Thursday, November 3, 2011

The NASCAR Manager

Tristan ponders his vocational choices
Creative play forms the basis for all vocational dreams. Which really makes me ponder whether grandson Tristan will be the next Dario Franchitti on the NASCAR circuit, by the Executive Director of the Smithsonian or conduct our local philharmonic. His current preferences for spending his play time gives no hint of which way he will turn.

As NASCAR driver he requires the services of the “manager” none other than yours truly, his Mimi. He prefers Mimi as “manager,” who really does the job of announcing, because I capture his imagination about how race day excitement and events might unfold., “Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to NASCAR. You are in for the most exciting day in racing and you will not be disappointed!” His preference for Mimi has nothing to do with my knowledge of NASCAR, cars in general or aerodynamic properties. It’s all about drama and the glib tongue.

Based on the engaging Cars movie and Cars 2, Tristan’s cast metal and plastic cars all possess personalities and moral characteristics. We line them up, sort them into categories and make a place for the pit crew and for President Barack Obama’s limousine and entourage. Tristan always gets to be Lightning McQueen and win every race. Losing is not one of Tristan’s self-identities at this point in his life. So we set up the race in Mimi and Pappa’s living room, family room, kitchen, breakfast room and hall way. It’s takes a lot of real estate to create NASCAR.

At some point in our early days, I must have referred to the attendees as “folks.” It stuck. The watchers of the race henceforth are called “folks.” He divides the cars into various countries usually according to style of cars---these designations zoom over Mimi’s head---but I can always expect Japanese, Chinese, British and Italian cars.

So the “manager” has to develop, at minimum, a British, Italian and Oriental accent because I voice most all characters. The bad guy/car, Francesco got in trouble yesterday. He broke one of the rules of NASCAR and the “manager” called for an investigation, penalty and fine. I must have been on a roll as Francesco’s angry mother who attended the race. I ranted and raved in my best Italian accent. So well, in fact, that Tristan broke character and inquired, “Mi---------mi, are you mad at me or are you still being Francesco’s mommy?” Guess I played my part well.

My little NASCAR fan also confuses whether the driver breaking the rules has to be accountable to the track rules or his mommy. Guess we know where is locus of authority still rests.

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