So out of boredom the other day, I was channel surfing through the limited number of over the air channels (no cable or satellite available) on the TV at the cottage, and happened onto a Nascar race. I am not now nor have I ever been a racing fan, but I like to claim an open mind, and my natural curiosity got the best of me, so I decided to give it a chance. Nascar racing is purported to be the fastest growing spectator sport in the world, so I figured I should try to find out what all those people were finding so fascinating.
I am not going to bash racing fans and Nascar fans in particular, but I just don’t get it. I tried desperately to figure out who was running in first place in the race, or any place for that matter, but confusion reigned. The announcers were speaking some kind of foreign language filled with unintelligible jargon so fast and furiously that understanding them was nearly impossible. For some reason, the announcers are apparently required to have thick southern redneck accent in order to get the job of race analyst. That alone was a turn-off for me. I realize I’m stereotyping here, but every time I hear anyone talking with that cornpone accent I immediately get visions of one-strap bib overalls on a gap-toothed, inbred, roadkill-gnawing, moonshine addled, barefoot, ridgerunning hillbilly whose extended vocabulary consists of an extra aww shucks between y-alls. And when whatever he is saying spews forth without regard to punctuation in a rapidfire stream of consciousness babel, it becomes incomprehensible to my ears. Then when you add in the fact that there were at least three of those voices vying with each other for control of the microphone, you have a cacophony of nonsense that does nothing to explain to the uninitiated exactly what is going on.
Still I stuck with it for the better part of an hour. I thought maybe if I could pick out a particular car to follow I might be able to figure out what was happening. So I picked out a nice red car (red is my favorite color) that seemed to have a nice loud roar as it passed by (I reasoned that in an enterprise such as this, the louder your engine the faster it goes) and tried to find its number or any identifying markings that would allow me to recognize it on camera as it made all those left turns. Unfortunately, there were several red cars in the race and each one was blanketed with a dizzying array of decals, making identification a chancy sort of exercise. I couldn’t figure out how anyone could know who was leading the race since it was mayhem on the track as far as I could tell.
When I was able to understand what the announcers were saying I still didn’t understand what exactly they were referring to. Talk about loose cars, tight handling, and drivers who like it on top of the track and some who like it on the bottom and all the nudging and kissing and rearending of fenders had me envisioning Jimmy’s Johnson getting a workout in the backseat of his car. Then I was assured that these cars don’t have backseats and I was much relieved. Still the announcers sounded like nearly orgasmic voyeurs at times when talking about what was happening on the track.
I was starting to feel dirty, so I made a right turn, got off the track, and turned it off. There was a golf tournament on and that is much more my speed.