When you’re hot you’re HOT and you stay in Port Ludlow | Life in Ludlow

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Ned luce

As a product of the American Midwest, I suggest this time of year is supposed to be hot, but not here in the Great Pacific Northwest. But he is.

Our Seattle daughter and her family have been out for most of the past week. They even stayed for two more days because of the heat.

So all that good heat exposure training we gave him in Lees Summit, Missouri in the 1980s was lost.

She loves to complain about “child abuse” when she and her brother were kids because I refused to turn on the air conditioning in the house until Memorial Day. The story has some roots in fact but is actually just a legend meant to annoy me, his father. I mean I lived there too, and it was hot and humid.

We walked them to the beach near the Port Ludlow Inn because, well, they hauled our kayaks there. BJ and I even rowed and really enjoyed the tooling around the “burner point”.

The highlight was our son-in-law helping us out of the kayaks without us having to roll over in the water. Somewhere there must be an elevator designed to help people get out of a kayak without giving up any semblance of balance and dignity.

Our son-in-law is a marine biologist so we all went to Termination Point next to the Hood Canal Bridge at low tide to explore the marine life. We went with them taking our camp chairs with us.

BJ was much more interested than I was digging in the sand for clams, mussels, etc., and even stumbling upon a jellyfish that was probably not happy to be left on the beach as the tide was going down . They all seemed to be enjoying the humidity as I took advantage of the camp chair and watched the seal watch them and the other 20 people roam the beach.

Then our daughter and family spent time and money last week at the Marine Science Museum in Fort Worden, the O’Yummy frozen yogurt store in Port Townsend, and the Key City Fish Company for crab, smoked salmon and shrimp. BJ raised our daughter to keep Jefferson County “green”.

I am a regular reader and grammatical admirer of Dan Neil’s Wall Street Journal columnist. The title of his column is “Rumble Seat” and deals with all kinds of automotive items, especially the cars themselves.

Over the past two weeks, he’s been reviewing the Porsche GT3: “The Last of the Hot, Gas-Red 911” and the “Tesla Model S Plaid: Feel the Surge, Down to Your Core”.

The GT3 will go from zero to 60 mph in 3.2 seconds and has achieved a certain level of notoriety lately because California deemed the car’s manual transmission edition too loud. He was therefore forbidden to drive on the public highway of the State. The Electric Motor Powered Plaid will go from zero to 60 in 2 seconds. Neil also comments on this car’s exceptional handling on the twisty Route 299 in California. “Forget the board, Route 299 is the basic workout you’ve been looking for.”

With a downshift, I note a column in the Seattle Times last Sunday titled, “As gear changes fade into the dark, collectors jump at an opportunity.” As the New York Times’ Bob Sass observes, “They are not yet extinct, but the end of shifter cars is approaching. “

Bob says US News and World Report notes that only 18% of Americans can even drive a stick and only 1% of new cars sold have a manual transmission. Ferrari hasn’t offered a gearshift option on their cars since 2012. Apparently, Porsche, BMW, Lotus and Aston Martin are the only automakers to even offer a manual transmission now.

I’m not in a position to speculate whether this is good news or not, except that it also appears that the classic car market favors gear-shifting cars due to their increasing scarcity.

Do you wonder if there will be a premium on the dwindling number of us who can actually use a shifter? Yes, I doubt it too. But I really like the sound of this GT3.

Love a curmudgeon, keep cool, and have a great 4th of July.

(Ned Luce is a retired IBM executive and a resident of Port Ludlow who can go from zero to a beach chair in under a minute. Contact Ned at ned@ptleader.com.)


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