• Andrew Wilner, MD

"Memory Car Clinic"

I'm always on the lookout for exciting professional opportunities. Even though I'm happily employed with a great academic position, I can't resist browsing job announcements. Today, an unusual job opportunity appeared in my email, offered by a prestigious physician placement firm (I'll be kind and not mention their name):


Mass General Affiliated Program

This unique Neurology position provides an incoming provider full autonomy and resources to build a program centered around an aging population. With an option, to open a memory car clinic.


I don't know what a "memory car clinic" is, but I'm curious to find out. I'm guessing it has something to do with old people with memory problems and old cars.


As I've aged almost to the point of Medicare eligibility, a latent interest in automobiles has begun to surface. Buried deep in my memory are images of British and Italian sports cars that (I thought) I barely noticed almost 50 years ago. I recently watched every episode of Seinfeld's Netflix series "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee". Perhaps this program bears some responsibility for unleashing a never-realized passion for automobiles?


An unexpected need for a second car and some creative rationalization resulted in a recent purchase of an antique MGB (1972). It's a car out of my high school days--the best-selling sports car of its day. The MGB is, without a doubt, one of the coolest and iconic automobiles ever produced.


In those days, I couldn't afford a sports car or any other car. Anyway, a car was just a "thing," a "material possession." My high school self had greater ambitions than to acquire "things."


In hindsight, I was definitely missing out! This car is a blast to drive. Although its 4-cylinder 95 HP engine is superior to a go-kart or riding lawnmower, the experience is similar. Of course, those vehicles differ in that they possess more advanced safety features.


It seems that my role in this partnership between man and machine is to restore the car piece by piece. In the last 6 months, this antique MGB has acquired a new clutch spring, starter, temperature sensor, and thermostat, as well as a rebuilt carburetor, realigned wheels, and a variety of miscellaneous repairs. But isn't it beautiful?


What a memory this car will be!



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