The Green Hornet by
(18 Stories)

Prompted By My First Car

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52 two tone green Cadillac

As the family upgraded to newer, better cars, it got so I could drive the older one almost exclusively even though I wasn’t technically the owner. A two-tone green Cadillac that was old but didn’t exactly qualify as a beater became known as The Green Hornet. What a tank. It was like a couple of big, comfy sofas wrapped in metal that has made all subsequent cars feel like a tomato can to me.


My friends and I would bomb around in it, ski-jogging in winter, cruising Riv in all seasons. Riv, or the Riv, Riverside Avenue, the main drag going through downtown, was all of maybe 10 blocks and kids from all over the city would come and cruise slowly, windows down in every kind of weather, checking each other out. At the end they would turn around and cruise back again, looping on endless repeat. Once, around Halloween, we wired a pumpkin to the hood ornament. Woo hoo. Would have loved to be getting up to more mischief than that, but mischief was in short supply on the ground.


Here is a pic of one like it. You lifted up one of the tail lights to put gas in.

Profile photo of Constance Constance

Tags: Green Hornet, Cadillac
Characterizations: right on!


  1. rosie says:

    This is a delightful short. Was this the first car you drove. I like the color. The story made me think of “Happy Days” and Fonzie. Thanks for sparking memories of a time past.

  2. Constance says:

    Thanks, Rosie. No, my very first ever driving of a car was with my Uncle Frank in his VW bug on a country road. Got thrown in to the deep end of the pool with learning to shift gears. My hands were sweating that day but I took right to it and can drive anything or operate any piece of equipment now.

  3. rosie says:

    My uncle was actually the first one to teach me driving. My mom stopped him from continuing and I didn’t finally get a license until my late 20’s. It is nice to have an uncle who is willing to help you out.

  4. John Zussman says:

    I love the way you describe how roomy it was! What’s ski-jogging?

  5. rosie says:

    I wondered that too, what is ski jogging?

  6. Constance says:

    Back when, cars had exterior door handles that stuck out. When the streets were icy or even snowy one could grab on to the handles and be pulled along. For advanced ski-jogging one would run up to the back of a car, crouch down low, grab the bumper and be pulled along unbeknownst to the driver.

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