Friday, August 24, 2007

They're here

Yep, it's that time of year. This weekend is the big NASCAR race over in Bristol, TN.

Bristol, where I actually lived for five years when I went to college and the city where my gf was born, is down the road about 15 miles from us. So we are directly affected by the race, race traffic, and race fans.

Living near a NASCAR track means that once, or in our case twice, a year the red neck hordes from Indiana (sorry Liberality and Evil Spock), Pennsylvania (sorry Sherry), and everywhere else invade our little slice of northeast TN/southwest Virginia. Now admittedly where we live is not a MENSA capital, note to certain bloggers especially the one in Washington state who slams TN all the time, I can make fun of my state because I feckin' live here, you can't, but when NASCAR comes to town our collective IQ drops almost 100 points.

I'm not a fan of NASCAR but I'm smart enough to know that others are, many many many others. And they have every right to come out in droves to see their drivers and to hope for a horrific wreck to happen. If they'd modified those engines to run on used cooking oil then I'd be a lot happier with NASCAR but they're not about to do that anytime soon, anyway my point is thousands upon thousands upon thousands of people will be streaming into my home area this weekend.

Actually they started streaming in last week in vehicles like this:

Or in giant pick up trucks that are pulling these:

And they park over by the track and it looks like this:

For some local merchants the NASCAR races are like manna from heaven. The ones that benefit most are hotels and motels (there is not a room to be had within 100 miles of Bristol this weekend), liquor stores (NASCAR fans love some hard liquor), restaurants, grocery stores, and convenience stores. For them it's like having Christmas twice a year since they have a spring race in March and a night race in August. And of course the local city and state governments love the races because they generate so much in sales taxes.

We usually go out of town during race day in the spring, usually we drive across the mountain to Asheville and spend the day over there. But since we're going to the beach Labor Day week (yay!) we're gonna have to ride this race out.

We hate it and it won't be pretty. All weekend long we'll run into people who look like this:

And we'll probably get caught in bumper to bumper pre and post race traffic, you've never lived unless you've crawled at 5 MPH for twenty miles in between RV's being driven by people who have procreated with their cousins.

And then there's this type of thing:

This is a scalpers tent. They put those signs up saying they need tickets but what they really want is not tickets, what they really want is your money. I hate scaplers with a passion. Every time I drive by one of these assholes I yell out my window, "Hey scalper!" And when they turn to look at me I flip them off.

Don't let the sight of 100,000 thousand drunk wife abusing pot belly having NASCAR fans and their hideous off spring deter any of you from visiting the Tri Cities TN area. It only gets this bad twice a year, it's not like we're Knoxville, TN during Vol football games or something. Or like Spokane, WA during Sister Lovin' Daze. Or Texas on execution day, or as it is known everywhere else, Tuesday. This is a nice area to visit, honestly. Just don't come during the last weekend in March or the last weekend in August.


FranIAm said...

You make it sound so damn appealing. I will be RIGHT THERE.

Oops can't make it, stuck in NASCAR traffic.

I feel for you man, I truly do.

NASCAR Nation sucks.

commander other said...

you said:

"....but when NASCAR comes to town our collective IQ drops almost 100 points."

no, said:


OMG, that's funny! sure it's not "over"?!?!

'cuz like even though we're thousands of miles away from a NASCAR track up here, the collective IQ drops "at least" 100 points during NASCAR races.

i kid you not.

Suzy said...

Could you rent out your house to hotel/motel overflow and realize a profit? That's the American way …

mark hoback said...

Suzy, everybody rents out their houses and sleep on the lawn.

dguzman said...

Hope you've already stocked up on groceries.

Distributorcap said...

looks like a lot of bush...

(btw, link should work now on the post)

Phydeaux Speaks said...

Having grown up in Wilkes County, NC - home of Junior Johnson (yes, I've met him) and, arguably, one of the birthplaces of NASCAR, at the venerable North Wilkesboro Speedway - I can authoritatively state that you are correct sir!

The only good thing about it was that school was out on the Friday before race day so the sheep could go to the time trials.

BTW, one of the funnies names I've ever heard was that of a one-time NASCAR driver...

Dick Trickle

Phydeaux Speaks said... of the funniest names...


Missy said...

They just made scalping legal here...I cannot tell the difference yet.

I am afraid of NASCAR.

Jess Wundrun said...

Dick Trickle is a .... Wisconsinite!!!! Yay!!!!

When I lived in Richmond I swear the city was all "meh" about the races. Musta been too far north.

Liberality said...

call it like you see it Mr. M. I am not offended. Like it says on my blog "a blue gal in a red state" and red as in redneck as well as political redness.

Bush and Mitch Daniels are doing such a fine job though that it's getting positively purple around here in Indiana, believe it or not!

Boxer rebel said...

I lived in Delaware through college and then a few years after and when the races at Dover happened it shut down the whole state. Now, DE is a small state and all, but a whole state was gridlocked and shut down. This wasn't even a big NASCAR area, it was only when the races happened that suddenly we had NASCAR fans.

Second, I am slightly ambiguous about NASCAR. As you know I live in NC and I lived for a while in Greensboro so I know several people whose spouses worked for the NASCAR race teams and it created a living for these people, so it was good for them. It is not what I would prefer to watch, but it is good for the race areas where the weekends bring in commerce and I guess that is good. I am dreading Raleigh and this area when NC State football starts, I am guessing it will be like your race weekends only more of them.

Your Blog roll model o' the week is distracting me so this response took forever to write, just thought you should know.

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Fran-The beers are cold and waiting for you whenever you get here!

Commander-NASCAR fever, catch it!

Suzy-I'd sooner rent it to the Manson family than to a NASCAR fan.

Mark-Watch it or I'll come to your house and sleep on your lawn!

Dguzman-But of course!

Dcap-And a lot of ass too.

Phydeaux-Heh heh heh, you said "Trickle."

Missy-Be afraid, very afraid.

Jess-You are quite the well travelled lass.

Liberality-Bush is turning us purple too.

Boxer-I love Delaware, especially the beaches but I hate Joe Biden.
And on the subject of this week's blog roll model, go check out Positive Ape Index on my blog roll to see more of her, much more.

jewgirl said...

oh fuckin' fab. the white trash gala of the year. HA! I can't wait to read this weekend's posts.

Whiskeymarie said...

Um, everything you said makes me want to go...
I know that's wrong but I don't care.
If lovin' trash is wrong, I don't wanna be right.

Trailers, back hair, incest, beer and lawn chairs.
Holy crap I'm getting dizzy from the possibilities.

Infidel753 said...

"Sister Lovin' Daze"? Is that another incest thing?

dancinfool said...

I moved to the Northwest (Portland OR) 2 years ago after having spent almost 30 years living in Johnson City. I know whereof you speak. However, I won't pile on since I escaped. But....

The reminder of Bristol NASCAR weekends still makes me break out in hives. Thanks!

JustWondrin said...

Hey Monkey Man, over here in Kingsport Thuh Big Race doesn't affect us so much, unless of course you want to rent a motel room. You're right, time to get outta town. It's really stupid to have all county schools close on Friday, though, when the race really only affects one school. Glad to see your post mentioned in Crooks & Liars (one of my favorites) and glad to see another yeller (as in makes loud noises that the wingnuts don't like) in sorta red E TN. The more we yell, the more they get embarrassed and hide their W stickers.

Micgar said...

Yuck! NASCAR! The name even sounds like something you need to have excised! "Yes Mr. Muck, we will have to remove the nascar-before it grows larger!"
Hard to believe this is considered a real "sport"!
Funny, funny post!

zencomix said...

Driving in circles, I come to my senses....sometimes

Down in the basement, I hear the sound of machines!