CP MOTORSPORTS – MONTE DUTTON: YOU GOT YOUR STAKEHOLDERS, AND YOU GOT YOUR BEERHOLDERS
Memories. Each NASCAR season has them. Some are wonderful. Some are blunderful. Some are awful. Some are unlawful. Some are amusing. Some are accusing. Some are boring, and with that comes snoring.
But boring races don't provide memories. Rain delays do.
Twenty years later, no one ever says, "I'll never forget that snoozer of a race in Joliet."
"Oh, no, Fred, me, neither. It was so memorable how boring it was."
But 40 years later, someone will say, "You remember that time it rained for three days in Michigan?"
"Oh, yeah. Uncle Hoyt slept in the mud one night."
"I reckon he just passed out there and couldn't get back up."
"He was out of work a month."
Out of boredom grew misery, but misery is not boring. It's not enjoyable, either but ... what do you want?
No one ever defends the hellraisers, but what would sport be without them?
The kids with painted faces but bare torsos, screaming from the student section and catching their death of snow while Purdue slips past Manassas Polytechnic, 42-3. ...
... The Dookies' dirty tricks. If I ran a holiday basketball tournament, I would invite Virginia Tech, Wyoming, Duke and Southern Illinois. That would mean the Hokies would play the Pokies, and then the Dookies would play the Salukis. I'd play it somewhere in the Okefenokee. (Fortunately, no holiday basketball tournament has asked me to run it.) ...
... The spackled players of tackle football in the red-clay muck of a Talladega campground. ...
... Bikers of all ages. Bless their hearts. They don't have to all ride Harleys, but they do have to all wear Harley tee shirts, and today's world doesn't have nearly enough bandannas.
One problem NASCAR has is that they've priced the old hellraisers out of business and lost the young ones. Who’s going to raise the hell of future generations? It’s just going to sit there.
Modern races are carefully designed to be great places for "hospitality," which is a term for how big companies bribe small companies with freebies. The fellow hanging out with Kyle or Ryan or Justin or Jason isn't his biggest fan. He/she is a franchisee.
“Hospitality” used to be when Kirby would let someone he’d just met take a slug of his home brew just because he seemed like a nice feller.
The stakeholders prosper. The beerholders are grilling steaks on the patio where the police won't bother them. They got a big screen in the man cave.
Far be it from me to encourage boisterous and rebellious behavior in the infields of tracks. As a practical matter, though, there aren't enough wholesome types to replace the hellions who went off to Sturgis or somewhere. This is a lesson of the current century.
A man who becomes a race-car driver isn't likely to have pondered the ministry, and a race fan is unlikely to also be a connoisseur of barber-shop quartets.
Reluctantly, I stereotype.
Lots of the drivers have been to charm school. They don't really scrub up nicely because most of them have been scrubbed well for their entire lives. Scrubbing, as it turns out, is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
It's a lot harder to scrub up a fan base.