September 11, 2016

Human Crash-Test Dummies--and Loving It

This last weekend while everyone (in Utah at least) was watching the largest college football rivalry in the state, UofU versus BYU, we were watching the West Jordan Stampede Demolition Derby. Now that does not mean we weren't keeping a minute by minute updates on the score of the game (thank you smart phones!) so we could goad our BYU loving families! hehe

During the National Anthem...unsure of why they have a Confederate Flag there...

It was the first time that Lady Hiva and Lucky Dragon had experienced a demolition derby. She came with us mostly because the only other option was sitting at home by herself. However, after the first 'heat' of intense smashing of vehicles they were both hooked!

For those of you who have never been to a demolition derby, let me explain, it is a competition of several cars that come into a dirt arena 6 at a time--a heat--and spend the next several minutes ramming, sideswiping and, for a lack of a better word, demolishing each other's vehicles! Now, these vehicles are built out of scrap cars and trucks and are extremely LOUD! Some of them it is laughable to think how they are even running before the heat begins, let alone after the thrashing they take! The drivers are literally voluntary crash test dummies! I have to wonder if they are sore the next day from the whip-lash.

Trevor used to participate in these when he was alive--an adrenaline junky at heart. At the beginning of each heat we would watch the cars parade in and all three of us would choose a car that was 'ours' and spend the duration of the heat cheering on our chosen vehicle. This made the experience more and more interesting as we seemed to have vested interest into which car was left running at the end of the heat.

Uncle Beau-D would be SO stressed out that this truck had 4 mismatched tires, including one tractor tire
As each round was concluded, the vehicles that could no longer driver were taken off by tow trucks to do a quick repair so they could join in either the "Grudge Match" where the losing vehicles vie for one of the three positions in the final round, or they are one of the last three cars still moving in their heat so they are automatically included in the final round.

One of the most entertaining was the "Couples Match" where the female of the pair is the driver and has the brake while the male passenger has the gas pedal. As you can imagine there has to be plenty of communication going on to make that work. Not to mention it is so loud you cannot hear each other and there are 8 other cars ramming you from every direction! Talk about thinking in a tense situation. For this race Lucky Dragon chose a pink and black vehicle cheered joyfully and  relentlessly for the duration of the heat, "Go Pink! Go Me!..." over and over and over! Lady Hive had chosen a team from Cedar City, UT and they won, but at the end their vehicle exploded in fire and both dove out the windows and rolled around because their pants were on fire!

Putting out the fire

It was getting a bit late so Lady Hiva thought that we ought to take the Dragon home to sleep but he was having so much fun he refused to go! I am glad we stayed until the end. The final round had more like 12 or 13 vehicles in it, all looking like they were already on their last leg. But the experience did not disappoint! One truck was hit so hard it went clear over the cement barrier towards the crowd and Tau'aho could not stop talking about one of the trucks named "Junky" and how another truck hit it and went clear over it and both kept going! The meet ended in a huge plume of smoke and dust---the perfect ending.

A fan favorite because of how aggressive he was

Junky--the family favorite

So as we drove home our little guy recounted what he had seen in gory detail. His animated voice was full of the descriptions of the trucks and what they did including "boom, vrroom, bang" and other angry sounding sound effects to give us the full experience as if we had not been there with him. I am glad we took him, and I am glad that Lady Hiva decided to come with us. They were both so shocked at how intense it was they couldn't hide their smiles! We may just have to find another one to attend!

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