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Thursday, March 31, 2011

When I die, bury me at Daytona … actually, don’t

Some sports fans are crazy, that’s undeniable.

NASCAR fans often fit that description very well … my favorite ever being the guy who shaved Earnhardt’s No. 3 in his back hair. (So disgusting, yet so brilliant at the same time.)

Well, I saw a story the other day that was a whole new level of crazy. Legislation was nearly passed that would have allowed the creation of a Columbarium (a building that houses urns with the ashes of the deceased) on the grounds of both Daytona International Speedway and Homestead Miami Speedway (it was narrowly denied by a committee vote).

Prior to the vote, it was reported that International Speedway Corp. spokesman Lenny Santiago said many NASCAR fans have asked over the years about having their ashes laid to rest at Daytona International Speedway. "We have a lot of fans that are very, very loyal to NASCAR races and to Daytona in general," Santiago said. "This opens that door, this bill, and we're hopeful that this will get passed."

Don’t get me wrong. I love NASCAR, and I love Daytona, but the idea of what’s essentially a cemetery inside what is always a really fun racetrack just doesn’t fit and is a bit creepy to me. It’s like last week, when I went to Costco and saw they were selling caskets. …. I know they have a right to sell them, but I’m there buy some hot dogs and crab cakes, not prepare for my final resting place, and that’s a bit morbid for my shopping tastes.

Getting back to the Florida vote, I’m going to say they made the right call.
No disrespect to the people who want to live eternally at the home of NASCAR’s biggest race after their demise, but that’s a bit too much devotion for my taste, and I’m glad Uncle Jesse and Grandpa Joe won’t be permanently stored by the campgrounds inside turn 4.

"I just felt very strongly that to have people's remains, cremated remains, at the same place where there's NASCAR racing and a motorsports entertainment complex was not appropriate," said state Sen. Maria Lorts Sachs, D-Delray Beach, the committee's vice chairwoman. "A lot of that has to do with the fact that I love NASCAR, and I love Daytona, and I didn't want it to turn into a partial cemetery."

Well said, Senator. I couldn’t agree more.

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