Cruising, Orange County Style

It may seem strange to introduce a huge show report—actually my final blog, since, in time-honored biblical fashion, the last shall always be first in the blogisphere —with a photo of a Bentley Mulsanne (over $400,000). But inside this gorgeously outfitted automobile, a machine that even closes its doors for you should you be too occupied trading stocks via iPhone to pull the handle, is a custom-enhanced sound system by Reus Systems of Orange. (It was part of the exotic car exhibition that was part of T.H.E. Show.)

As showed off by General Manager Cliff Johnson, the system is one of many that Reus custom tailors to a car's interior. Reus integrates their own equipment and amplifiers with those already installed, and then in Johnson's words, "blends them together seamlessly." The system design is ingenious; the center-channel speaker, for example, is hidden behind the rear view mirror mounted on the windshield. Although sound can be a mite brittle at idle—the system is tuned to perform optimally over road noise, air conditioning, and the like, and includes the ability to adjust subwoofer intensity—I had a ball listening to CDs of "Hotel California" and "Send in the Clowns."

I'll take three. One for me, and two for the local Norteños who are certain to bring a forklift to my East Oakland neighborhood within days of their appearance on my block. Hey, if you're gonna deal, you had might as well deal in style.