March 7, 2008

I recently hosted a Career Day at the middle school where I work. It's one of the events that AACE sponsors to get students interested in pursuing higher education. We get different professionals from around the Bay Area to come in and speak to the students about what they do at work, what makes it fun, what they have to do to get there, etc.

We book just enough speakers to cover the classes we will be going into. I think it sucks to have someone come in and just be a backup or standby speaker. So I always joke to my co-workers that I can always fill in as an emergency career speaker if someone fails to show up. My job: racecar driver. (Note: I offered my co-workers a chance to be a speaker where they could pick the career of their choice. They just have to be able to know what they are talking about for 15 minutes or so and must be able to answer any questions the students might ask.)

I've got the whole racecar driver bit down. I'm officially a road course test driver for Hendricks Motorsports. I started my career in the USAC midget car series. After getting my degree in automotive engineering, I did a little racing overseas in Japan, where I won a few races, the 1997 Kyoto 250 and the Nippon Ham 300 race in 2001. (I would have to bring in some photoshopped images to back this up.) Soon after that, our racing team would have lost its funding and I found work in the engine shop of some low level Busch (now Nationwide) Series team. After working on the cars one day, I pulled a Ricky Bobby and drove a super fast lap, which led to my current test driver position. Between Days of Thunder and Talladega Nights, I've got just as good a story to encourage education (I did mention my degree in automotive engineering) as any of the professionals who came in.

At our last staff meeting, there was a question about what we job/career we would be doing if we didn't work with middle school students. Everyone thought I was going to say racecar driver, but I thought about it and had an even better answer: bank robber. I'm not talking Ocean's Eleven stuff here. Just small banks, a 7-11, or Burger King here and there. There's very little startup costs. If you timed it right, you'd only be working 2 or 3 days a month. It would allow the evil genius inside of me to finally reach its potential. The best part is that with my racing experience, I would be my own wheelman. So the next time I'm not in the office and you hear a report of cops engaged in a high speed chase with a green Camry leaving a robbery scene...

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