Sunday, December 20, 2009

A NASCAR Christmas for Toyota: A one-act play

The scene opens in an office at Joe Gibbs Racing. Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano are writing Christmas cards to fans, sponsors and family. J.D. Gibbs is in the room, making phone calls and answering questions from the drivers.

Kyle: How do you say Merry Christmas in Japanese?

JD: (With cell phone in hand and held to his hear) I don’t think they celebrate Christmas in Japan.

Kyle: Then why am I sending a Christmas card to Toyota?

JD: (Talking into his cell phone) No, dad, it’s just that I don’t think Christianity is that big in Japan. (He covers the mouthpiece and turns to Kyle) We are all signing a card to send to Toyota for the holidays. No need to write Merry Christmas.

Kyle: Well, what am I supposed to write?

JD: (Talking into his cell phone) Buddhism I think. I’m not sure what religion is big in Japan, dad. I just have a feeling there aren’t that many Christians there. (He covers the mouthpiece on his cell phone again and turns to Kyle) You don’t have to write anything. Just sign your name.

Kyle: I need to add something clever, something snappy. I want to say something cool in Japanese.

JD: How ‘bout a simple thanks. (He uncovers the mouthpiece on his cell phone) Can we talk about this later dad? I have to make sure these cards get out today. All right. Talk to you later.

Kyle: Thanks? For what? Giving me a 13th place car?

Denny: My car worked fine, for the most part. It’s not Toyota’s fault you didn’t make the Chase.

Kyle: Fine. You can thank Toyota. I’m not going to do it.

Denny: Why are you so upset? They gave you a championship Nationwide car. You won almost half your truck races. Those were all Toyotas too.

Kyle: Nobody cares about that. All anybody cares about is why I didn’t make the Chase.

Joey: To enjoy success
One must first find meaning in

Kyle: What was that?

Denny: It’s a haiku, a type of Japanese poetry. Joey’s been talking like that for weeks now.

Kyle: It didn’t even rhyme.

Denny: It’s not supposed to. I guess it can, but not always. It’s just supposed to, y’know, be truthful, profound. It’s supposed to be only three lines too. Short and sweet.

Joey: Poetry needs rhyme
Like a shrub needs a loud voice

Kyle: Yeah, a loud, talking shrub. That would be obnoxious. C’mon Joey, help me write one of them haikus for Toyota.

(Joey does not respond. He closes his eyes and starts to hum)

Kyle: What’s he doing?

Denny: Meditating.

Kyle: What for?

JD: If he has nothing to say, he doesn’t say anything. Especially now since he’s speaking in haikus. Takes some time and thought to put those things together.

Denny: He’ll answer you when he’s ready.

Kyle: This is killing me. I’ve got hundreds of Christmas cards to sign. I just need one cool haiku to send to Toyota.

Joey: Greetings Toyota
Let’s build something together
Sincerely, KyBu

Kyle: Perfect!

(The scene closes as JD and Denny open their mouths to try  to say something to Kyle, then stop. Kyle writes furiously on his Christmas card to Toyota. Joey sits back, puts his hands behind his head and smiles)

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