Checking in because I’ve had a few visitors lately – hi to everyone who has landed here while Googling for pictures of Anderson Cooper with his shirt off. Sorry to disappoint you.

But if you’re a NASCAR person and stumbled upon this blog in earnest, welcome. Since it’s not my rookie season any more this blog is dormant, but I hope you’ll poke around and see how I spent 2007. You’ll laugh; you’ll cry; you’ll gain ten pounds from all the references to chicken fingers and cheese fries. At least I did.

Here’s a top ten posts list, if you’re into that kind of thing:

  1. Epiphany (The one that started it all)
  2. I Don’t Know How They Do It (My own trip around the track)
  3. Testoster-ific (Test Day @ Lowe’s Motor Speedway)
  4. Mudlington (Darlington)
  5. Hey Now, You’re An All-Star (All-Star Challenge)
  6. The Gala, Part II (More adventures from the Speedway Childrens Charities gala. All new! I had kept this private before because it’s so cougarific and cliched and embarrassing, but what the hell.)
  7. Pole Night (Charlotte – Coke 600)
  8. Speed Street S*cks, But… (Oh, hey, Huggy Bear)
  9. We Need To Talk. (In which I request a break after an insane May)
  10. Covering my sadness in melted cheese (In which I live blog the B of A 500 instead of attending it, even though it’s, like, 15 miles from my house. I still can’t talk about it.)

I’m still watching and going to races whenever I can, and trying to spread the NASCAR love among the wine and cheese crowd. Keep an eye out for me in the grandstands – I’m the one in the cardigan twinset.

Enjoy your stay!

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I certainly had hoped to be able to reveal something profound – about myself, racing or maybe even, oh, I don’t know, America – at the end of My NASCAR Rookie Season.

But at the end of the day – season – I think I may have overestimated my own attention span and underestimated the extent to which NASCAR is just not marketed (or perhaps even intended) for people like me.

Let me take a step back and think about what I expected when I started this journey in February.

I definitely hoped/expected to see more of it in person, and part of the problem with that may be that I did a year’s worth of activity in May and that now seems like a long time ago. I’m definitely never going to be an every-Sunday-in-front-of-the-TV kind of girl, and there’s not enough money in our bank or time on our hands to be travelling fans. (Although we will definitely splurge on Bristol sometime in the next couple of years.) So, maybe next year I will be a February, May and October fan and be satisfied and happy with that.

I also never settled on a favorite driver. It’s too embarrassing and cliched to be a 40-year-old woman who’s a Kasey fan (although that doesn’t mean I’m getting rid of my autographed picture or anything). I got interested in the Earnhardt soap opera, but mostly because it seems like a modern-day Dickens novel and because we have a two-degrees-of-separation factor. (BTW, I’ll post my profile of Kelley for our alumni magazine later this week – it turned out great, I think.) Carl Edwards disappointed me when he bullied Kenseth. And I never heard much about Tony and Kevin above the din of Jimmie and Jeff.

I asked Carl on Friday night if he could think of a driver who reads (or looks like he might be the type who reads). Can you picture any of them stopping by a Borders – or, dare I say it, the library – on a Monday afternoon? He couldn’t really think of one and then said, “Even if one did, it’s not something they’d want to promote.” I’m not saying they’re not smart – heaven knows all that mechanical engineering stuff is way over my head and there’s definitely skill and brains and talent involved in driving like that – but I’m surprised and maybe a little disappointed that there isn’t anyone who self-identifies as a well-read person. (Kasey’s poster that shows him promoting reading by holding the Washington State driver’s manual doesn’t count.)

So maybe next year, I’ll keep an eye out for the Smart One.

Maybe next year – without the blog – it won’t feel so much like homework, so I can enjoy watching and reading about racing without having to come up with “clever” things to say. (I hope I have been clever at least on occasion, instead of/in addition to being just bitchy.)

This blog was an experiment to find out if an enjoyment and attraction that took me by surprise would hold up over time; seeing if a one-night stand could turn into a long-term relationship. Where we’ve ended up, NASCAR and me, is as Friends With Benefits, I think.

And I’ll definitely be looking forward to our next hookup in Daytona.,recipes/cat_id,44327

I would be willing to bet my entire retirement savings account that Rick Hendrick has never made a Honey Raisin Bran Muffin. Ever.

And you can’t tell me that Carl Edwards would eat a “Quesadilla” Cracker. Food is generally pretty “unappetizing” if you have to put “quotation marks” around some of the “words.”

And don’t even get me started on Kasey’s Ragu Beef Chili Mac.

Darrell Waltrip’s Speedy Spicy Fried Bologna Sandwich is about the only piece of nonfiction on the entire page, as far as I can tell.

“Who are the ad wizards who came up with this one?”

(Q: What is the deal with Count Chocula? A: I mean, are we supposed to be afraid of this guy? Hee.)

This blog hasn’t turned out much like I thought it would. Frankly, I’m not sure this year has turned out like I thought it would. I had such high hopes and, perhaps, completely unrealistic expectations. (The curse of the overactive imagination.)

I think I’ve also been a victim of my own timidity and the curse of six degrees of separation, living “among the natives” as I do. Which is ridiculous, of course, because only four people read this thing with any regularity so I’m not sure who I have been afraid of offending.

In any case, as the boys wrap up business on the track I may end up with some profound reflections on my rookie season. Or I may not. I’ll keep the four of you posted.

I think my favorite executive-transvestite, Eddie Izzard, said it best:

So that’s the end of my show, and I do like to end the show with a kind of “Ehh” feeling, and I think I’ve done that quite well. But thank you very much for being here. I hope you’ve enjoyed it.

Oh. My. God. Cannot stop laughing.

Turn any website into a LOLCATS site:

Go see this here site, done up kitteh-style:

Forgive me, it’s been a long week and I am punchy and easily amused!

I’m getting a million search engine hits lately for Coop descamisado, I guess because his name and “drunk and shirtless” show up within a week of one another. (Let me be clear: it’s in two different posts!) Sorry, folks, we are birthday twins but we’re not, like, intimately acquainted. Plus, I know he’s not playing on my team and all, but I think he might be one of those guys who looks better with his clothes on. 

It’s not that I’m not happy for Jimmie Johnson. He certainly deserves to win again and again and again. And there is a personal connection between us (I get to drive by his house if I miss getting Lee on the morning bus to school) so it’s kind of like I’m a winner today, too! And I guess that from now on it will be exciting and nice and sad and poignant all rolled into one when a Hendrick car wins at Martinsville.

But I’m sorry, I have a soft spot for underdogs; and it’s a bit of a shame that a person can miss the first three hours of a race (doing a good deed, no less!) and not really miss much of anything at all. 


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