Christmas comes early each year to our normally quiet community here in Homestead, Florida. Santa's come by the droves, not in sleighs, but in RVs, and campers, and pick-up trucks. They come here each year to watch the last NASCAR race of the year; the one that decides the NASCAR champion, The Homestead-Miami Ford 400. These Santa's, don't come with a bag of presents, but with pockets full of cash. It is a welcome influx of cash for the hotels, shops, trailer parks, and bars of Homestead, and Florida City.
My wife, who tends a bar in Florida City, looks forward to this big three day party every year. After bar tending here the last five years, she knows that these folks love to drink, party, and lavish her with piles of dough; and there are few things she likes more than making lots of money.
The average NASCAR fan won't win many Nobel Prizes, or even spelling bees in their lifetime; but they remember her little bar, and they even remember her name, so it is like a big reunion for everyone.
These folks may be a little grubby, and their smiles remind you of a gap toothed jack-o-lantern; but they are usually well behaved, and very generous. Just be sure that you have countless cases of ice cold Coors Light, Budweiser, and Jack Daniels, on hand.
With all the drinking going on, it is a wonder to me how they can even find the race track, let alone keep track of how many left turns their favorite driver Billy Bob Kyle has successfully negotiated but, they do. In fact, they really get into the race.
Many of them rent out head sets so they can listen in on the communication going back and forth from the pit crew chief, and the driver. Crackle, static "hey, that was a real impressive left turn yew made back there, Jimmy Joe Don, now be careful, 'cus yew got another one coming up right quick" Crackle, pop "yeah Benny Earl Ray, the car's running real smooth right now, hold on, gotta another one of them left turns coming up."
I'm not really big on NASCAR racing; just five minutes of watching these guys going around in circles puts me in a trance. But, as long as they keep coming down here every year with pockets full of cash, we'll be glad to welcome them here.
"Hey, Kenny Jeb Kirk, how the hell are yew? Its good to see yew agin! Did yew bring your sister?"