Just in time for the granddaddy of all car shows, The Pebble Beach Concours d’ Elegance, and such Monterey Car Week events as Concorso Italiano and The Quail, a Motorsports Gathering, here are 5 Simple Rules of what not-to-do at these public car exhibitions:
1. Do not touch the cars! Absolutely, positively, not at all! Especially leveraging your upper body weight on aluminum panels and a spindly seat frame. It doesn’t matter if this guy was leaning over to read the car’s description placard. It’s the simplest rule yet the hardest to follow: Just. Don’t. Touch.
2. Stay out of restricted areas Auto events usually rely upon the generosity of a host facility such as a golf course, country club or museum. Which means their regular activities and members are displaced so that we may enjoy ours. Act like you would in someone’s home, observe the signs and stay in the designated areas.
3.No horseplay around near cars Yayyyy! Let’s climb on Daddy’s back near this 100-point, $2 million Ferrari that took five years to restore. You know why they’re called “accidents”? It’s because you weren’t planning on having them happen. Fortunately, with common sense and spatial awareness, most of get through life without many incidents. But why would you risk it?
4. No “You Toucha This Car I Breaka You Face” signs The sad but understandable reaction to violators of Rule #1 is the placement of “Don’t Touch” signs everywhere, which gives the impression of visiting a Kindergarten classroom. The signage absolutely ruins viewing and photography for the 97 percent of the attendees who do respect your car and would not dream of touching it.
5. Don’t be a Jerk So you pay all kinds of entry fees to have your car exhibited and fawned over by the masses at a public event, and when someone facilitates the adulation by photographing your car, you flip them the bird? We’re still trying to figure out what could have been so irritating to this guy that he lets the finger fly…the photographer is not underfoot and at least 40 feet away using a telephoto lens. Anyway, isn’t your worst day with an Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 still better than most of our best days? Not how I would want to spend my 15 minutes of fame, but here you go dude. | Tom Schmock photo
William Hall is a writer, classic car broker and collector based in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. He has spent the whole of his professional career in the automotive industry, starting as an auto-parts delivery driver at the age of 16 to working for some of the nation's premier restoration shops. He is a concours judge and a consultant to LeMay-America's Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington.