of the car out. I took the picture to Montreal. I was in a bunk bed on the top and I taped the picture of that car above my bed.

You used it like a focal point.

Yes, and three months later, it was sitting in my drive­way.

I’m sure you opened it up. How fast did you get it?

I had it over 100, but I never really drove it that hard. I’m not a big, hard driver on the street. Too dangerous. I just go to the track and do it.

What kind of music do you listen to when you’re driv­ing down the road?

Talk radio.

Sports radio?

No. News. Never sports. Don’t really follow sports that much. I’m on the good Republican conservative side, so I listen to all but the bad guys – Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage, Glenn Beck and Marc Levin. >

On the drive to Bruces home, all I could think about was his face on the cover of the Wheaties cereal box that sat on my kitchen table when I was a little girl. He might even be the reason I started watching sports in the first place. We relaxed in his home office, and it was awesome to see his memorabilia and view all of the accomplishments he’s amassed throughout his celebrated career. It was also obvi­ous that he is a big fan of remote-control helicopters. He has a unique collection and told us that he loves not only col­lecting, but flying them.

Who would’ve thought that, as a little girl looking at that Wheaties box so many years ago, I’d have such an amazing conversation with the guy on the cover. Enough said.

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Barbara Terry interview with Dan Jansen

Imagine what it would be like to work your whole life to accomplish one goal, to be the best in the world at one sport, to get so close for years and to just miss winning it all. Dan Jansen doesn’t have to imagine any of this because he lived it. Jansen broke numerous speed skating records and went to four Olympics. At three of those games, he was favored to win numerous races, but, in 1988, he contracted mononucleosis and his beloved sister, Jane, died of Leukemia. In 1992, he slipped. It cost him the gold.

But, Dan Jansen persevered. In his last Olympic race ever, in 1994, he accomplished his goal, setting a World record as he won his gold medal in the 1000-meter event by finishing the race II seconds faster than any other human being ever had – at 1:12:43.

What was your first car?

I shared a car with my brother because I’m the youngest of nine kids, so we didn’t have a lot of money. The first one my dad bought us, because we were training and we needed to get to our workouts, I think it was a Chevy Malibu. It was this green thing with a white top and he paid $300 for it. We’d get so frustrat­ed because we’d pull up to stop at a stoplight and as soon as you hit the gas, for whatever reason, it would stall. We would get stuck in intersection after inter­section as the light turned green and it would stall. That was pretty much our first car, you know, mine, where I had to pay for gas and do what I did to get where I had to go.

I understand what you are saying about having to share cars with your siblings or having hand-me- downs, because I grew up with six big brothers. My vehicles were always their trucks. What was the first car that you bought for yourself?

The first car that I purchased was a Chrysler LeBaron. No reason. I started saving money to buy a car, and it wasn’t the old boxy kind, like when Chrysler started making their comeback. It was a sportier car. It was nothing special, but it was nice.

What color was it?

It was silver. Same color as my car now, actually.

When you were a kid, did you have a “perfect” dream car? Like a Porsche or a Ferrari?

For whatever reason, I was more of a sedan kind of guy than a sporty guy. I never really was into small, two-door sports cars, for whatever reason. Not that I don’t like them, I was just more into a nice Cadillac, Mercedes or Lexus, or something like that. That was always something I aspired to buy.

Which do you like the best: cars, pickup trucks or SUVs?

I’m not a pickup guy, never have been, but I have had several SUVs because I travel a lot. When I travel with my wife – she’s a golf pro – we take the golf clubs, so we need at least one SUV for the family. We currently have a sedan and an SUV. But if I were just to choose, I would have to be practical about things. It would probably be a sedan. Like a 7 series BMW or some­thing like that.

Those are nice. What’s your favorite color combina­tion when it comes to cars?

I’ve been through them all. My last car was jet black and now I have silver. I was kind of happy to get rid of the black just because it was so hard to keep clean. Now that I think of it, I kind of like dark colors. It’s like, whatever you have, you want the other one.

Right but there is nothing like a black car when it’s fresh­ly cleaned up.

Exactly. The only thing is, this time of year, it’s hard to keep any car clean because the roads are wet so much and get so muddy. So, when they’re black, they really show the dirt. A cleaned up black car…you’re right, it is nice.

So would you ever own a hybrid?

You know, I would. I never thought about it until lately, just with the economy and all that’s going on with energy. I’m certainly all for saving energy and so I would think about it, yeah. Now they’ve got nicer hybrids out. I’ve seen nicer hybrids, nicer SUVs and nice sedan hybrids. I don’t think I’d go for a tiny little thing, but I would go for a hybrid.

The zero to 60 in 30 minutes type thing.

Yeah, I’ll pass.

Have you ever been big on motorcycles, ATVs or dirt bikes?

Never. I’ve ridden on motorcycles and I’ve driven them, but I’ve never wanted to own one, simply because I don’t trust other drivers on the road. I would always be defensive driving if I owned a motorcycle. It’s just too dangerous for me.

What kind of music do you listen to when you’re driv­ing?

I am still, at heart, a country music guy. I grew up that way for whatever reason, even living in the Midwest.

What was up with that?

I don’t know, I really don’t know. One of my older broth­ers was into country music and it stuck with me. But I still like all kinds of music. I listen mostly to country, but then some older music groups that aren’t so popular, that are from my era, that are more rock kind of groups. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of the BoDeans or Lowen and Navarro.

Who are they?

They’re called Lowen and Navarro.

Lowen and Navarro?

Yeah. They’re actually very good. One guy, unfortu­nately, has ALS now and he probably doesn’t have too much time left. Lou Gehrig’s disease, it’s awful. They’re very good song writers. Do you know Pat Benatar? Do you know the song We Belong? They wrote that and they sing a version of that. Anyway, I have everything in my car, from Bon Jovi to Kenny Chesney and those kinds. I like variety; the only kinds I don’t like are rap and heavy metal. Other than that, I’m pretty open.

Right. Classic country like Merle Haggard and Johnny Cash.

Love that. Those are the ones I grew up with.

Charlie Daniels, Charlie Pride, Ronnie Milsap.

Tom T. Hall, and I am a huge fan of Jimmy Buffett. I even named my dog after him.

Oh yeah! My brothers and I used to have some of his 8-tracks.

See? Exactly.

The good stuff.

That’s right. I have those. I just don’t carry them in my car anymore.

How many cars do you think that you’ve owned throughout your life?

I would say in the neighborhood of 10 to 12, in that range. I owned them, or some I got from promotional stuff, like representing either the company or doing some commercials for them or that kind of thing. Not necessarily owned them, but I had them for a few years and that kind of thing.

You can’t argue with that

No, those are the best kind. So, yeah, I would say 10 or

  1. Something like that.

Tell me what you own and drive now.

I have always liked the BMW brand. When those first came out – the X5s – I just loved the look of them. I owned a black one first, and then I went to silver just about a year ago. It is a 2006.

Does it have the 4.4 engine?

No, it’s actually the 3.0

The 3.0, so you chose the smaller engine with less horsepower?

The 3.0, yeah. Hey, be nice.

What do see as, let’s say, your next vehicle?

I’ve actually thought about that. I feel, sometimes, like I should be driving an American car because I’m this Olympic guy driving a foreign car in the United States. I’ve thought about going back to an American-made vehicle. If I do, it would probably be in the Cadillac line, maybe an Escalade. The new models are great. They’re kind of sporty and a little bit smaller. Anyway, that’s possibly my next one.

You would look good in an Escalade! What was your all-time favorite car that you had from the get-go?

I would say a two-passenger Chrysler that I had. It was really fun to drive on spring days. It was a little Chrysler, tiny little one. I’m sure you’ve seen them around, they’re just two-seaters and they’re real small. It was a fun, fast car and fun to drive. Other than that, I would say I like the one I’m in now. I’ve had a Lexus before, and that was my first new nice car that I bought for myself. Not to say that my Chrysler wasn’t nice.

What model Lexus was it?

It was just a 300, the smaller version.

Like the ES 300?

The ES 300, right. That must have been in the early ’90s. It was a while ago, but it was nice and it was the first time I could afford a little more expensive car.

Have you had any speeding tickets?

I’ve never had a speeding ticket.

No way! Not one?

Not one. Ever.

Are you serious?

I’m serious. I’ve been stopped a few times.

Was it for speeding or an unsafe movement?

No, twice for speeding. But once was in my hometown, and they knew who I was and they let me go. The other one was actually down here, going to Augusta, Georgia. This very, very Southern police officer recognized me. I couldn’t believe it. He said something about skating and about going fast, like you’re used to this, but you take your time on the roads. And this was a long time after I had won my medal, so I was really surprised he recognized me. He let me go, so I got lucky.

Wow. You can’t complain about that.

No, and I probably drive five to nine miles over the limit and then I set the cruise. If they’re going to stop me for nine over, then they stop me. But I’m not a speed racer.

Have you ever been in an accident?

I’ve never caused one. I’ve been rear-ended once. I’ve been pretty lucky on that side, too. I’ve been good that way, too.

You obviously drive a bunch. How many miles a year do you think you drive?

I probably drive 15,000 to 20,000 miles a year. It is not too crazy, but in that range. Most of it’s in the Southeast at least. If I’m going anywhere else, I’ll fly. I don’t drive cross­country.

You should try. you might like it sometime!

I drove my parents down here; they live across the lake in Davidson. Well, they live here in the winter. They still live in Wisconsin in the summer. This year, in October, I flew up and drove them back here. They’re both 80 now, so it’s getting to be a longer drive for them to do it by themselves. That was the longest trip I’ve made lately. It’s about 15 hours, with my dad in the passenger seat and my mom in the back, and me lis­tening to country music. It was a fun trip.

Did you do it all in one day or did you stop?

No, we stopped overnight. Eight hours the first day and six or seven the next day.

Can you drive a stick shift?

Yes.

Pretty good or do you grind the clutch?

Pretty good because I’ve owned three sticks, and then I’ve driven in Europe a bunch. A lot of those cars over there are stick shifts.

All stick shifts are different as they have different adjustments.

That’s what was fun about that little Chrysler car, being as it was a five-speed. That’s the most recent stick shift that I’ve owned. It’s probably been four or five years ago, now.

All right so how fast have you gone in a car, like top speed?

With myself driving? Probably about 120.

That’s pretty good.

Yeah, it was on the Autobahn in Germany, so it was legal. That’s moving.

How long did you stay at that speed?

Probably three minutes and then I brought it down a little bit. But it is fun. Those roads are so nice. Have you ever been to Germany?

I actually just spent this past New Year’s Eve in Germany. I will take Dubai over Germany any day!

I’ve been to that airport.

Really?

Yeah. We stopped there on this weird route on the way to Japan. We stopped there just to refuel.

It’s a big airport.

Yeah. We were getting ready to skate the World Championships. It was cold in Europe, and it was fair­ly cold in Japan. Then you get out in Dubai and it’s, like, 80 degrees. I didn’t want to keep going, I didn’t want to move.

What year was this?

This was probably ’86, maybe. Nineteen eighty-six.

Then it was not the Dubai that it is now.

No. Now it’s the place to be.

Do you have a favorite road trip?

Favorite road trip. Oh man, I would say, I think I’d go way back for that one. My parents, my brother and sis­ter and I went out to Yellowstone Park and did the whole Western thing. We had this old camper.

Did it fit on your truck?

Yeah. It was the kind you put on a trailer hitch and pull, so it’s not the kind you’re driving. We went out and did Yellowstone Park and Mt. Rushmore and the whole thing. It’s good memories because my sister passed away later in life. It’s a good one for me to look back and remember her as a child. You know, that’s proba­bly the best one that I remember. And we did some fun ones with some skating friends after the season; we did this a couple times. We’d drive from Milwaukee down to Florida just to kick back and play golf and drink beer and go to the beach. The way down is great, but the way back isn’t.

Yeah, especially if you’re hung over.

Yeah, if you’re cooked. It took, like, 18 hours to get back home, so, those were fun too. Great memories. It really is great to look back on road trips, even though, at the time, you just want to get there. Great fun.

I’m surprised that you didn’t get any speeding tickets on those trips.

Yeah, true. True.

Dan’s story is inspirational, and you don’t get to meet too many Olympic heroes. Meeting one that persevered so long and who worked so hard to accomplish his goal was truly a pleasure for me that I will never forget.

Some cool info…next time you’re watching the Olympics or a speed skating competition, they streamline those com­petitors so much that they make the skates to fit without socks. Apparently, Dan never lost his need for speed because his pant leg came up during the photograph ses­sion and he was wearing loafers with no socksl You can take the man out of the game, but never take his soul out of the sport.

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Barbara Terry interview with Marvin Harrison

In 12 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, Marvin has amassed 1,090 receptions, catching most of them from quarterback Peyton Manning, with whom he shares a number of tandem records. He’s only the fourth play­er ever to catch 1,000 balls in the NFL, and when it’s all said and done, he’ll likely be second only to Jerry Rice. He’s been to eight Pro Bowls in his 12 full seasons and is only the seventh wide receiver with 10 touch­downs. He holds the single season record for receptions with 143, almost nine receptions a game.

What was your first car?

My first car was a Dodge Daytona…not sure of the year. It was a two-tone five-speed, blue with grey stripes down the middle, from the trunk to the front of the hood.

Where do you think that car is now?

I totaled it about a year after I got it, so it is crunched up into metal.

So you can drive a stick-shift?

Yes.

Now to prod him a little. Marvin is a man of few words. I figured if I could find the right button, something about his collection, I’d get him going.

As I look around your garage, I see that you are a collector of Pace cars.

Correct.

Okay, maybe that wasn’t the right button, but something about the gleam in his eye and the way his eyes swept over the room when I mentioned pace car told me I was on the right track.

When did that collection start?

For years, I have always liked pace cars, especially Corvettes. I had a problem distinguishing between whether I just wanted to collect Corvettes or to collect pace cars, so I combined the two to make it Corvette pace cars. I am missing three of the years-2004,2005, 2006 – but I will continue to grow as I get more space.

Bingo! Have you tried to find those three missing years?

Yes. The 2005 was at a Barrett-Jackson auto auction in Las Vegas last month. It went for $70,000.1 stopped at $55,000, so it got away. They only made three of those identical cars each year, so it will be rare to get those three that I am missing.

Marvin obviously loves his pace cars. I wanted to learn more of what he knew about them.

What year is the oldest pace car that you own?

A 1978 Corvette pace car.

Then the most recent year is the…

Two-thousand eight. You had to have both.

Okay, that about covered the pace cars. I wanted to find out more about his experience with automobiles in general. There’s more to cars than restoring them.

What type of music do you listen to while cruising down the road?

I just like to relax to R&B. Anita Baker is one of my favorites. Good choice, yes. I listen to the more relaxed music than the upbeat and up-tempo music.

I’d try to push his buttons, get him going a little, see what makes a guy that catches nine footballs a game and still goes over the middle against linebackers twice his size tick.

So you listen to baby-making music?

I would not say that. Just relaxing music.

Marvin giggled at my joke and was definitely loosening up. Now I could find out what he liked besides Corvettes. Certainly, there was more to the man than a passion for ‘vettes.

Other than the Corvettes, what cars are you passionate about?

The Buick GNX. That is the ultimate, being as they only made 547 and there are only about 200 left in existence. They are numbered and I happen to have car number 88. It is on the dashboard.

Eighty-eight is Marvin’s number for the Colts, a number that most certainly will be retired by the Colts when his playing days are done. He even wore number eight in college at Syracuse, when he was catching passes from Donovan McNabb.

Really? Was that coincidental?

I wanted the car number 88. The odds of that happening were slim to none. A guy in North Carolina had the car and I bought it from him in North Carolina.

How did you find it?

A friend of mine who is also in the car world told me that this guy had it.

Looking around the room, I noticed other cars, too…cars he hadn’t yet mentioned, but had gone to the trouble of purchasing and restoring.

I see that you also like Impalas.

Yes. The thing with my Impalas is that they obviously only made three colors-the cherry, the green and the black. I have two cherry and one green. I am missing the black one. I want the black one to be very nice. If I could get the Dale Earnhardt edition in black, that would be my choice, but I have been holding off on getting it.

Ahhh…sports figures, championship-caliber ones, are always competitive. It’s what drives them to succeed in the toughest of all arenas. They love most any game and sport, once bitten by it.

Are you a NASCAR fan?

Not really a big fan, just feel the need for speed.

Speaking of speed, how fast have you driven in one of your cars on the freeway? Marvin giggled as I asked the question. I must’ve hit a nerve.

Pretty fast. I cannot remember the exact top speed, but it was over 100 miles an hour. Nowadays, the way they make cars, it is not hard to get going over 100 miles an hour. I would rather not talk about how fast I was going, but just pretty fast!

I take it you do not like cars that have a governor on them.

Correct!

Marvin, while certainly wealthy, appeared to be very wise with his money. He didn’t overpay for cars he wanted, but could obviously afford, preferring to wait for a good price. He’d bought this building to convert instead of overpaying for a suburban spread. This made me wonder how he paid for the cars.

Do you prefer to own or lease?

I like to own, definitely own. It depends on what you are buying. If I am buying an everyday car, I like to own. Being as I have my own dealership, I can own and sell my cars. I am not in the lease or own busi­ness, so I will own, then sell and switch out to a differ­ent car.

Would you own and drive a hybrid?

I do not know the power that the hybrids have. I know that they are supposed to be good on gas, but I do not know how much torque and how much power that they have.

I do not think you can put hybrid and torque in the same sentence.

I would probably own one, but I would not use it as my everyday driver.

When you first signed as a professional athlete, what was the first car that you bought yourself?

It was a Lexus LX470 SUV. That was the first car that I bought.

Where is that car now?

It was a lease, so I do not have it anymore. It is long gone.

Ah, so when finance dictates, he’d lease. But his frugal, Intelligent nature tells him to buy outright when possible.

What do you drive as a daily driver now?

I drive an SRT-8 Grand Cherokee – black exterior on a charcoal interior. It is super fast.

Is that your favorite color combo?

No. My favorite color combination is white exterior with a tan interior.

He has a very cheerful attitude, a hint of mischief in his eyes, and, again, is a very intelligent guy. He does have a love for power, though. Most people with a love for power like to work on cars, too.

What type of modifications do you like to do to your vehi­cles?

I like all stock stuff. I like the original window sticker, all of the original details. I do not like anything but stock. One of my cherry-colored Impalas has a little bit of everything done to it because it is my speed car. It has a lot of things added to get more horsepower. Typically, though, I like to keep base rims and everything stock.

How often do you take some of your Corvettes out and around the block?

I take all of them out once a year. Every year, I take at least one out for a weekend or a week.

Tell me about your custom golf cart

You just have to have the ultimate golf cart. When I go to big auctions – whether it is in Carlisle, PA, or Barrett- Jackson in Florida – you have to have a golf cart to get around to look at all those cars. Normally, I rent a golf cart every year, but, from now on, I can just bring my own, just drive it around. It is good to have it. If you have family pic­nics in the park, you can bring the golf cart or even drive it around the house.

I see that it is personalized and very cute.

Yes, it is something good to always have.

Marvin also has a collection of motorcycles, quite a serious collection, just like with the cars.

What kind of bikes do you have?

I have one Hayabusa and five Ducatis. Ducatis are my passion. I also have three Spiders – a yellow one and two silver ones. One of the silver ones is a limited-edition. I started out with a passion for motorcycles – like my Ducatis – but when I heard that the Spiders were coming out, I just had to have three of them for my buddies, and for me, when we ride. The Spiders are a cross between a four-wheeler and a motorcycle.

If you do not currently own your dream car, what would that dream car be?

It is a toss-up between two different ones. For collecting, it would be a Mercedes Benz Gold Wing, but to own and drive every day, it would be a Mercedes SLR McLaren.

What color would you choose?

I would go with a black exterior on a charcoal interior.

How many cars do you think that you have owned throughout our life?

I am in a different realm when you are your own car deal­er. I have owned a ton of cars and I have sold a ton of cars, but the cars that I have personally owned…l would say probably about 50.1 still have about 25 to 30 of them and more to come.

Do you think that you were ever influenced by another teammate’s choice in cars? Did you ever pull up to prac­tice and say to yourself, “I have to get me one of those?’

No, I never have wanted something that someone else has. I have always tried to be the first one to have the hottest car that came out, so, no, I have never been influ­enced by another teammate’s choice in their cars.

How old were you when you got your driver’s license?

On my 16th birthday. On my birthday, I tookthe driver’s test. I did not waste anytime!

Do you get a lot of speeding tickets?

I do get pulled over an awful lot, and to someone’s good credit, it always seems to work out. I have not had a lot of speeding tickets, but I do get pulled over a lot.

Do you have any favorite road trips that you like to take?

I do like road trips, in general, being as I do not like to fly. I do not like the hassle and congestion of going through air­ports. I do not like driving more than eight hours, so any­thing between three and seven hours, I do not mind driv­ing. I like nice scenery, so I like driving through North Carolina and the Virginia Beach area, being as they are very pretty areas. I do not mind driving at all.

What is your favorite charity?

My favorite charity is to help out inner-city youths that do not get the opportunity to go to Virginia Beach. Or here, locally, we have Six Flags Great Adventures and we have Dorney Park. During the summer, when I get to take all the kids from the neighborhood on a bus trip to amusements parks…that is my biggest thrill that I get to do.

What do you have going on right now?

Nothing too exciting other than it is my 13th season. I’m enjoying it. I am looking forward to finishing off this year, and I obviously have a Super Bowl ring.

I was curious. He’d mentioned several times that he’s an entre­preneur, which is common after the playing days. But to be the best receiver of your era AND run car dealerships can’t be easy.

Tell me about your car dealership.

It is a used car dealership; we call it the little rinky-dink used car dealership. We have $3,000 to $5,000 cars that we sell. Being as I have been into cars all my life,

I want to continue. Over time, this is something I will do – sell cars and collect cars. I will always be involved with cars.

You seem to be very passionate about cars.

Yes. I love to sell them and collect them.

What does your family think of your choice in cars?

My six-year-old son, Marvin Harrison Jr., loves cars as much as I do. He has his little Corvette, a four-wheel­er and a little motorcycle. He has all the same things that his dad has.

Does he want to be a race car driver?

He is not into race cars, but he loves his four-wheelers and motorcycles. At the age of six, he knows every Corvette, and knows the name of each and every car and motorcycle. My family and friends love my choice, but my son is the one that enjoys all my cars the most and gets to ride in the passenger’s seat with me all of the time.

Have you ever had any car accidents?

A ton of them, but let’s not talk about them. I have had a couple in my time.

Do you have any funny car stories?

Yes. The limited-edition Buick GNX is a great story. I was shopping around for a GNX for years. I knew they only made 500-plus and they were each numbered. I was just waiting for one. When the time came for me to get the right one, I was lucky enough to get the number 88 car.

How long have you had it?

It has been over a year, now.

How many miles does it have on it?

Thirty-six thousand. A little high for a Buick GNX, but you can hardly find them, so I had to bear with it. It was either get low miles or get the right number. I could not refuse getting the number 88 car. □

Man/in indulged us and opened a huge exterior bay door of the garage where he keeps the majority of his rides in Philadelphia. We pulled inside and there was a giant garage in the old building with a mammoth collection of beautiful, vintage, restored cars. It became evident that this man is very, very serious about his collection. I can’t describe the depth of it. As I found, Marvin’s passion for, and knowledge of, cars was matched only by his passion for his communi­ty – for Philadelphia. His biggest joy is using his cash for inner-city children and biking around with his friends. He could live anywhere in the world and he’s stayed loyal.

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Barbara Terry interview with Natalie Gulbis

Natalie Gulbis has been a golfing phenom since an early age, introduced to the sport before she was five years old. She played her first LPGA event as an amateur at the tender age of 14 and joined the tour as a pro at 18 while attending college. She’s also a part-time model and builds motorcycles with her dad. She has a love of trucks, big cars and classic muscle cars.

What was your first car?

My first car was an ’83 Ford Bronco. It was in college, my second semester. My parents bought me the Bronco.

What color was it?

Navy blue exterior with a tan interior. It was an Eddie Bauer and I loved it. I’ve always liked big trucks and cars.

Was it a full-size Bronco?

Yes. Then, when I turned professional, I bought a Tahoe. A 1999 two-door Chevy Tahoe.

Do you play for the most part now?

Yes, now I just fly. It’s so International. We play more outside the United States than we do inside the United States.

Your two-door Tahoe, did it have a cloth or leather interior?

Cloth. Bright red, big rims, it was really tall. I felt safe in it. I’ve always felt safe in big cars and trucks.

I wondered what happened to it, she seemed to like it so much.

I love those. Great choice.

The next car I bought was on eBay. It was a Harley Davidson truck, a 100th year anniversary truck. I was obsessed with it. It was silver and black. I looked everywhere for it for about four to five months, then found it on eBay. I flew my dad out to Texas and he drove it back to Vegas. I still have it.

That’s awesome!

Yes. This is actually the first car I’ve had, the Lexus you are shooting today. I’ve had trucks for eight years of being professional; I’ve had an Escalade and an Expedition. I would just keep on changing out big cars and big trucks. I would take my car out on the road to tournaments, but now I won’t. Now we have an International schedule. I used to drive to all of the tour­naments, so I always had a big vehicle.

And you sold it?

Yep.

Ouch.

I kind of turn them over. Sell them or give them to fam­ily, but turn them over.

Do you like leasing or owning your vehicles?

Owning.

Because of the equity factor or the fact that the vehi­cle is yours and you can do whatever you want to with it?

So I don’t have to make another payment!

Hi

(LAUGHTER) Yes, that’s a good thing. How old were you when you got your driver’s license?

I was 16. My parents couldn’t afford to get me a car, so I went to college without one. In my second semester, my parents surprised me with a car for my birthday. That was my 18th birthday. I was a freshman.

What do you drive now?

Now I have a Lexus 350is, which is the car you’re shooting today.

Awesome. How long have you had the Lexus?

A few months. I just sold an Escalade and got it.

How well do you like being in a smaller vehicle?

I love it. It’s so fun having a car. I can’t believe how easy it is to buzz around in it.

It’s easier, but different, if you’re used to sitting up high in trucks. It’s a different feeling. When you used to travel going to tournaments, what was your favorite road trip?

My favorite city in the United States is Los Angeles. I’m from Sacramento, California, but I love L.A. I pretty much like driving all over the U.S. I’ve been cross-country, prob­ably, five times. I spent a lot of time on the road. I’ve been on the road since I was 14 playing in tournaments.

Can you drive a stick shift?

Yes. And now the Lexus that I have has the paddle, so I learned how to drive with the paddle shifter. It’s so much easier than a stick. I learned howto drive a stick a couple years ago. I had a TV show on The Golf Channel and my dream car at that time was a Dodge Viper. I said I wouldn’t buy a sports car until I learned how to drive a stick, so my producers on the show surprised me and brought me a Viper for a weekend, and it was a stick. They actually set it up because they wanted to shoot me learning to drive a stick. I drove it around Vegas all week­end, stalling it out. It was fun. That’s how you learn, though. Usually, you don’t learn on a Viper.

So you were grinding the clutch…screeeeeeeech.

Well, I was doing okay. They started to shoot and said, ‘You’re ready’ and started me out going up a hill.

Oh no.

Yeah, a big old hill.

And to learn on a hill is impossible, especially at a stoplight with a car coming up behind you. You feel like, ‘How am I going to do this?’

And I have another car, a ’68 Mustang Fastback that is in showroom condition. I keep at my parents’ house.

I wish we could have shot that! Sweet!

They don’t drive it much, maybe take it to a show if there’s one nearby. I’ve always liked the old classic Mustangs.

Is it all original or has it been restored?

No, it’s been restored and we put some extra bells and whistles on it.

How long have you had the Mustang?

Five years, but I only drive it when I go home to Sacramento. My parents make sure that it’s kept up because I’m not home very much. I’m on the road 90 percent of the time.

How many miles does it have on it?

About 18,000, not many.

What color is it?

Bright red, Ferrari red. I’m going to put white stripes, racing stripes, over the top next time I go home. I used to go to car shows all the time. You go to different cities, you get to see different cars.

Oh, yeah, get different ideas on how to restore clas­sics. What’s your favorite color combination with cars?

I tend to buy black cars over and over again. I like the blue Viper with the white racing stripes. Definitely, the Mustang I’m putting those stripes on, but I’ve tended to buy black cars for the last seven or eight years.

When you were a teenager, before you got your dri­ver’s license, you probably thought about cars and thought, “Wow I’d like this.’ What was that dream car? Was it a Lamborghini, was it a truck with big rims? What really caught your attention?

A white Lamborghini with tan interior where the doors went up. And I thought the Camaros looked like that — had the same slant, and looked like it. I thought one day I could realistically get that when I became a pro golfer, but I didn’t. Then I set a standard and decided that when I won my first tournament, I would buy a Viper. In 2007, when I did (win), I threw a big party, but I’m not home enough to feel I can have a car like that. Maybe one day, when my life slows down a little bit. I go to car shows, and they have great Lamborghinis and Ferraris at the museum here in Las Vegas.

Isn’t there a Ferrari dealership in one of the hotels here?

Ferrari is inside the Wynn and Lamborghini is inside the Palazzo, but I love classic cars. One of the maga­zines I get when I travel is the Du Pont Registry. Many athletes love classic cars. My favorite part of Cribs is when they show the cars.

(LAUGHTER) Yeah, it’s funny. When I started this book, I didn’t want all spectacular cars. I wanted some different cars, like Sugar Ray Leonard has a Smart Car out in LA. He’s driving this little bitty white Smart Car all over Los Angeles, it’s hilarious. It’s cool, though. What about car accidents? Ever had a car accident?

No. No car accidents, no speeding tickets, knock on wood.

No speeding tickets?

Nope, no tickets. I do not think I have ever even gotten a parking ticket.

Have you ever been pulled over and talked your way out of a speeding ticket?

One time. I was on my way to the airport about 4:30 one morning to get on a plane to go play a tournament in Singapore, and the officer said, ‘Natalie, where are you going so fast?’ I told him I had to catch a plane to Singapore and he let me go with a warning.

That was nice of him.

Yes. My management team, I think, currently has an over/under on when I’m going to get a ticket in my Lexus.

Would you ever own a hybrid?

Yes, absolutely. I think the next car I get will be a hybrid. They used to be so small, but now that you have choices. I’ll probably get a Lexus hybrid. They’re beautiful and so quiet.

They’re sweet yes. What kind of music do you listen to when you are driving?

A combination. I like classic rock and top 40. Now that I have satellite and regular FM, I’m always changing. It’s easy with a touch screen.

How many cars do you think you’ve owned throughout your life?

Twelve.

That’s pretty sweet. Have you ever looked at another golfer’s car and thought you might need to get what they have?

No. I never see the other golfers’ cars, but I do see celebri­ties’ cars on TV. All tricked out. I just saw on the last Cribs, Kim Kardashian had a white Range Rover with white seats with pink trim, and pink on the rims iLAUGHTER) ..yeah, but it was custom and it would be nice to have custom stuff.

Leading right into my next question. Speaking of custom, what do you like to modify on your cars when you get them straight from the factory? Is it rims you want first or an upgraded stereo system? What do you find that you’re not happy with completely, as far as factory goes?

I like to upgrade everything. I like it supercharged. I like to change the brakes, put all high-performance stuff on, high-performance tires with the biggest rims that I can fit, but still make manage. I have never had bigger than 22 inches, but I’ve seen them. Definitely leather seats. If I can fit TVs in there somewhere…I’ve always had SUVs, so I had TVs in the back for group travel with a pile of DVDs.

Well, with that you know that they are sitting in the back seat and occupied. They’re entertained while you are driving.

Now, a navigation system. I don’t know how you can travel without a navigation system. I used to have my little Garmin, but now I get navigation systems in the car. Tinted windows. You know, Nevada is more lenient than most states. You can get the windows tint­ed very dark here, but then if you drive that car in California… ticket! You have to be pretty careful, being as different states have different regulations. Now I take off all the logos, too, all except for the one Cadillac symbol. I like a clean look.

How fast have you driven in a car?

Donald Trump let me take his Ferrari out at a tourna­ment a few years ago, and I’d say 150 or 160.

Was that on the Long Island Expressway?

No, it was in West Palm Beach. He’d just gotten a new Ferrari, and for our tour championship, we got to stay at his hotel and we got to play at his golf course. He has beautiful cars, and a friend and I got his car for a night. I’d like to drive on a track once. I know they have a racing track here in Vegas, and I’d like to do that one time. You know, where you can actually take a car out on a track.

If you ever want to go to one of my off-road races, let me know. I’ll take you.

Really? Do they have them here?

Yeah. I just did the Vegas To Reno back in August. The way the course was mapped out it came out to be

What!!!

Yeah. Not on the road, but up in the mountains, on the sides of cliffs doing 80. We raced the Ford Raptor truck, the only Raptor they modified for racing. Off- road is fun, but it’s not very glamorous. If you don’t mind eating dirt for a few days…

Okay, speaking of your Tahoe, it was lifted. Did you put the lift kit on it?

I bought it that way.

What do you have going on right now, or what is your favorite charity?

This year, I got to be on Celebrity Apprentice, which was fun because I got to play for my favorite charity. The Boys & Girls Club. Now that the off-season is here, I have more time to spend here and in Sacramento where my parents live, and I’ll spend more time with the kids here and there. I’ve got great sponsors. My largest sponsor is Addidas. (Others are) Taylor Made, Cannon, Outback Steak House, Mastercard, 24 Hour Fitness, Sky Golf and Winn Grips, which are two golf companies. I do stuff with Addidas Eyewear. I got to design an Addidas shoe for 2010. That was exciting.

That’s cool. When does it come out and where?

In January, I think all over the world. You always have a dream of having a shoe.

(LAUGHTER) Yeah. Why did you choose Vegas?

I chose Vegas because my coach is here. Butch Harmon lives in Vegas. I came across this area of Lake Las Vegas, which doesn’t have the feel of Vegas. You have a man-made lake, beautiful homes and a sense of community. You’re a half an hour away from the strip and anything and everything you could imagine. There’s great concerts, spas, restaurants and shop­ping.

An international airport

Yes. There’s a lot more to Vegas than just the strip. You can go hiking in Red Rock. There’s skiing a half-hour from here.

Great spas.

(LAUGHTER) Yes. I would love to check out every spa in every hotel.

That’d be a book in itself.

Yes. It would make a great TV show. Get paid to do it and order every treatment on the menu.

Tell me about your motorcycle.

One of my favorite toys that I built with my dad is a custom bike. It’s beautiful. It has caricatures of me and my dad, and it is a retro baby blue. They actually had it on display at Treasure Island. They’ve shown it across the country at different motorcycle shows and now it’s at home. One day, I’d like to have a room where you can have it up on display.

You don’t ride it?

No, it’s too beautiful. My dad rides it when my parents come to visit me here in Vegas. It was on display for almost a year on the strip.

That’s neat. Have you ever had a bike you rode a bunch?

No. Being on tour, you cannot really take chances. Yes, you have to be extra careful with the body.

I was excited to meet Natalie knowing that she was not only an accomplished athlete, but a lover of horsepower. She was gracious, sweet and inviting/ A hot lady that knows her cars!


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Barbara Terry interview with Breaux Greer

Breaux Greer, like his friend Dan O’Brien, who introduced me to him, is a world-class athlete. He is an eight­time American javelin-throwing champion who holds the American record with a toss of more than 90 feet. He is an exceptionally in-shape, fun human being who enjoys his life to the fullest. Globally, he is ranked as the ninth greatest javelin thrower of all time.

What was your first car?

Let’s see. My first car was a Toyota Celica. It was in high school – an older car, obviously. I went to high school in, like, ’91 and I think it was an ’87 or ‘88. It was fast. It was one of those cars that, if you turn the air conditioner off, it goes faster. That’s how cool that car was.

That was a very nice car for high school.

Yeah. Well, I mean, I worked hard. Ever since I was 13 years old, I had a steady job. I literally had to keep money going through the family. It was just me, my two sisters and my mom, growing up, so somebody had to make some money. I actually had a little extra cash to buy a car with. I was always working, since I was a lit­tle kid.

Was it an automatic or a stick shift?

It was a stick.

I decided to get a ribbing in. After all, he had thrown me into a lake that was close to the photo shoot that we’d had with him earlier in the day.

How well can you drive a stick?

I can drive a stick pretty darn well. Yeah, it’s funny because, whenever I was learning, I learned on this really crappy car. I don’t remember what it was, I wanna say it was a Buick, but I don’t even know if they have a stick-shift Buick. I’m here, sitting at a red light, and I’m probably 12 years old at this time. My mom’s, like, cool, just drive. I revved it up so hard because I didn’t want to stall it because we were on the high­way. I did it and I just spun around on the highway. We went in a ditch and we came back out. I told my mom, ‘Get in the drivers seat. I’m done with this thing.’ I didn’t drive for a while after that.

And how old were you when this happened?

I was about 12,1 think. I had big responsibilities when I was a kid.

Do you find that the hard work ethic that was taught to you as a youngster has helped shape you into the exceptional adult that you have grown up to be?

Absolutely. You know, that’s the thing. Growing up, whenever all my friends – being in high school or jun­ior high – they got to go to parties and do all that stuff. I had to work because I would help my mom pay the mortgage, even at such a young age. I didn’t have the freedom a lot of other kids had, so it made me grow up a lot faster and appreciate everything I got. I just men­tally grew up. I didn’t have the leeway and do stupid stuff like all the other kids. It kept me out of trouble, kept me out of jail.

How many cars have you had since that first Toyota?

I moved on to a Civic after that.

Okay, time for another ribbing.

Why did you choose a Civic?

It was just an easy car with gas and mileage. I was doing a lot of work in different places, so I needed a car that didn’t take too much gas. And that was the most low- maintenance car. I had that and I’ve had a Tahoe, I’ve had aZ28, which was probably my favorite car-a Camaro Z28 – which I had souped up. It was really fast. That’s how I lost a lot of money, paying for gas with that one.

Did you have the 5.7-liter in the Camaro?

Yes I did. It was a really fun toy car. Then I got this, and this has been a really easy car. I wanted to get a bigger car, but I didn’t wanna go for a Tahoe and I didn’t wanna go for a regular car. This is kind of in between and it’s got the big Corvette engine in it. My dog and my javelins fit in it, so it is just perfect for me.

It’s a Trail Blazer?

Trail Blazer SS. This one has 425 horsepower, so it’s a fun little toy. It sucks up gas like crazy.

Well, with that engine, what do you expect?

But it’s fun. It’s just a fun little toy.

What year is it?

It’s an ’07.

What’s your favorite color combination? Obviously, this one is black on black, so do you always gravitate towards this particular color combo?

Yeah. Im always black on black. Ive seen a lot of white cars, and white cars are looking good right now. They tend to stay fairly clean out here in the desert.

Like the white diamond color?

Yeah. Some window tint and some fatty rims, and that baby shines.

Speaking of rims, what type of modifications do you like to do on cars that you own?

Every car I’ve ever had, I’ve put rims on. Every single car I have owned, I put limo window tint on it. Always gotta have a sound system and, every once in a while, I tweak the engine. This is the first car I’ve had that I didn’t put different rims on it. The rims on it are great. I had a supercharger in this car that I’m gonna put back in. I was gonna sell it, but I’ll probably just buy another car and keep this as a Gracie car, to tow her around in – Gracie, my dog. So I might as well put it back in. It’s really fun when you put another 80 or 100 horsepower in.

When you were a kid, did you have that dream car? Lamborghini, Porsche? Was there a particular flashy car that you thought you would always buy when you got older?

I think I’m like a lot of people that, whenever they saw Gone in 60 Seconds, everybody wanted an Eleanor. Strangely enough, I saw that car last night. I’m just sit­ting there, thinking, “Wow, that is just an unbeatable car. If I could just have that one car, I would be com­pletely happy.’

Simeon Rice has an Eleanor that he is restoring.

I love those. You cannot beat them.

What kind of music do you listen to when you’re driving?

I listen to a lot of Howard Stern now. But, as far as music goes, I listen to everything. My favorite of all time is Brian McKnight, strangely enough.

Oh, I know. He is great! Cool, grooving music.

Yeah, I know. But you just wouldn’t picture a guy like me because I also listen to Marilyn Manson. I can’t really get into country, and jazz never did it for me. Anything with a piano or acoustic, or the complete opposite – anything that’s really loud and obnoxious. I really like all of those.

From the sounds of it you like variety; you like to mix it up.

I like the whole gamut.

How do you know Dan O’Brien?

He’s in track, and in the track community. We’re all a family and he’s obviously one of the top athletes to ever set foot on this planet. To me, he’s just another guy, but if I take a step back. I’m, like, ‘Holy cow, that’s Dan O’Brien. That’s the guy that’s done so much.’ He lives by me, so while he’s training, I’m training. It’s just, like, you run into him and it’s, ‘Hey, how’s it going.’ He’s a good role model for a lot of people to have. He’s just freakishly amazing. I mean, he could still make the Olympic team if he wanted to. That’s how good of an athlete he is.

This one had me curious.

What do you think of hybrids and would you ever own one?

Yes, I would. I would own a Tahoe hybrid now, if some­one would give me one. I’ve got no problem with them. It’s just going to keep getting better and better; it has to. But I wouldn’t own one of the small, funky hybrids. I don’t mind them; whenever I see somebody driving them, I’m think­ing, They’re smart.’ It doesn’t fit my personality. I like to burn gas.

Right You like the horsepower. Do you get a lot of speed­ing tickets?

I rarely get speeding tickets. The thing here, especially in Scottsdale, you know where the flash cubes/speed traps are.

I was thinking it had been a miserable trip.

I think I’ve gotten three here in Arizona in the last five hours.

You pass them and you just see the big flash come out of nowhere.

I don’t know how you guys deal with it here. I constantly speed, break the law and they’re everywhere here.

Everywhere!

Well, that’s the thing. If you lived here, you’d know where they are. That’s a good thing. In Atlanta, you’re driving around and you got cops hiding in woods.

Yeah, but you can talk your way out of it in Atlanta, among other places in the country.

I’ve gotten really lucky at times when I’ve gotten pulled over. Somehow – maybe I was on TV at the time – the guy’s, like, ‘Oh, you’re the guy off of TV.’

Oh yes, that does help!

Every once in a while, it’s gotten me out of trouble.

Tell me about your doggies.

My dogs are my life. I had a dog for 18 years and, in February, she passed. Gracie was lucky enough to be brought up with her for a year? so it was really cool. This is Gracie; she’s a Presa Canario, which is the rarest dog on the planet. She’s a little bit over two years old and she’s my everything. She literally is. Friends sometimes come and go; people come and go out of your life. But there’s two things I wouldn’t mind spending my money on – it’s my dog and food – the only two things I need to survive.

They are great and I feel the same way. Tell me what all you have going on in your life right now.

Currently, I’m just kind of idling by. I still have a cloth­ing line, I still have a medical patent business in New Orleans, and I’m seeking out a couple movies here and there and doing the track thing. Trying to stay busy.

How fast have you gone in a street car?

I got up to 167 in my Camaro. It was outside of New Orleans and I realized that I had cut off an hour and some change of driving time on that trip. I didn’t real­ize I was going that fast because you’re sitting on the road and you just tend to not realize it in a Camaro. It just sounds like you are idling. So, 167 was my top.

That might have been the fastest of all the athletes I’d inter­viewed.

Wow, very impressive, Mr. Greer.

Yeah. I didn’t realize I was going that fast, but I looked down at the speedometer and was, like, ‘I should slow down.’ Normally, I’m an 80-mile-per-hour guy. Not too fast, just fast enough to get people out of my way and keep cruising.

Have you ever looked at another athlete’s vehicle and thought ‘I have to have that?’

No. Actually, I haven’t. Maybe because I live, literally, a minute from Barrett-Jackson. Those are the cars that extreme enthusiasts have, so I get to go see the top cars of the top cars. If you have an athlete driving a Ferrari, big deal. That’s not history, that’s just a Ferrari. Essentially, anyone could get that if they have money. They don’t make the ’69 Camaros anymore. You get one of those in perfect condition, and you’ve got a car. I tend to, every once in a while, envy those kinda guys. Strangely enough, they tend to all live in Scottsdale because I see them all the time. There’s a lot of money that’s gone through Scottsdale.

Have you ever been involved in an accident?

Yeah, I have. I was at a car wash this one time, getting my car cleaned up and polished for an athletes/cars book interview and photo shoot. Oh, that’s right, it is your book. I was getting it cleaned up and then I see an Escalade coming out of the cash wash shoot. It just gets finished power washing and it starts rolling out. It just keeps picking up speed for a good 30 yards. It keeps coming and just smashes right into my car. I got a new bumper out of it!

(WE BOTH CHUCKLE) Do you think you’ll ever pull the trigger on the Eleanor?

If I have a ridiculous amount of play money. It is still hard for me to think about because it is a car, but I would like to have it. Not necessarily keep it for the rest of my life; I’d just like to one-time own it. Just play around with it, not put many miles on it, just say, ‘Hey, this is my car. Check this thing out.’ There’s something to be said to that, because that is history. But, like I said, I like to throw my money towards investments and not having to work the rest of my life. Maybe when I’m an old man and I’m extremely comfortable, then, yeah, I could throw some money towards that way.

Do you have any favorite road trips you like to take?

Absolutely. Driving from my house out here to the hills. I try to do this daily because it’s just refreshing. It tends to unwind the mind without you knowing, just because it’s so beautiful out here. I don’t even realize it because it’s only, like, a 15-minute drive and it goes by so fast. This is surely my favorite place to drive. I mean, you look across and see forever. It’s peaceful. I don’t think enough people get enough time to themselves, just to unwind. They think they do, but they really don’t.

What’s the craziest thing that you have ever done in a car?

I think one of the craziest things was, me and one of my friends were in my Camaro in college and he was in the passenger seat and I was in the driver’s seat. We were only going, like, 65 and I asked him to sit in the driver’s seat. So, as we’re driving, he switches over and I, like, let the gas petal get up to 100. He’s, like, one of those crazy guys, so I climb out on the windshield and he goes to 100. Thinking back, it was really dumb, but it was actually kinda cool. On the front of the car, you’re going 100 miles per hour past other cars, hanging on to the windshield wipers. I thought it was kinda cool.

Have you ever been into motorcycles?

No, only because I know what would happen if I got ahojd of one. The two evils of those are those that have fallen and those that will fall, and I have no doubt that I would press my luck. I have that much common sense to say no, I’m not going to get into that.

On my way there, I got a call from the cardiologist that my beloved first dog, Rocky, had died from heart failure. I was heartbroken, but couldn’t cancel the interview. Breaux took the time to tell me about never getting over losing your first dog, but gave me insight on getting another one. He is a big, tough guy, but he’s down-to-earth and has a big heart.


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