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NASCAR is changing this year. I don’t know exactly how yet. Racing changes every year. As long as interest keeps going down, I reckon it’s going to keep on changing. If the reason it’s declining is the constant change, I guess the folks in charge haven’t noticed, being as how it’s only been a decade, give or take a few years. They seem to think if they change enough, eventually they’ll get it right. I really hope that’s this year.

Circumstances have progressed to the point where I am a writer of the macro, not the micro. Ever since NASCAR implemented phases and stages, circles and cycles, and themes that we’ve all seen before (Willie Nelson song), I’ve sort of followed the alleged philosophy of a baseball manager not known for tinkering: Let them play (race) and see what happens.

I don’t have any idea what’s a bonus point for the regular season and what’s a bonus point for the playoffs memorized. If I need it, I look it up. I just write about racing a couple or three times a week now, either here or at

Here’s what I gather. A new “package,” involving aerodynamic configurations and power-squeezed engines, is to debut on Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Then, it’s going to go further the next race in Las Vegas. I saw that called “the ultra-package” on Twitter or Facebook or both.

Racing gets ever more complicated, but then again, I just bought a vehicle of my own for the first time in over a decade, and apparently all vehicles get ever more complicated, whether drivers race in them or not.

Just yesterday I learned how to open the gas tank.

There hasn’t been much explaining on TV because its excitable ringmen and women have been obsessed with the Daytona 500, which, I understand, was run under rules that have little to do with what will prevail from now own, or until NASCAR officials come full circle again.

All you technical wizards are undoubtedly disappointed at my lack of interest, but I always have sneered at writers who think they know more about engines than a Yates, Robert or Doug, or, for that matter, a curveball more than Sandy Koufax.

This writing racket has a lot to do with recognizing that one knows just enough to be dangerous. Fortunately, the readers, bless their hearts, are even more knowledgeably dangerous.

So it all works out.