Dec 20, 2009

(Mike) Joy to the World!

As January begins, a mild sadness always creeps over me. The fiber-optic Christmas tree has been stuffed into our storage bin, the champagne flutes have been put away, and I am officially a year older. There’s still about a month and a half before pitchers and catchers report, and it’s still dark when I leave the office.

For these reasons, I have to say the mid-January staple known as Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale is perfectly timed. The largest of the B-J Collector Car Events is always a bit of festive week at our place. Just what I need to lift the spirits!

How I look forward to planting my Snuggie-clad tuchus on the sofa as John and I tune in to SPEED TV (in HD, of course) to welcome Bob Varsha, Matt Stone, Mike Joy, Steve Magnante and Rick DeBruhl into our home for the first Barrett-Jackson Event of the new year.

I can’t help but do a little dance as The SPEED TV “Special Presentation” intro plays to kick off that first hour of coverage. For now, and for the better part of the week to come, I leave the post-holiday blues behind and run through a whole spate of emotions (not to mention take-out food). Here are just a few:

Laughter: John mocks the announcers. “Bonafides,” he says, “provenance.”

Disbelief: We watch as the “affordable” autos roll across the block. Where the hell does that guy get a million dollars?

Yes, John. I know yours had the pistol grip.

Irrational logic: Seriously, if I had 4 million dollars, I would totally buy the “Parade of Progress” over a house in Alpine.

Impatience: Alright, Carroll Shelby, you’re a legend. We get it. Now, let’s moooove on.

Sadness: My heart sinks just a little at the top of each hour when upon returning from a commercial break the announcers state that one more hour (of like 1,000) of SPEED TV coverage has passed. They reassure me there is still plenty more action to come – but the damage is done. Don’t toy with my emotions, Matt Stone.

Confusion: Can Ron Pratte possibly care so much about the Daryl Gwynn Foundation, or is it just a tax deduction? Hmmm…  And why do they let John Schneider carry on like that – he’s JUMPING ON THE ROOF…AGAIN!

Titillation: Good lord, Steve Magnante, feel that steel! (If you haven’t seen it, let me explain: in a new broadcast segment, called “Feel the Steel” a blindfolded Mags runs his hands over a classic vehicle and gives the make, model, and year within seconds.) If that ain’t the ultimate in geek-sexy, I just don’t know what is.

And, ultimately…

Heartbreak: I always get upset as the SPEED team wraps things up with their “final thoughts.” I actually wept one year as Mike Joy gave a rather touching closing (and I am not being sarcastic here) where he recalled the passing of his father, a car enthusiast, and expressed how he wished he could take just one last ride with him.

But nothing lasts forever.

Before I know it, it’s Sunday afternoon and, just like the holiday season, B-J Scottsdale is over too quickly.  Out of our TV come those familiar words I hate to hear: “And that concludes SPEED TV’s coverage of Barrett-Jackson, live from Scottsdale, AZ. We’ll see you in April when we broadcast from Palm Beach.”

As the April event will coincide with our yearly trek to Mets spring training camp....oh yes, Matt Stone, you will certainly see us in Palm Beach!

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