Category Archives: General

San Jose

This past weekend, I drove up to San Jose (Santa Clara, to be specific) to visit a friend.  It was a 5 hours, 340 miles drive.  Overall, it was a pretty awesome drive.  I took the Interstate 5 to the State Route 152 to US Route 101.  The 152 was an amazing scenic drive, especially next to the San Luis Reservoir State Recreation Area.  On the 5, I opened up the throttle quite a bit.  Of course, I slowed down anywhere the California Highway Patrol would possibly camp out behind.  With the Toda camshafts, individual throttle bodies, and short gearing, it’s just a pleasure to drive.  For a naturally aspirated Honda, it’s a lot of power to play with on the open highway.  In Central California, I hit moderate amounts of rain.  My Falken RT-615Ks held up great in the rain; I was driving and passing people at 80+ MPH without any wheel spin or hydroplaning.  Oh, and I got 23 MPG on the highway.

For those curious how I dealt with exposed ITBs and hydrolocking, Kelvin and Charles hooked up some Tracwrap.  The best way to describe Tracwrap is that it’s a easy-to-apply and removable clearbra that comes in a roll.  I applied it over my C-West hood vents.  After 700 miles of highway driving, speeds excess of triple digits, and couple hours of rain, my Tracwrap was still 100% adhesive to my hood, kept my engine bay 100% waterproof, and was easily removed without lifting clearcoat.  I know the point of Tracwrap isn’t to cover hood vents but to prevent rock chips on the racetrack.  If Tracwrap can cover a vent under these extreme conditions, it can protect your bumper from rock chips.

Here’s a few pictures of my car, Thadya’s Integra, and David’s Prelude.  A big thank you for their hospitality!  For those curious why the photos were taken in a storage facility, it’s because I rented one to park my car for the weekend.

If you look closely in this picture, I really need an oil catch can.  I have blow-by spewing everywhere.  Right before this picture was taken, I actually wiped some of it off.

My friend took me to Santana Row in San Jose.  The ghetto/hood is the first thing that comes to mind when I hear Santana Row.  In reality, it’s an upscale outdoor mall.  Snapped a few pictures of Tesla and their store there.

On Saturday, we went up to San Francisco and explored.  We decided to try out the House of Prime Rib.  Since we didn’t have any reservation, it was 2-3 hour wait.  We found a highly rated coffee shop, Contraband, around the corner and killed time there.

After a 2.5 hour wait, we came back to this.

It was a pretty epic dinner.  Danced it all off at Ruby Skye, left the club at 3am, and got back home at 4am.  Awesome trip to NorCal!  Can’t wait for round #2!

Mr. & Mrs. Vong: Feature & Accident

A big congratulations to my good homies, Peter and Theresa, for being featured in this month’s issue of Super Street. I’ll let the article do the talking.

Even though we didn’t “help” with the build, Dat and I really appreciate the shoutout!

Peter and Theresa’s build have really come a long way.  After seeing their feature, I kinda thought about when I first met them.  Peter, Theresa, Jason, and I were in the same car team (Team Hybrid) in ’08.  Emmie was really young; Theresa had the crazy Vietnamese blonde going on, coupled with her angry, glaring du-ma facial expression.  The next year, Jason and I retired from Team Hybrid while Peter and Theresa showed with Hybrid for one last show (’09 Spocom).  Ahhh, those were good times, when life was just about a lot more simple and a lot less busy: Hybrid, cars, and clubs.  Now, we’re stressing over taking our full-time careers to the next level, starting new businesses during nights and weekends, trying to save for a house, etc…

You guys can ask Theresa what happened in this picture…

Enough nostalgia and to some unfortunate news.  A month ago or so, a few of us from Double D Garage were at Five Axis for ENCORE – An Automotive Charity Shindig.  It was a charity event to raise funds and awareness for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).

Anyways, approximately thirty feet away from the booth, some guys from Sinister Skate Shop were doing their thing on some ramps.  One of the guys (Douglas Desautels) was attempting some skating trick.  Unfortunately, he lost control of the skateboard.  The skateboard flew towards Theresa’s car.  As Douglas ran and dove towards Theresa’s car, he slammed into her door and left a sizeable dent and scuff.

Douglas just laid on the ground in shock over what happened.  Needless to say, Theresa was absolutely livid.  Douglas’s friend, Yoshi Nurijumi, ran over to immediately disclaim any responsibility (specifically, monetary compensation) over what had just happened.  The following are some choice quotes from Yoshi Nurijumi that escalated the situation.

Yoshi Nurijumi: “It was just an accident.  It happens all the time!”

Yoshi Nurijumi: “It’s not a big deal.”

Me: “You need to pay to repaint the door.  Or at the very least, pay for the paintless-dent-removal.”
Yoshi Nurijumi: “How many times do I need to say this?  We’re not responsible for an accident.  There’s no contract to say we’re liable.”
Me: “I don’t see why this is so difficult to understand. You know, you break, you buy.”
Me: “So if you were to skate into the building window over there, you’re not responsible for it?”
Yoshi Nurijumi: “That’s different. It’s a business.”
Me: “So if I broke your skateboard, I wouldn’t be responsible?”
Yoshi Nurijumi: “Well, if you did it accidentally, it’s just an accident. If you did it intentionally, we would have a problem.”

Yes, accidents happened; it’s the way Yoshi Nurijumi handled the situation that was fucking appalling.  After 30 minutes, we were able to arrange for Theresa and Douglas to exchange information.  Seriously, he just wanted to hit and run.  Unfortunately to this day, Dogulas still hasn’t taken responsibility.  When Theresa calls Douglas’s home line, even his parents won’t help facilitate any resolution.  Understandably, your parents are going to always cover your ass.  However, I expected his parents to pay for the damage and yell at their dumbass kid later.  I know my parents would do that.  It’s pretty clear that the kid learned his irresponsibility from some his ethically challenged parents.

At this point, it’s not even about restitution rather the principle behind it.  I’m pretty sure Theresa wouldn’t be so zealous in seeking restitution if 1.) Yoshi Nurijumi wasn’t such a fucking douchebag 2.) and Douglas made some effort to pay for the damages (opposed to “sorry, I don’t have money, cya!”).

Hopefully, between insurance and the courts, Theresa will find a fair resolution.  While it’s a pain in the ass to file the claim through insurance and/or small claims court, I can’t see Theresa losing this case because it’s just open and shut.

PAS after ’09 SpoCom

Jason passed me this photo today.  It’s of of my car, his car (Tomei Evo X), the AQ Motorsports/Harman Motive STI, and a few other cars.  It was for Performance Auto and Sound’s coverage of ’09 SpoCom.  I don’t think this photo (not this photo exactly, since it was taken on Jason’s iPhone) was ever published.

It was the only show I was rocking Jason’s CE28s w/ r-compounds.  I miss that setup!