BY Tom Judson
September 23 2009 2:30 PM ET
Dressed For Success
Middleburgh, N.Y. -- Since the date of the New York City premiere of Canned Ham and the posting of this column installment are one and the same, I am not yet officially on the road. But this feature is about taking the camper around the country -- and lord help me, I need the practice hauling it -- so I have been making periodic overnights and day trips. Cass Morgan, of course, was the subject of the first column, and shortly after that I dropped by Alan Cumming's place in upstate New York, where we taped an interview a la maisonette.
But in spite of the pleasure I've gotten from these jaunts and the increased comfort at towing they've afforded me (comfortable enough to rubberneck out the window when that cute guy jogged by), something was missing. I felt incomplete. Undressed. Almost naked. That was due to the fact that in the course of restoring the camper I had neglected to find suitable hubcaps. And gentlemen, we all know that the perfect pair of earrings can turn an outfit from simple to simply fantastic.
Oh, if only there were a place where one could choose from a multitude of hubcap styles. A place where the proprietress could -- with just a glance -- judge exactly what one needs to conceal one's unsightly lug nuts. Doesn't that place sound like paradise?
Welcome to Hubcap Heaven. Behind the imposing chain-link fence sit more than 10,000 hubcaps. Wheel accessories for everything from Nash Ramblers to Ford Torinos to Buick Skylarks can be found here. And Kitty, the doyenne of the establishment, does in fact know exactly where everything is, although she doesn't allow photographs of the yard. Pity, Kitty, because you've got quite a museum sitting there just off the road. After I gave her a glimpse inside the camper, which she thought was pretty sweet, she agreed to let me shoot the gate and sign and to use a vintage Chevy cap for a prop. The Ham itself wound up with a pair of modest yet tasteful Chrysler full-wheel covers.
And off I went!