Valentines, Hot Rods and Super Bowls

Well Hello, February!

Love is in the air! Roses and football and hot rods, oh my!

You’re asking yourself what do hot rods have to do with February? Well, when you’re a teenage boy from Detroit, the Motor Capital of the USA in February 1988, my focus wasn’t Valentine’s Day. Football was hit and miss, to say the least, especially when you’re a Detroit Lions fan. Yes, the Super Bowl was a tradition to watch with the family and friends, but you’d find me wrenching on my candy apple red 1965 Ford Mustang in the garage during the commercial breaks more often than not. Ah yes, my beloved Mustang….. True love was in the air, or so I thought.(Ironically, the Super Bowl that year was between the Denver Broncos vs. Washington Redskins – the Broncos lost ☹)

Mike and his first love!

However, as much as I thought I was all that and a bag of chips, fate had a different plan for this young amigo. There’s a bible verse that says, “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child”. I was 17 years old, enough said. It was literally a little over a month later that the now Mrs. Kirby entered the scene. Que the beautiful Miss Sharon Way. Of course, our meeting wasn’t at a local Michigan rendezvous point, like you would think. No, we waited to meet clear across the country on the back steps of a church building in Malibu, California, on a Spring Break Church Chorus Tour. The Metropolitan Detroit Youth Chorus was a youth chorus of over 130 kids from about 20 churches from all over the Detroit metro, and honestly, we hadn’t even met until that moment. No, I never thought of myself as a singer back then, but mysteriously I all of sudden liked going to chorus more than working on my beloved Mustang. Funny how that works.

It reminds me of the old George Jones tune “The Corvette Song”:

The future Mrs. Kirby and Mike.

“Oh, she was hotter than a two-dollar pistol,
She was the fastest thing around,
Long and lean, every young man’s dream,
She turned every head in town,
She was built and fun to handle, son
I’m glad that you dropped in
She reminds me of the one I loved back then.”

Yes, I know the song was about a Corvette and mine was a Mustang, but the part of the song about every young man’s dream is what makes this song applicable. There I was staring at the prettiest girl I had ever laid eyes on, and no, I wasn’t even talking about my Mustang. However, the most embarrassing

Mr. & Mrs. Kirby

part of our story is that it took me a week to learn her name and would mistakenly call her Shannon until I got tired of our friends teasing me about it, which still is laughed about today, 30 years later…and now you know the rest of the story.

Happy Valentine’s Day!
Mike

“Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalms 37:4

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