The Right Way to Roll in a Ragtop
Are you Cruisin’ the Coast this weekend? “Ragtop” rookie mistakes can ruin your good time. Follow these five simple tips for maximum top-down fun!
- by Dena Temple
Wear a hat. At low speeds the wind feels fantastic, and you look super-sexy with your hair streaming behind you. That all changes when you hit the Interstate on-ramp. That gentle breeze becomes a typhoon, and by the time you reach your destination, you are guaranteed to look like you just stuck your finger in a light socket. Hats and/or ponytail bands are your friends; use them. Hat-head is far better than a rat’s nest - and you won’t have to shampoo out anything dropped by a passing pigeon!
Sunscreen. I rented a convertible once in Miami and drove down to Key West. The breeze felt great, and I didn’t feel the heat. By the time we arrived at Mile 0 I was as red as a Florida lobster! That was the end of my fun in the sun that week. Don’t let that happen to you!
Glasses. Don’t think you’re safe because you are behind a windshield! Sunglasses will protect your eyes not only from the sun, but from 50-mile-per-hour insects, too. There are plenty of things that can cause your eyes harm at higher speeds, so grab those Wayfarers on the way out the door.
Watch the seats. Sure, the car looks cool with the top down, and it’s tempting to leave it that way when you park the car. If you do leave the top down, do yourself a favor: fold the seat backs forward before you go shopping. Black vinyl baked in the scorching Southern sun will leave a fiery welt on bare legs. If you want to be a great auto-host, bring beach towels for your backseat passengers to save them from the same fiery fate.
Cultivate your “cool.” While you may feel giddy ‘cause you’re riding in a magnificent machine (especially if it’s yours), you must maintain a sense of decorum in a convertible. You are in a cool car – you must keep your cool! Pretend you don’t notice pedestrians and other car owners staring as you drive slowly by. Yes, they all wish they were you, but don’t let on that this pleases you.
Aw, who am I kidding – it feels great! Be silly, have fun, turn up the radio and most importantly – enjoy the ride!
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