Monday, July 16, 2012

Taking It to the Redline

One of the Hot Wheels from my favorite score. Photo (c) Terri Coop 

When I was a kid, every year for Christmas I asked for race cars and Legos. As a girl, I usually got dishes and dolls. So, I played with the cars the boys didn't want anymore (by the way, doll dishes make great jump ramps in the sandbox).

As an adult, the only thing that has changed is that I can eat dessert first and collect all the race cars I want.

Like most kids (grown up and otherwise), I love Hot Wheels. Mattel introduced these 1:64 scale muscle mites in the 1960s and are still going strong more than half a century later.

Like most Hot Wheels enthusiasts, I have a fondness for redlines,the original series of Hot Wheels produced from 1968 to 1977. Finding a redline Hot Wheels is finding a piece of the past and a piece of my childhood.

Most collectors can tell you where every car on their shelf came from. My biggest find or "score" of Hot Wheels redlines came from a flea market in Claremore, Oklahoma. I was out with my husband digging around when I saw several plastic silverware trays (you know what I mean, the ones in your drawer with molded compartments for each utensil) in a dealer booth. The trays were mixed with cheap toys and small appliances. They were tightly wrapped in plastic film and the hand-written tag read "TOY CARS BOX - $2.00"

Quick look.


Double take.

Closer look.

Happy Squeal!

There were five trays and they were full of redlines. About 50 in all. They weren't perfect. All were in what is called "good played-with" condition. Didn't matter. They were redlines and they were mine.

Many years later, this is still one of my favorite Hot Wheels memories. What is yours?

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