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Dazed and confused: Trying to make sense of it all


I heard something Monday that made me stop and think. Two men talking on the radio told their listeners to “Have a happy Memorial Day.” Obviously, they don’t have a clue what the holiday represents.

Memorial Day is when a nation pays reverence to the men and women who died in the line of military service while defending this country. There’s nothing happy about that.

That’s not the only thing. Other things lately have made me decide whether to laugh or be concerned.

Take Sunday’s “Greatest Day in Racing.” Starting with the Grand Prix of Monaco, then with the Indianapolis 500 and wrapping up under the lights with the Coca-Cola 600 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, the day was supposed to feature 762 miles of racing.

While many consider the Formula 1 race at Monaco the series’ flagship event, it’s actually the worst race of the year at any track. Want proof? Here you go: there were more green-flag lead changes in the first 200 miles in Monday’s NASCAR race in Charlotte than at Monaco since 1987. Put down the cellphone calculator. It’s 35 years.

Max Verstappen started on the pole and led all 78 laps Sunday. He won by nearly 28 seconds.

Indianapolis turned out great, with Josef Newgarden passing Marcus Ericsson on the final lap, and Mother Nature was the only leader at Charlotte. NASCAR officials called off the race seven hours in advance because of rain. That’s nobody’s fault, but for someone who was prepared to hunker down with cheese dip, nacho chips and Arnold Palmers for more than 10 hours of racing, it was a bummer of a day.

While we’re at it, have you seen the commercials for the Great Wolf Lodge Water Park and the Ark Encounter? Have you also noticed neither provides a location? I did some research and found out there are 19 Wolf Lodges. The Ark is in Williamstown, Kentucky. Now you don’t have to look it up.

One of the mythical moments in NASCAR lore was Dale Earnhardt’s famous “pass in the grass” after Bill Elliott hit him from behind during the 1987 all-star racing.

What really happened – and I was there – was Earnhardt was leading. The bump sent his Chevrolet into the infield grass, but he gathered it up and returned on the track with Elliott still running second. There was no pass.

I’m also baffled by television ads on local stations trying to attract visitors to Space Coast and Daytona Beach beaches. Don’t they realize we have beaches, sun and sand up here, too?

I also find it amusing that some people in California want reparations for slavery. First, California wasn’t in the Civil War. Second, there’s no proof they didn’t move to the United States before the war. And most important, the people demanding millions in payments, or their parents, grandparents, great-grandparents or great-great-grandparents were part of our country’s most-appalling period of history – slavery.

While we’re on the subject of irresponsible spending, the college loan forgiveness plan still puzzles me. If I have it right, the government wants me to pay for a bank foolishly giving an 18-year-old $70,000 to study art history.

Lastly, I am disappointed whenever someone turns the “Star-Spangled Banner” into an extended love song. The song should never be butchered like Jewel’s Sunday Indianapolis 500 performance. Unless you’re Whitney Houston at the Super Bowl, it’s not supposed to be yodeled. It shouldn’t take more than 95 seconds. It’s about the War of 1812 when British ships bombarded Fort McHenry in the Battle of Baltimore.

When it comes to our National Anthem, I’ll take Paul Wane and his guitar every time.