CSD Dinner Table Topic of the Day – Dad, Which Would You Prefer?

…for your son to come home and tell you that he cashed in his student loan check or maxed out his new credit card (because you know, you gotta establish your credit right?) on this:



For your daughter to come home for dinner with her new boyfriend and when he takes off his coat, you see this:




Cruising with CornerstoneDad: The Return of the Buick Grand National?

With all the buzz about hybrids, fuel efficiency, high gas prices and dependency on foreign oil, it was beginning to feel like auto manufacturers were putting “lets just do it” plans on the back-burner. “Lets just do it” plans by GM brought us the great and well, not so great classics like the Chevy SSR, Cadillac CTS-V Wagon and Pontiac Aztek.

But now there’s talk that The General may be bringing back the great Buick Grand National? At least that’s the word on the automotive street.

So what do you think?

The trend over the last few years has been to go retro as we saw with the Mustang, Camaro and Challenger.

So what do you think GM should do? Let us know in the comment section below.

Just remember, that last GTO was fast…but it did NOT deserve to wear the GTO badge! So will they get it right or wrong?

Check out the story from Edmunds.com:

Grand National, GNX and T-Type Are Returning to Buick

By , Editor in Chief | Published Nov 26, 2012

Just the Facts:

  • Buick is planning to reintroduce the Grand National, T-Type and GNX nameplates.
  • The new models will ride on GM’s rear-wheel-drive Alpha platform introduced in the Cadillac ATS sedan.
  • The Grand National and T-Type models will likely use turbocharged V6s, while the GNX will most likely get GM’s new LT1 V8.

SANTA MONICA, California — Buick is bringing back the Grand National, the GNX and the T-Type, three legendary performance nameplates from the brand’s high times of the 1980s. All three cars will be sedans and they’ll use GM’s new rear-wheel-drive Alpha platform first introduced in the Cadillac ATS sedan.

That’s the plan anyway, according to a reliable source who spoke to Edmunds.

As in the 1980s, the T-Type and Grand National will share powertrains and suspension calibrations, but the T-Type will be offered in a full color palette, while the GN will come in black only. Details on the exact drivetrain that will be used are still hard to come by at this point.

Buick’s current turbocharged 2.0-liter has the right vibe but lacks the muscle, and the normally aspirated V6 has the guts but just doesn’t feel right for these nameplates. A more likely scenario is the use of GM’s long-rumored, and recently spotted, twin-turbocharged 3.6-liter V6. It’s expected to produce between 350 and 400 horsepower, which would be more than enough power in a bad black Buick with a Grand National badge.

So what’s left for the legendary GNX nameplate? How about GM’s new LT1 V8? We’ve already confirmed that a V8 will fit in the confines of the Alpha platform, so it’s not an issue of “if” it can be done, but one of “how” it will be done.

With a V-Series version of the Cadillac ATS almost certainly in the pipeline, a Buick version with a slightly less powerful V8 could be the ticket for the GNX. A six-speed manual transmission and six-speed automatic could be available in all three sedans.

Buick will also make changes to the sedan’s interior and exterior to bring it into the Buick family. The size of the sedan should remain unchanged, however, (the Cadillac ATS is exactly the same size as a BMW 3 Series) and all of its subsystems such as steering, brakes and suspension will be shared with the ATS.

For those born after the Reagan administration, the Buick Regal T-Type, Grand National and GNX were essentially the quickest cars you could buy in 1986 and ’87. They were powered by turbocharged versions of Buick’s 3.8-liter V6 and they instantly became legends on the street and on every drag strip in America. Today these Buicks are highly valued collector cars, with prices topping out at $100,000 for one of the 547 GNXs that GM built in 1987.

One of those GNXs used to belong to Mark Reuss, the current president of General Motors North America. In fact, his dad, Lloyd Reuss, approved the original GNX when he was executive vice president of General Motors North America in the ’80s. Needless to say, there’s plenty of enthusiasm at the very top of General Motors for a return of these storied nameplates.

That enthusiasm can’t work miracles, however, so we’ll have to wait at least another year before this crop of performance Buicks even gets a mention in public. Figure the 2014 Detroit Auto Show is a good bet.

Edmunds says: Just when we think GM has settled back into stupid mode Reuss and the gang get smart. We can’t wait to drive these new Buicks. Make ours, and everyone else’s, black.




Bodybuilding Loses A Legend – Sergio Oliva

This week the bodybuilding community lost one of the best ever, Sergio Oliva.

Sergio died on November 12 and was 71 years old. Known as “The Myth”, Sergio’s biggest claim to fame was the fact that he was the only bodybuilder ever to beat the other great one, Arnold Schwarzenegger (I know, I know, some still say Mike Mentzer beat Arnold in 1980 but that’s a subject for another day.)

When I first started lifting weights, Sergio was a big inspiration and earned plenty of space in the Iron Temple, which is what I called my home gym. My upper arms were always a strong body part for me (not in exercise terms, but in appearance) and the dream of one day having to cut the sleeves just to fit my guns in there kept me going down in the chilly basement. But Sergio’s physique was so perfect and dense, he made me hope that I could even bring my weak limbs into proportion as well. Yet that to was a pipe dream, as that’s what made Sergio “The Myth”. Very few then and now could attain a physique with no visual weaknesses as his muscularity seemed more like a cartoon or airbrushed picture, than something real.

Sergio’s accomplishments are also remarkable because it harkens back to when training and reaching genetic potential determined winners in bodybuilding, not endorsements and pharmaceuticals.  That doesn’t mean that Oliva’s and his contemporaries didn’t use anabolic drugs. But the guys had to know what to use (and it’s not nearly as much as what would later be used in the “sport”), how to train and how to eat in a very non-scientific world. Sergio even trained with some of the smartest guys in bodybuilding at the time, Arthur Jones and Mike Mentzer, two guys that revolutionized training with an abbreviated lifting method called HIT or High Intensity Training. It was truly a time when bodybuilding led science, not the other way around like we see today.

American’s always want to tell boot-strap-type stories and Sergio certainly has one of his own. He defected from Cuba decades before we started hearing about other athletes coming to America seeking fame and fortune. The Chicago Tribune reports,

“Oliva defected to the United States from Cuba in 1963 at a Pan American Games qualifying competition in Jamaica, bringing the entire Cuban bodybuilding team with him. He came to Chicago in 1963 because “he heard this was where the jobs were,” longtime friend Jack Merjimekian said.”

You can read more about the life of Sergio Oliva here: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-11-14/news/chi-retired-chicago-cop-former-champion-bodybuilder-dies-20121113_1_bodybuilder-arnold-schwarzenegger-memorial-fund

First, my “wrastling” CSD’s will know the guy with Sergio.
Second, my man had to cut his sleeves!

CSD Thought of the Day: Realize Who You Are To Her

I’ve finally finished Meg Meeker’s book, Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters, and thought it was absolutely extraordinary.

There are so many great thoughts in the book, that I’d like to share a few of them periodically here.

Today’s thought: Realize Who You Are To Her

“When she is a baby, her eyes will search for your face. Her ears will listen for your voice and everything inside her will need to answer only one question, “Daddy, are you here?” If you are there, her body will grow better. Her IQ will start to rise, her development will track where it is supposed to, but more important, she will realize that life is good because you love her. You are her introduction to love; you are love itself.”

It’s been quite a few years since my little girls were in the baby stage. But I still remember those days. There was something about seeing them and knowing that one my roles would be as the protector of her heart, mind and body. The ground that I lay in her life in regards to love will determine how love is perceived and grows in all the other areas of her life.

Dad’s this is definitely one of those areas where both of you will reap what you sow.

So what kind of ground will you sow today? What kind of “soil of love” (I know that sounds cheesy, but it fit) are you creating in her life?

I remember I missed class because of the birth of my first daughter. Dr. Lyn Lewis, my professor at the time, told me that I would have a larger impact on the life of my daughter than my wife would. Over eleven years later, I realize how truly right she was and I’m still trying to make sure that impact is far more positive, than negative.

How about you?

If you have an adult daughter, how did you do and do you have any advice for the rest of us CSDs? Let us know in the comments below!