Posted in What I know.

At A Loss.

Last post I wrote about NASCAR, I wondered what has gone wrong with the #14 team so far this year.  I am hoping it is just something they haven’t figured out with this new Gen-6 car.  I didn’t watch much of the Kansas race due to the onslaught of out of control weeds in my back yard.  But every time I would pop in during the race Tony was racing between 19-22 place.  I mean it didn’t matter when I came in there he was stuck in that zone.  This is the zone his team has been the last several weeks with his car.  Could it be more than just missing the set up on the car?  Could SHR be stretched too thin with three teams to take care of each week?  Sometimes more doesn’t mean better.  I think if SHR can get Tony’s team on track the other two will fall into place.  I just don’t know any more.

Congratulations to Matt Kenseth for winning Kansas.  He is the third driver in a row to win from the pole position.  I have to say the move from Roush Racing to Joe Gibbs has been a positive move for him.  Sometimes changing jobs can make such a huge difference.  Matt, along with Jimmie and Kyle have two wins this season.  Matt is one of those drivers that tends to quiet but deadly.  At times you say to yourself, where did he come from?  I think he is going to be a force during the rest of the season.

Sorry for not writing too much about NASCAR with this post.  Last weeks’ events in Boston and West have had the country engrossed in news outlets for hours at a time.  This includes me.  I found myself watching things unfold on Monday with the bombings in Boston, through Friday when they were able to apprehend the second suspect in the bombings.  I am proud of the law enforcement entities involved in the bringing this manhunt to a conclusion.  Even though I was saddened by the events in Boston, my heart is with the residents of West, Texas.  I am so proud of my state for banding together to support this town of roughly 2700 people.  If you haven’t been through Texas, you can’t understand the vastness of the state.  We are the 2nd largest state in the union.  You can travel all day and never get out of the state.  It takes about 12 hours to bet from my home in Lubbock, Texas (located in the northern part of the state or square part as some have told me) to the Weslaco which is located near the border of Mexico.  It is closer to Los Angeles from El Paso than El Paso to Beaumont.  In this vastness there are many tiny towns and communities many have never heard of.  West, Texas is just one of those outside of Texas you did know existed until Wednesday night.  I have told people about West and they think I am talking about the West Texas region.  This is a mistake.  I would have to clarify by saying West comma Texas.  I do not have to do this any more.  When traveling in the state Texans think about how long it will take not in miles.  But despite all of this Texas has never been so close.  I am so proud of my fellow Texans for banding together to help the city of West and its citizens to try to recover from this horrific event.  If you are in the Waco area, there will be a memorial for the fallen firefighters and EMTs at the Ferrell Center located on the Baylor University campus.  If you can take time out your day to pay tribute, please do so.  These men were heading into the fire while others were running away from the fire.  The memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm.  I wish I could be there, but even though I can’t I will be thinking about these first responders and their families. God Bless.

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Posted in What I know.

West, Texas

11713_4373154101624_1682736452_nI am at a loss.  As I watched the events unfolding in West, my heart began to hurt.  I began following Twitter and Facebook for any information on the explosion.  I did not grow up in Waco, but I lived in Waco from 1985-1995 and then again from 1997-1998.  I lived in near the community of Axtell, TX.  This community is about 15 minutes from West.  I remember going to West Fest during Labor Day weekend.  I also remember stopping and getting their famous kolaches on my way on day trips to the DFW area with my mom.  West is a close-knit community.  It is a small Texas town you wish you could live and raise your family in.  The townsfolk are some of the most friendliest people around and some of the most helpful.  This is why my heart is breaking right now for West.  Many of the people I went to high school with and others I know have friends and family affected by this horrific event.  I just don’t know what to do.  I feel so helpless.  My fondest memory of West was shopping for my junior prom dress with my mom.  There was a little shop dress in West called JoAnn’s Bridal.  They were a small shop, but I felt like a princess when I found the dress for my junior prom.  I am not one who likes to go shopping, but this is a memory I will cherish forever thanks to these lovely ladies.  When it came time to look for my wedding dress for my first wedding, I wanted to look for one at JoAnn’s.  Once again the ladies who assisted me were very friendly and patience.  I will never forget these two experiences I had with my mother.  I will cherish them forever.

I know the kind of people who live in West and they will persevere through this horrific.  The outpouring of love and support from not only surrounding communities, but from around the state and nation.  As a Texas I have never been so proud to see the outpouring of love and support from surrounding communities and other Texas cities. If you know us Texans were are a resilient people and West will rise above the darkness and despair and come into the light.  My thoughts and prayers are with those friends and families who have been touched by this horrific event.  God Bless.

Posted in What I know.

Racing Memories

I love the sport of racing. I have been watching all kinds of racing since I could remember. I think it all started with my dad. He had a good friend of his that raced at the local dirt track in Amarillo. My father would help him out on the weekends on his pit crew. As a result I spent many a Saturday night during the spring and summer at the dirt track.  My parents pretty much let me have fun at the track.  I remember hanging out with my buddies behind the bleachers just being kids.  I also remember sitting in the stands watching my dad’s friend, Bobby Gray, drive his modified around the dirt track.  I still can hear the track announcer, telling everyone how great the cheeseburgers were down in the concession stand.  He would also say, “All you race fans need to go get a cheeseburger, cheeseburger!”  And man…they were good. The memories of those days are so vivid.  There was the souvenir stand where you could buy a button with your favorite driver on it.  I proudly wore my #77 Bobby Gray button.  If you have ever been to a dirt track, you know you don’t leave the track without some of that dirt on you especially if the track was a little muddy.  The best part I think about it all was the racing.  These are guys who had other careers during the week, but on Saturday night, they were stars.  Just like now, I had my favorite driver and the driver I loved to hate.  After the races were over, we could go down in the pit area to see all the cars and drivers.  It was one of the best times in my life.  Here is a picture of my favorite driver (circa 1980).  Unfortunately my dad, Claude Crews, and his friend are not longer with us.  My dad is the man with the brown shirt over the white t-shirt behind Bobby.

That’s why today brought  back so many fond memories of that time.  I was headed to one of our local Walmarts and what do I see in the parking lot…race cars!  I think I was more excited to see them in the parking lot then my two boys.  Of course we had to stop and take a gander at our local racers.  They looked different from the ones my father worked on and saw race at the dirt track so long ago, but the feelings were the same.  These are guys who love to race and it showed.  My oldest son had a ball just going around taking pictures of the cars.  My youngest who loves cars was a little shy, but once he got to sit in the car, it was all over with it.

Every Sunday we all watch the big boys race, but the passion and pure love of racing can be seen in these local drivers.  If you can’t get to a NASCAR event, support your local tracks.  I can guarantee that you will see some great racing action!

Posted in What I know.

Hurricane Ike

First and foremost my thoughts and prayers got out to my fellow Texans affected by Hurricane Ike. I lived in Houston for a few years back in the late 90s and its hard to watch the coverage of Hurricane Ike. I have made many visits to Galveston and it pains me to see what has happened to the Island as well as Houston.  I see places where I have been or driven past during my time down in that part of Texas.  Even though I do no longer live in that part of Texas, my heart goes out to those who live there.  As a Texan, we are all affected by this. 

Here are some photos I took during one of my visits to Galveston a few years ago.  Galveston, like New Orleans will recover from all of this.