I worked for many years as a bartender and met many characters along the way.


‘The most remarkable feature of these largely unremarkable people was their ability to dispense inaccurate information on just about every subject under the sun.’


The sad part was they rarely saw the sun while they were perched on a bar stool in a dingy bar.




The typical bar conversations lurched between the mundane and the ridiculous on a daily basis. The one common denominator was every barfly drew from their limited library of knowledge and just filled in the blanks for the rest of the info on any given topic.




It was a daily Cliff Claven convention and misinformation was the driving force behind the conversation.




I have not been a bartender for many years, but I have found another world that has cyber-world Cliff Clavens to send out a flood of really bad information to an unsuspecting reader.


Most of the misinformation can be found on car hobby forums and social media sites. For some reason a specific inquiry about an automotive issue seems to bring out the worst in these cyber-misfits.




They will take the poster’s question and give some outlandish solutions to the problem. Some of the answers are so off-base they wouldn’t even dupe Curly Howard and can be easily dismissed by the original poster.




However, there are some answers that will have just enough credibility to drag the poster into an even bigger predicament. The “expert” will be armed with just enough information to appear to be a credible source and will dispense horrific advice with dire consequences.




These clowns will take a car guy with limited skills and get him in big trouble when their advice takes the guy well beyond his mechanical abilities and into a mechanical disaster zone.




We have encountered many instances where a simple inquiry about an old car issue has gotten very complicated by misinformation provided by an unruly herd of Cliff Clavens who know how to use a laptop.




Our best advice is to seek out local car guys who have built a reputation in the old car hobby and know their stuff.  The local car hobbyists are well aware of the big dogs on the block when it comes to mechanical expertise and will steer you in the right direction.




The real experts are car guys who have been around the hobby for most of their lives and built a sizable portfolio of real world experience. Some are trained experts and others are just natural talents when it comes to automotive matters.




Occasionally the local car experts may not be able to answer the question. This is a situation where we would recommend a thorough search for the right information if you choose the internet to find a solution.




Try to find a consensus of opinion via several sources if you seek answers via the internet.


‘Eliminate the answers that appear to be written by people who are off their meds or desperately seeking an audience for their sad and lonely lives by dispensing horribly inaccurate mechanical advice.’


Jim Sutherland


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