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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

CAN WE SAY DRAMA QUEEN DRIVER?

Just when you think you've heard it all something comes along to change your mind. Would you believe there's an Arizona grandmother that wants to "OCCUPY NASCAR"? Frankly, I can't say I blame her and after reading her email I tend to think she may be on to something.

Our desert granny happens to be a huge NASCAR fan. So much so that she finds it unbelievable that there are people out there who are not fans....including myself. So for her sake I did a little research to see what all her stress was over and I find myself very much on her team. Both her and hubby are glued to the television for all the races and this past Friday she witnessed a very un-sportsman-like scene involving an intentional wreck causing another driver to lose any chance of winning the race.

NASCAR is supposed to be exciting to watch (evidentially) and I'm sure the closer the race the more exciting it gets (probably). It's obviously intensely competitive and when that flag comes down and the race is over, there's going to be a winner and there's going to be runner-ups, not losers. Along the way anything both unforeseen and unfortunate can occur resulting in a car being eliminated or disqualified, like say it catches fire, suffers engine trouble, or blows a tire...all unpredictable events. Then there's the necessary pit stops which at times can result in a car losing precious minutes. It's all part of the sport.

What should not happen ever in any race is a driver intentionally doing something so completely childish to another vehicle that it results in that car being completely knocked out of the running. Yet that is exactly what happened Friday. Two vehicles get chewed up and spit out, in turn distracts the other drivers and now the race is abruptly over for both drivers and all due to an immature act of aggression on the part of one selfish individual.

NASCAR's age requirement is 18 years old....physically, that is. Obviously there's no mental age limit since it sounds as though they allow ignorant sorts to race. In my book 26 years old is old enough to know better, but then is it with some individuals? Since I've also read that there have been previous incidents where this person has been warned, fined large amounts of money and put on probation, I tend to think he must be just plain ignorant. Being a hot-head behind the wheel does not make one a champion in any race. Maybe he thinks being a bad guy makes him seem grown up. Maybe he just wants to follow in a sibling's footsteps. Just exactly what is biting his hiney? Who does he think he is to do something so undignified in front of the fans?

I think a true champion is someone who can lose as gracefully as they can win. Was the possibility of losing so intense that this loser thought he could justify what he did? Or did he just not think at all? Such aggressive behavior displayed for all to see tends to leave a nasty taste especially when you think of what kind of message it portrays to the younger fans watching. As our AZ grandmother pointed out in her missive, she raised a son and he has raised two sons and now one of them has a young son. They all love to watch the races. What did that driver's lack of respect say to the little fan? What if that driver had been hurt? Those racing vehicles go really, really, really fast. How much control did that aggressive jerk have when he crunched into that other vehicle? Again, anything could have happened as a result of his stupid stunt. Will the littlest fans see this as acceptable behavior? Is NASCAR about every man for himself? Is this how sporting events are supposed to go? Parents have to explain how NOT to act, that this guy is definitely not a role model.

What did the nasty driver's punishment say to these impressionable little minds? Another fine again...that's easy enough since money is probably not an issue. An indefinite probation....he's probably loving the adrenaline rush over that one. Oh, and sit out the next race...ouch...a time-out. And then don't forget his big apology of sorts...the expected-what-else-can-he-say words that 10 to 1 somebody else wrote for him. Ignorant, remember?

Aggression is a mode of communication and behavior where one expresses their feelings, needs and rights without regard or respect for the needs, rights and feelings of others. Emotional or physical force is often used so that the rights of others are not allowed to surface. Try explaining that to a young one who was quite upset about seeing that performance. Can you tell him such obvious aggression won't lead to violence?

According to the latest updates this individual will be allowed to compete in the upcoming race in Phoenix this week-end. Interestingly enough there is rain predicted both Saturday and Sunday. To top that off I read that the drivers are concerned over the quality of this race and how it may upset the fans because of a possible single-file style race. Since testing the track last month they discovered the track had been recently repaved and reconfigured. NASCAR's last visit in February resulted in trouble developing even one reliable racing groove. Now do I sound like I know what I'm talking about or what?! Research people, just research.

Anyway new pavement typically means single file racing at any track for the first few years of a new surface because there's only one good racing groove and with the searing hot desert heat on this track there was no choice but to repave. So my question is will that be the only concern for these drivers? Anyone worried about being the car in front of that M&M sponsored car? Will the drama queen further embarrass and defame the poor candies represented on his vehicle? Just how short is his little fuse? Will the track conditions, or perhaps the weather conditions upset him to the point of trying to plow through anyone in his way? Sounds to me like maybe he needs to go back home and learn some good old-fashioned manners and learn respect for others and get down off his high horse once and for all before somebody gets hurt. Sometimes that early onset of fame isn't such a good thing when it fails to mature the individual in such a way that he fails to appreciate the competition rather than run it into a wall.

On your marks, get set, go OCCUPY, Granny!

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