By Ingomar Schoenborn, Quilt staff
DATELINE: SHERMAN WAY
It was a scene of utter chaos in Canoga Park today when dozens and dozens of wildly decorative vintage-looking automobiles all broke down simultaneously causing a severe traffic jam and complete gridlock along Sherman Way from Topanga Canyon Boulevard all the way to Jordan Avenue.
|From where did they come from? In Canoga Park, Canoga Park residents wander about the mysterious|
vehicles that appeared on Sherman Way in Canoga Park on Sunday morning in a daze. Staff photo.
Drivers were seen abandoning their vehicles and standing idly in the street. Many popped open their cars’ hoods, as though to check for engine trouble or perhaps to let overheated engines cool, but no signs of steam escaping radiators nor of mechanics repairing broken motors was evident along the two city-block stretch. Local pedestrians, well-known for their practice of eschewing sidewalks for busy roadways were out in force as well, strolling along the curiously immobile automobiles as they went about their normal walking-in-the-streets business.
|Dr. Morris Detzer.|
Photo: Mimi Detzer
“Those cars, oh my! It was truly remarkable - something I'd never seen before. A phenomenon for which I simply have no frame of reference,” says Dr. Morris Detzer, head of Latino and/or Hispanic Cultural Studies at Pierce College Winnetka, who had come to the area to enjoy a “Día de los Muertos,” or Coupla Days After Halloween, Festival reportedly held somewhere nearby but was initially unable to reach it because of the blocked roadway.
“Evidently there was some sort of localized nuclear weapon attack resulting in an electromagnetic pulse, or EMP, which disabled all of these vehicles at the exact same time, like that scene in ‘The Day After,’” the professor explained. “As to where all these anachronistic vehicles came from in the first place, my guess is some sort of time-traveling device along the lines of whatever they used to get the aircraft carrier to 1941 Pearl Harbor in ‘The Final Countdown,’ or more likely, DeLorean-based technology involving flux capacitors. Only in reverse, and on a much larger scale. There was some crazy bastard at Pierce who was working on something like that my first year there, in ‘85, but they let him go after he kept burning the pavement in the employee parking lot.”
|In a daze, Canoga Park residents wander about the mysterious vehicles that appeared locally on Sunday|
morning on Sherman Way in Canoga Park. From where did they come, many wonder, from? Staff photo.
The stalled vehicles were all elaborately and intricately decorated, in a veritable rainbow of colors with many featuring extensively detailed designs in their paint jobs as well as enormous amounts of highly-polished chrome - rather unlike what one might presume to have rolled off assembly lines.
“Yet clearly they did,” insists Detzer. “They’re obviously from an alternate universe where such fantastically decorated vehicles are factory-standard. We got their cars and they got ours. It’s like that episode of ‘Star Trek’ where Spock has the goatee.”
However, residents needn’t be concerned of the otherworldly, motionless vehicles permanently blocking the street, Dr. Detzer notes.
“Based on my extensive knowledge of sci-fi television and movies, these things have a tendency to clear themselves up on their own after 30, 60, 90, or 120 minutes, depending on the format. I just hope they’re still doing the skeleton face-painting by the time I make my way through this mob over to Remmet.”