Thursday, August 7, 2008

Fast cars and rednecks

I've loved sports since I can remember. It probably has something to do with my parents' football obsession, but one of the things I watched often when I finally got my own television was ABC's Wide World of Sports.

WWofS was a fantastic series. Not only did they show every sport imaginable, but they had fantastic commentary. Even if you were barely interested in the sport they were showing (boxing for example) they made it exciting and educational.

One of the sports I have always been fascinated with is auto racing, NASCAR in particular. Okay, some people don't think its a sport, but you try sitting in a REALLY hot vehicle for hours going more than 200 mph just inches away from 40 other guys doing the same thing. Racing IS a sport.

Now some people think the only people who like NASCAR are beer-guzzling red necks who only use NASCAR as an excuse to get drunk and loud. Nah... NASCAR fans come from everywhere, heck some of us don't even like beer! :)

My roommie and I have often had a discussion about what MAKES someone a redneck. Jeff Foxworthy did a lot to define the term but for me it's more than being from the country and having something on blocks in your front yard. Deb says my brother is a redneck. Well, he does like beer and he used to like NASCAR (before it got too "slick"). He drives a truck and works outside, so maybe she's right.

Either way, most of the NASCAR fans I've met have just been really, really American. They are patriotic and passionate. They are hard working and love their families. They are fiercely loyal and like to have a hell of a lot of fun.

And so I'm a casual NASCAR fan. I've never been to a race, but I watch them almost every weekend during the seasion. My favorite driver is Dale Earnhardt Jr. A lot of people are Junior fans because of his father, but not me. I was drawn to Dale initially because he reminded me of my brother, Jon. I told Jon that once and he was pissed LOL.

My other favorite is Dario Franchitti. It's probably just that he's totally adorable and I LOVE his accent, but I'm his number one fan :)

A couple weeks ago I found out that one of Junior's cars was going to be on display at a local mall. I just HAD to go see the car. I really didn't think it would be one that Junior had used, but the guy there said it was. It was annoying not to be allowed to sit in the car, even though they were letting kids do it (I probably would have had a hard time getting in anyway) but I did get to touch the 88! Next year... we go to a race.