Friday, July 01, 2005

Donkey-riding protestors target French GP

If French socialists hate your sport, and are willing to ride donkeys to prove it, you know that you are on to a good thing especially if they call it a “irresponsible and puerile circus game.” From Yahoo Sports: Donkey-riding protestors target French GP.

As far as Formula 1 being the anachronistic hobby of spoiled rich brats, well, d’uh. The whole structure of the Formula 1 experience is dependent on its panache, a distinctive, stylish elegance as the dictionary attests.

Simply because Formula 1 has become so dependant on commercial support, the rich brats, unless they are oozing with driving talent, or have earned a Ph.D. in fluid dynamics, metallurgy, or mechanical engineering, or have a father who is willing to “invest” tens of millions of dollars to buy them a ride, don’t really have any place in competition. There was once a time when courage and a modicum of talent was all a driver needed. Now, the drivers are elite athletes with highly developed reflexes, aerobic capabilities to put to shame any marathon runner, an encyclopedic knowledge of car behavior, and aggressive will to win tempered by equal parts courage and caution. The engineers who support them can brag of their years of experience honing their technical knowledge coupled with native intelligence and elite levels of education without par in the world of sport.

You might ask, isn’t all this human expertise, talent, and knowledge a bit too much to be devoted to a sport that involves grown men driving around a track at breakneck speeds? My answer is a resounding “maybe”, mostly because I wouldn’t want to deny out of hand that perhaps Formula 1 is a bit wasteful of human resources. However, I have to ask, don’t all sports (and maybe this begs the question of sport generally) involve the devotion of talented people towards ends that are more than just a little bit pointless? Every time we see a man run around a track, a woman diving off a high-board, or groups of men chase a little round ball around a field, are we not celebrating the human capacity for play? Are these socialists, by harping on the uselessness of Formula 1 ignoring, and showing their ignorance of, the possibilities for human beings to enjoy play? Do socialists really understand the human soul?

How much pollution is created by a donkey induced traffic jam?
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