Though it may seem too good to be true, Bobbie Bauman's fly ride is street legal.
Instead of car seats, the 1949 Ford has lawn chairs latched inside its frame. Rather than a coolant container, it's got a Jack Daniels bottle. Instead of steering-wheel pleather, there's motorcycle chain. The car's rust-lacquered body hangs so low that it enshrouds the wheels, and, like some primordial creature, it belches pungent black smoke.
Then there's the name: "Suicidal Tendencies."
Inside Suicidal Tendencies sits a blond bombshell aside a dude with a black Mohawk: Bauman. One day, Bauman puttered Suicidal Tendencies through Fort Lauderdale, pulling up to Original Fat Cat's. Sparks flew, and patrons gawked.
What's up with all the rust? Who's that guy? Is he single?
Yes, Bauman reports, the babes flock to his ride. "Girls love this freaking thing," Bauman says. "Sometimes, when I come out of a restaurant, there are girls just sitting on it."
Bauman, who's in a serious relationship, contemplates the possibilities for a moment. "I could pick up a lot of babes," he says.
Bauman owns a custom auto body shop called Mad Mods in Pompano Beach and has always been into twisted cars. And everyone knows it, he said. So one day, years ago, he got a call from a buddy in Orlando.
"I think I've found the car for you," he told Bauman.
"When I saw it," Bauman says, "I thought, 'I gotta have it.' "
He painted the car's sides, refurbished it, and constructed quite possibly the illest vehicle in South Florida.
On YouTube, a video showing Suicidal Tendencies screeching down I-95 doing 80 has gotten nearly a half-million clicks. Bauman made it onto the front page of Reddit last year, and has received messages from across the land asking about his ride.
"We laugh all of the time," said Bauman, 43. "We say, 'What the fuck? This is crazy." The most common question he fields: How many times have the cops pulled him over? Only once, Bauman replies.
That time, the cops peered inside his car -- and apparently ignored the lawn chairs, the steering wheel, the bottle of Jack -- and posed just one question. Had Bauman been speeding?
Bauman said he hadn't, and screeched off. The cops had nothing on him. Under Florida law, it's legal to alter a car's interior is legal -- no matter how ludicrous the results.
So no, Bauman says, the lawn chairs don't have seat belts: Suicidal tendencies.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to New Times Broward-Palm Beach's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling South Florida's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism