A spin in the Blues Mobile

By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  November 16, 2011

Five years later, when his niece was set to graduate from high school outside Chicago, he put his wife on a plane for the graduation party and told her he was sorry he couldn't attend.

Then he hopped in the Blues Patrol, fully tricked out by now, and drove west with his daughter. "We ended up pulling around the corner with the PA, 'I understand there's a party going on over here,'" Carlson says. "The women came out, realizing what had happened, they were crying and screaming. It was ridiculous, absolutely ridiculous."

That afternoon, riding around in the car, a friend of the family offered him $10,000 for the Blues Patrol. He told him he wouldn't cash the check until the guy had a few days to think about it.

A few days later, the man called and said he did, indeed, want the vehicle.

Carlson deposited the check and, promptly, poured the money into the Blues Mobile.

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