Last night — well, actually right before I woke up this morning — I dreamed that I was at a NASCAR race, but I was supposed to give the prayer before the National Anthem. Never mind the fact that an actual minister does this at each race.
A few seconds before it’s my turn, I realize that I have nothing prepared and that I’m going to have to rely on my Southern Baptist upbringing — which is ten years behind me — to get me through this. I know that praying for the safety of the drivers is a given, but could I throw in that I’d like for Kurt and Kyle Busch to finished 43rd and 42nd? It doesn’t matter who gets what, as long as they’re in the back of the pack. And a lot of the ministers say “Shalom” right before they say “Amen” (perhaps in an attempt to avoid alienating what must be a large Jewish following of NASCAR?), so I know could add that as well. Suffice it to say, I’m in trouble as the microphone is handed to me.
So I start off with “Dear Lord,” while in my head I’m thinking, “Dear Lord Baby Jesus,” and secretly cursing the fact that I love Will Ferrell and Talledega Nights.
Then, someone is trying to say something to me, and I’m on the verge of retorting, “WTF, can’t you see? I’m praying here, dammit.” But I have the sense in my dream to know that was a bad idea.
But no, The Powers That Be try to usher me to my seat, and what’s even more weird than that is, Greg Biffle is doing the ushering. Know what my first thought is? No, not “Why isn’t he in his car?” (Of course, he might have figured that since he can’t make The Chase, what was the point? Only you NASCAR fans will get that, I know.) It is, “Cinlach is going to be so jealous.”
So I’m having to pray while I’m walking to my seat, and I’m doing both badly. Then, Greg is no longer ushering me. I guess he figures he’d better get in his car if he expected to actually race.
Suddenly, I remember that I left my bags — as in travel bags — at the spot where they were doing the opening ceremonies. So I trudge back down all those steps and grab my bags. A couple of minutes after that, my alarm went off. (Today’s my Saturday to work. :-()
And it’s not like I’m going to be taking a break from NASCAR, either. Tonight is the last race before The Chase, and we’ve invited a couple of friends over to watch. Plus, Cinlach has just bought NASCAR ’07 for PS2, so I’ll be hearing race cars running in my sleep.