Listed below is a blog I still here about the infamous Me, Me, Me, blog from 2010. I repost it today to let everyone review it because in the next few days I play to update it with what has occurred over the last five years and have we learned anything?
ME, ME, Me, Me, me, me. That simple phrase will destroy our sport. Another way of saying this is selfish, selfish, selfish. We actually have a generation described as the ME generation, the generation immediately after the Generation X. It really doesn’t matter what generation we are discussing it is time for racers to unite and talk we, we, we. Unfortunately we have a sport born on competition and secrecy. From what I have learned there may be a secret for a short while but in the racing community and especially with today’s technology there are no secrets.
So exactly what has me, me, me done to racing. It has separated the sport into too many different classes. Anyone remember when there was one modified? Look at all the modified rules we currently have outlaw modified, IMCA Modified, IMCA Northern Sport Mod, IMCA Southern Sport Mod, B Mods and various different track rules, crate Mods, Ump Modifieds, and USMTS Modifieds. Not stopping there but lets look at the stock classes, IMCA Stock Cars, IMCA Hobby Stocks, Factory Stocks, Chargers, Super Stock, Stock Car, and Pure Stock. Late Models, same song different verse, we have ULMA Late Models, Crate Late Models, Grand Nationals, Lucas Oil Late Models, World of Outlaw Late Models, UMP Late Models, IMCA Late Models, MARS Late Models, Dirt Late Models, and Asphalt Late Models. Sprint Cars, you too, are not immune to the me, me, me of splitting up the field, after all, ever heard of 360 Sprints, 410 Sprints, 305 Sprints,World Of Outlaw Sprints, ASCS Sprints, WOW Sprints, Wing Sprints, Non Wing Sprints, and USAC Sprints.
When you read the above paragraph you just have to go – WOW and then ask, How in the blankety blank did we get here? Quite honestly me, me, me. When it comes to rules too many people want to protect their own turf. When it comes to money too many people want to protect their own turf. When it comes to sanction fees too many people want to protect their own turf. Always it is the ME, ME, ME coming out.
It is time for change, not political change as we heard in 2008, but real change or our sport is headed the way of the drive in theater. We have to quit looking out for number 1 and the me, me, me mentality and instead start thinking of we, we, we, and us. We have to understand we are in the entertainment business. This will hopefully be even more understood after the show Heartland Thunder airs.
In the entertainment business think of what the casual fan sees. What is the difference between a Stock Car, Factory Stock, Hobby Stock? The casual fan does not know, he or she sees the cars that all look the same. Same with the various rules of modifieds, various rules of late models, and various rules of sprint cars, to the casual fan the outer appearance of each of these same type race cars is the same car. Sport Mod versus an A Mod, same car to the casual fan. Appearance means everything to the casual fan. We do not need all these various rules and designations we need a simplified set of rules that are transparent between tracks and sanctions.
Well how are we going to get to this simplified set of rules you may ask? It first starts with giving up the me, me, me attitude. Track owners must work together to make tough decisions on setting simplified rules. When making decisions for their tracks they must think we, as in how we are going to work together, how can we simplify and enforce rules, how can we save the racers money and it make it affordable to race.
Conversely, drivers and team owners must quit protecting their own rules and engines and parts. They must begin thinking what is best for the sport instead of what is best for me! They must quit spending their families’ hard earned money on overly expensive equipment. They should be following God first, family second, work third and racing wherever it falls after the first three.
Parts suppliers must be willing to simplify their inventory and not offer parts outside the rules. Engine builders must learn to build motors within the rules not build illegal motors because that is what the racer wanted. Currently parts suppliers and engine builders are all charging for their piece of the pie. They are part of the me, me, me, thought mentality which must be changed to we, we, we.
The media must also start thinking of we, we, we. Currently the media delves in creating controversy, because controversy sells. Once again that me, me, me attitude. Jack Harry of KSHB TV 41 was talking about this exact subject a couple of Sundays ago. He stated, the media attempting to create controversy is simply fraud. Today’s media wants to be the first to break a story or create a story. They must return to reporting and to help our sport they must become we, we, we.
Can we do this, can we change the attitude, can we avoid becoming the next drive in theater. Personally, I think we can. Will it be easy? No, there is a lot of me, me, me rooted in our sport. But remember it is our sport, we all hold a piece. We must all work together. We must think of what is best for our sport. We must forget what we currently have and understand where we are going. We must start following the good book and think of doing unto others what we would do unto ourselves. We must look at the future rules and see how they benefit us instead of looking for the gotchas and loopholes. It will take a small spark to change the attitude, but all fires start with a spark.