Community Spotlight: Bottomfeeder

Posted: 2008 Apr 29 07:05 UTC

Bottomfeeder the Car was an internet favorite, consistently ranking in the top 5 at Google when searching for "bottomfeeder". It had many owners and was last heard of from the City of Pasadena Police who towed it in 2008. This page is dedicated to the life of Bottomfeeder and has pictures and histories as told by its owners. It was a beast of vehicle and will be remembered always. Or at least for a couple more years.


Make Mercury
Model Grand Marquis
Year 1984
Mileage 104,536*
Miles per Gallon 16

* Dan said that Rex claimed the odometer had not rolled over.


Bottomfeeder from the back This is the back.
Bottomfeeder from the left side And this is the side.
Bottomfeeder from the front Here is the front after the modifications (carpet).
Bottomfeeder's steering wheel and dashboard Again...the inside after the carpet.
Bottomfeeder towing a boat This is what towing a boat looks like. (Note Dan.)

First four pictures provided by Aaron. Fifth picture provided by Dan.

Bottomfeeder's Shady Past

by Dan (2003 Sep 29)

Bottomfeeder didn't always look the way it does now. In fact, it rolled off of the production line in 1984 as a top of the line luxury vehicle. Apparently a gentle grandmother nursed it around town for years, not putting many miles on it. When she passed on, the behemoth vehicle ended up in the hands of a bewildered grandson. What on earth was he to do with the extra, gas-guzzling car? Why, he sold it to a Mr. Mark Spitzer, man of ideas and action, and author of a few novels, including one entitled Bottomfeeder. (The book actually is about eco-terrorism and the mishaps of a giant catfish in a lake near a small town.) Mark took it upon himself to shape a dream vehicle. He took a good, full-size sedan and converted it into one of the greatest vehicles on the road today. With a few swipes of his power saw, he lopped its top off, exposing the interior and its passengers to the elements. He toyed with the car for a while, struggling to keep her V8 running smoothly, but he knew that it was time for the car to move on to bigger and better things.

Meanwhile, on the next street over, Dan was struggling to get his tiny Plymouth Lemon to the auto shop. After a botched towing attempt he was forced to push the car down the street, only to walk right by his destiny. There parked in front of a small beat-down house was the chopped top vehicle, with a handpainted "For Sale: Cheap" sign on its windshield. With nothing more than idle curiosity, he gathered his eccentric roommate, Robert, and went over to see just how cheap the car was.

"We'll take it!"
"Don't you want to test drive it first?"
"Oh, yeah, that's right."

The test drive was just a formality. The car was as good as theirs. Affordable luxury.

The car was used exclusively for recreation, cruising along River Road and sometimes hopping the levee to explore the mud trails on the banks of the Mississippi. After a single month, both Dan and Robert (co-owners of the beast) had felt that the car had paid for itself in sheer joy. They decided to name the joyful vehicle after its creator's book: Bottomfeeder. The name somehow reflected its large size, low brow appreciation, and affinity for the Mississippi river. After a year of ownership, the vehicle had required a few repairs, which luckily were not beyond Dan's eagerness to learn car maintenance. The car was a valuable mechanical experimentation bed for him.

Both Dan and Rob knew their co-ownership had a finite timespan. Eventually they would have to split ways. Over a couple of 40-oz malt liquors it was decided that the vehicle would go with Dan, due to his maintenance efforts that kept Bottomfeeder in top shape.

Before Dan realized it, the vehicle had become his primary transportation. The car handled several road trips to Houston and Florida in style. Bottomfeeder loved the road. Dan decided upon Caltech for his graduate school. Faced with the decision of selling the vehicle or driving it across the country on a multiple-day one-way road trip, Dan began packing Bottomfeeder's expansive trunk. The car survived high altitude mountain ranges and the desert heat without so much as a falter.

Currently, Bottomfeeder lives in Pasadena, CA. It enjoys carrying Dan's surfboards to the Pacific. On Fridays a bowling ball decorates its hood as Bottomfeeder carries its enthusiastic occupants to Bowling night.

Earlier History

by Rex Rose (2004 Jun 19)

I got it from the widow of a guy named John Roman. John had bought Bottomfeeder used. He was an old-time political activist in Hollywood, Florida, with an Eastern European accent. John was the one who successfully led the fight to keep all the beaches in Hollywood, FL, public. He was at one time a caricaturist and ended up a well-off guy. He owned a big house on Hollywood Boulevard not two blocks from the beach, and there Bottom Feeder dwelt in a covered drive. Those were the days of wine and roses for Bottomfeeder -- cruising up a street lined with royal palm trees, AC on full blast below the hot Florida sun. When John died, Bottomfeeder's new life started. John's widow, Helen, let it sit for two years and it was almost junked! Finally, Helen gave the car to me.

I spent way too much money on getting it started again, whereupon I drove it to Baton Rouge, and promptly drove it to Monterey, Mexico, where it got its paint job. After driving Bottomfeeder around Baton Rouge for a few years, I finally sold it to my buddy Mark Spitzer, who gave it its well-known body modifications. One time we drove it out west of Baton Rouge and were challenged to a race by some guys with a tricked-out Japanese sportscar. They had the lead for a short while, but their car started to smoke, and they tasted Bottomfeeder's exhaust. Bottomfeeder was shot at once when we were chasing some guy's cows with it on the banks of the Mississippi.

I forgot to mention that I sold it to Mark for a dollar.
I was the one to add the "HORN BROKE. WATCH FOR FINGER." bumper sticker.

A New Chapter Begins

by Dan (2008 Apr 30)

At 104,536 miles, I sold Bottomfeeder last night for the princely sum of $400. The new owner's name is Angel, and he has designs on prettying up Bottomfeeder and giving it a new life as an urban cruiser land sled. It was a bittersweet moment for me, but I think it was for the best. Bottomfeeder will get the attention she deserves and continue her life on the open road.


by Dan (2012 Aug 8)

Unfortunately, that may have been the last days of Bottomfeeder. A few months later I got a note from the police that it had been towed and if I wanted it back I'd have to pay $300 for it. Since the car wasn't mine anymore, I can only assume that Angel didn't get around to making the improvements that he had envisioned on the wild-eyed night he bought it from me.