SL 050816 HOT ON THE WHEELS - Louis Marx

“O.K. Miss T. J. MacGuire. Must be Miss since this here letter of intro came from my Great-Aunt Helena who’s got the bug for me to breed for the family line. This latest ruse of hers isn’t up to snuff. Too obvious.  The old bird likes her little games. An’ no art magazine’s gonna write up my cars. They’re nothing but toys, for god’s sake. I only let that pretty-boy decorator put’em up on those dammed expensive plastic shelves so there wouldn’t be any space for pictures of damn fluff boats with tweety birds flying topside. Art. Can’t stand the stuff! White walls are just fine. But now that I’ve scrabbled my electro-overdrives into this big corporation I’m supposed to spiff up my act. Means I have to keep my toys off my desk.

All the time we were growing up my brother Dickie and I ran these cars. Still do when he comes into town. This one here was part of a set my Grandad had when he was a kid. We raced them all around our house catching bank robbers, con men, rum-runners, mobsters. Trouble was everywhere. In our faithful pursuit car we protected every corner of the city. Great fun. Looking for trouble. Finding trouble. Locking it down.

That one in the box is my latest. Absolutely mint. Never been touched. Dumb skull idea, like putting a lion in a cage, but that’s what the decorator said I needed to make this other stuff look like a collection. The way I see it, he got me to buy all these other cars so it wouldn’t look weird that I have toys in my office. That’s his problem. Not mine. I’ve made so damn much money no one should be able to get up on me.

An’ I don’t need my interfering old aunt to find me a wife. In fact I don’t need a wife at all. But if I did she wouldn’t be a flashy piece like you. All that hair hanging round your face and almost touching those . . . . You’ve got way too much on top. More than a little bottom heavy too. Tone up. Get rid of ten, even twenty pounds. Tell ol’Aunt Helena I’m partial to restraint, style, not some blondie show girl. An’ my women have classy names, Katherine and Elizabeth. Not just initials like some cigar-puffing old man. What does this T. J.  stand for anyway?”

“My name is Trouble, Mr. Hanover. Trouble Jane MacGuire.”


G-Man Pursuit Car” created by Louis Marx in 1930’s
International Spy Museum, Washington, DC, USA