We drove that car from before I was born until we were ready to come back from Guam in 1964, when my dad sold it to an airman who was looking for what was turning into a bit of a beater by that point. But that's what the ravages of three kids and a dog can do to a car.
There was the time when we lived in Kansas and were crossing the Arkansas River. Now this was long before kids had to be strapped into car seats, so my sister and I were in the back seat and my baby brother was safely tucked between my dad and my mom in front. This would have been just fine, except that the shift lever for the automatic transmission was horizontally mounted in the middle of the dash. This put it in perfect range for baby brother Mitch to kick the car into reverse gear.
Fortunately, my dad was paying attention as the car lurched backwards and shifted us back into drive before we could either get hit by traffic or find the edge of the bridge. I do suspect that was the last time that Mitch rode in the center front seat of that car.
My father was a man of interesting theories. (Stop laughing, daisy_knotwise!) One such theory said that if you're making a trip from Kansas to Illinois with three kids and an Irish Setter, the place to put the Irish Setter is in the trunk of the car. Well, it was a big trunk.
I'm sure that Scott the Irish Setter wasn't thrilled by this. I mean, the people were all up there, while he was in this black hole.
Did you know that an Irish Setter can push his head through the cardboard behind the backseat so that it's sitting in the rear window like a little bobblehead? Of course, the kids were delighted to be able to pet the dog. The dog was delighted to be able to see what was going on.
My dad, maybe not so much.