Back in 1981 at around 9pm one summer Friday evening I was making a left turn at a lighted intersection in Columbus, Indiana. I had the green light and was driving my girlfriend’s 1979 Chevy Nova. Somewhere around the middle of the intersection a large Buick Electra 225 came barreling through the red light and struck the Nova just forward of the area where the front fender meets the driver door. I was conscious for a time after impact long enough to hear my girlfriend’s pain (broken shin and abrasions) and listen to a neighborhood old woman who rushed over with wet rags inform us that we had been ‘hit by a carload of drunk n******s.’ I do not have a racist bone in my body but that lady certainly did, and her crass words stuck with me.
At about that same time, the trauma to my head from the accident kicked in. I was later diagnosed with a severe concussion and a minor skull fracture, and along with several abrasions I was bleeding like a stuck hog. I was completely oblivious to everything and everyone around me as well as reality, and I am told I asked the same three questions over and over for three straight days. The questions were:
- Were we in an accident?
- Whose car were we driving?
- Did we get hit by a carload of drunk n*****s?
Evidently this was embarrassing to those who did not have head injuries because I asked the questions all the way to the hospital in the bus-like ambulance, then in the hospital as all the victims were treated, including the six intoxicated African-Americans, two of whom had been launched through the windshield of the 225. They were not in a position to blow into a breathalyzer until 2.5 hours after the accident, but the driver still blew at twice the legal limit and this was later backed up by various tests on blood and tissue.
I was told my asking the same three questions asked over and over again got me moved from a semi-private room to a private room (drove the other two guys in there crazy repeating the questions over and over) sans the nurse call button (I called them in a lot to ask them the same questions over and over). My girlfriend, my family, her family and my friends all failed to visit the first three days because I kept asking them the same three questions over and over. The hospital also took the telephone in the room away because I would call people and ask the same three questions over and over.
Essentially my brain could not let me get past the accident and I was unable mentally to process any answers to the three questions I asked. Eventually, however, I healed.
The only reason for relating this sordid tale is to make a legitimate comparison to bitter antagonists who still, to this day, refuse to budge from 1995. They are an aggressively defensive lot prone to challenging any real or perceived slight against the old cart or champcar series. I am one person they obsessively follow all around the Internet to openly challenge just about anything I say whether the subject is ‘the split’ or not. My personal opinion of such people is that they are either suffering from traumatic head injuries or are mentally unbalanced. As a rule I do not trust any of them any further than I could throw them. They need to join the rest of us in 2011 where we are supposed to be one big happy family.
I recently began contributing again at one of the leading racing forums, Trackforum, and almost immediately a small group of defective knee-jerkers began attempting to engage me in tit-for-tat type exchanges. I do not believe it is fair to Trackforum, its readership or any other site I frequent to have it polluted by the repetitive nonsense of such youthful enthusiasts. I am held to a different set of rules than anyone else there and at other sites so we need to find an alternative outlet for those who choose to practice such pointless, stupid behavior.
In deference to all parties involved I have created a separate area here for pointless rantings about the ‘split.’ Hopefully this will be the only blog in this new category. If you feel compelled to veer off topic at any other forum and whine about cart or something someone said about it that you do not like, simply take your meritless posturing to the comment section here. When/if I get time and if you are lucky we can argue about all the repetitive, pointless nonsense you want right here so that others do not have to wade through it if they choose not to.
Here is an example of a pointless response crapped out on Trackforum by a defensive cart apologist after I correctly observed that cart turning their back on Indy killed them. Twice:
“And how exactly did the cart owners turn their back on Indy?”
Answer: They held the idiotic, OTO US 500, an event Roger Penske later called the biggest mistake of his entire career.
“TG’s 25/8 was the reason the cart teams decided not to race in the 500 in 96, with full support from their sponsors.”
Answer: The sponsors got burned. That was another example of the way in which cart foolishly scorched the earth of the entire sport.
“Had that not occurred, there would have been no US 500 and most if not all of the cart teams would have been at Indy.”
Answer: Hindsight is 20/20, and the US 500 misadventure was well beyond idiotic. What happened as they came to the green is something karma aimed right at that arrogant, disrespectful bunch.
“I still don’t get the “they boycotted the 500” excuses. What was cart suppose to do?”
Answer: Use equipment they already had, run some of their guys in what was originally scheduled on non-competing weekends, then win the two races before Indy, then Indy, then watch the IRL go bye-bye before the end of its first season.
“Blow off the sponsor commitments for 1996, new chassis and engines, and forgo the 1996 cart season to race in the IRL just for the chance to qualify at Indianapolis?”
Answer: Hindsight is 20/20, and answers that question with a resounding ‘yes.’
“Or were they expected to add on the financial commitment of racing in two different series with different equipment?”
Answer: That is a sourpuss excuse. They get no sympathy.
“Looking back now I wish the cart teams would have raced in the opening two races of the IRL season in 1996. They would have made backmarkers out of all of the top IRL teams and the split would have been over before it started. Of course, that’s assuming some other dumb rule wasn’t set in place to guarantee IRL teams starting spots……”
Answer: They let their egos get in the way of their sense, and paid dearly. Twice.
If this column commentary becomes the ‘success’ it could, we can simply copy and paste boilerplate answers to the same boilerplate questions cart enthusiasts keep asking over and over and over again without much rhyme or reason. That way we will not have to waste the time of others who have moved beyond that tawdry period. Sound like a plan?
Much better plan: Join me and all real racing fans in 2011.