Ray's musings and humor

“Desire! That’s the one secret of every man’s career. Not education. Not being born with hidden talents. Desire.”

 Bobby Unser (American Automobile Racer who won the Indianapolis 500 race three times (1968, 1975, 1981).

 

 

 

As most of you know I moved to Indianapolis, Indiana USA on a semi-temporary assignment forty years ago. It changed to a permanent non-temporary some years later when I refused to leave. I needed to let you know when I arrived since I did not want anyone to think I was here for the first running of cars at the world famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway one hundred years ago. In case you weren’t there either here is more information about the Speedway.

 

August 19, 1909

First race is held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway

On this day in 1909, the first race is held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, now the home of the world’s most famous motor racing competition, the Indianapolis 500. Built on 328 acres of farmland five miles northwest of Indianapolis, Indiana, the speedway was started by local businessmen as a testing facility for Indiana’s growing automobile industry. The idea was that occasional races at the track would pit cars from different manufacturers against each other. After seeing what these cars could do, spectators would presumably head down to the showroom of their choice to get a closer look.

The rectangular two-and-a-half-mile track linked four turns, each exactly 440 yards from start to finish, by two long and two short straight sections. In that first five-mile race on August 19, 1909, 12,000 spectators watched Austrian engineer Louis Schwitzer win with an average speed of 57.4 miles per hour. The track’s surface of crushed rock and tar proved a disaster, breaking up in a number of places and causing the deaths of two drivers, two mechanics and two spectators.

The surface was soon replaced with 3.2 million paving bricks, laid in a bed of sand and fixed with mortar. Dubbed "The Brickyard," the speedway reopened in December 1909. In 1911, low attendance led the track’s owners to make a crucial decision: Instead of shorter races, they resolved to focus on a single, longer event each year, for a much larger prize. That May 30 marked the debut of the Indy 500–a grueling 500-mile race that was an immediate hit with audiences and drew press attention from all over the country. Driver Ray Haroun won the purse of $14,250, with an average speed of 74.59 mph and a total time of 6 hours and 42 minutes.

Since 1911, the Indianapolis 500 has been held every year, with the exception of 1917-18 and 1942-45, when the United States was involved in the two world wars. With an average crowd of 400,000, the Indy 500 is the best-attended event in U.S. sports. In 1936, asphalt was used for the first time to cover the rougher parts of the track, and by 1941 most of the track was paved. The last of the speedway’s original bricks were covered in 1961, except for a three-foot line of bricks left exposed at the start-finish line as a nostalgic reminder of the track’s history.

As you probably know the speeds these days are well over 200 miles per hour. If you ever get a chance to come and see a race I think you’ll be glad you did for the size of the track, the hundreds of thousands of spectators and the spectacle itself must be experienced since words do not do the experience justice.

~~~

"Every race I run in is in preparation for the Indianapolis 500. Indy is the most important thing in my life. It is what I live for."

Al Unser

~~~

TEACHER: Why are you late?

WEBSTER: Because of the sign.

TEACHER: What sign?

WEBSTER: The one that says, "School Ahead, Go Slow."

~~~

"An old timer is a man who’s had a lot of interesting experiences — some of them true."

~~~

When a physician remarked on a new patient’s extraordinarily ruddy complexion, he said, "High blood pressure, Doc.  It comes from my family."

"Your mother’s side or your father’s?" the doctor asked.

"Neither," he replied.  "It’s from my wife’s family."

"Oh, come now," the doctor said.  "How could your wife’s family give you high blood pressure?"

He sighed.  "You oughta meet ’em sometime, Doc!"

~~~

"Any husband who says, ‘My wife and I are completely equal partners,’  is talking about either a law firm or a hand of bridge."

 

Bill Cosby

~~~

A collector of rare books ran into an acquaintance who told him he had just thrown away an old Bible that he found in a dusty, old box. He happened to mention that Guten-somebody- or-other had printed it.

"Not Gutenberg?" gasped the collector.

"Yes, that was it!"

"You idiot! You’ve thrown away one of the first books ever printed. A copy recently sold at auction for half a million dollars!"

"Oh, I don’t think this book would have been worth anything close to that much," replied the man. "It was scribbled all over in the margins by some clown named Martin Luther."

~~~

"Start every day off with a smile and get it over with."

-W. C. Fields

~~~

A guy walked into his friend’s office, he found him sitting at his desk, looking very depressed.

"Hey, what’s up with you?" he asks.

"Oh, its my wife," replied the man sadly. "She’s hired a new secretary for me."

"Well, nothing wrong in that. Is she blonde or brunette?"

"Neither, He’s bald."

~~~

A computer expert is someone who can tell you logically why he doesn’t know what to do about your problem.

~~~

An airline customer-service agent got a call from a woman who wanted to know if she could take her dog on board.

He told her the dog was welcome, as long as she paid a $50 charge and provided her own kennel. He further explained that the kennel needed to be large enough for the dog to stand up, sit down, turn around and roll over.

"I’ll never be able to teach him all that by tomorrow!" she said, and hung up.

~~~

Thousands of years ago, cats were worshipped as gods. Cats have never forgotten this.

~~~

This lady went with her daughter to visit a prestigious university, and the student guide pointed out the nationally ranked library and state-of-the-art science facilities. She told them that the professors were the best in the world, and she recommended the daughter apply early to improve her chances for admission. "We get so many applicants," she boasted, "because of the stature of the school."

After the tour the mother asked our guide, "So, why did you choose this school?"

"Oh," she replied, "my boyfriend works at the McDonald’s across the parking lot."

~~~

"To finish first, you must first finish."

Rick Mears

~~~

Stay well, do good work, and have fun.

 

Ray Mitchell

 Indianapolis, Indiana

 Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies.

The editor is somewhat senile.

 

This daily is sent only to special people who want to start their day on an upbeat. If you have system overload because of our daily clutter, let me know and I will send you the information via mental telepathy. If you have not been getting our daily you can join at http://groups.google.com/group/Rays-Daily. Back issues are posted at http://raykiwsp.multiply.com/journal currently there are about 1500 readers from all over the world.

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