Meals on wheels
It was love at first sight when Chris Owens laid eyes on a 25-year-old beauty in Noank, Conn. Unfortunately her asking price was $18,000.
Owens, the owner of a local pizzeria, decided that the purchase would be a nice gift to his business and soon became the proud owner of the Noank G-42, a retired fire truck.
The truck gave Owens the idea to expand his restaurant into a mobile pizza catering company. But rather than just deliver pizzas in a fire truck, he invested another $50,000 to convert the truck into a rolling pizza shop—with all the amenities.
Owens removed the 800-gal water tank and installed a gas-fired stone oven on top of the truck. He also took out the fire pump and replaced it with a small refrigerator to hold beverages. Insulated lines that once pumped water to the front of the truck now pump beer, wine or soda through two taps.
With the push of a button, a hydraulic ladder converts into a bar table on the side of the truck. There’s even a small water tank that powers a water cannon for the kids.
All of this is powered by a 50-lb propane tank and 3,000-watt generator on each side of the truck.
Owens hopes to use the truck to cater birthday parties, weddings and nonprofit events. If that doesn’t work out, you can bet he’ll be hosting the most popular football tailgate parties in town.
When Utah farmer Rhett Davis failed to reach an agreement with his neighbors over a fence, he built one for them—out of a Ford and two Toyotas.
Davis’s new neighbors complained about smells, flies and dust during the hay-cutting season. Davis offered to build a fence between the two properties if the neighbor paid for half the cost. The neighbor declined, so Davis took a cue from the ancient mystics and built what he calls his “Redneck Stonehenge.”
After using a backhoe to dig three large holes on the edge of his property, Davis found some old demolition derby cars and planted them nose-first in the ground.
Davis maintains that the cars were planted in good fun and he would be happy to remove them if asked.
The next Lara Croft
When your kids pester you to buy them the latest ultraviolent video games, you might consider the potential life-saving benefits to your family.
One evening this past August, the Norris family was driving to Diamond, Ill., to visit family when their Jeep Grand Cherokee swerved off the road, hit a guardrail and flipped four times before landing on its side in a ditch.
Thanks to hours spent playing the shoot-’em-up classic Grand Theft Auto, 11-year-old daughter Audrey knew that vehicles that roll over often explode. With that in mind, she quickly began working to free her family from the wreckage.
With her parents and two younger siblings still dazed and pinned inside, Audrey managed to climb out through the smashed back window. She was then able to pull her mother out through a window and help the rest of her family escape.
Audrey then led her father, who had lost his glasses during the accident, back up to the road, where they were able to get a passing motorist to call 9-1-1.
The Norris family suffered cuts and bruises, but no major injuries.
So this Christmas, consider how video games can inspire heroism in times of tragedy by providing a basic, if not entirely accurate, picture of automobile physics.