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Days of Blunder

Fucking NASCAR.

Last night, Amy and I decided to head over to the beach to eat dinner. There’s a little restaurant called Snack Jack’s that is right on the beach in Flagler, two towns north of Daytona. It’s about 50 miles away, but the weather was so nice that we couldn’t imagine a better time to go sit outside and eat dinner with the ocean only about twenty feet away.

Dinner was over around 8:30.

Do you know what else was over around then?

The Daytona 500.

I guess one of the ramifications of never reading a newspaper or watching the news is that you miss out when one of the biggest events in the area is occurring. You also miss out on the one reason not to go within 100 miles of Daytona Beach.

For our punishment, we got to travel on I-4 back to Altamonte Springs along with 190,000 of our newly discovered friends who were all leaving the racetrack en masse. And I’ve never seen so many stickers of Calvin peeing on something in my entire life.

This wonderful experience of sharing the road with thousands of idiots, rednecks, and morons just cemented my dislike and confusion when it comes to racing. One of my very oldest friends loves it (sorry, Brent), and although I respect his opinion in almost every other area, I cannot grasp what he enjoys about this so-called sport.

As you may know, I’m already against spectator sports. I have a hard enough time understanding why people want to live vicariously through the physical activity of a bunch of steroid-enhanced criminal lowlifes. But at least that’s watching physical achievement of some sort. NASCAR, on the other hand, is about watching cars drive in circles. And, if you’re lucky, one of the cars will crash. Is it worth watching circuit after circuit for 500 laps just to see one or two crashes? I can’t possibly imagine that it is.

How do you get psyched up to watch cars drive? Can you talk strategy? I can only imagine what fans say to each other during the interminable race:

“Yeah, he really kept his foot on the gas pedal and turned the wheel really well.”

“Did you see how quickly he stopped the car so that the pit crew could change his tires?”

“Wow – they just drove by in about a second and a half, and now I can’t see them anymore. What a rush!”

“This is more fun than our last Klan rally!”

“I’m going to buy Valvoline because he drove around the track so expertly!”

“Did you see how he stayed behind that other guy and then at the last minute, pulled in front of him??”

“Wow, his hands were totally not at 10 and 2 but he still won!”

“After this, we should go get plastered and drive our trucks in the mud through the woods randomly!”

“I’m so glad I bought these tickets rather than paying for Kid #4’s braces!”

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75 Replies to “Days of Blunder”

  1. Karen Sugarpants

    Ha. We watched some race thing tonight with 500 in the name, and I was thinking some of those same things. And now I know why my father-in-law looked at me like I was a fucking idiot when I said, “It’s so cool to watch the pit crew. They go so fast.”

    He replied (sarcastically), “Yeah but they just drop those nuts everywhere.”

    I mean really, how fucking stupid do we sound?

  2. Amy

    You mentioned the Calvin peeing thing… but I’m shocked that you didn’t mention the RIP’s for Dale Earnhardt (or who the fuck ever, I don’t care!) on the back windows of cars. I think I see more of those around here than the Calvin peeing thing… jeebus help me.

  3. Wayne

    I kindof had the same kind of blunder, but in my case, I forgot it was my 5yr old’s baseball tryouts. I had driven him 90 miles away for the weekend to stay with relatives so I could do some construction and totally forgot.

    But the good news is, since he’s brand new, tryouts are optional – he’ll get on a team no matter what. This is t-ball after all.

  4. kapgar

    I love playing racing games on whatever video game console I have. I even enjoy the NASCAR-themed games specifically. But watching that shit either live or on TV? Hell no. Unless they get to ram each other intentionally and we see body parts fly, I’m not tuning in.

    100 miles? I would think three states. You’re cursed by being in the heart of racing country. I don’t envy you.

  5. ADW

    So I get why rednecks like NASCAR. What I don’t get is why normally sophisticated people like bankers and my dad (ha ha) love it. I just had a conversation this weekend with a couple who claim to love “the sport”. Vomit.

  6. Trishk

    Woo Hoo! Nascar is back! Yeah!

    Actually our conversations are more like…”don’t you love that lovely shade of red on Kasey’s car?” or “woops, guess there are M&M’s all over the track now” sometimes we even cuss a little bit “did you see how that F***tard Gordhead almost hit Tony?”

    Poor Avi-ummm..just a heads up…they come back to Daytona in July, the first Saturday. You may not want to head to dinnner then either.

  7. Avitable

    Flutter, me too. I mean, I love me too.

    Amanda, just faster, and in circles!


    Jay, but a Confederate flag is great home decor, don’t you think?

    Karen, why were you watching it in the first place?

    B.E. Earl, I’m assuming Ryan Newman is one of the “athletes”.

    Amy, oh yeah – plenty of those, too. Along with big old “W” stickers.

    Wayne, do you want your Father of the Year trophy now or later?

    Mr. Fabulous, I’m surprisingly even-tempered. I just bottle it all up for later.

    Nina, wow! I think I’m in love.

    Britt, “Britt, did you know today is the 500?” “Yeah, so? Ohhhhhhhh.”

    Kapgar, I love playing racing games – they’re very fun. But until they lace the track with random mines or race on an busy intersection, I do not get it.

    ADW, and you’re a football fan!

    Poppy, does he do oil changes at light-speed?

    Trish, you’re one of those? Sigh. Were you there last night?

    Karl, if I wanted to watch something walk in circles, I’d buy a hamster.

  8. Jam

    I actually live about 5 minutes south of the Texas motor speedway…believe it or not, there are a few nascar/racing fans in Texas.

    Every weekend during racing season there is no sense even getting near the freeways if you want to get anywhere. Oh, and I don’t suggest stopping at any of the local gas stations, lest you be visually assaulted by endless mullets, barefoot, bare chested, inbred, morons swilling bud light while filling their RV’s with enough beer to intoxicate a small 3rd world country.

  9. Miss Britt

    OMG that’s right! I had to stop at the gas station this morning off of 1-4 and someone was buying Busch Light at 8 am BAREFOOT! In the store!

    There was a fucking SLEW of rednecks in that place!!

    Which is odd, because I thought I had proven with my early morning excursions to Wal-Mart that rednecks sleep in…

  10. Grant

    Years ago I lived within 3 miles of the Atlanta Motor Speedway (located, naturallly, about 25 miles South of Atlanta) so twice a year I had to plan to drive to my place via the country back roads (which were still clogged), then hunker down for the weekend because every store and restaurant in the area was packed with NASCAR fans. I should have followed the example of the local churches and daycare centers and rented out my lawn for parking.

  11. Avitable

    Christie, you’re not a fan of perpetually circular driving?

    Britt, yeah, I kind of bit myself in the ass on that one.

    Jam, when I used to live in Daytona, that was a big consideration during the races and during Bike Week.

    Trishk, no, I guess I’ll let you in. Sighhhhhh.

    Poppy, see – that is a good skill. Unlike being able to drive in a circle.

    ADW, ha! Forethought, planning and intelligence? We are talking about throwing a ball back and forth, right?

    Robin, I am well versed in mulletology now.

    RW, see? I purposely didn’t even mention anything like that, just for you.

    Grant, you could have made a fortune.

    CMG, so how do you really feel?

    Bossy, well put.

    NYCWD, PB&R? Peanut Butter & Relish?

  12. Wonderer

    Yummmm…. Snap Jacks! Love that snook and those puppies. Best restaurant in Ormond.

    But seriously… from which planet did you land? You live in Florida and managed to miss that the Daytona 500 was happening?

    Call us rednecks & all that, but try to stay in your seat at an actual race when the cars fly by at 200 MPH within 2 inches from each other… Adrenaline Rush! Oh … and while you’re at it… consider which other sport employs aerodynamic engineers to strategize it’s plays (it’s physics, people). I’ll wager the Nascar strategists any day against the college drop-out thugs in football. Ever hear of a Nascar driver getting arrested for dogfights, Ho beatings, gang involvement, drugs? Nope… didn’t think so ….

  13. Avitable

    Britt, I can send you an actual image if you want.

    Wonderer, I don’t read the paper and I don’t watch the news. It didn’t even occur to me! Do you live in Daytona? I didn’t realize you lived in the area.

    You won’t be able to win any arguments with me by comparing racing with other sports. I find spectator sports to be even more recockulous!

  14. LizB

    I don’t wear a mullet, own a Confederate flag, or shop convenience stores for beer barefooted at 8m. I’m an intelligent, well-educated woman, and a proud NASCAR fan. I watch it on TV and attend several races a year. I could try to explain my fascination with the physics of driving and setting up the cars for different racing conditions, or the skill of the drivers and crew, but I think it’s one of those things that you either get it or you don’t. However, I do think it’s embarrassingly narrow-minded and terribly unoriginal to stereotype all NASCAR fans as rednecks and Klan members. I’ve heard this before, and I’m sure I will hear it again; such is life.

  15. Trishk

    Avi, we who read you regularly know that you don’t read newspapers, watch news, etc. But you do read blogs. If you had been a good blogging buddy and stopped by my little ole blog on Sunday, you would have seen that a little tiny race would be happening. In Daytona.

    If you had stopped by to say Hi, I could have saved you a lot of heartache. But you didn’t.


  16. Wonderer

    I live in the hellhole called South Florida, but my kid lives in Ormond Beach (just a few miles from Snap Jacks). Another kid attends UCF there and my auntie lives in Windermere so we’re pretty much in your area 1/3 of the year.

    I envy your Orlando ‘city on a hill’ existence.

  17. Avitable

    Hilly, you could probably bring it back to Wal-mart and return them. šŸ˜€

    Jenny, I’m not sure. It’s one of those horrible things that started showing up on pick-up trucks and spread like redneck wildfire.

    LizB, an intelligent, well-educated woman would have seen that (a) I didn’t stereotype all NASCAR fans as rednecks – in fact, my oldest friend is a fan, and (b) I was surmising what some people might be saying to each other at the races. There is no inference that every person who attends the races is a Klan member. Don’t read stereotypes into a place where they don’t exist.

    TrishK, I was busy and didn’t get around to reading blogs this weekend. Boy, I wish I had!

    Wonderer, I lived in Ormond Beach for almost 20 years. Orlando’s a bit better, but I’ll take Los Angeles any day.

  18. ADW

    OK, how do I break this down for someone with a vagina???

    OK, here goes…. They have these things called game plans where each person at the line of scrimmage has to follow his portion of the plan. There is a simple objective (get to the endzone and score a touchdown) with many complex moves to be made before achieving said objective. It’s a bit like chess with live people. For every one move there are hundreds or thousands of potential countermoves. Except, unlike chess, EVERY player on the field (AKA board) moves at the same time. Oh crap this is getting complex.

    To save time now, I will just say that ABBA rules, especially when played at high volumes and I love you even though you are a girlie man.

  19. Turnbaby

    Your quote sugar—

    “”””How do you get psyched up to watch cars drive? Can you talk strategy? I can only imagine what fans say to each other during the interminable race:

    “This is more fun than our last Klan rally!”””””

    Your comment to LizB:

    “”LizB, an intelligent, well-educated woman would have seen that (a) I didn’t stereotype all NASCAR fans as rednecks – in fact, my oldest friend is a fan, and (b) I was surmising what some people might be saying to each other at the races. There is no inference that every person who attends the races is a Klan member. Don’t read stereotypes into a place where they don’t exist.””

    Had you put the modifier and made it “some fans say” in your original comment your point would be correct. However you did not.

    I’m very intelligent, have a law degree I use, and have always been a NASCAR fan. My father drove stock cars and managed to finish second in the “Classic” division one year. (yes I know you do not know or care about the nuances of the divisions). And yes I’m completely aware of the stereotypes people tend to lob at NASCAR fans. I don’t give a rat’s ass.

    Not trying to ‘convince’ anyone– I do think you ‘get it’ or you don’t.

    And I just have to say this–even if you don’t read papers or watch the news–how could you NOT know???? LOLOLOL

  20. Avitable

    Turnbaby, clearly it’s reasonable to assume that I was unable to list what all 190,000 fans present at the race were saying to each other. As a result, this is clearly a cross-section of what some fans, not all fans, could be saying to each other. The “some” is clearly inferred from the context of the statement.

    And your implication that I don’t use my law degree is based on a flawed assumption. I use it to weigh down some comic books in my office so they don’t blow away.

  21. Amanda

    I filled in for someone in a different office so she could go see a race, and she thanked me by buying me a shirt. So I am a proud owner of a nascar shirt. It’s still in the plastic wrap, shockingly.

  22. hellohahanarf

    i just LOVED adw’s explaination. :clap:

    avi, i don’t think i am blood thirsty. maybe vodka thirsty. and rarely am i a lunatic. although the sex fiend fits. :finger:

    turnbaby’s “sugar” melts me immediately. love it. :heartbeat:

    (damn, apparently i don’t want to work this afternoon, but would prefer to play with your smilies.)

  23. Bec

    My Mum and Brother are huge F1 fans. They love watching the entire race on TV… every two weeks on a Sunday (with qualifiers on Saturday) for about 2 and a half hours a piece.

    It makes me feel like :violent018: the TV which of course is a sin.

  24. Sybil Law

    I actually watched about the last 5 laps of the race. I don’t have the patience for all the other laps. I know so many people who love NASCAR, so I watch the end to hold a conversation. Haha
    However, I really don’t get it, either. Although, it’s hot as hell in those cars, riding around superfast and trying not to get killed or kill anyone else AND trying to keep some semblance of patience and getting tires changed, etc – I’d say it’s a helluva lot harder than it seems. I think it would be a lot of fun to go out on the track and drive really fast and see how well I’d do. šŸ™‚

  25. Avitable

    TrishK, good idea. Always look on the bright side, eh?

    ADW, vagineriffic?

    NYCWD, I think that of all beer.

    Bec, I think shooting the TV is actually a saintly act.

    Sybil, I’m sure the driving part is hard, but I don’t know why you’d want to watch someone do that.

    Uncle Dan, shit. I hate Bike Week!

  26. turnbaby

    No sugar -I meant by Britt and the suspense is about what you’ve done and precisely how she chooses to do it šŸ˜‰

    Oh and PBR tastes like total shit and will give you a headache by just smelling it.

    But the DAWG has it totally wrong–PBR does not sponsor a car–why would any self respecting NASCAR fan drink it? It’s wrestling fans that love PBR.

  27. AnnieB

    I don’t have that kind of time right now to give you a list, but what I was referring to in my comment was ardent NASCAR fans. (Duh)

    Yeah, turnbaby, your’re spot on … I think Bud replaced Coors as the official sponsor. They don’t have a Diet-Coke car so Avi’s not interested.

  28. Fogspinner

    You would like Jeff Dunham’s skit with Big Daddy D. They talk about NASCAR being a stupid sport. “OH look their making another LEFT turn, Oh look ANOTHER LEFT turn… I wonder what’s going to happen next? Come back in three minutes and you wouldn’t have missed a damn thing!”

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