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Author Archives: Amy
I can tell you exactly where I was. I was home alone. My father was working late and my mother and brother had gone to visit my grandma. I was a high school sophmore and I was pleased to be home alone. I sat in my dad’s recliner and kicked the legs up and had just turned on the television. I found something I wanted to watch..the show escapes me now but as soon as I got into it- the television shut off. I picked up the remote and tried to turn it back on. Our neighbors across the street had the same tv we did and sometimes they would end up turning off our TV (really it happened!). I thought they had done it again so I tried to turn it back on…since it was still light at that time I didn’t realize that our electricity had cut off. Then…the shaking began…I hopped out of the chair (leaving it still reclined) to get away from the plate glass window. All those earthquake drills in school told me to get to the kitchen and hunker down under the table as it was the strongest piece of furniture in the house. The shaking was so bad I couldn’t make it that far and ended up taking shelter in the door frame in the hall. From my vantage point I could see my parent’s computer shaking so violently in their bedroom that I was sure the desk was going to break. In the kitchen the chandelier was swinging back and forth and nearly but not quite touching the ceiling on the swings. The cabinents in the kitchen swung open. Drawers opened in the bathroom. Those 15 seconds seemed to last a lifetime.
You probably saw it on the news. Quickly dubbed the Loma Prieta earthquake- it was a big deal because of all the damage in San Francisco…and because it was the third game of the world series between Oakland and SF. You probably saw photos of highway overpasses pancaked, of the upper deck on the bay bridge collapsing onto a lower deck. You probably saw the extent of the damage before we did…our particularly area was without electricity for 28 hours. We were lucky. There were parts of the area without power for over a week.
What you probably didn’t see was our neighbor coming over to make sure we were ok…knowing that we wouldn’t see my dad for days at a time (he is a utility worker for the power company)….that we had food and water (grocery stores were closed and word was our water supply may be contaminated (it wasn’t)…and a way to cook (barbeque!)…that we were ok for now. This wasn’t an isolated incident either…not just one neighbor…all neighbors checked on each other…several times throughout the week. People shared batteries, radios, candles, food, and most importantly…comfort. It is what struck the teenage me the most. Not the damage…but the beauty that sprang from it….the fostered friendships. The closer relationships with neighbors…some that you knew…and new ones that you maybe didn’t know before. Sad that sometimes it takes something as devastating as a 6.9 earthquake to break down the fences we live behind.
I can’t even remember how it came up. We were in my dad’s truck going somewhere (why waste my gas?)…so it was probably going to check on my grandma on Saturday, do some shopping for her and run other errands. I was in the backseat and racing came up…probably because it was Saturday and I mentioned hoping to be home in time for the start of the race.
Somehow our local dirt track came up. I have vivid memories of my dad going to the local dirt track with his friend and their sons. Yep..the boys. But for some reason my dad thought I had been there and said…something like Oh you remember when [friend] would run the figure 8 and we would sit up in the stands and he would wave. I was like “Um… I have never been to the Watsonville Speedway…you would take [brother] not me.”
He looked at me in the rearview mirror “Are you sure?” I said I was sure…that [brother] was always the one he took with him. What I didn’t say was how I was always jealous because racing was my thing not my brother’s….how I always REALLY wanted to go only to be shunned for being a girl. This is not to say that my dad didn’t spend time with me…he did. But he spent MORE time with my brother. The local races. Hunting. Fishing (although sometimes I got to go fishing too). It was about that time that I started to kinda ween myself off of racing…I didn’t follow it as closely for several years because most of my friends weren’t into that kinda thing. My big thing is that I would get one of my dad’s coworker’s NASCAR YEARBOOK thingy and sticker each year. I wish I had thought to keep those…but I digress.
I didn’t stop watching…if I was home and there was a race on…(cart, nascar, NHRA- didn’t really matter) I was probably watching it. I, of course found my way back to being a full-on race fan…through my dad who actually took me to an CART race….at our OTHER LOCAL TRACK. That’s right…he took ME…not my brother. It was just him and I and it will probably stand out in my mind as one of the best times we had together just the two of us. I remember him sparing no expense to make sure we had paddock passes so we could wander around the garage and stuff….I remember the smells and sounds…but that is another entry.
He mentioned perhaps going to what use to be Watsonville speedway sometime…I don’t know if we will actually go…sometimes these kinds of things are mentioned but never followed through for whatever reason.
As I am typing this- there is 6 laps to go and the race is just now going green again. My beloved Tony is in 13th. Race is under yellow and we are waiting for what will hopefully be the final waving of the green flag. My Tony has been having a race. Not a good race. But a race indeed.
He qualified in 29th. He had slowly and methodically worked his way all the way up to 5th. Then…there was not one but TWO mishaps on the same pitstop. EXCUSE ME…I HAVE TO YELL AT THE TV. ITS UNDER YELLOW….AGAIN BUT WE ARE UP TO 9th right now. Be back after the race…sorry this is just too damn good to blog during! Ahh ok we are over. Tony ended upcoming in 7th because of some people having problems. Why one of those problems couldn’t be Jeff Gordon running out of gas I do not know. Anyway…you really have to hand it to Greg Zipadelli and the whole 20 crew….instead of letting Tony get way down in the field due to some fairly extensive right front damage…they worked very hard to get the car back into the shape that Tony needed it to be in to work his way back up into 7th. If the race was any longer I bet Tony would have placed even higher.
I will tell you what…one of the cooler things about DirecTv hotpass…is I love being able to see what is going on in the pits. Like watching the 20 pit crew plan out the repairs to make…I just wish I could have heard what was going on…because that stuff fascinates me…immensely.
Janet, who hosts friday fill-in had a big announcement for us…starting next week…the friday fill-in will have its OWN site…yey!!!
1. Once upon a time in a galaxy not too different from our own there lived a girl.
2. She was screaming and kicking and biting.
3. While the evil step-mother was just sipping her white tea and ginger. (hey there is ALWAYS an evil stepmom!)
4. Way down deep inside the girl knew there had to be a better way to get what she wanted.
5. Keys are easy to lose; locks are hard to open without keys.
6. Have you seen Snickers Dark? They’re so delicious!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to going home, tomorrow my plans include the night time race at charlotte and Sunday, I want to sleep in…and try PF Changs!
How do you make a sticky entry that stays on the top? I can’t for the life of me figure it out….it can’t be that hard!
I figure I should probably get this out quick before Saturday.
First my disorganized thoughts on the Kansas race:
- I have mentioned it before…will mention it again: rain delays suck.
- Tony Stewart needs to add me to his crew…because I was telling him to pit before that tire went down as soon as the flag went green. I just knew that was going to happen. Do you think the radios would work from my living room? I guess that would be what you would call an arm chair crew chief? (although technically I was on the couch).
- Speaking of the above: It was a pretty hard hit- bet he was sore the next day.
- Biffle did win the race- the field was already set when the caution came out. He just needed to cross the finish line…which he did just fine thank you.
- Um rain delays suck.
- People were complaining that the race at Talladega was boring because it is all drafting til the end and then it is jump off the couch exciting (at least it was to me). Um…it has been that way as long as I can remember. This is NOT a new thing. It is NOT because of the resurfacing. It is NOT because of the COT. That is Talladega man. I could never figure out why this track is my dad’s favorite track…because it seems pretty boring to me.
- The Big one? Let’s call it The medium one instead…it wasn’t that big.
- What was with that kamikaze move that Stewart pulled? Was he crazy pulling out of the draft to try to block Newman? I mean seriously? I think I actually yelled “What the hell are you doing???” That was the very definition of being hung out to dry.
- Um rain delays suck.
- Is there a UFC fight on this Saturday? The only reason I ask is that it seems that every single time there is a race under the lights this season it is in conjunction with a UFC fight…and I am stuck yelling at a small screen in the bedroom as the rest of the household watches the fight.
- Tony has won at Charlotte- so I hope he gets a chance to do it again. He has said he likes racing at night because he doesn’t have to get up so early. I don’t blame him there.
- Bobby Labonte is going to be driving a pink car for the cure- which I think is totally awesome BUT I think there needs to be a full time pink car.
- GO TONY!