OK, so the day job stuff is done for now. I write for a living (you’d never know it from this blog!). I write all kinds of marketing stuff. Annual reports (4,000 words, no problem!) radio ads, brochures (just worked on two today), web banners, video scripts. I’ve written everything short of business poetry.
Anyway, I’m a real streaky writer. When it’s on, it’s on. When it’s not, it’s not, one of the many reasons the super-flexible hours of a self-employed freelance writer fit me. Plus after a big writing session my brain is the size of a golf ball. All mashed down and compressed. That’s when I gotta relax, let Uncle pdog out, listen to Ke$ha and emote thusly (thanks for enabling my behavior by reading this).
Rousch Fenway seems to have Texas wired. Greg “The Biff” Biffle has one there twice (including last year) and Carl Edwards has won at Texas three times. So maybe we can keep our eyes on the third Rousch Fenway car, cowboy-belt-buckle-wearing Ricky “The Ricky” Stenhouse Jr.
The Ricky saw his squeeze (Danica Patrick) have a fabulous race at Martinsville, so maybe Texas is his turn. Speaking of NASCAR’s power couple, Danica tweeted out a photo of her wearing cowboy boots and hat the other day. Danica. Come back to us, Danica. Think high fashion, not high hats. WALK AWAY FROM THE (campfire) LIGHT. Kidding, of course. Maybe the woman from Roscoe, Illinois, is being assimilated into the Western culture. Wait a second … Danica in spurs … I had to take a second there.
Texas is one of them-there allegedly evil 1.5-mile deals and people expect the speeds this Saturday night to be “flat flyin’” (that’s kind of the NASCAR equivalent of GOING PLAID) with the new Gen 6 car. Matt Kenseth and Jimmie Johnson are always threats at Texas as well. As a Danica fan, I’ll be interested in seeing if her IndyCar smoothness helps her at Texas.
The Texas race this year is sponsored by the National Rifle Association, which caused some people to wet themselves (either with joy or despaired) when it was announced. (Latest look at the issue from Nate Ryan here.) Meh. The NRA has the right to sponsor a race same as anybody, I guess. Texas is a fitting since it seem everyone packs heat down there. (I KNOW, it’s a stereotype. I live in Iowa. Fully familiar with state-wide stereotypes). And the winner of races at Texas cracks off some faux rounds with some old-fashioned hog legs (six shooters) in victory lane. The Biff won Texas a year ago, to break a 559-day winless streak. Tune in at 7:30 p.m. ET, FOX.
Joey and Denny … Junior and Jimmie!!! — The NASCAR drama train continued this week with Joey Logano talking about his tussle with Denny Hamlin at Fontana. And of course we had to know if Tony Stewart was still mad at Logano for blocking him at Fontana. Then, at Martinsville, people got into a tizzy over Johnson passing a wounded Earnhardt car on the track, putting Junior a lap down.
Insert screams of YOU BASTARD!! aimed at Jimmie here. Jeff Gluck Got to the Heart of this Raging Controversy by asking Junior what he thought, and Junior said he "would have done the same thing Jimmie did." So there you go. Read it all here. Hard for me to believe anyone pissed their pants in rage or rapture about the incident, but racing fans can be a little, ah, hardcore at times, myself included.
The winner here is clearly Coca-Cola. Coke slapped together a beautiful ad post Stewart/Logano fracas:
He-huh, he-huh, he-huh … funny. Tip: they didn’t film any of that ad immediately after the Fontana race. What did happen was the agency or whoever made that ad got an idea on how to modifying expositing ad or use some extra video they shot during the making of the ads, record some new voice over for the radio announcer bit and BAM, funny ad.
FYI … a little marketing insight here … but making a TV ad or a video of any kind is possibly the least efficient endeavor on planet earth. It takes a zillion hours of set up, filming, editing, tweaking, tearing down, tweaking and tweaking to create a 30-second spot. Seriously. As in spend FOUR HOURS setting up to get 4 seconds of footage. Just the nature of the beast. Also, in the process of making a TV ad, you usually end up with about a billion extra minutes of video that doesn’t get used.
Good for Coke in addressing the controversy and getting some fun out of it. Smart. Resourceful. A lot of corporate sponsors would have ran from the whole Logano/Stewart/Hamlin thing, especially since Hamlin got hurt. Maybe you think Coke should have done that. I think it was genius.
Also, Danica Patrick should not quit her day job to become a singer.
Clint Bowyer is Growing on Me — I’m pretty new to this whole NASCAR thing, but I kind of like Clint Bowyer, if only because he seems to be having fun and is an unpredictable interview. Quippy. Prone to say funny stuff. I get a big John C. Reilly vibe off him. Is that just me?
ANYWHO, Clint seems like he’s pretty authentic. “Authentic,” that’s a hot word these days. When talking about a person it means to be real, true to yourself, genuine. That seems like Bowyer. And of course he had me from the moment he sprinted around the Phoenix infield last fall as part of a brawl between his team and that of Jeff Gordon. Insert West Side Story gang fight dance scene here. Impressive wheels on Clint.
Clint is a dirt track driver from Kansas and often seems to be having -- gasp -- fun. It seems to me that dirt track drivers do what they do because it is fun. Sure, some of the big dogs up in World of Outlaws, etc., can bet a little bit intense, but the local dirt tracker is just out there having fun, racing, then having a beer with everyone after the race. I get that vibe off Clint. (Which is not to say there aren't many others in that category.)
That’s what it’s about, right? FUN? I get “brand building” and all of that, and I get “wanting to win” as well, but sometimes I wonder if there’s any joy in some drivers. SURE, (most) everyone is happy when they win (except maybe Kimi Räikkönen, but even that seems to be authentic from Kimi, so I love him for it). Too many are wrapped too tight and they don’t have any fun. (Kimi, I would say, is soooooo not wrapped tightly.) Dude, you drive race cars for a living. Ease up a little bit. Enjoy the ride (har) a little more.
Hey, gotta go. No IndyCar this weekend. I was going to talk about the IndyCar TV ratings from Barber, but they were putrid (hard to describe 0.18 any other way) and I’m on a don’t-stress-the-ratings bender right now. Not going to harsh myself.
Have a good weekend. Smile. If you don't have to dodge snipers or sell pieces of your body to get food, you got it realtively good in the world. DRINK, ye BASTARDS … but not too much. pdog … out.