When For Everyone Else Racing is Just Like Child Porn.

I was coming home from running some errands and, as usual, when I got to my local residential zone I keep myself 1 or 2 MPH below the 25MPH speed limit. Thing is, once I was driving around my neighborhood at the speed limit and a little girl in a red dress rushed to the middle of the street for whatever reason. If I wasn’t paying attention she would be pancakes by now. Thus I decided to be extra careful from that day on and started to drive not only a little slower, but I also started to pay even more attention to my surroundings.

My car is known (and even admired) all over the neighborhood. The Crystal Blue NB Mazda Miata is a little loud and the color is unusual, helped by the assorted stickers on the windows and on both doors. As I was crawling around the neighborhood with the top down a lady that I’ve never seen in my entire life screams at me: “Slow down! You’ll get my kids killed, you dumba**!” I immediately stop, get on reverse and go back to her position to ask what’s up. This is her reply:

We know you race! That is very irresponsible! That kind of act cannot be tolerated and I will warn the homeowners’ association!

I proceed to calmly tell her that I do not race on the streets nor contemplate doing so. Rather, I race sanctioned amateur events in closed courses, Autocross races and Road Races.  Not convinced, she stands by her argument:

This should be considered illegal. You are us all at risk and wasting gas.
She might have been in a bad mood, who knows. The problem is the varied reactions that I get from people when they find that I participate in racing events. Surprise and admiration are very pleasing to be noted, many are surprised after scanning my Facebook photo albums and even want to engage in racing events or watch me race. But most look at me with disdain (even when understanding that the events are properly sanctioned) as if I was committing a horrible crime.

Maybe this is all a side effect of the second cold war, or maybe people just don’t understand that as there are people that like football or baseball there are those that enjoy working on cars and racing the machines. Tolerance is a rare treat indeed.

That intolerance though is still curious: Cars are a intrinsic part of our lives and much more so then many other elements of our interest, yet their presence in media, entertainment and even motorsports coverage is minimal when compared to others. What do you think?

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