Go to hell, NASCAR (and stay there)



That’s it. I am putting my foot down.

If NASCAR is a sport, then driving your car should be considered an aerobic activity.

Putting on your seat belt should be practiced as often as a jump shot, and changing your tire should be clocked like the 40-yard dash.

It is a maddening time when a man in a machine is more touted for his athletic abilities than men who actually use their legs in sport. NASCAR drivers don’t use their legs, they use their feet. Placing your foot on and off the pedal does not require strength or conditioning. It is repetitive and retarded. So instead – accelerate, brake and bite me.

But, my problem is not with NASCAR. It is with America loving NASCAR. It is living in a country where people eat, sleep and breathe these cars because they love fast motors, loud noises and sensational wrecks. The fans are real-life versions of “Anchorman’s” Brick Tamland. As car blow by them, fans throw both fists in the air and scream at the top of their lungs, “LOUD NOISES!”

Last Sunday, NASCAR drivers used the first Car of Tomorrow in Bristol, Tenn. The car features a steering wheel closer to the center of the car, a more upright windshield and a higher center of gravity. The Car of Tomorrow drew a firestorm of criticism from drivers who found it tough to adjust to Bristol’s higher banks, wider turns and shorter straightaways. I say: Drivers, be glad there is a tomorrow for NASCAR – so suit up, saddle up and shut up.

I am standing my ground on NASCRAP. I plead to my fellow readers, don’t watch NASCAR. Watch Major League Soccer. Watch the National Hockey League. Hell, turn on an Arena Football game. Pay attention to a sport with a playoff system, not a points system. A leaping header is much more interesting than a left turn. A body check and broken plexiglass beat a blown tire and a pit stop any day of the week.

There is a reason NASCAR is the only sport in America that allows spectators to bring coolers full of alcohol into the stadium. They want their fans to get so flushed that they can’t feel their face, let alone remember who crossed the finish line first. Alcohol is all well and good, but I am not cool with Billy Bob and Mary Ann conceiving a child on the track’s infield. I’m sorry sport fans, but I don’t think a brother and sister should be doing that sort of thing.

Rather than admiring a gymnast or a goalkeeper, Americans prefer to glamorize the Jiffy Lube guy. NASCAR boasts better ratings than baseball, and when compared to other premier sports events since the 2001 season, only the Super Bowl and the Daytona 500 have enjoyed an increase in viewership. Even satellite radio is jumping on the spoiler. Sirius Satellite Radio was granted exclusive broadcasting rights to NASCAR through 2011. It airs the radio communication between driver and crew chief for 10 teams each race.

Get serious, America. The only “bumping” and “grinding” I want to see in sports is upstairs at the North Walnut Street bar. The only Bristol I know is home to ESPN, and the only Car of Tomorrow that I want to see is one that flies over traffic on the New Jersey Turnpike. (Whoops – I gave away my identity).

And yet, NASCAR – like reality television – continues to gain ratings because we are nation of nimrods.

If this is the sport of tomorrow, Sirius-ly kill me.

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