Voices From the Heartland · Jeff Meyer · Thursday September 23, 2010
Recently, a very close friend (yes, I do have a few!) contacted me and was all excited. It seems that after being turned down to be part of NASCAR’s Fan Council for over a year (they were full), someone must have died and they invited him to join.
After jumping through all their hoops and giving them a dossier of personal information, the likes of which J. Edgar Hoover would be envious of, he sat back and giddily waited for his first chance to participate. After a short time of waiting, that opportunity finally presented itself this past Monday.
As fate would have it, I happened to be present, with cold beverage in hand, as he eagerly opened an email that sought his opinions about the most recent NASCAR shindig in New Hampshire.
Now, truth be told, I cannot remember exactly how each question read, and it is too late now to go back and look, seeing as how the “survey” was only open through Tuesday. But I do remember the gist of it all, and it still fills me with a sense of incredulity!
The first question asked if you (he) had watched or attended either the Truck or Cup race. Having not seen one bit of the Trucks, but most of the Cup event, he truthfully chose the latter. As the process wore on, he dutifully answered a few questions that, from their nature, started to give him a sense of fulfillment that he was actually making, even if minute, a difference! How much of the race did you watch? What did you think of the quality of the race? The broadcast? Etc.
Suddenly, just when we were both starting to think that maybe the time spent answering the questions was slightly more productive than trying to teach a pig to sing, (don’t try that, by the way… it really annoys the pig!) up popped a picture of Jamie McMurray standing triumphantly in the door of his car, arms raised, confetti all around, obviously celebrating one of his latest victories. The question that accompanied the Victory Lane photo was something like this: What, if anything, do you know about the person in the photo that is highlighted in the green box? Well, who do you think was highlighted in the green box… McMurray? Nope. It was none other than a piece of eye candy, complete in their own driver’s suit… that’s right, a Sprint Girl! Both my friend and I looked at the girl, looked at each other and said, “WTF?!?”
The survey went on to ask more questions about this chick than it did about opinions about the most recent race! Questions like… “Who do you think this person represents?” which then proceeded to give you a multiple choice, check the box of the cell phone company logo that you thought she represented. That’s right; a full page of actual company logos to choose from!
Oh, but it gets better!
Who do you think pays this person (if at all)? NASCAR, Sprint, both, or no one? As I said before, I don’t remember all the actual questions, but I do remember that ANY sense of fulfillment or “making a difference” went straight out the window as it turned out that there were just as many, if not more questions about this girl than there were the race. At this point, probably due to our cold beverages and the fact that we are, well… guys, we started lamenting the fact that we could not type in some interesting questions or comments of our own!
So, what do you really want to know NASCAR? Did I notice that this chick was a hottie? Did I think that the Sprint driver’s suit made her butt look big? Were her boobs big enough to be nicely accentuated by said suit? Is this young girl a professional? That would certainly have a bearing on whether she gets paid, and by whom! If I didn’t have a hottie of my own, would NASCAR be interested in providing her name and number? How much does it cost to employ a Sprint Girl? Does she have her own “hard card?” And the idiots in Daytona wonder why NASCAR has a ratings and attendance problem!
So what started out as a good and hopeful experience for my friend, thinking that he was a part of something, that NASCAR actually valued his opinion about the sport, turned quickly into nothing more than a few one-liners about a hot chick, the likes of which could be déjà vu from any “guys night out.” So astounded and disappointed was my friend that he seriously wanted to resign from the council right then and there. He expected a survey about the latest race, not a pure marketing one!
Luckily for NASCAR, I managed to talk him out of resigning from the council on the spot, and now have him on an assignment to copy and paste any and all future questions so I can share them with the rest of the world. It’s all part of my crusade to continue to point out just how stupid they can actually be, and better still, how stupid NASCAR thinks YOU are!
The long and the short of it all is this: Don’t be fooled into thinking that the sport values your, the regular fans, opinions because they don’t! What they do value is your money, and I applaud each and every one of you who has made your voice heard by keeping your dollars to yourselves!
The funny (or sad) thing is, while NASCAR is actually hurting now from your frugality, they still don’t have a freaking clue! How stupid do you got to be to run a sanctioning body?
Stay off the wall (unless you need to stand on it to get a better look at the hot chicks!),
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