The Insider The DiMora Motorcar Newsletter
Backseat Driver

A Toast to a Clever Invention

By Robert D. Bliss


As we continue to create the Natalia SLS 2 sport luxury sedan, it is fun to imagine what it might be like to own and enjoy this extraordinary automobile. In today's time-traveling, telepathic experiment, we will hear Reginald's account of the day Higgins drives him and Sophia to the college football stadium for the pre-game tailgate party.

I kick off my Bruno Magli shoes, set the backrest angle to 65°, and turn the seat massage to gentle lumbar with low heat. A flip of the switch raises the left 21-inch LCD screen to show a high-definition telecast of the highlights of my alma mater's 38-17 victory in last week's competition. I set the audio to directional sound left; Sophia wants to read her magazine while listening to Andrea Bocelli on directional sound right. Neither of us wears headphones, yet our programs do not overlap.

Thanks to Higgins' ability to route around traffic jams using the navigation system that integrates GPS and traffic data, we arrive at the stadium parking lot before our friends, Geoffrey and Cuddles. Higgins parks and shuts down the DiMora Volcano V16 engine, but the air conditioner continues to keep us cool-for hours if needed, despite the 90° weather during this late summer heat wave. The relaxing massage has almost put me to sleep, when a rap on the window interrupts my reverie.

"Hey Buddy, can I borrow your corkscrew?" asks the gentleman beyond the variable-tint glass.

I hesitate for a moment. Short answer or long? As Geoffrey and Cuddles have still not arrived, I decide to have fun in pseudo-intellectual-snob mode.

"My Friend, your predicament is both commonplace and preventable. It is a side effect of centuries of attempts to preserve wine indefinitely until the time of consumption is at hand. A cylindrical piece of cork has proven reasonably efficacious for the preservation function; however, it remains a formidable hindrance to consummating the consumption objective. No doubt you realize that in just the past three decades, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued no fewer than 186 patents dealing with the challenge of effectuating the extraction of the cork plug from your bottle of Two Buck Chuck."

My newfound friend is too flummoxed to reply, so I continue my discourse.

"Please allow me to explicate an answer to your conundrum." I toggle the left screen from TV to monitor mode, then use the Natalia's handheld computer to browse to the USPTO illustrations of a cork extraction patent. My friend's quizzical countenance changes not a whit.

I decide to embark on a final attempt to educate the ignorant. I touch another concealed control, then watch the automobile's interior transform. In an action reminiscent of a James Bond movie, up from the floor emerges an elegant burlwood bar. From the enclosed refrigerator, two chilled bottles of Castello DiMora Chardonnay appear.

I hold a bottle in my left hand and turn the cylinder at the top with my right. Before the startled eyes of my guest, the cork emerges effortlessly from the bottle, and I pour glasses for Sophia and myself. We enjoy the exquisite bouquet and the rich blend of flavors that tickle the tongue before leaving a refreshing aftertaste.

Once again, the joy of the moment is interrupted by a rap on the window. "Hey, man, thanks for the show. Now do you or don't you have a corkscrew I can borrow?"

Reluctantly, I reach into a drawer of the bar to retrieve the primitive cork extraction device of a bygone era. I hand it to the gentleman and wish him well.


#  # #