Nascar

So one of my favorite birthday cards my dad ever got was, appropriately, about Nascar. On the front it had two hillbilly-ish looking guys and a caption saying “Ever wonder how “Nascar” got its name?”. Inside the car the two hillbillies were looking at a car and their speech bubbles said, “That’s a nas car right there.” and “Yeah, a reeeaaal nas car.”

If you were to call me a redneck or hick or hillbilly for proudly proclaiming that Nascar (and racing in general) is one of my favorite all time sports (up there with soccer, and third would be hockey), I’d thank you because I have no problem with these terms.

I don’t mind, of course, when people don’t like Nascar. It’s like how I just don’t like basketball, for my own reasons (I just find it boring); everyone deserves their own opinion. I tend to get fired up and disagree, though, when people don’t consider it a sport. “Sport” is a very general term (go look it up in a dictionary, why don’t ya?), and if it can include cheerleading, it can include racing. Though they are not the quintessential example of “athlete”, they have the second best reflexes in sports, only after baseball players. They require more mental toughness than in any other sport, considering they are in a car that can reach speeds of almost 200 miles per hour (on the fastest tracks, even on the smaller tracks its still 150 or so) for hours, under the pressure of the G forces and knowing that a single move can, at best, ruin their car and put them out of the race, at worst injure them or take their life, or hurt someone else. As the commercials like to say, “Everything else is just a game”.

Honestly, my love for the sport doesn’t have any sense to it? Why would I waste a few hours just sitting, watching cars go around in a circle again, and again, and again, and again, for 200-500 miles. Essentially, that is all Nascar is.

But is so much more. There is so much engineering and technological genius that goes into these cars, that I guess people like my dad (who is a heavy equipment (crane) mechanic) can relate to. The athletes in Nascar are the most grounded, coolest guys in all of sports.  They make a fair amount, but it is far from ridiculous. They are just typical guys who love racing and cars.

I’ve watched Nascar so intently over my childhood and teenage years that I know most of the drivers by heart, and have my little preferences and inside jokes with my dad. Chad Knaus is probably one of the smartest guys around, and my dad likes to say he could have worked for NASA or something but went to Nascar instead. Whenever they talk about Juan Pablo Montoya, my family always quotes the Princess Bride and say, “I am Juan Pablo Montoya, and you killed my father; prepare to die.” Oh and it wouldn’t be a race without Sam Hornish Jr. wrecking. I’ll even admit to my crush on Trevor Bayne (if you’re out there, I love you, WAIT FOR ME. Sorry, I’m joking of course, but I couldn’t resist).

But most importantly are the wonderful ways it has affected me personally. Nascar just makes me feel good, and relaxes me (even though sometimes the suspense of those few final races kills me). When my favorite drivers win (such as when Brad Keselowski, won the championship last season), it’s as if I just won the race.  It’s exciting.  My dad, of course, works all week and sometimes Saturdays. Nothing beats Nascar season and the assuredness that he will be there watching the race on Sunday afternoon-and I can be there alongside him. We talk and joke about the race and other things too; it’s something that just brings us together, and I will always be thankful to Nascar for the wonderful experiences it has put in my life.

So, come Sunday afternoon, I will be on my couch, probably some tortillas and salsa on the table, with my dad and dog close by, watching the first race of the 2013 season of Nascar: the Daytona 500.

Late Night Poetry: Depressed

Here are two poems I wrote late at night at time when I was feeling down and whatever. The first one comes from this summer, and was (unfortunately) fueled by a guy. The second comes from last night, when a friend pointed out that sometimes I run away from growing up and making decisions such as college. Now that I think about it, I did write a poem awhile ago about holding into the past a lot, and not looking to the present or future. Whether this is true or not (still trying to figure it all out, not running away this time though), that’s where the second poem came from.  Oh and go me for posting three days in a row! (For some reason the second poem isn’t cooperating, there is supposed to be a space between each question and the following stanza).

I’ll admit that I haven’t really edited the second one or tried to create a specific flow of words. Though I always like that challenge, this time I just wanted to write and leave it in its raw form in the hopes that some of the emotion carried in it would still be in the poem when others read it. This is something I have struggled with for a long time because I’m never sure if the poetry, blogs, or stories I write will hold as much meaning to others as it does to me. I guess it doesn’t really matter anyway, it’s what I think of my art that’s most important. As always, please give me feedback if you can!

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The Root of Almost Any Debate

Lately there have been a lot of debate about, well, lots of things-gun control, gay marriage, etc. And in every single instance, I believe there is always one problem at the root of every situation.

Usually, in the media, we only hear from extreme liberals and extreme conservatives, or, as my history teacher put it, “the crazies from this end and the crazies from the other end”. We could probably blame this on the media wanting the best story bla bla bla. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about.

Pretty much everyone knows how these extremes can sometimes be idiotic. For example, I watched a vlog on Utube yesterday (MrRepzion..you should look him up, some of his videos are very insightful), and took particular notice of the two religious-ish ones that I watched. One of course had to do with some lady calling gays “not human”. Now, I’m fairly certain that 99% of the population doesn’t believe that. Whether or not they believe in gay marriage, they aren’t as idiotic to say something like that. However, because this woman was Christian people tag her beliefs to the beliefs of all Christians.

I can relate for a fact that every Christian I have talked to about this issue has homosexual friends or relatives, and are perfectly fine with it. In fact, many of them are fine with the idea of gay marriage. Honestly, aren’t there so many other things we could be worrying about, like I don’t know (like seriously I don’t know) but I’m sure there are better things out there to worry about! Er how about that economy?

In all seriousness, people need to realize this game that the media plays and that a lot of what we see is the crazies and not the people in the middle who actually have rational thinking. Lately I’ve been getting sort of pissed with all these issues, not because I’m hating on the people and their opinions, because I truly believe that every is entitled to an opinion. However, I’m just getting pissed because Christians are unjustly being labeled for certain things, like any other group could be labeled. Obviously not all of us think, “Oh yeah, I’m Christian so I think all atheists and gays are going to hell.” No, it’s not like that.

And I’m sure not everyone gives us those labels. It probably is just, once again, the crazies that are making us ALL out to be terrible, zealous, unfeeling, unrational people. Though I have witnessed others speaking about Christians as such in my school and other places, and it takes a lot of self-control to not let it get me riled up. So let’s all just be happy, love each other, and blame the media =D

Thank you for listening to my little rant there.

What I Would Change…

…..about my life if I could.

Honestly there isn’t much. I’ve been really blessed with tons of amazing, great people who have come into my life and, even if they never realized it, impacted my life a lot. My parents, sister, and friends are all incredibly dear to me and even though they piss me off a lot, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’ve gotten to do so many cool things from play soccer to excel in school to go to Austria to live in the quaintest little house you’ve ever seen. I’m lucky to have parents who are who they are, and well, I guess the list could go on and on.

There are really only two things I’d change about my life, and they seem so insignificant to the bigger picture of things, but still.

1) I wish I had been more dedicated to soccer and improving myself earlier.

Don’t get me wrong, I love soccer to death, just playing the game is a blessing when other people have to struggle with so many other serious things. But if I could, I would have actually cared about getting better and being competitive at a younger age, which would have helped me a lot in my high school career.

However, I have seen the good that has come from my lack of soccer skills, at least in comparison to the other girls i know. Honestly it’s humiliated me on more than one occasion, and that’s a good thing. It has given me something to fight for. It has made me realize that just because you aren’t the best at what you do is no reason you should quit (which was also an important lesson to learn when it comes to writing).

2) I wish I had been able to take karate or some type of self-defense class when I was little, or even now.

Honestly, this is something I could still change. When I was little I desperately wanted to take karate like my older cousin, but it was too expensive and my parents couldn’t afford it, and that is probably the only time I was genuinely hurt by my parents financial standing. I’ve always wanted to be someone who can handle herself, to be tough just in case anything goes awry. I’m generally not strong so this would have helped my confidence as well as made me feel like I was capable or whatever.

But other than that, I can’t really see anything to change. Everything I have done-even the bad-has made me who I am. The mistakes I’ve made I’ve (mostly) learned from, and even if they were just plain mistakes that nothing could be learned from and no good could come out of, at least I’ve got a crazy story to tell one day. In fact, I’d go back and relive all the terrible times in return for all the good ones.

Note: Despite the seemingly cliche-ness of this post, this is truly how I feel (even though I’m so stubbornly against cliche’s and such).

And has anyone else noticed how I capitalize some “I’s” but not others? Weird.