Dover Plains, New York – Jessica Long, aka Nurse Ratchet is a nurse and a car girl–thus the clever play on Nurse Ratched.  Don’t worry, though. Jessica won’t put you in a straight jacket or anything. She will however stick a ratchet to any loose nuts or bolts on “Fancy,” her 1961 Ford Falcon. This car gets driven, and I mean, DRIVEN, even when snowed in.

Seriously. I can’t even wrap my head around all of that snow, but Fancy trudges right through.

The Ford Falcon.

The Falcon might be the ultimate survivor in the economy car realm. Think of the sheer number of them out there–even after 50+ years.

Several of my car-girl buddies have Falcons, including Motor Dolls reader Jessica. People love Falcons. Like Jessica says…

Every person who comes up to us has a story about a Falcon their family owned!!”

It’s true. I’ve seen it first hand. Heck, my brother’s first car was a Falcon.

When Falcons were new, they were an accessible car, affordable and reliable. In modern times, they’re a wonderful entry into the world of classics, easy to work on and to find parts for–plus they’re darned adorable.

Fancy the Falcon is Jessica’s daily driver.

I’ve always thought they were so cute especially the early ones, even though my father says my car looks like a little old man with a mustache.

Like many of us, Jessica grew up working on and driving around in old cars with her dad, a long time hot rodder.

I was always with my dad, always trying to take things apart and drive them. He would put me in front of an old carb and let me take them apart and put them back together.

The Falcon came onto her radar thanks to Craigslist, but before she got a chance to see the car in person, the seller changed his mind. He wasn’t going to sell. Six months later, she got an email. The car wasn’t running and he didn’t know what was wrong. $800 bucks later, Jessica had her Falcon. She and her dad cleaned the carb, put in a new battery, and Fancy came to life.

I didn’t stop driving her until the stock 144 straight six lost all of its oil pressure. Up until that, I drove her everyday and everywhere. Probably put about 20,000 miles on that motor.

Instead of rebuilding the 144, she picked up a 200, hooked it up to the 2-speed Ford-O-Matic, and she and Fancy were once again mobile.

The car still needs some body work, and perhaps paint. And even though Jess sometimes gets frustrated with Fancy’s annoying little issues, they’re manageable. Unlike with a new, more complicated car, Jess can pop the Falcon’s hood, assess the problem, pull her tool box from the trunk, and try to fix whatever’s going on.

I’m always one to try everything I can before I call my dad or my boyfriend for help! I hate new vehicles and the fact you need to rely on someone [else] to fix it.

Through the good and the bad, Jessica loves her Fancy.

My car is cute and dorky kinda like me!! I get sad when I have her parked!

For those times when the Falcon is parked, Jessica dons her Ladybug helmet, and fires up her 883 Sportster–also red.

The Harley-Davidson

Jess wasted no time putting miles on her bike. In the first two weeks of ownership, she rode over a thousand miles. Talk about a perfect way to get to know your machine.
Now, she has another option for when Fancy is parked, and when it’s too cold or windy to ride the motorcycle (or when the Falcon gets buried in snow…YIKES!)

The Dodge Dart

Jess recently picked up a 1971 Dodge Dart Swinger Special with a 225 straight six. The car needs a bit of work, but once she gets it going strong, she hopes to focus on Fancy, get her in tip top shape, and give the Falcon a rest from their 80 mile commute.

The Ford T-Bird

There’s one other project I haven’t yet mentioned. Her first car, a 1966 Ford Thunderbird. She has big plans for this baby!

When I was little my dad and mom drag raced every weekend and I loved the track life and hope to live that life again. I’d eventually like to turn my T-Bird into a street drag car!

While I’ve never met Jessica in person, I have “virtually” enjoyed getting to know “Nurse Ratchet” on social media. Her antics always make me grin.

I am a dork, a complete cheeseball, one of my greatest achievements is always being who I am and not letting anyone change who I am.

Exactly why I like her.


Find Jessica:

On Instagram @nurseratchet61
On Twitter @jessaford66
On Facebook Jessica Lynn Long

 Until Next Time…


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