I’m not quite sure what possessed me to even THINK about doing this, but since I hardly have an original thought in my head, it does not surprise me in the least, despite any semblance of judgement, better or otherwise, that might reside somewhere within me, albeit deeply buried, that I actually attempted this at all. Also, it should come as no surprise that I didn’t pursue this quixotic jackassery in the privacy of my own home, fat white ass in my recliner with a 42 pack of DAB and a bag of pork rinds. Nope. I grabbed my notebook and my pink pen and made straight for Mt. Horeb’s very own FIREHOUSE BAR to capture the Brickyard 400 in the relentlessly smokefilled puerililty of the descending series of moments that loom larger than life in that little home away from home on the corner of 1st & Front Street in downtown Mt. Horeb, Wisconsin.
I will also say straight out that I am stealing the concept of this from blog好き, which is arguably one the best anime bloogs out there. Do you honestly think I could come up with this on my own? Of course you don’t. Also, since Twitter has suddenly become all the horrible rage, you might think that this is a relatively new and trendy phonomenon. It is not. Jason, who published the aformentioned blog好き has been doing this for quite some time. My appropriation of the concept also has nothing to do whatsoever with the horrors of Twitter, and all that social networking dross.
As I said, whatever madness propelled me to do this will most certainly be revealed shortly.
I order a THREE FLOYDS Robert the Bruce, and get at it. I am, ofcourse, writing this after the fact from notes, and wish that I could take short hand. (No I don’t). Mark Martin is in the lead. Of course, he started on the pole and it’s not too surprising. Good for him.
My buddy Squirrel is here…he’s been talking with a guy named John, from Peshtigo. They’re talking union stuff…Squirrel regaling John about his days in Des Moines working for the union, and John telling us about the hard days they’ve been through up in Peshtigo with the local paper mill going into bankruptcy, then being bought out by the man who tried to buy it earlier to save it from going into bankrupcty. And all through it, John kept his job. But lots of other people there lost their jobs. The new company, BPM Inc. seems to be doing well…or as well as can be expected. Although their website could use a little bit of my keen insight. They specialize in making candy wrappers.
And NOW, somehow, Juan Pablo Montoya has taken the lead!!
Junior, who started 3rd despite having the flu, has ridden the porcelain Honda (a/k/a the #88 Amp Energy Drink/National Guard Chevrolet) into 2nd place…shitting in his firesuit….puking in his helmet…
On the broadcast, they cut away from the race to a taped interview with That Homo Jeff Gordon who is talking about the importance of The Brickyard and the Brickyard 400, and also about his the back pain that’s been plaguing him recently. Gordon won the inaugural Brickyard 400 so he obviously has a reverance for the Brickyard. But I wondered if the Brickyard is really that essential to NASCAR as it is for IRL.
NASCAR’s history at the Brickyard is recent in NASCAR terms. The first race was in 1994 with the improbable Rick Mast on the pole. SO the history there is not as long as Daytona, Bristol….Darlington….or places that are ghost of NASCAR now….the Rock…North Wilkesboro….Riverside…I recall a story where back in the day, a driver flew in to Riverside CA from Florida, rented a car at the local agency, drove it to the track, raced it to an 8th place finish, dropped it back off at the agency and flew home.
Happy is in at Lap 29. Don’t know if it’s a green flag stop, or trouble. Happy has not been happy at Childress lately. The buzz is is that he wants out. Maybe the ghost of Dale Earnardt is haunting him at last.
Denny Hamlin slugs in at 33…verrrrrry slow….engine trouble or something perhaps. He’s been almost forgotten this season despite being 6th in the standings. I honestly had no idea he was 6th in standings. With Pocono coming up, maybe he’ll get his first win.
With Juan Pablo Montoya still in the lead as the green flag pit stops have cycled thorough, the talk gets around to Michael Jackson again…did he OD?? Kill himself?? Was it a plastic surgery disaster that finally got the him? It was pretty much agreed that he was a malfunctioning cyborg.
Some dude across the bar asks me who drives the #1 and the #7 car. He’s got in a pool and he has 1 & 7 for the win, which also means he as #17 and #71. I tell him Robbie Gordon is #7 and Martin Truex Jr. is #1. ((Of course, he knows #17, Matt Kenseth)). Truex is jumping next year from the DEI/Ganassi frying pan into the Michael Waltrip Racing fire. It’s a fallen world, for sure. As for Robbie Gordon, I have enormous respect for him. I like Robbie Gordon and which he would do well. But it’s hard for a one car owner/driver to do well in the NASCAR environment these days. It’s a struggle and I admire him for sticking to it and doing at least well enough to be able to qualify on owners points every week.
But for some reason, I can place a driver with the #71 car. It is only after the race is in the books and I’m driving to Milwaukee that remember…..oh yey….the #71 car is being piloted to oblivion by David Gillilland. ((Yes, THAT David Gillillililland)).
My friend Terry Anderson tells me about Felipe Massa’s crash during practice for the Hungarian Gran Prix. I hadn’t heard about it. I’ve been slacking on my F1 stuff. Massa is luck to be alive…lucky that the spring that hit him in the helmet was a glacing blow on the left side. Lewis Hamilton went on to win the Hungarian Gran Prix. Michael Schumacher is coming out of retirement to run for Felipe Massa while he recovers.
I twittered this as the first caution of the race, but it’s actually the second. Kyle Busch spins in turn 4 and smacks the wall. He’s not out….but he’s down, and it occurs to me that Kyle has been racing the way the Milwaukee Brewers are playing baseball these days. Both started strong and were the class of their league….but now…Kyle is out of the Chase for the moment at 14th and the Brewers are getting their asses handed to them by the two worst teams in the National League.
Sam Hornish blows a tire on his #77 Mobil 1 Dodge and smacks the wall in turn 3. A caution is not thrown on this one.
Meanwhile, Michael Waltrip’s #55 NAPA Toyota is sidelined with the hood up.
Green flag pit stops are cycling through….Gordon, Smoke, Harvick, Martin….
Montoya is still in the lead. He’s been a dominant MONSTER today.
Meanwhile, the lads start chirping about the $200,000 ride into space that Virgin Airways is offering. Actually, it’s just to the edge of space. So what the fock is the value of that??!! It’s like taking a taxi the edge of town, then back you go. What the fock is the point?
If I’m going to space for $200,000 I’m not going unless it’s actually into SPACE, and the Sky Girls are along for the ride, preferably piloting the ride.
Meanwhile, Squirrel asks me, “Michael! How many notes are you making?”
“Way fucking too many, Squirrel,” I say, and I draw a piece of music in my notebook.
Jimmie Johnson is boring BORING BORING and going for 3rd place past Brian Vickers. But have no fear, Danica Patrick will save NASCAR.
The conversation with Terry Anderson moves on to Wendell Scott. I hope someday that Wendell gets votes into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. For most of his career he was the only black driver in NASCAR. On December 3rd, in Jacksonville Florida, he earned his only NASCAR Cup win. But…being black, he didnt get to celebrate the win in Victory Lane. He’d passed Richard Petty with 25 laps to go and went on to win, but the race was awarded to 2nd place finisher Buck Baker. Only after crowds were gone, was Wendall Scott officially awarded the victory. At the time, it was feared that there would be trouble if Wendall appeared in Victory Lane, since, as part of the festivities, he would have had to kiss a white beauty queen, and in Jacksonville Florida, in 1963, in the NASCAR world, and sadly a lot of America, a black man kissing a white woman was not to happen under any circumstances. Ditto a black man beating a white man in a NASCAR race.
While America has, somewhat, moved on from this. I’m not so certain about NASCAR. Their Drive for Diversity is a worthless fucking joke. Lewis Hamilton’s success in F1 really drives that point home. And when Danica Patrick shows up, stick a fork in it.
My fervently scribbled notes indicate that we then moved on to a discussion of Formula 5000 racing, which Terry had seen at Road America. We also touched on USAC and SCCA. Both of us competed in SCCA sanctioned Road Rally events.
Juan Pablo Montoya has been leading almost the entire race. He has, by far, the best car out there.
But…he is flagged for SPEEDING on the entry to Pit Road!!
What the fuck was he thinking….he had nearly a 5 minute lead (or so it seemed) on everybody else. NO ONE was going to catch under any circumstances.
A pass-thru penalty drops him from 1st to 12th. Nothing like snatching defeat from the jaws of victory (or insert YOUR favourite cliche here).
To be honest, in my notes, I thought that Montoya got caught out of sequence making a green flag pit stop when…
Junior finally shitz his pants!! His engine goes and so does the spirit of Junior Nation.
Mark Martin takes the lead on the Montoya penalty. Retired truck driver Nick Keller arrived, gets his can of MOUNTAIN CREEK and noticing me and my notebook asks, “What the fuck you’re doing?” I tell him. A bumblebee flies in the back door of the bar, swoops and dives around, then noticing my cribagge playing buddy, John O’Bryan, promptly flies out the front door of the bar.
THIS is the time of the race to start worrying about The Evil Machinations of Chad Knaus.
The race restarts and my fears were true. Jimmie Johnson grabs the lead from Hendrick temamate Mark Martin.
Terry Anderson has been reading my blog and is curious about my witing style and asks me if I ever took a course in English Composition. I think my answer to him should be obvious to all. No English Composition classes, ever. Like everything else, you just learn by doing it, and going for what you feel is right. He asks about influences, and well….that’s always dangerous ground to tread on. But I give out a few favourites, from a style and approach standpoint: The late great poet Charles Bukowski; and the late great anthropologist Loren Eiseley. I honestly don’t like answering these questions about influences, since I really have no pretense of even approaching the hallowed realm of writing in which they both reside. But it’s a conversation….and if there’s anything to take the mind of the boring numbness of the evil machinations of Chad Knaus and the venerable driving skills of Jimmie Johnson, then I’m all for it.
Boring BORING BORING!!!
Jimmie Johnson widens his lead.
In the pits since lap 139, Michael Waltrip’s #55 NAPA Toyota is fianlly pushed to the garage where it belongs.
The notes I have are getting more spurious, divergent and delusional. According to my pink pen scribbles, Squirrel mentioned something about taking a horrid beer shit in Area 51 at 2:27 AM. I told him that I hoped he put it back.
The old man looks like he’s running JJ down. He might have something for him. But maybe not.
For some reason, thought of Mr. Bushido entered my head, as noted. Maybe I was thinking of putting a Mr. Bushido image here. Or not.
The Old Man Mark Martin is coming on strong….almost gets him….but he can’t quite close on Jimmie Johnson.
Lap 160 — Checkered Flag
Boredom Evil Rules!!! Jimmie Johnson and Chad Knaus and their damned ability have done it again!
And YIKES!! Jimmie Johnson has shaved his beard! Now he’s even MORE boring. Hrrrrr!
Nick Keller turns to me and says, “Fuck that race! Whatta waste of gas and money! People are starving and we got to waste our money on this shit!”
Actually, Nick is just drubbed because That Homo Jeff Gordon didn’t win.
My lord what was I thinking when I thought this would be a good idea. My pals at the FIREHOUSE who I gratefully thank for their tolerance can be well assured that they will not have me there with a focking notebook for a NASCAR or any other sporting event anytime soon. Whatever spirit possessed me to do this, I hope it’s good and fucking satisfied. I know that I am. Time for another beer
I had this hope that perhaps NASCAR would find some rules violation during the post-race inspection of Jimmie Johnson’s #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet….due, of course, to the evil machinations of Chad Knaus. The victory would then be awarded to Mark Martin and all would be good with the world. But sadly, there was no last minute rumpus. Here’s to the losers who lie in the street as the last bus goes by.