Clergy persons around the world registered alarm today that recent events in the Indy Racing League might actually be "signs that the apocalypse is upon us."
Religious leaders pointed to recent merger talks between IRL headman Tony George and ChampCar World Series leader Kevin Kalkhoven and the hiring of KISS rock star Gene Simmons to lead IRL marketing efforts as "breaking the final seal that will loose the devil on earth."
Saying "open-wheel racing needs to be unified," George confirmed recently he was talking to Kalkhoven about mending the open-wheel split that dates back to 1996.
The news greatly distressed racing bloggers and message board posters who view reunification as dramatically reducing what they have to bitch about. The religious community also saw reunification talks as an ominous sign.
"We're certainly alarmed," said the most Rev. Peter Iscobar of Fairfield, N.H. "I've always said the day Kevin and Tony sit down and talk about ways to save open-wheel racing is the day the four horsemen of the apocalypse dismount in my front yard."
Iscobar said with both George and Kalkhoven admitting talks are going on "I'd say life on earth is about over."
Kalkhoven and George were once thought to be signatories to a "mutual assured destruction" agreement, a sort of suicide pact that had them both rejecting any merger even if it killed open-wheel racing entirely.
But with car counts in both series making like an Acapulco cliff diver and Kalkhoven and George allegedly writing huge checks just to keep races going, there may have been an epiphany. Rumors have also swirled that the IRL's television "partner," ABC/ESPN, may actually expect to attract TV audiences that number above 4,503.
Other black-helicopter enthusiasts have taken the elevation of British driver Katherine "Show Some" Legge from Atlantics to the ChampCar series as an escalation in the "babe arms race." Kalkhoven has famously promised not to ask Legge to dawn a thong and drape herself over a car hood to get attention for herself and ChampCar.
But, the theory goes, Kalkhoven may have threatened to "turn up the hoochie momma" factor if George refused to negotiate. The threat of Legge stealing some of the babe appeal now cornered by IRL Rookie of the Year Sensation Danica Patrick may have gotten George to the table.
Meanwhile, the leaders of NASCAR allowed that they are following reunification talks closely. "God help us if open-wheel stops eating its own young," said one NASCAR insider. "And, besides, I'm frightened of Gene Simmons. It's the tongue."
Elsewhere, Bush Administration officials said they are "still considering" calling up the KISS Army for deployment in Iraq.