Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

July 27, 2010

Fans Indy Car Does NOT Need Still Include A Guy In Florida Who Continues Lacking Any Discernable Sign of Maturity or Sportsmanship

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 1:55 am

I would like to thank Steve from Orlando for reinforcing the non-racing fan stereotype I accurately portrayed after he wrote a whiny, rambling, self-crucifixion letter to Robin Miller of Speed TV’s web site that got published a few weeks ago. The tendency of weak-minded individuals is generally responding to an argument by using lots of cuss words and name calling.

Steve submitted a response to my blog of July 8 that was rescued from the spam folder of this blog after arriving there presumably for excessive foul language. Here is a quaint summary of Steve’s juvenile epithets for your review:

-Self-absorbed, pontificating douchebags

-Bitter, crochety old ass clown

Cuss word count: 

-hell (once

-crap (once)

-f*#k (twice)

-sh!t (thrice)

Does anyone beside me think it is unusual that Steve seems obsessed with either excretory or reproductive functions of the human body? He averages over one such scatological epithet per paragraph. It is probably best to let his words speak for themselves:

‘Thanks for the ink.  I didn’t realize my letter to Robin Miller would draw the ire of such a well-respected (cough)blogger as yourself.  Really, I appreciate the attention.  I do.’

Obviously, Steve. There is no other reasonable explanation for such a pathetic, public self-crucifixion. If you actually turned down round trip air fare, lodging, ground transportation and tickets to the Indy 500 solely because it is not what you think it ought to be, then you are fairly distant from:

-Even a basic understanding of it

-Basic respect for your spouse

-Using your brain effectively

. . . and I feel very sorry for you.

‘In answer to some of your points.  First, where the hell do you get off deciding who can and can’t be a fan of IndyCar racing?’

I do not decide who can or can’t. That is a personal choice. Most everyone is welcome. My personal war is to rid the sport of vile malcontents who seek to do it harm. As for determination as to who is a fan or not, I merely observe and pass judgment accordingly. It is mostly a self-designated right based upon physical attendance at that track in parts of seven consecutive decades. I attended my 46th 500 this past May. Over all of those decades I have become an astute judge of who is and who is not an actual, or even a casual, fan.  Most of the time those who are considered fans attend and/or watch. Those who are not find something else to occupy their time and do not act like whiny little girls about things they claim not to enjoy. Either way is OK with me. My biggest problem is with hypocrites who claim no longer to be, but offer far too much critical commentary anyway.

You dig? Here is a real life example. I would rather ingest then subsequently pass through my colon a bucket full of dirty glass shards than watch even 30 seconds of any professional soccer match. That is my personal choice, however, and I keep it to myself. What I could never do is write an idiotic e-mail to Andres Cantor to tell him my wife bought me birthday tickets to the World Cup but I chose instead to visit some white trash tourist trap I thought would be more fun because soccer lost its luster about the time I went to high school. Why? Because I fully support the right of everyone else to be gleeful about soccer. Even though it is not my cup of tea there are millions who rabidly enjoy it. Who am I to impose my critical opinion on such people? What purpose would it serve? As a mature adult I would simply choose to enjoy the other attraction and hope those at the World Cup enjoyed themselves immensely as well. That is how it works in a world of grown-ups.

‘ I’m pretty sure I’ve never met you (I have a pretty good memory for self-absorbed, pontificating douchebags), so who are you to determine whether I do, or don’t, have an understanding of the sport?  Whether or not I liked CART in 1995 (I did) doesn’t matter for crap.  Over the past 15 years both the IRL AND CART pretty much battled to see who could screw up open wheel racing more.  And it took both of them to f*#k it up and bring it to this point.’

What ‘point’ is that? cart died, twice, and Indy Car is alive and well. It has a national television contract that pays it millions every year. It has quality title sponsorship from IZOD. Series sponsorship is on the rise in a tough economy. Attendance at most venues is up. A new chassis and engine platform has been officially announced, and those of us who have clamored for more diversity in manufacturers and a departure from ‘spec’ are excited about the possibilities. Are you one of a dwindling, boisterous handful who tries to compare 2010 to 1995 or some other unrealistic evolutionary period that has no bearing on the state of sports and entertainment offerings today? If so, please orient yourself in the current decade.

‘As to your realities:

1)  Cart is dead.  Really?  No Sh!t, Sherlock.

2)  Indy Car Racing is nothing without Indy?  At one point did I suggest it wasn’t.  Again, No Sh!t, Sherlock. 

3)  Tony George is out of the picture?  Really?  Didn’t realize he was the object of my hate, but thanks for pointing that out.  Can we get another No Sh!t, Sherlock from the peanut gallery.

4)  I don’t care what Barnard makes it, and how he does it.  As long as its not a spec series with everyone playing follow the leader behing Penske and Ganassi, I’m fine with it.  And while he’s at it, maybe should try and return to some of the IRL’s core principles?  Maybe find a way to get Chad Boat, JR Hildebrand, Dave Darling, and other qualified American drivers a ride in America’s Greatest Race?’

Just because they are Chad Boat, JR Hildebrand or Dave Darling? The only one climbing the right ladder is Hildebrand. If the others want to try the current reality is they need to bring sponsorship money. Wish it was not that way, but that is reality. Steve, if you were able to look at a bigger picture you might understand that Indy Car evolves significantly every five years or so. The first time I walked into the gate everyone drove a roadster powered by an Offy. Isn’t ‘Barnard’ a famous cardiologist? If you actually mean BERnard, as in Randy, I am pleased so far with his work. 2012 looks great in terms of evolution.

‘And by the way, while I wasn’t a ‘teenager’ when the split happened, I’m probably a lot younger than you are.  So it’ll be you that dies off before me.  Unless you just ACT like a bitter, crochety, old ass clown.’ 

Based upon our relative maturity levels, I am OK with that. As a lifelong fan who has never fair-weathered my way on or off a bandwagon I understand and accept evolution in Indy Car. I do not really like having seen the series spec’d and micromanaged into something that is occasionally difficult to watch. I know from experience, however, that it is bound to change. Just because I disagree with an evolutionary phase does not mean I will not watch. That would mean I am not really a fan.

‘Thanks again for the attention.  I really did appreciate it.  By the way, SeaWorld was a blast.  The new Shamu show really is spectacular. Oh yeah, I almost forgot.  Respectfully.  Go F*#k Yourself.

You have very effectively captured the essence of why I reached my original conclusions about your ilk. I have no use for any of you, and your continuing intrusion into a sport you say you do not watch but offer commentary on anyway is not only hypocritical, but usually vulgar, stupid and juvenile. Again I ask that you concentrate on cultivating maturity necessary to be called a racing fan. If you can’t why not simply seethe quietly on your own and have enough courtesy to let actual fans enjoy their sport? You can enjoy Shamu and we’ll all be happy.



  1. Hey Steve, I just sent a letter off to Robin Miller telling him how I declined an offer to go watch Shamu in Orlando, flight, hotel, and car, because watching whales is well, kinda boring to me. I’m looking for a hate site for whale bashing, because I want to spend all my hours awake telling the world how bad the product is.

    Comment by The dude — July 27, 2010 @ 11:03 am | Reply

  2. Maybe I’m a glutton for punishment, but here goes one more time.

    IRL Defender. You are correct. My reponse to your posting about me was juvenile and immature in terms of its language. Miller’s mailbag column posts a reader rant each week; I used the ‘rant’ tone not to attempt to destroy the sport, but to suggest where I wanted to see it go in the future. You interpreted it as the ravings of some bandwagon-jumping jackass and used it as the basis of a post. And I objected to that. Vehemently. To do what I wanted to do (which was take offense at your judgement of me and fans like me as bad for the sport), I should have, and could have, made my points without resorting to profanity and personal attacks. And by the way, only giving me credit for one epithet per paragraph does a disservice to the amount of profanity I did use. Which was far more than that.

    Yes, I turned down going to the Indy 500 this year. I’ve been before, I’ll go again. If I get crucified for it, so be it.

    As to a couple of your points. Again, in a sport that is struggling for fans compared to where it has been in the past, who are you to decide who can and can’t be a fan? And what shape that fandom should take? Am I critical of the sport? Yes, I am. Is it because I want to destroy it? Far from it. I want it to be better, I just don’t have the answers to it. Regardless of my criticisms and opinions (though they obviously differ from yours), I still consider myself a fan of IndyCar racing. I still watch it on TV. Every race. I still read about it online (yes, your blog is part of the reading list). And I still attend races. Every year. Have I been to 46 Indy 500’s? No, I haven’t, but then again if you don’t live in Indiana, your initials are AJ, or your last name is Andretti, neither have most people. You don’t like the way i choose to express myself or my fandom. Fine. I’ll agree to disagree with you on that; you’ve already shown you disagree with me.

    You asked why did I pull out the names Boat, Darland, and Hildebrand. I could have just as easily used the names Levi Jones, Colin Braun, or Alex Rossi. All are young. All are American. And all are likely going to ply their trade in racing OTHER than IndyCar. And if IndyCar wants to increase butts in the seats, and viewers on the tube, they need to get more American drivers in the cockpit. The most successful American drivers (Kid Rahal and RHR) went into the season with no assurances they would have a ride for the entire year. And yes, I do understand that today’s IndyCar economy means that to get a ride you need to bring sponsorship money. But, at the same time, something needs to be done to match American drivers with sponsors. And I don’t have any ideas how this can be done. I just know it needs to BE done.

    We’re both fans of the same sport. You look at it and see what it is. I look at it and see what I want it to be. You seem to think I want to refight the CART/IRL wars again, or step into Mr. Peabody’s Wayback Machine and set it to 1995. I don’t. It’d be pointless.

    That being said, there were some things about the state of OWR in 1995 that could be brought to the present that would make the sport better. Multiple chassis manufacturers. Multiple engine makers. I think the changes wrought by Randy Bernard are a great start. While I would have loved to see Lola, Swift, and more join Dallara as makers, it wasn’t economically feasible AT THIS TIME. I fervently hope that teams WILL take advantage of the opportunity to buy different aero packages and we will get away from a spec series. I hope Randy is successful and gets companies OTHER than Honda to build engines. One thing that I don’t see many people pointing out about the 2012 package is COST CONTROL; it’ll give more teams the opportunity to race. And, as long as we’re in a ride-buying phase, give more American drivers the chance to put together packages that they can take to teams. So owners won’t be forced to choose between talented drivers and deep pocketed ones. And if Randy could fire Brian Barnhart that’d be a plus too.

    I’ve had my say. By the way, I just bought my tickets for Homestead this year. And if that doesn’t prove I’m a fan, I don’t know what will.

    Editor’s Note: Next race we’re at together I’m buying you a cold one of your choice.

    Comment by Steve Kornya — July 27, 2010 @ 11:18 pm | Reply

    • Oh, man. Is it just me or is it getting a little dusty in here?

      Comment by The Speedgeek — July 28, 2010 @ 2:14 pm | Reply

  3. I’m not Defender, but I feel compelled to address your comments here, Steve.

    First off, you did better in explaining yourself without profanity. The use of profanity to me shows a lack of intelligence and the inablility to express oneself properly, but it seems you have learned.

    Two of the points in your letter stick out to me. You wrote was that you look at the series and what you want it to be. To me, that’s the crux of the issue for you and many IndyCar “fans”. You choose not to enjoy what you have now because you want to pine and whine for something you can’t have again. That’s not IndyCar’s problem, that’s YOUR problem, and the problem of people who think like you. It’s not about what YOU want. It’s about what can be done realistically in the environment we’re in, and I for one think Randy Bernard is something of a miracle worker for what he has accomplished with the series since he came on board. If you choose to be misanthropic about the series, fine, but don’t blame anyone else for your choice to be a malcontent.

    The second point you made is that the series needs more American drivers. I for one don’t care if a driver comes from Alabama or Zimbabwe, but if you believe the message boards, i’m in a very small minority. I do understand the value of having American drivers-it is an American-based series. However, in the environment we’re in now, drivers have to bring money. Sad but true. Hopefully that will change, but until then you have to play by the current rules of the game. I also have a problem with your hinted suggestino that Bernard do something to try to help certain American drivers get rides. Why should Bernard do so for only American drivers? You open a major can of worms if something like that occurs. You also say that the IRL needs to return to it’s core principles. If those core principles were so succesful, why have they changed? And what makes you believe that if you follow those principles, that the result would be different? Perhaps a bigger question for me is, why is it that drivers from other countries can find money but drivers from the richest country on earth can’t?

    Bottom line, it’s not 1995 anymore-believe me, I wish it was, not necessarily for AOWR. You have to make a decision. Long for a past you can’t have and be miserable or accept the reality of where the series is now and try to enjoy it. It seems like you’ve chosen the former, and to paraphrase Mr.T: “I pity the fool who cant’ accept reality and wants to live in the past.” It’s your call.

    Comment by Thesmartestguyintheroom — July 28, 2010 @ 1:35 am | Reply

    • Points taken. Now, a couple of counterpoints.

      First off, I’m not misanthropic towards the series. I don’t have a ‘generalized dislike, distrust, contempt, or hatred’ for it. Far from it. I’m not one of those who thinks that it might as well just go away and die, because something better will come after. Because it won’t. I watch the races, go to the tracks, and buy the merchandise. Some might consider that masochism, but definitely not misanthropy. I understand IndyCar racing is what is is RIGHT NOW, and accept that. I don’t however accept that it needs to maintain the status quo forever. IRL Defender was accurate; every few years IndyCar goes through a reinvention of sorts. Maybe my desire for that reinvention to come sooner rather than later is misconstrued for dislike of the sport; it isn’t.

      Secondly, I do understand that drivers have to bring money. All too well. I see it every week when i look at the last row and see the #23 Citgo. Right now we have to accept the model that requires drivers who can bring money to the table in order to maintain a reasonable car count. But that doesn’t mean we have to like it, and it doesn’t mean we can’t hope it will change.

      But this is an American based series. And a great many fans want to see American drivers. Not necessary supplanting the Helios, and Darios, and TKs, but racing alongside them. Look back (I know, I’m treading on dangerous ground here) twenty years or so. Emo, Arie, and (later) Mansell and Villeneuve had fan support, but it was the Mears’, Unsers, and Andrettis that were putting butts in the seats, driving the TV revenues, and also the sponsorship dollars. I suggested that Bernard (or the series itself) make an effort to find American drivers rides, because I think that would benefit the whole series. Graham Rahal and Ryan Hunter Reay are young, handsome, personable, well-spoken, and can drive the heck out of a race car. And if it weren’t for Sarah Fisher in Rahal’s case, and RHR winning races this season, both could very likely have been sitting on the sideline by this point. Add Paul Tracy to that list; like him or hate him, he can still drive and he draws attention to the series. And at this point, more attention is a good thing. The series needs to find a way to convince sponsors that IndyCar, and its drivers, are a good investment and can help push and market their products. Ultimately it doesn’t have to be American drivers that get the help; I’d like to see an economic situation develop where the best drivers get rides, exclusive of what they can bring to the table.

      You make the point that I suggested IndyCar needs to return to its ‘core principles’. Develop a lower-cost alternative Open Wheel Series to CART. Create a series that wasn’t dominated by technology and the few teams that could afford it. While I freely admit I was on the other (CART) side of the ‘war’, when you take out all the bs, all the ‘only race ovals’, all the 25/8, the original idea behind the IRL was sound. Except now you don’t have to make it an alternative to CART.

      Finally, I know its not 1995 anymore. My hairline and waistline tell me that every day. And I know, rolling in 1995 nostalgia will get me nowhere. And I also know the state of 1995 open wheel racing was not the days of bread and circuses that many make it out to be. Costs (primarily on the CART side) were spiraling out of control. The old generation of American-born fan favorite drivers was nearing retirement, and the next generation was heading south to race tintops. But there were still some things back then that I think fans did enjoy, and would like to see IndyCar strive for as it moves forward.

      I don’t think a true fan should ever be completely satisfied with his sport. He should always want it to be better. Because it can always improve. But wanting improvement should not be confused with, or interpreted as, hating the present. I may not be completely satisfied with the state of the product as it is now. But at the end of the day, I’m still watching.

      Comment by Steve Kornya — July 28, 2010 @ 4:03 pm | Reply

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