JERRY REED ONCE SANG a song about cars. It starts off with the line:

“Well, if you’re one of the millions who own one of them has-drinking, piston-clinking, air-polluting, smoke-belching, four-wheeled buggies from Detroit City…”

While Jerry was moaning about the stress of owning a car, millions of us grow close to our rigs. We even name them.

In my driveway, my partner’s big green wagon of an SUV sits. She calls her Bertha.

Me? I’ve had three variations of the same name. Much like a ship.

The Smoke Wagon I, II, and my current one: Smoke Wagon III.

Here’s the original, still in the backyard back home. This is the ’94 model. A television news photographer I worked with years ago gave the truck that name and it stuck.

Arguably the most famous named vessel in our town was Sadie.

Just as you would imagine, Sadie was an adorable little VW bug. Bright mustard yellow with a black rag top that folded down.

She was a 1974 Volkswagen owned by the iconic Carolyn Blackmon.

Sadie wasn’t just known for hauling the Blackmon sisters and their friends all over county (especially at parade time), she was known to hang out in the carport on Bledsoe Street or in front of the music room at De Kalb Junior High School.

This is not Sadie but looks VERY similar. I ran across this one in Little Rock the day after I published this dispatch.

Eddie Blackmon was known for poking fun at Sadie. When the family would tow it behind an RV on a trip, Eddie had a sign made that attached to the back:


These days, you can order big eyelashes that attach to the top of VW bug headlights. They didn’t have those when Sadie was running the roads, but I would like to think Carolyn would have jumped at the chance to buy a pair.

How about you? Did you ever have a ride that you like so much (or despised) that you gave it a name?