Before you reach Amarillo, following I-40, you look to the right and see a series of Cadillac’s stuck in Texas dirt in the middle of an unplowed field.
In the old days the Cadillacs used to be natural, like they came from the factory. They had huge fins, power windows, custom paint jobs, real rubber tires, chrome that would make any car buff salivate. You looked out in the field and the vehicles looked like they had come back down to Earth like errant arrows and buried themselves into the soil as far as their momentum would carry them.
In past years, this site has become a Texas Landmark and the Caddy’s have been cannibalized.
On most days you see tourist cars clustered by a little turnstile and see tourists themselves following a wide path out to the cars where they pose for pictures, touch the cars to see how they feel, kick where real tires used to be. The Cadillac’s have been covered with so much graffiti that they are now hardly recognizable.
At the entrance to this entertainment is a little sign that informs you that ” This is not a National Park, Pick up your own Trash.”
This diversion is a brainstorm of an eccentric Texas oil man, Stanley Marsh. There have been not so nice rumors about his sex habits but he was a patron of the arts and how often does anyone create a Texas Landmark that has ended up in coffee table books all over the U.S.? It is unknown exactly what snapped in this man’s mind when he was having barbecue ribs on his back porch shooting Lone Star beer cans with a 45 pistol, but now we have a spectacle that wasn’t here before his epiphany.
Men do all kinds of crazy things and, for the most part, they don’t need a reason. In Texas, you are still free to speak your piece and act out your fancies.
If everyone buried a Cadillac halfway into their backyards, we wouldn’t be standing here taking pictures, shaking our heads, getting mud on our shoes