Skip to Main Content

John Hinds on Why Cars Are Still Fun

As members of the Piston Foundation work hard to set up the guidelines by which we will administer scholarships and apprenticeship grants, we’re grateful to Piston Ambassador John Hinds for reminding us of why cars are fun—the people!

By Jeff Mason

March 2, 2022

We look forward to changing lives as we bring career opportunities to people who want to work in the skilled trades so everyone can continue to enjoy the camaraderie that John describes.

Where We Are Supposed to Be

As can always be said, car people are different. We’re doers and slightly off kilter. To my mind, that means we always seem to have more fun than other folks no matter what.

In the new world of pandemic insanity, a lot of pent-up car enthusiasts have just adapted and really not missed a beat. For example, the originators of Caffeine and Octane here in Atlanta, Georgia decided to move to a smaller venue. If you don’t know about this group, we’re car enthusiasts of all denominations who gather on the first Sunday of every month, in a quiet corner of Roswell, Georgia, to enjoy the world of petroleum-based fun.

More than 12 years ago, a woman exited a Panera Bread shop, obviously surprised to see us and our cars. She loudly declared, “What are all you people doing here?! You should all be in church!” One of our more quick-witted members replied calmly, ‘We are where we are supposed to be. This is the Church of Automotive Worship.” Now known as worship in the Atlanta Car Community, we continue to gather—safely—in fellowship.

Bad Weather: Still Good Fun

Bad weather won’t stop us from having fun, either. For 22 years, the Georgia Triumph Club has organized a fun gathering, driving a route to ring in the New Year. We plan our drive to end at a destination that offers a lunch break. This year’s 28-degree weather was no barrier to our tradition despite the fact that not all of the more than 90 cars of all makes and models could boast a robust heater. Even a Vega Station wagon braved what Georgians think of as exceptionally cold weather.

Friendships Made With Our Cars

I’ve met some of the best people because of cars. We’re thankfully very different and I love that we can embrace life together. Driving at 60 mph is a good way to socially distance and an even better cure for being sick of lockdowns. We’ll adapt and have a ball finding ways to stay together, enjoying our cars.

Support skilled trade education for future auto restoration technicians.


Sign up for our monthly email with stories, updates, and volunteer opportunities.