Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Tony Stewart has got a challenger. A NASCAR talk radio show host, Rob Pascoe of WDFN AM 1130's "On the Track" from the Detroit area has challenged Stewart to a race to the top of the fence at MIS in June '08. This came months after Stewart said to a media person... "I'd like to see you get your fat butt up there"... this guy, Rob, will probably blow Smoke away!! He is apparently not a Stewart fan and has also challenged Smoke to a boxing match. Smoke better be cautious...

I've not commented much on the Atlanta race because of the disappointing end. Seeing Martin Truex Jr. lose what was his race to Johnson over possible water in the fuel tanks sits better. At least now I can point the finger at NASCAR and/or Sunoco instead of the Hamlin crew. Marty Jr. had a great day!! Well... almost.

Back at the Cottage... I apologize to my fellow bloggers for my lack of attendance. I have been sick with some sort of flu bug. It's still hanging on and seems to enjoy me as a host. Little bastard!!

Monday, October 29, 2007

World Champ's...Again

True Irish blood!!

If you're even remotely aware of how loyal a typical Red Sox fan is you'd know that they are all in celebration today after the team clinched the world title last night after a 4 game sweep. They did the same thing in '04 against St. Louis. This '07 team is full of young blood and it's likely the Red Sox can win the World Championship again next year.

The Atlanta race... bizarre.

Sunday, October 28, 2007


Yellow pretty much sums up the Busch race at Memphis yesterday. Cautions are all part of a good race, but this race proved, to me at least, that there can be too many. By the time lap 120 was complete I was ready to watch a movie or something.

Kudos to Dave Reutimann for his first Busch Series win and chalk one up for Toyo and MWR too.

The Biff on the pole at Atlanta.... now there's a surprise! Perhaps with all the negative publicity Roush-Fenway is getting over the Edwards-Kenseth fiasco, The Biff was able to focus... whatever!! But I think it's cool to see Greg get a pole and the RedSox... WOW!! 3-0 in the World Series. Our household is full of diehard RedSox fans, including my 10 year old son who is going to get a pancake breakfast this morning to celebrate the Sox victory.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Time for Carl to Grow Up

Reading all the A.P. articles, blogs and other related media concerning Carl Edwards, Kenseth and Roushfenway only made me look into this on a deeper level, especially where Carl is concerned.

I've concluded, although my conclusion is relative to only one side and/or possible reason{s}, that Carl is disliked not only in the RoSox camp, but in the general garage areas as well. This is a guy that has it all. Personality, talent, looks, brains and brawn. He is very sure of himself with glowing self esteem and confidence. Chances are he grew up this way and his peer rivalry goes back as far as Kindergarten. Living in these shoes is not easy. His peers have most likely always viewed him for something he's not... a cocky, self-centered know-it-all. Guys like Carl usually develop a lot of resentment and unresolved anger due to their being misunderstood, disliked and ridiculed. This evolves over time and can erupt. The good news is, with maturity it usually levels off.

Does this excuse his on-camera display? No. But it does make sense in what is a very gray area. I hope these guys work this out. RoSox is an awesome organization with the potential to win championships and it's a shame to see all this talent faltering due to boys being boys.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I know how that Otter feels. After Sunday's race at Martinsville, I've succumbed to what's been the norm all season... Hendrick dominance. Clearly at this point in The Chase it would take DNF's by both Jeffy and Jimmy for Country Clint or Smoke to become contenders. This weeks race at Atlanta will certainly clinch it for both of those Californians, but a glimmer of hope remains that there could be an upset in the points. This would make the season's finale far more interesting, unless you're a Gordon or Johnson lover. It almost reminds me of MLB's playoffs with the best two teams going to The Series...{GO SOX!!!}... Maybe this brainchild of Brian France's is not so genius afterall. Robert at Nascar from the Bleachers made some very good points in a recent post concerning not only The Chase, but Brian's role as Chief... which, if the rumors are true, may be shortlived.

Pre-Chase NASCAR was not much different. There were usually 2 and sometimes 3 drivers in contention for The Cup. "The Chase" was supposed to make the very long racing season far more exciting. It's supposed to keep us interested and be tuning our TV's in on the final races instead of MLB or the beginning of the NFL season. The race for The Chase was far better this year than the race for The Cup is. Perhaps Uncle Jim taking control... {everyone pray}... will bring some changes.

I'm probably biased in my opinion's because clearly Hendrick dominance has been the norm all season, so why would it not be now?

Jerry at Ranting and Raving posted an awesome article. Please read!!

Back at the Cottage... Yesterday brought some sad news to our house. We brought home a Minature Pinscher at 10 weeks old in early spring of this year. Within a couple of days we noticed a limp in his front right leg and promptly had it x-rayed. He was either born with or sustained a separated shoulder shortly after birth and at 10 weeks it was too late to correct. We paid $1,300 for him and could've gotten a full refund, but instead we took another pup, which we gave to Pattyjo's mom, and we kept Coco. He went in for a neutering yesterday and while under anesthesia the Vet x-rayed his shoulder again, which has progressively gotten worse. The sad news is, there is nothing they can do for the little guy. It's not operable and cannot be amputated. We can only give him life until the pain and discomfort becomes too much to bear. This is tearing Pattyjo to pieces... Coco is her baby and his personality is not A-typical of the Min-Pin. He is a sweetheart. I've told Pattyjo that at least we gave him an opportunity at life, because he surely would've been put down at 10 weeks had we not opted to keep him. We are unsure how long he can go on.... months... years... we really don't know. At this time he does not appear to be in pain and his mobility is okay... but it's only matter of time when this thing will become too much for him. I will replace him with another Min-Pin when the time comes, and we will always have Coco in our hearts as the little guy whose life was in our hands.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Ping Pong Anyone

Skinner... Hornaday. Hornaday... Skinner.
These NCTS drivers are switching the points lead on a weekly basis. But Mike Skinner actually spread the lead yesterday by 11 points. If the pattern continues with 3 races remaining, the Champion will be Ron Hornaday.
The Truck race at Martinsville had it's share of cautions as usual, but the best two came near the end. With only 7 laps to go the track was red flagged due to a multi-truck wreck that left fluid and assorted truck parts everywhere. With the restart underway and Skinner in the lead with 3 laps remaining, things were crazy with more bumping and banging than that of a wreck-um derby. With less than a lap to go and Skinner out front Hornaday pulled a stunt I've never seen to get around another truck and what he left behind turned into a pile up that allowed Skinner the win, followed by Jack Sprague and Hornaday took 3rd. The rest of the field literally limped, crawled and trickled across the finish line, under power at a reasonable speed with spoilers dragging and flat tires.
Good ole Truck racin'!!

The Petty Enterprises #45 car is falling quickly and Richard Petty himself is getting behind the wheel to keep the car in the top 35.... well not quite, but Kyle Petty has talked about putting Bobby Labonte in the seat. Bobby has done very well lately in the #43 Cheerio's car and with that momentum
it'd be crazy to pull him. Kyle wants both cars in the top 35 and instead of earning it himself he wants to do it by proxy. Bobby has provisional's as well and far more talent than Kyle, but I'm against this sort of thing and although other teams do it {MWR} I don't condone it.
Martin Truex Jr.'s car has fallen out of the top 35... DEI decides to put Dale Jr. in the #1 and Truex Jr. in the #8 for the rest of the season.
YA Right!! That would fly with the fans like a lead balloon.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Nationwide Logo Cool Blue

A Nationwide PR Rep sent me a nice Email with a link to the new logo. I like it. And as I said before, I like the change and it won't take me long to get used to it.
The new logos are nearly mirror images.

It's late in the A.M. for me... it's Friday... I have to head out the door very soon...
Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Good Things

I can be an ignorant s.o.b with my mind focusing, yet missing out on the things happening in the racing world that are vital. NASCAR is now so very different from the days of yore, and some is negative in the hearts of the long time fan. Vroom made a very good point of this in a recent post. Like everything else, NASCAR has and continues to evolve, but deep behind the scenes there are many people doing things for the sport that 20 years ago would've been thought of as taboo. I clicked on a link in one of the many NASCAR related web sites I visit, and in fact I cannot tell you which site it was, but it took me to the Drive for Diversity site. This was all brand new to me, but what an eye opener. It's a racing program started in 2004 with opportunities for minority and female participants with established race teams in the NASCAR Grand NationalDivision and the NASCAR Whelen All-AmericanSeries. http://www.drivefordiversity.com/

This is awesome and many kudos to all those involved. Richard Childress Racing is a big supporter as well as a Team Partner and Tony Stewart is involved, as he has a huge interest in promoting the potential of young drivers.

Have a nice day!!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Let's Not Forget The Rookies

The year was 1973. I was a high school sophomore and Lennie Pond was the Winston Cup Rookie of the Year. You'll hear Lennie's name from time to time and usually out of "Jaws", D.W. Lennie beat out Darrell for the Rookie honors. It was one of the tightest contentions for the Rookie title of all time, but Waltrip went on to become a Champion and Lenny... well he had the makings of a champ but had too much bad luck. He had many runner up finishes but only one victory in his 17 years... Talladega in 1978. I cannot locate anything on what he does today or where he is. This is the case of many past greats.

2007 Rookie of the Year... looks like it's going to Montoya. Not a surprise, but it's been a boring season for the rookie contenders. The '08 season promises to be better, with several open wheeler's coming into NASCAR. My money is on Franchitti next year.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Murphy's Laws

1. Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
2. Nothing is as easy as it looks.
3. Everything takes longer than you think.
4. If there is a possibility of several things going wrong, the one that will cause the most damage will be the one to go wrong. Corollary: If there is a worse time for something to go wrong, it will happen then.
5. If anything simply cannot go wrong, it will anyway.
6. If you perceive that there are four possible ways in which a procedure can go wrong, and circumvent these, then a fifth way, unprepared for, will promptly develop.
7. Left to themselves, things tend to go from bad to worse.
8. If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
9. Nature always sides with the hidden flaw.
10. Mother nature is a bitch.
11. It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious.
12. Whenever you set out to do something, something else must be done first.
13. Every solution breeds new problems.

It seemed apparent that Jeff Gordon was going to win at LMS last night... this I pondered as I decided I could watch the remaining 6 laps from my bed. Funny how Gordon stated over his radio that NASCAR better do a good job cleaning up the Speedy Dry only to sputter from low fuel at the re-start giving Newman the lead and what appeared was going to be a victory for Ryan. I came to life!! Jumping up in my bed chanting "please, please Ryan, come on Ryan, yes! yes!.. oh no!!!" I was so disappointed when the Speedy Dry took Ryan's tires out from under him sending him into the wall. That was supposed to be Gordon. The leader at that point was like that of a pioneer, and Newman's demise with 3 laps to go came from being the point man. So sad, but the icing on the cake that defined the last race at LMS for the '07 season.

Jeff... well, I cannot deny his skill and if he does take another championship it will be well deserved. He has been dominate all season and fairly consistent. He is among the Elite of NASCAR and with 10 or more years of racing left in him he could break all previous records by other past greats. Nonetheless... and with all due respect, I am not and never will be a fan of his and I wanted nothing more than for him to be the one to find the wall... not Ryan Newman.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Yet Another

Yet another restless night. Much of this is due to our restless dogs that feed off of each other's behaviour. They must think it's some sort of game to see which human will get out of bed first to quiet them down. I'm the winner!! Or loser??

Yet another pole for Newman! 42nd and his 7th pole at LMS. If nothing else... Ryan has made a name for himself for this. It's been over 2 years since his last win, but it's possible he'll break that streak yet this season. Crew chief, Mike Nelson has come a long way in his rookie year. He had some big shoes to fill following Matt Borland. This Penske team is all about Engineers. Nelson was the teams engineer since it's inception in 2000. With Ryan himself being an engineer as is past crew chief, Borland. One has to wonder if there is a conflict of the minds. Nelson and Newman seem to mesh well and they are listening to and getting garage ideas from Pat Tryson, the #2 Miller Lite crew chief, who is not an engineer, he has a B.A. in Business Administration. Engineer's are a stubborn bunch and analytical to the extreme. I know this all too well coming from an engineering background myself, but I also have extensive business experience, so in most cases my engineering logic loses to risk because business is all about risk and so is racing. Without Tryson in the Penske garage it's likely the "Logical" thinking would succumb to head butting as it did with Borland. I'd like to see the #12 Alltel team continue on this upward momentum into next season.

Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Biff & Nicole

One week from today Nicole Lunders becomes Mrs. Nicole Lunders-Biffle.
When Greg was asked.."Why on a Wednesday?"... he stated "Because Jack won't give me a weekend off." Okay... so what's the rush all about? Why not wait until post season? So instead of a week in the Cayman's they get to enjoy their Honeymoon somewhere between Concord, NC and Martinsville, Va.
Martinsville is the sweatshirt Capital of the World so they can get his and hers sweatshirts stating...
"Just Married in Martinsville"
Nicole is pretty special and not just another pretty face in the pits...
Best of luck to them!!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Happy Columbus Day

They're stealth and come from behind to bite you in the ass.
That's how it felt watching as Jeffy and Jimmy snuck in from behind the pack. Unpredictable... but that's Dega.

Pattyjo was wondering why the crowd was cheering as Jimmy took the lead followed by Smoke's attempt to cross over only to get shuffled back... I guessed it was due to the good ole plate racin going on.
It was a great finish.

The RO-7 Chevy apparently cannot hold up under 8900 rev's. Surprising any of the engines could hold up under that for 3 plus hours. The attrition was biased though and DEI-RCR should literally put the RO-7 on the {auction} block.

So now that the COT has made it's debut into the restrictor plate world, maybe the driver's will stop their bitching about it. The car did well as far as I could tell and I'm sure Kyle Petty feels good about it this morning after the body slam he took.

Several Chase contenders are now eliminated from winning The Cup. It's pretty much left up to the top 4 now, with Smoke in 4th. Although Harvick, Edwards and Kurt Busch have a glimmer of hope.... mathematically. And the Million Dollar spot, 13th, can be had by several, even though Jr. still holds the spot. Newman, Mears and The Biff are all easily within reach.

Back at the Cottage... In a word... hectic. I'm faced with a moral dilemma concerning a business decision. In a nutshell... I have almost priced myself out of an upcoming contractual project due to the high wage I've been asked to pay an employee. A big part of my success comes from the fair pricing I've maintained, but a carpenter under my employ has made that difficult. I had to back peddle and lower my price on this job, which means I'll have to let the carpenter go. If I lower the price's and keep him on he'll make more than I would and in all honesty... he's not all that!! His skills are lacking in several important areas, but he's good with vinyl siding and drywall... ask him to trim out the windows and doors and he's lost. It's never easy letting someone go and it takes a lot of courage because chances are he'll take offense. This because he does feel he's worth every penny.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Dega Day

Kudos to The Onion {Bodine} for winning the Dega Truckfest yesterday. I missed most of it because Pattyjo and I got caught up in Dick's Sporting Goods. I needed a new pair of shoes and after spending a couple of hours on my own earlier in the day without success, I asked Pattyjo if she'd go to Dick's. She brings me luck and sure enough I ended up with a very nice pair of Merrell Moab Hiking shoes.

Theses puppies are not cheap, but OMG!! they have to be the most comfortable shoe I've ever owned. So... I missed the race to tend to my feet, but I'm happy I did. Jack Sprague wrecked and I get ired when he wrecks. He is an alumni of my own public school in tiny Spring Lake Mich. and graduated with my younger brother. I remember Jack as a little kid and I have that protective nature about me. I only just read about it this morning so I didn't sit around pissed off last night.

Qualifying for the Cup race... bizarre to say the least. Mikey on the pole! I did watch this in it's entirety and I must say it was one of the most interesting qualifying telecasts I've watched. So... what will happen today when all of those "Go or Go-Homer's" up front get run over? Their cars are not in race trim and I envision a draft locomotive plowing through the Brat Pack within minutes. Well at least the NAPA Toyota got some much needed publicity as well as Toyota in general. It's been their weekend with this and their first victory with the Friday ARCA race. Cup win looming??? I predict that'll be next season in a JGR car.

Happy "Dega" race day and may the draft be with you.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

A Fans View

The word alone sounds ominous. Many driver's are concerned over tomorrows race and rightly so.
We've been there and the mere sight of this mammoth is surreal. I've posted a few pics I took there from the Spring 06' Busch and Cup races. From the grandstands it is like none other. We witnessed some horrific wrecks.
I hope things go well for the guys tomorrow... it's a frightening place... but we will go back again!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Melting Pot

They forgot the ears!! M&M's don't have ears, but in this case they should've included them. It looks more like Elvis than it does Kyle Busch. I'm a tad disappointed that Shrub is the newest M&M driver, and probably the last for years to come. M&M's are my favorite candy and now every time I go to eat them I'll have Shrub on my brain and I'll want to hold them to prove they do melt in your hands. The E. Sad M&M stuff was the coolest and I began to accept Gilliland, and seeing the #88 with it was awesome.... but Kyle Busch!!! I will never be able to root for the M&M car again.

Speaking of the car... the 08' COT Camry JGR #18 M&M car is very cool looking... well maybe now that Gibb's has Mars on board some of the other driver's may get some cool looking candy coated cars on occassion, ie; Smoke driving the nuts off the Snickers car in the "Nationwide Series".

I kinda like the new Grand National major sponsor. The only problem is they have already given Warren Wallace the axe. GEICO has two years to leave Nationwide Series. But I don't think this keeps them out of the Cup level.

Yesterday brought an explosion of news. So much at once it's hard to keep it all straight. 07' will always be the year of change.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

All In A Day's Work

I enjoy sharing what I do in the world other than living and breathing NASCAR.
Below is a pic I posted in an earlier blog and I said I would follow up with progress photos.

The mason and excavator sub's I use finally got it ready for framing. It's a family room with a bump-out for a stairwell into the garage. That is a 12' wide opening you see into the existing basement wall. We had to hire a specialist to cut through the 8" thick concrete. It took him all of 3 hours and he charged $850.00. The new basement area will eventually be a home theater room.

That's yours truly this past Monday standing atop of a wall like I have Spiderman powers!
A regular client of mine owns several old apt. buildings. Below is one she owns that was built in the 1850's and was originally a mule barn for mules that pulled the log barges down a nearby canal that dumps into the Hudson River. It is now and has been for well over 50 years a 4 unit apt. house. The deck portion of the porch was nearly 75 years old and was very hazardous. It serves as a main entrance so I had a big challenge on my hands to remove it and rebuild it in one day. Success!! The 1st pic was taken at 8:30 am yesterday, the last at 5:30 pm. Nothing fancy, but certainly safe and sound.

This is the boss, "Chase". She just turned 5 mos. and as you can see loves scrap lumber.

One note on NASCAR... I'm happy to know that "The Rock" has been purchased by someone with plans to revive it. Richard Childress was also a high bidder but former racer and driving school owner Andy Hillenburg now owns it at a bargain price of $4.4 million.

Monday, October 1, 2007

It's The Biff's!!!

I am very happy with "Da" Biff's win. He clearly had the best car at the end. The slowing down?? He said he had fuel and crossed the finish line under power, the field was frozen, the caution was out, that's it. That was just the icing on the cake to what was an insane day in Kansas.

NASCAR took their own rules and manipulated them, but then again I don't have a copy of the rule book. I always thought that if there is a rain delay beyond the halfway mark and there is not enough time to finish the race, then it's called at that point. Okay... so apparently that is not the case. So be it and let it be. Anyway, I think the whole thing turned out humorous with Country Bowyer stating "I don't know... but Jeff and Jimmy said.... and those guys know racing". I forgot his exact words, but to claim these clowns have rights to the tower was hilarious. And then both of these Hendrick pion's bitched, as expected.

Did anyone happen to catch Kasey Kahne getting snubbed by Johnson? It was during the second rain delay very near the re-start. Kahne approached Johnson as Johnson walked past and Kahne got a look from Johnson like he was a pawn. It was very apparent and deliberate and frankly it turned my stomach. Something about Johnson has always held me from giving him the benefit of the doubt as far as his character goes. He has got to be the most arrogant SOB in NASCAR and that attitude does not mesh with what NASCAR stands for or where it all began. I hope that his high horse breaks a freaking leg.

I'm short on time this morning, so cannot read other blogs. I'll check in on everyone later and I'm certain to find some interesting stuff!!