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Ray Gibbons

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Subject: Ray Gibbons
From: "Thomas James Pokrefke, III" <>
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2001 19:49:16 -0500
I was cleaning out an old computer today and found this.  I thought some of
us who have been here for a while might like a reminder.  I don't know who
it was from originally.

Fellow LBC nuts, Ray death has saddened me greatly and it has been
frustrating for lack of details.  I just called the U of V Med school and
a very pleasant chat with a lady who obviously knew Ray well.  She will send
me the Obit and I will post it after I get it.  Essentially she said that
went very suddenly from a ruptured bowel while on the table.  They were
exploratory surgery.  Cancer was a possibility.  Ray hadn't been feeling
for 6 months or so but had kept that quiet.  Ray has a son and daughter that
live nearby along with his ex-wife.
Ray apparently had a very nice lady friend during the last two years who
enjoyed riding in Kermit.

Since I'm missing Ray's daily dose of humor, I dug through my inbox and
picked out a few gems, here they are and here's to Ray Gibbons!

Ray Gibbons Says

On Tue, 12 Dec 1995 wrote:

> This is stolen from an old MG Car Club Northwest Centre (USA) newsletter I
> edited a few years back, in a letter to the editor from Doug Beagley. I
> only say that it seems accurate, though research might turn up a few
> inconsistant details.
> MOWOG stands for MOrris, WOlseley, and mG.

I have been told, by a british car nut who knew more about lbcs than any
sane person should, that it stood for MOrris WOlseley Group.  I suppose it
could be mG, but that seems to lack a certain logic.  If it were to be MG,
then why not MOWOM?  I mean, the Royal Air Force is not abbreviated RAE.
Morris Garages was not abbreviated MS.  But there may be a different
logic--if MOWOM had been cast on the parts, there would have been an
advantage in that it would read the same backward and forward, but a
disadvantage in that half the people in the world would have been asking,
"What does WOMOW stand for?"

Once we resolve this, we can move on to the question of what to do about
the high cost of medical care.

   Ray Gibbons  Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

On Mon, 29 Jan 1996, Denise Thorpe wrote:

> Not having insurance doesn't necessarily make her more likely to be in
> accidents and hopefully your kids are covered by health insurance anyway.

Now, Denise.  Even if your child is covered by health insurance, that does
not make it right for motorists to drive without insurance.  These days,
many people can't afford health insurance, and if they can, it may not be
adequate for all contingencies.

> Don't assume she's evil.  It's possible to be "financially responsible"
> without having insurance.  The woman has agreed to pay.  If she doesn't,

It's possible to be "financially responsible" without insurance, but only
if you have a million or so in liquid assets you're willing to give up in
the event of a serious accident.

> if you win, the DMV is exempt from paying the court costs.  Most people in
> California can't afford justice at the hands of the DMV.
> But, if the DMV takes your license away for commiting a "civil" offense

> then you're caught driving without a license, it's a criminal offense.
> Thus, you can spend time in jail without ever having gotten a trial for

> original offense.  The truth is that Americans _do_ have the same rights

> a civil case as in a criminal case, but the DMV is not answerable to any
> other government institution so they get away with it.
> The question is, do you want to aid the CA DMV in their treatment of the
> rights of American citizens?  Even the police in California don't report

> Years ago, when car registration was first suggested, the opponents said,
> "Registration today, confiscation tomorrow."  This has now come to pass in
> California.  If someone is driving without a license, the car they're

Easy, Denise, easy.  The CA DMV may be evil incarnate, but if someone
*else* decides to opt for freedom and happiness by driving without
insurance, and seriously injures me or someone I love, then *I* may have
to bankrupt myself to pay for the accident.  That's the epitome of
unfairness.  If you can devise a way to prevent that, while scrupulously
being fair to everyone, at reasonable cost to the taxpayer, then I
will vote for you to lead the VT DMV.

You have let your anger at the DMV get the better of you, I think.  I've
grown to enjoy your musings and mechanical advice, and don't want to read
that a California woman has barricaded herself in a mountain retreat, is
rumored to have several MG 1100's converted to armored personnel carriers,
and is surrounded by well-armed DMV agents who have orders to shoot at
anything that is octagonal.


   Ray Gibbons  Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

On Wed, 8 Jan 1997, JOHN HARDY wrote:

> I've never criticised non-standard. I've merely had a gentle go at the
> practice of vandalising old motors and second guessing their designers by
> the use of inappropriate technology. Call me picky but I would also
> disapprove of painting a Hepplewhite Dining table to make it easier to
> clean!
>                                Yours intransigently, JH

Dear Intransigent,

So let me see if I understand.  You would disapprove of painting a
Hepplewhite table, but you do approve of nickel plating a front axle on a
vintage car?  True, there may have been nickel plated front axles on some
specials of the period, but some people probably painted Hepplewhite
tables, too.

Exploring it further, would you approve of building a modified version of
a Hepplewhite table, using a mix of new parts and parts from a genuine
Hepplewhite table, as long as all the joinery was consistent with the
methods used in Hepplewhite tables?  If you built such a thing, would you
then nickel plate the legs?

I think your car is really nifty, but I have to give you a little grief.
I sense just the teensiest amount of inconsistency here.


   Ray Gibbons  Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

> On Thu, 25 Jan 1996, Rick Brodeur wrote:
> > We are restoring a 1950 MGTD which has a grey painted frame.  The
> > owner has had the car since 1958 and this is its first complete tear
> > while he has owned it.  All references I can find indicate that all
> > were painted black.  The paint seems to be original.  Does anyone have
> > additional info?  I appreciate any help.
> The factory probably ran out of black that day, so someone grabbed a
> can a gray paint just in order to meet the day's quota. They were not
> really concerned with 'originality' in the factory.
> Dirk

If you managed a factory making cars you thought one day would be
classics, it would be one hell of a lot of fun to play little tricks on
future concours restorers.

I imagine this conversation between the shop foreman and his workers:

"Boys, I think Cecil's taken leave of 'is senses.  'e says we're to paint
all the frames light grey this week, greenish grey next week, then change
back to black.  'e's the boss, so paint them grey.  And I asked 'im what
yer wanted to know, and get this:  'e says 'MOWOG' don't mean any damn thing
at all!  When I left, 'e was laughin' 'is arse off!"

   Ray Gibbons  Dept. of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

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