Lets start off by stating the obvious. NASCAR is not a sport. Anyone who begs to differ can leave right now. I will admit that it take skill to drive a car, especially at high speeds, but I will not declare it a sport. A sport, by definition, requires some sort of physical activity, an object, spherical or otherwise, that is used to fascilitate scoring and some semblance of “team” mentality and perhaps even strategy. That is my definition of a sport. That basically covers anything from ultimate frisbee strait through polo and everything in between. I say again, driving in a circle is not a friggin’ sport. But the zeal with which it is covered certainly makes it seem that way sometimes.As an example of my dislike for this “sport” I will entertain you with tales of yesterday. For it was yesterday that the Daytona 500 was occurring at the same time Lauren’s family was trying to have two separate birthday parties at two separate locations. Lauren’s grandfather, a very nice man, was watching it when we arrived at Lauren’s parent’s house shortly after church. That was fine, it was on merely in the background and it wasn’t bothering anyone. We had lunch and cake and the headed over to Lauren’s uncle Jon’s house. Uncle Jon is a rather large man, a mechanic by trade, and so he has an affinity for racing. Understandable since both his livelyhood and hobbies involve engines of somekind. Jon’s sister and husband were also there, I can only assume to torture the rest of us. They had the race on too. Actually when we arrived the race had just finished but for some reason we were forced to watch the “post-race wrap up”. This is absolutely fascinating to me since only insane people would want to watch the “highlights” of something that a) isn’t exciting in the first place and b) they just finished watching and obviously know the outcome of. I’ve been told by some that watching it again is simply done to “see the crashes”. Those people have issues. What also got to me was the annoying banter back and forth debating perticular drivers worth and skill. Something to the effect of “number 34 should have beaten number 8 and I can’t believe that number 16 came in 5th”. I also completely made up those numbers, so don’t go looking those up or anything. The converstation was mind numbing at parts as they retold the heroics of “Alison’s pass of Gordon on lap 112”. They even got the phone out to call their other NASCAR friends and ask them if they had seen the same things they did. Surprise! They did… because they were glued to the idiot box for 5 hours as well. What’s almost worse is the warping of the little kids. Since it was “race day” the kids were dressed in matching Daytona t-shirts and hats with their favorite drivers numbers on it. There was also controversy over the birthday cake, which had the wrong drivers number on it and didn’t match the match-box car on top of it. I sat very quitely in the corner of the room, hoping, if I stayed quite long enough, I could ride it out and leave without having to discuss “someone’s new engine” or “the new paint job on number whatever’s car.”
So, let me get this strait… they drive a little bit, then turn left… then left again… then left again… then left some more… and they do this 500 times and whichever moron has driven in a circle the fastest wins? Idiots. At least Indy car racers have to turn right occasionally. They at least qualify in the “skill” category. Shit, they even had Ben Affleck in the pace car. Do NOT tell me HE has the ability to tie his shoes let alone drive a car that fast. That boys, does not add credibility to your sport. Now, give each car some guns or rockets or something and I’d be there… but if all they’re doing is driving in a circle, then yes, the crashes are the interesting part. Simply because they’re a break from the monotony.