TODAY’S CAR IS THE MODERN MAN’S HORSE. THERE IS A marriage of
man and machine, a recognition of all the car means to a guy: independence, the thrilling possibility of travel, a chance to get away from it all and be master of your own fate. Of course, it’s also a bit of an enchanted relationship. From Steve McQueen to the Dukes of Hazard, men have long been associated with their hot rides.
But like a horse, your four-wheeled machine has needs, however basic they may be. Answer those needs—change the oil regularly, rotate the tires, take care of the beast—and your car will serve you well for decades, until that fateful moment it breaks an A-arm and you have to shoot it. Or just trade it in.
Or, in the case of that ’69 fastback Mustang, rebuild the thing no matter what.
Knowing how to fix what’s wrong with his car is every man’s protection against greedy mechanics and unscrupulous tow jockeys. It’s also a way for any man to bond more fully with his favorite machine, if not just spend a Miller High Life hour in the garage with a foamy beverage, the classic rock station, and an impressive array of tools. Knowing how to drive that same car in every possible weather condition, and how to drive it for fun, is protection against personal injury and boredom.
Of course, not every man chooses four wheels. The motorcyclist taps into the cowboy’s love of wide-open spaces, and the freedom and rebellion that has drawn the passion of characters from the Wild One to Easy Rider. But the two-wheeled horse presents its own handling challenges, being the most dangerous mode of transportation (part of its allure).
The complete man knows how to handle his horse no matter how many wheels it may have. That is why mastering motorized transportation is undeniably a mainstream manskill.