Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

June 24, 2008

I Thought I Died and Landed in Hee-Haw

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 12:50 am

I had the good fortune of conversing with some NASCAR fans over the weekend in their territory.  The occasion was a family reunion on the wife’s side.  I was basically dragged along as part of my marital duty.  The ‘for worse’ part.  She has first cousins who live in and around the eastern Tennessee part of the country.  Bristol is their home track.  They love their NASCAR.  It is not difficult to ascertain that reality simply by listening to them twist the English language into barely recognizable, grammatically destroyed phrasing.  God love ‘em.  Many of them even have original teeth. 

I slapped backs, ate the potato salad, ingested the baked beans, had a burger, and mercifully found the beer stash (family of mostly Baptists—lots of Lord praising, Republican agenda affirming and iced tea drinking, but precious little alcohol) after isolating the non-believers.  Turns out they all love NASCAR.  Go figure.  I swear this is true.  I bought a $900 Canon camera a few weeks ago with every option you can imagine.  It takes phenomenal pictures.  I took pictures of about six of these people and the thing broke. 

Not being the least bit interested in ad nauseum discussion about the gnarly branches of that particular family tree on what was going to be a really great race day prompted me to find a private room with a television.  There I was able to flip with fairly accurate dexterity between the replay of Formula 1’s Euro activity and the Indy Corn 250 from Newton, (if you build it they will come) Iowa.  Slowly, three or four of them found me and decided to offer commentary after reminding me that they had to ‘git home afore fav to see the reel race drivers in Cali-for-ni-a.’

‘Wail hail, Deefender, I reckoned all them roller skate pilots was a’-tryin’ Cup and gittin they asses kicked. You mean theys drivers left in them slot cars?’ ‘Hahahahahahaha.’  ‘Boy, if yew wunna see some racin’, git down heer ta Breestul.’  I agreed wholeheartedly about Bristol.  To me, that represents the very essence of Cup racing.  It rarely gets better.

I tried in my best buzzed diplomacy to espouse the virtues of Indy Car racing, a difficulty compounded by the continuing lack of dedication and professionalism of ESPN on ABC.  I even tried doing so sans biting retort designed to let their own abject stupidity expose them for what they are;  i.e., mostly dumb, uneducated fat rednecks with a great deal of prejudice.  One of the most vocal was a formerly gorgeous southern belle who, ten years ago, was an object of desire for every man with a pulse and not predisposed toward homosexuality.  Blond.  Shapely.  Very well endowed.  Ten years later after three kids then a marriage, she tips the scales at close to 300, which is not that far away from her husband.  I refrained from asking practical questions like how anyone could gain 200 pounds in ten years other than ignorance or gland issues.  She went on and on about NASCAR, oblivious to everything around her.  I tolerated it and stayed above that particular fray, regardless of the nasty thoughts ping-ponging about my noggin.

In one instance during a yellow caution period, I indicated the yellow lap speeds of Indy cars were only slightly less than racing speeds for Cup cars.  They disagreed.  😉  Then I began discussing the 15-second lap times at Iowa and Richmond the IRL offers. 

Slowly but surely their barely literate skepticism was replaced by relative excitement, and they began asking legitimate questions.  Motor and chassis things.  Weight jacking.  Wing angles.  Drafting.  Radios.  Danica.  Ganassi and Penske.  Andrettis.  Foyts.  We found common ground.  For that I am happy. 

As a matter of fact I am hosting at least four of them this weekend for the Indy Cars at Richmond.  Even though they can drink without fear of the wrath of God I have encouraged them to limit the consumption and take in the racing. If you are going this weekend keep your eyes peeled for us.  I’ll be the guy who some say is good looking with at least four obese southern redneck-looking guys and gals most likely wearing goofy NASCAR-themed clothing in as tacky a style possible.  I have decided their wardrobe choices will not be held against them, nor will their inability to communicate intelligently. 

I love taking NASCAR stalwarts to Indy Car races.  It’s the highlight of my year.  I am certain we will all have a great time, and I will offer a follow-up report next week.

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