Wednesday, July 23, 2014

James Garner: Movie Star and Man of Auto Racing passion Dies at 86...



I first heard the news of James Garner's death during the rebroadcast of the German Grand Prix upon NBCSN this past Sunday during the Pre-race show, as it was eluded to during thy 'Wee Willie Buxom's (Will Buxton) interview with another Hollywood entertainer turned 'Mega motor racing Geek "Dr. McDreamy," aka Patrick Dempsey, who was on hand at Hockenheim whilst participating in the Porsche Supercup race this weekend.

As for Mwah, Garner was always one of the "Cool Guys," albeit thee Anthesis 'O COOL for me and many others will always be Steve McQueen, for which I caught the bug unknowingly when having found an iconic Le Mans movie poster featuring McQueen in that revered blue Gulf liveried Uni' (uniform) as a teenager, before I even knew anything about motorsports in general.

But as Leigh Diffey eluded to later  during the race broadcast 'bout having grown up with The Rockford Files, (1974-80) which I fondly recall watching over the years, both live 'N re-runs, as its even still available on my local "ME TV" channel - as the fictional Jim Rockford drove one of the hottest "Muscle Cars" of the mid-1970's, a NARLY' gold Pontiac Firebird Esprit... As how many of those cars do  Yuhs think GM sold due to that show's popularity?

As interestingly, reportedly Garner was given a brand new Firebird each season of the show, albeit didn't like the  looks of the 1979 Esprit redesign and ran his '78 model for the show's final two seasons instead.

Yet as cool as Jimmy Rockford was, for Mwah, the Narliest Car chase scene of all-time will forever be Steve McQueen's ultra BAD ARSE romp thru the streets of San Francisco aboard his 1968 Mustang in Bullitt!

And whilst I knew of Garner playing the lead role in the epic 1966 Grand Prix movie, as was  I-T really nearly eight years ago when I watched it in its entirety for the first time on the Speed channel? Which I scribbled  'bout in;


As another comment Messer Diffey made on-air that I was totally unaware of was the fact that Garner had owned his own racing team, which was called American International Racers, which apparently ran in then the B-I-G 3' Endurance races, i.e.; Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring. As DAMN! 'Ol "Pete Aron" (James Garner) sure picked the perfect trio of iconic Sports Car races to contest! As wonder if he did so in regards to current day Hollywood racer Patrick Dempsey's screen career  forbidding him from driving in open cockpit cars? As surely the studios don't want Dempsey messin' up his hair, right? Hooah!

TheJames Garner American International Racing 1968 Corvettes


Whilst I was also unawares of the fact that Jimmy Rockford had driven the Pace-car at Mother Speedway not once, but three times, leading the field at Indianapolis in 1975, 1977 and 1985.


Yet I suppose for many, he'll most likely be better remembered for his acting, then racing exploits, as I've also never seen his documentary film The Racing Scene, (1970) as I suspect the majority of "Mainstream" America remembers him from Maverick and The Rockford Files, although for reasons unknown, another film of his I've never seen sticks in my craw, that being the film victor Victoria which he played opposite Julie Andrews in 1982.

And thus, another 'Mega  successful Hollywood star, who along with the legendous' Paul Newman and Steve McQueen has taken the chequered flag...


James Garner, Witty, Handsome LeadingMan, Dies at 86


Monday, July 21, 2014

Tiptoein' thru the Backstretch...



First of all, I've just spent thy past weekend on a 'Mega Telie' Gorgeathon, watchin' both the German Grand Prix and Toronto IndyCar action both Saturday & Sunday and thus, I'm a 'Wee bit Knackered...

So I was thinking of doing the cliche-ish' The Good, Bad and Ugly theme for this post, but really don't have nothing ugly to divulge, as actually its A-L-L good except for the two parts that "Peacock-lite" SCREWED UP!



First of all, I have to say that I like almost the entire current NBCSN IndyCar On-Air talent, with the exceptions of Wally Dallenbach & Marty Reid, (OOPS! And nobody caught my Freudian slip, eh? As it was supposed to be Marty Snider...) as they're just a 'lil too much "Country;" Err 'RASSCAR for Mwah; as has anybody noticed just how hard NBCSN's pushin' its 'RASSCAR programmin' a year before it arrives...

That said, as I know I just read thee OLD-est IndyCar Blogger Geo. Phillips recently comment how his perfect IndyCar TV Booth Boyz' line-up would include Leigh Diffey, "Professor 'B" (Jon Beekhuis) and thee irrepressible 'PT, the "Thrill from the West  Hill," nee Paul Tracy - as that would suit me fine, as I'm not campaigning for anyone to get the Hook, but; I cannot say just how much I enjoy hearing Bob Varsha's voice! As he'll always be my Numero Uno for lead announcer over Diffey or Brian Till...

Thus, it seemed that the Dye was cast early into Saturday's miserably WET Toronto race  when Derrick Walker Deadpanned to Varsha how astute of him in surmising it had been deemed officially a "Wet Race;" (start) Hya! As Varsha just seemingly spent the afternoon playing the "Straight Man," whilst Ol 'R, aka Robin Miller provided the comic relief on Pit-lane and  in the Stands, while Paul Tracy played a very enjoyable "Straight Guy" for Townsend Bell's unending Quips!

As perhaps I'm wacky? As I was gonna say "Goofy," which is my 94yr old 'Awntie Harriet's "Tag-line;" Hooah! But I found myself chuckling for hours whilst watching 'N enjoying almost the entire Saturday NON-Race TV Broadcast... As two thoughts came to mind, probably inspired by 'PT's in-car track demo with whom he called 'T-Bell when he said it wasn't his first rodeo.

That being, that us Fans are extremely lucky to have such experienced television broadcasters, albeit its Tracy's and Kelli Stavast's rookie seasons, while not only are we lucky, but IndyCar, and specifically "Starship HC" (Hulman & Co.) are DAMN FORTUNATE to have hired such a sage hand as Derrick Walker to run the competition side! Even if presumably people in the Paddock and elsewhere's disagree, Walker's "Been There, Done That!" And knows how to NOT panick and do what's best for everybody, including the Driver's safety...

As Yeah, I think IndyCar totally made the right call on red-flagging the race repeatedly, although it had a little bit feel of Sao Paolo's Nightmare to Mwah, which I'm pretty sure I shellacked 'Ol 'Billybob Brazenheartz (Brian Barnhart) over the stupendous choice to go GREEN during a Monsoon! As HELL! Even the Pace-car had troubles in Toronto; Aye Karumba!

While I kept thinking of  poor 'Ol Alex Zanardi every time a driver mentioned not being able to see squat and if a car spun out in front of them and got T-Boned... Although the last part is just what I thought, and don't think it was ever said?

Although I still remember Justin 'B-I-G UNIT Wilson noting years ago how when they couldn't see NOTHING during the Champ Car race upon Il Notre Dam, at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve which is notorious for its trees dripping mist upon the track when it rains... That you just simply looked skywards for the banners or anything overhead in order to try 'N get a bearing upon where you were on the track; YIKES!

Yet at the same time, I have to say how much PT's growing on Mwah as an announcer, as I really enjoy his "Straight Shootin'" style, with almost NO BS... As the chemistry just seemed remarkable between Varsha, Tracy and Townsend Bell, a la Paul Page and Pippa Mann on the IMS Radio Network side. As my favourite thingy 'bout PT is that  he doesn't do the contrived "WHOOOOOOOOOOAAAA!!! Screaming BULLSHIT that Steve Matchett and David Hobbs do  when something happens on-track during an F1 race...

And perhaps it's because I've typically skipped the Pre-race banter this year, especially since NBCSN's tends to run way too LONG! That it  felt like it was the first Pit-run I'd seen Miller do this year, which was very entertaining, as his time with 'Cheep! (Ganassi) got the comedy rolling... While Robin's interviews with 'SuperTex, nee A.J. Foyt and later on the "Mad 'Rooskie," as I tend to recall that Bill Vukovich was type casted as the original Mad Russian, as I'm sure that Mikhail Aleshin was thinking the whole time what in thee HELL is this (OLD) guy talking about! While being interviewed with Miller who had a really BAD pun 'bout some "Russian Poot-teen" (protein or Vladimir?) that Aleshin was  gonna eat... Who played along brilliantly by saying the bacon would add one second per lap time; Hya!

while foyt's quips 'bout just being a spectator made me immediately think about him being a "JAFO!" A classic from Blue Thunder; Hooah!

And although I read that Mr. Oil Pressure thinks KS' (Kelli Stavast) is still a little too bit stiff, which I sort of agree with, it seemed like she loosened up a little bit the longer the Red flag periods went on; as I can't remember which driver it was, but it sounded like she was almost gonna laugh, while I seem to recall her pronouncing her rookie status during another rain delay this year, perhaps Barber?

As I recall she was interviewing ''HULIO (Castroneves) who said he'd hook her up with some appropriate foot attire after she had her camera person do a close-up of her muddy 'N wet shoes, which made me ponder how she'd faired this time out after they went off the air.

Kevin Lee did his usual, typical, good, steady reporting, although nothing to get overly excited about,  while I definitely missed 'JB, (Jon Beekhuis) yet I'm guessing he was probably quite ecstatic to be wherever he was in the Dry!

NBCSN COCK-UPS!
My only two complaints revolve around the actual network, not the announcers, as I couldn't believe they'd done I-T again! Having sat down for breakfast pre-race, I tuned into NBCSN's nonstop Tour de France coverage and as it got towards the bottom of the hour, i.e.; 8:30AM Pacific, I raced over to grab the remote as another U$ Bank Sports Update began, as I was ready to hit the MUTE button whilst curiously wonderin' if they'd be so STUPID to reveal the Hockenheim Qualie' results which were being re-aired at 9AM Pacific on you guessed I-T! SHUHZAMM! As I quickly punched the mute button as the Talking Head began blathering 'bout 'Der Hockenheimring; SHEISA! As this is exactly what "Peacock-lite" did on the morning of their British Grand Prix replay; CRAP!

KNOCK IT OFF NBCSN!

And the second snafu, albeit not as egregious, was Bob Varsha telling us they were going to show Motorcross racing  and then be back at 4PM Pacific to inform us what IndyCar and the Toronto promoter had decided to do in regards to trying to run the race.

Thus I sat there and listened 'N listened for some 15+ minutes until 4:11PM (Pacific) realizing that there wasn't gonna be any announcement; WTF! As although perhaps there was some mention on the teensy-weensy "Crawl?" But guess what  BASTARDOS! Just like being unable to read the qualifying line-ups which are NO longer read for the entire grid, I CANNOT SEE the "Crawl" and hence, therefore totally unaware of what had happened to the race until going to Trackside Online, which immediately informed me that the race had been postponed, with the article being posted at 6:14PM Eastern, just a scant five minutes after "Peacock-lite" had switched over to the two-wheeler action...

And then somewhat surprisingly, Indycar.com actually had a lead news item upon the reschedule of the twin races being run on Sunday in;


As A-L-L of this, which will both be shown on NBCSN, makes me wonder if it'll SCREW UP the slated rebroadcast of the German Grand Prix I'd originally planned on watching at 9AM Pacific and thus pondered 'bout getting up at Oh DARK 30! instead to watch the live action upon CNBC instead?

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Back, Sorta...



'Whale, I really hadn't expected to get thy 'Confuzer back in one day's time, which unexpectedly happened prior to the 4th 'O July weekend; having since been gallivanting 'round thy Pacific Northwest way too much lately to have any time to scribble something of importance...

As I'm definitely 100% DONE! With the local Computer Shop I'd done business with over the past year's time... As basically what we'd discover, after the JACKALOPE Computer Sonics "Bench Jockey" accused me of lying to him... Lost another customer with his (ridiculous) customer service; NOT! After I'd tried vainly giving my patronage to a local business.

The IDIOT in question said to me on the phone: Who serviced your machine? To which I (truthfully) replied; nobody. To which he asked a little more firmly: No, who serviced your machine? To which I calmly replied NOBODY HAS! As it's NEVER been serviced, to which he curtly echoed again: Who serviced your machine. To which I retorted, nobody has,  that's the way it came from your shop when I purchased I-T! To which I really should have said: YOU FUCKING BUILT IT THAT WAY!

AnyHoo, imagine my surprise when we pulled up to where the Computer shop used to be, only to find the shop vacant - fortunately with a we've moved notice & location on the door. And sauntering into Computer Sonics and explaining how my machine was still under warranty, they tried pulling a FAST ONE by saying, NO Sir, your warranty is from the date of purchase - even though my machine wasn't built until a week later.

Well Ok, but it's still making a nasty sound upon start-up, please diagnose it for Mwah, to which I was shocked to receive the aforementioned phone call questioning my honesty the very same day as the Bombastic Boffin' said your machine's got electrical tape all over it and there's an incorrectly wired switch in it, Huh; WTF?

Thus, thanxs to Claudio, we picked up le Machine one  day later, to which the Computer Geeks firmly told me that my warranty was done; Uh Duh JACKARSES! As they told me that the power source was the issue, as Claudio would subsequently show me how the sides of the power source unit were wrinkled, bent and chewed-up, to which A-L-L we could surmise is that they'd tried cutting corners by installing used parts upon my machine that I'd thought I was paying for a brand new computer CPU tower one year ago when having it built...

And thus it makes me laugh seeing the "Positive Feedback" remarks upon Zed Internetz, for said company that cannot even update its new location on the very same Internetz! As obviously I'll NEVER be going back there again!

But at least for the time being, I've got a working 'Confuzer, and thus, I'll continue with the riveting Blog stories for awhile longer - which I guess I'd better ski-dattle 'N start scribblin' some more, eh?