Beachn Bubba

DAYTON’R BEACH, Fla. – Howdy Y’all.

Though this here column is gonna run on Tuesdee, I’m actually sittin’ here on Mondee night in Dayton’r Beach watchin’ the 500 on a tape our new room-cleanin’ pals Rashish, Awkmad, Seshwanna and Yuklips (or somethin’) made fer us. We gotta leave this Hotela de Badsmella in the mornin’, and me and the boys shore do wanna thank them fellers for makin’ our weeklong stay one we ain’t never gonna forget.

Somethin’ else me and the fellers ain’t never gonna forget was the stuff we seen live on Sundee – and on tape on Mondee… so let’s get right down to it.

Here’s just some of the stuff we seen or was just thinkin’…

*T-shirts fer $5 or three fer $15. I got halfway back to the hotel before I realized my three shirts weren’t really no bargain at all. Dern it all.

*Lots of folks on e-mail have asked me what I thought the biggest surprise story was in the 500. After thinkin’ fer about two seconds, I decided the biggest surprise story of the 500 was Tony Stewart.

Don’t rush to no conclusions now, cuz the Tony Stewart surprise I’m talkin’ about wasn’t that his car quit on him on the first lap.

No, the biggest surprise was that when interviewed about his car crappin’ out, Tony didn’t call the guys on his team big ol’ poopypants… he didn’t blame NASCAR, no other drivers or the media… and I’ll be derned if he didn’t even feel sorry fer the engine guys back at the shop who had worked so hard.

Reckon we gotta call him Tony the Pussycat now?

*When Dave Marcis got that ceremonial run right behind the pace car before the race, anybody else expect him to have a case of sometimers disease and accidentally slam that sucker right into the wall?

*Y’all see and hear that big ol’ opera singer do the national anthem in like 35 minutes flat? Who makes the decisions on who sings and stuff like that?

My guess is the decision maker is the same feller that told Benny Parsons a big and bright red shirt would be a good idea’r fer television. Made me wanna holler “HEY KOOL-AID!!!”

*Either Brooke Gordon done dyed her hair blonde, or ol’ Jeffy Poo was bein’ escorted this weekend by Brookey’s sister Bubbles. As best I can figure, he don’t lose either way.

*Anybody out there shocked that it was fired-from-RCR driver Mike Skinner bumpin’ into current RCR star Kevin Harvick on pit road?

*Speakin’ of RCR… you think Lowe’s realizes it’s already been more visible this year with Jimmie Johnson and the Gordon/Hendrick boys than it was the entire time it was with RCR?

*I done decided a race without Jimmy Spencer is like a T-bone without the fat. Y’all can tell Jimmy and his team they can use that slogan if’n they want… I don’t mind.

*Would ever’body stop callin’ the Daytona 500 winner the Daytona 500 champion? It ain’t no circuit or series or nothin’ like that, it’s one race. You don’t win no championships for winnin’ the 500, so stop callin’ the dern winner a champion.

*How dern hard up is this Daytona USA thingy that they gotta steal a winnin' team’s best car to get some publicity? Got me a feelin’ NASCAR makes a buck off that somehow, don’t you?

*They say winnin’ the Daytona 500 makes the entire year fer a driver. Well, that was sure the case last year, as Michael Waltrip all but fell off the face of the earth followin’ his win.

Here’s to hopin’ Ward Burton has a bit more luck. I’m guessin’ he will.

*I seen these ESPN boys set up outside the track, and it got me to thinkin’ about just how ridiculous it is fer them boys not to be allowed inside.

Seriously now, if NASCAR ain’t tellin’ a fib – can’t imagine that can ya? – why in the world would they make drivers and teams have to take a bunch of their precious time to have to go all the way outside the track to get interviews done with ESPN?

Ya gotta figure either NASCAR figures the drivers won’t juggle their incredible schedules to be on ESPN – which is totally ridiculous - or they figure those lame FOX talk shows will someday be somewhere near the level of ESPN shows and take over… which is probably more ridiculous.

I ain’t great at rithmatic – or math, either - but if you take NASCAR bein’ ridiculous in one sense, and add that to NASCAR bein’ ridiculous in another… well, you pretty much got NASCAR bein’ doubly ridiculous.

Oh, fer y'all NASCAR apologists that can’t help but write stories that begin with – “some out there say….” cuz you ain’t got an original thought in your noggin’ – don’t gimme no bullpucky like “NASCAR has to lock ESPN out like that, it’s a part of the tv contract!”

That ol’ tired excuse, used so many times already, holds no water as I’m quite sure FOX and NBC didn’t force NASCAR to sign that contract… they done it all by their selves and are takin’ great credit fer it.

Just gotta wonder one more thing and ask NBC and FOX somethin’…. Is there any reward whatsoever in knowin’ the only reason anyone tunes into y’all’s shows at all is because ya locked someone else out?

*While I’m on the tv kick, let’s try to figure out just some of the 100 things that’s goofy on this taped race.

Somehow, unbelievably, NBC found a way to make those little bubbles above the cars even more annoying than last year. Honest folks, this time around, those suckers jiggle up and down enough to make ya dizzy, and they’s so big they cover up the next six to 10 cars on the track. All you can see is the car they’s talking about, so they might as well just zoom in on that car, right?

Do they even test this stuff? Do people actually sit in a room, watch the test, and then walk out saying “Yeh, that’s what we want!!!!” Yikes.

*Also, instead of prerace highlights from Daytona 500s of old, like Pearson and Petty battling to the line or somethin’ that shows the history of this thing… we get Wally Fallenback teachin’ us about bobsleddin’ (just so NBC can play up its Olympic coverage). Y’all think you’re foolin’ us on this advertorial stuff… that we’re not gonna notice how lame that is?

Then, later on, again leavin' out information about the actual event we tuned in to see – the Daytona 500 – NBC goes scuba divin’ with Jeff Gordon? Can’t y'all leave that to those silly “magazine” shows on FOX with such incredible speakers as Derrike Cope, Barry Dodson and some guy we never heard of name Steve Wayne (or somethin’ like that).

That reminds me… if Jeff Gordon is supposedly goin’ scuba divin’ down there to “get away from thinkin' about racin' for a while,” – which the story kept tellin’ us - what is NBC’s race coverage team doing there on the dock, in the boat and in the water?

Y’all can’t sneak that stuff past ol’ Bubba.

*Quote of the Week: “No one has mentioned Dale Earnhardt to me. It’s only the media.” – Benny Parsons

Benny, they got you locked up in that booth or didn’t you happen to notice every single person at that track talkin’ about Dale Earnhardt every other sentence? If you “calls’m likes you sees’m,” you might wanna get them specs fixed.

*Changin’ spoilers ever’time the wind blows. Changin’ the plates. Changin’ the yeller line rules… Any chance we can change the guys that are changin’ all this stuff?

*That yeller line rule stuff was just hilarious, weren’t it? Here’s just one example of what I’m thinkin’…

Geoffrey Bodine gets bumped by Sterling Marlin and swings left to go below the yeller line to avoid wreckin’ them both. That’s a penalty.

So, rather than take the penalty next time, Bodine - or any other driver in this situation - should turn up into the car above him (that’s not a penalty) rather than turn away from the other cars.

Geoffrey turnin’ right and knockin’ Sterling into about 15 other cars would be no penalty, but goin’ low and avoidin’ any type of wreck is. Makes a heckuva lot of sense.

*Question of the Week… How long before Jimmie Johnson accidentally runs into the back of Jeff Gordon and wrecks his boss? I’ll bet on three weeks.

*Speakin’ of bettin’, I won me a bunch of money this here weekend. Wanna know what I bet on? OK then, here goes…

1. I bet there’d be a big ol’ wreck in the second 125 qualifyin’ race. I figured with the likes of Mike Skinner, Jimmy Spencer, Buckshot Jones, Shawna Robinson, Dave Marcis, Kenny Wallace and Robby Gordon in it, there weren’t no way I’d lose.

2. I bet them trucks would be wreckin’ each other all over the dern place. Another sure thing.

*Speakin’ of them 125 thingys, did y’all catch Ally McBestwick and the boys callin’ them suckers? If not, it sounded somethin’ like this…

“He’s now in 16th, but qualified 18th, which means he’s in the Daytona 500… or maybe out…. Wait a minute, he’s definitely in or out… Hold on, if the world stopped spinnin’ right now, we’re quite sure he’d either be out or taking a provisional… we think.”

*Did I just hear Marty Shhhnyder say “the car got run over by the crewman’s foot”… good grief.

*Quote of the Week Part II: “The 500 isn't about using gimmicks, it's about covering the Great American Race... We have 19 other races to play with the toys." - Sam Flood of NBC.

Hey Sam, how bout y’all concentrate on coverage of all the other 19 races, and leave them derned toys we all hate at home to play with?

*Pretty interestin’ that Shawna wrecked a few times this weekend in the "BAM" car, ain’t it? Reckon the "SPINOUT" sponsorship is headed Buckshot’s way soon?

*Anybody think someone other than Robert Pressley or Ted Musgrave is gonna win a truck race this year? I shore wouldn’t bet the barn on it.

*Quote of the Week Part III: From the same interview (with Richard Petty and Dave Marcis).

Reporter – What’s the biggest difference between the Daytona 500 now and way back when?
Marcis – Eh? What’d that young fella say Richard?
Reporter – I say, what’s the biggest difference between the Daytona 500 now and way back when?
Petty – It’s all just done growed up so big.

Ya gotta love that Petty accent, don’t ya? Who the heck else could get away with callin’ this incredible event the Dayton’r 500’rd?… Ok, I could.

I’ll talk at y’all next week… I reckon.
Bubba

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