By Jane Smith
As I sit here and watch the Winston Cup race in a state that I spent thirteen years in, things have surely changed. There was no California Speedway, in fact, there were mostly dirt tracks where I lived. Some were sprint car racing but mostly good ole dirt racing.
It was the kind of tracks that you sit on a hill or you took a chair but very few blechers. I think alot of folks know about these tracks.
I am sure that alot of folks are looking back today, remembering the good old days and some of their favorite drivers that we no longer have with us. Davey, Alan, Neil, Adam, Kenny, Tony, and countless unknowns that only their local tracks know. But unknown or well known, you can bet your bottom dollar that they are having a good ole party about right now.
Today as we watch the California race, it is heavy on our minds that today would have been a major celebration day for Dale Earnhardt. Today is the birthday some celebrate with great anticipation as to the next 50 years and some dread. I think Earnhardt would have look forward to this day with joy. He did not see it as a bad thing but one to celebrate.
Even in heaven, they can still have birthdays. Everyone has their own ideas of heaven and what it is. This is mine and the big party that is going on there right now:
There is a big screen tv with the California race going on. The room is more a man's room than woman's, you know what I mean. It is manly. Racing trophys, racing pictures, sports of all kinds, decorate the walls. Black streamers hang from the ceiling coming to a point in the middle of the room. Black balloons decorate the corners and little buzzards are everywhere too. You see, being 50 means you get the "over-the-hill" treatment even though you are no means over the hill yet. And the buzzards are there to remind you that you are now "an old buzzard" of a fellow.
There is a table behind the sofas, that sits so perfectly in front of the tv, with every known goodie that a man's heart desires. And, of course, even in heaven, there is beer for the beer drinker and soda for the sugar freaks. And in the middle of that vast amount of manly food, there is a sheet cake. A racetrack decorates the cake with a number of cars going around the track but only the 3 is out in front. You see the 3 will lead because today is his birthday.
The guys have filled their plates and getting comfortable and suddenly there are wet little drops coming from their eyes. As they watch 3 doves fly above this grand racetrack, they realize that they are not forgotten. In years to come, they may not be celebrated as much but there will always be a fan or two with each guy in their heart. They realize that each has made footprints in the sands of people's souls and this alone will keep them alive and on earth for many years to come.
May your birthday in heaven be as festive as it would have been on earth because 50 is worth celebrating. We down here celebrate you - HAPPY BIRTHDAY DALE EARNHARDT.
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