Thursday, 11 December 2014

1983 Buick Skylark Worthy of Contemplation?

During recent correspondence with a Benedictine monk, it was suggested by him that the 1983 Buick Skylark is a vehicle worthy of contemplation. More specifically he wrote; “there now - ponder that puppy for awhile!” My initial instinct to paraphrase his text is an overt attempt to appeal to the uninitiated who may not believe that monks speak as quoted, but who nevertheless may have valuable insight into this vehicle and its properties. Those familiar with the Oblates of St. Benedict, will find the quotation a more authentic representation of their speech.
Lest anyone consider even for a moment that this present discussion indicates a lapse in attention toward or devotion to the beloved Citroen DS, let me state emphatically that it does not. This research is motivated out of academic interest and even more so out of a sense of holy obedience to the monk who suggested it be undertaken. The 1983 Skylark was mentioned in response to my e-mailing the OSB a PDF of a DS manual with the subject line: “My latest Spiritual Reading”. Looking at the lines of the '83 Buick Skylark I can scarcely believe that it could ever be worthy of inclusion in a discussion centered around the spiritual characteristics of the Citroen. As AC/DC's Brian Johnson said, "I have my 1973 DS 23 Pallas....It's still the most beautiful shape in the world".
Having said that, it did occur to me that there may be some mechanical aspect of this vehicle which one could learn to appreciate, and with which I am not currently familiar. Perhaps the Skylark's virtues should not be judged on its box-like appearance any more than the virtues Thomas Aquinas should be appraised on his ox-like one. If the Dumb Ox contained a soul and intellect capable of producing the Summa, perhaps there are features of this car which are indeed worthy of praise. As I delve more deeply into the mysteries of the Citroen, I find within this creation deep and abiding mysteries that speak not only to the excellence of the vehicle, but even more so to the goodness of the One who endowed mankind with the ability to engineer it. I will admit freely that my initial attraction to the car was purely physical, but now it has taken on a mystical quality that can only be appreciated by those who have known a similar attraction toward a particular car. As human objects of affection may at first catch our attention through the senses, and then develop into something deeper once the intellectual and spiritual qualities of our intended are revealed slowly over time, so too my affection for the DS increases daily.
I am wondering if anyone is familiar with the 1983 Skylark and can enlighten me on why the monk feels it is an object worthy of contemplation. I have even considered that there may be no redeeming feature of this vehicle and that the subject was given as a penitential spiritual exercise suited for the season of Advent. Perhaps it is to be considered in the way that from time to time one should consider the flames of hell so as to avoid entering into them. If you know, in theory or in practice, anything about the 1983 Skylark, I would love to hear about your experience with it. Might I add gentlemen, in order to avoid having to redact comments before sharing them with monks, please keep your comments to the features of the car itself, and not to any worldly experiences in which the vehicle may have played a convenient part. Deo optimo maximo!

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