Wednesday, May 19, 2010

NASCAR Fan-atic

We had a baby shower for one of the girls at work today. She was telling us what a Colts maniac her husband is. They planned their honeymoon around an off football by-week but coming home on the plane, he asked the pilot if he could find and announce the score of the game (which he did).  When they had their first son, Hubby lobbied to name him Peyton or Eli, after the Manning brothers. Andrea said absolutely not. Finally, he suggested the name Cooper which she liked and Cooper it was. Not until the baby was a few months old was she told that Cooper is the name of the third (unknown) Manning sibling.

Everyone else at the office smiled at his craziness but I told her I understood perfectly because if I was still young enough to have a son, or a daughter for that matter, his/her name would be Jimmie Johnson Williams. My colleagues all laughed. They thought I was kidding.

Having come to it late in life, I am sometimes amused by my own unsuspected capacity for being a NASCAR lunatic. A few years ago, I would have probably condescended to people I thought must be of somewhat less than average intelligence to get so caught up in cars going around a track, who actually owned whole wardrobes of gear with a driver's name on it, who would go out of their way to buy certain products at certain stores because they support NASCAR and sponsor teams. Now I do all those things.

Even as a young girl, I wasn't one to swoon over actors or rock stars. I liked a lot of them but you''d never have found me standing in a miles-long line to see the Beatles come off an airplane.  I bought most of his albums but I didn't have a poster of Elvis on my wall. My most admired characters have mostly been authors, along with a few politicians, but I wouldn't exactly call it a grand passion, more like a low-key kind of esteem.

Now, here I am at 64, practically having a heart attack at the end of every race if the number 48 Lowe's Chevy is in the lead, trying to push Jimmie to the checkered flag by sheer strength of will. Now, instead of election results, my mood soars or plummets based on Sprint Cup point leads.

I'm joking about naming a baby Jimmie Johnson Williams though....I think.