Is there anything sweeter or more American than a custom van? Go ahead, try to think of something. I'll wait.
The answer, of course, is no, and I'll tell you why: A custom van is a combination of artistic expression, mechanical expertise, and high-concept feng shui all rolled into one. It can function as transportation, shaggin' wagon, party area, or mobile apartment depending on the owner's needs, and in addition, a custom van just plain LOOKS RAD. I love my custom van (above). It rules.
Here's a little gallery of custom van images I've gathered up around the internet. Maybe they'll inspire someone out there to get a custom van of their own. Believe me, it's the most fulfilling, life-enriching thing you can do.
Above: I don't know who "Spinellis" is, but he's obviously a Major Bro. Slapping Maiden's "Trooper" on the side of your van is an act tantamount to saving a bunch of sick kids from a burning orphanage or pulling off a massive jewel heist. Bravo, Spinellis, bravo.
Below: While I can't get behind a Heart-themed van quite as much as a Maiden-themed van, I still applaud the owner's juxtaposition of artistic flash and emotional substance.
Above and below: Kicking it up a notch in the 'family travel' category. If I ever retire, you bet your ass I'll be state-hopping in a rig like this.
Above: Star Wars, a classic theme in the custom van realm for nigh unto three decades.
Below: "The Mystery Machine". Corny, but somebody obviously put a Hell of a lot of work into it. Kudos.
Above: Comedian Michael Ian Black wrote a book called My Custom Van. I've never read it, but you can't deny the awesomeness of the artwork that adorns the van on its cover. Naked wizard chick astride pegasus? Amazing.
Below: Some sort of chessboard-battle-themed van art. Beautiful.
Above: "Wizard and dragon against black background" is probably the classiest choice you can make when deciding on custom van art. Visual Dom Perignon.
Below: A mysterious, Grim Reaper-themed beast known only as "The Sorceror".
Above: Another Star Wars-themed van. Super-cosmic! And a black spoiler? Icing on the cake, bro.
Below: An advertisement for the 1977 Dodge, one of the truly great customizable vans. I like this picture because the couple up front seem to be conversing with some sort of invisible phantom-waitress.
Above: "The Warlock". I wish the picture was a little better quality. It looks like there's some really EPIC shit going on with the side panel of this fucker. The Warlock probably hangs out with The Sorceror on weekends.
Below: The guy who owns this little beauty's name is John Stallion. Seriously. I did my research.
Above and below: Two solid entries in the "jacked-up late-60's Econoline" category. Look at that sweet fire-breathing dragon on the red one!
Above and below: You know how I said the Japanese are better than everyone else at everything in the last post? Well, sometimes they take it a little too far. Take, for example, these two custom vans from The Land of the Rising Sun. They look like some Japanime tentacle-porn threw up all over them. Too much, man.
And lastly, "The Gambler". Although not too appetizing from the outside (despite the sweet graphic of three dudes gambling on the hood), the inside of "The Gambler" is a veritable wonderland of custom van goodies. I'm not going to publish all the pictures on this post, but for a bunch of interior shots of "The Gambler", click here (trust me, it's worth it).
Totally unrelated: Here's a video of a turtle raping a shoe.