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Dakar Rally Dumped: Terriorists Win by Stan Silliman humor sports comedy cartoons articles


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman
Dakar Ralley Dumped: Terriorists Win

         Hal Fast, the old racing guy, is seething. In fact I’ve never seen him seethe this much.

    He’s expressing grief at the cancellation of the Dakar Rally, halted because al-Qaida called in a bomb threat.

    “This event should not be stopped,” says Hal Fast, who, if you say his name really fast comes off as “half-ast” which, ironically, is a lot like some of his ideas. “The guys who run these rallies know it is dangerous. Heck, a lot of them get killed anyway. End up in a sand dune, flip over into a bed of scorpions, go off course, get lost and fry in the desert. What are a few grenade launchers to dare devils like these guys?”

    But there could be land mines and the 5700 mile course is too long to secure, I tell Hal.

    “If you cancel the Dakar, you are emboldening the terrorists. I don’t know if George was consulted on this one,” Hal says. He goes on to tell me the rally is 30 years old, one of the biggest competitions in auto racing and that since it’s inception over two dozen racers have died. “What about all these guys who gave their lives so others could race in a desert? What about Humphrey Bogart?”
    What’s Bogart got to do with this?

    “You know?! Bogey, when he was in Morocco and held Ingrid Bergman in his arms and said ‘We will always have Dakar.’ ”
    I don’t think he said that.

    “Oh yes he did. He looked straight into Ingrid Bergman’s eyes and said something about a ‘hill of beans’ which is one of the most dangerous hills on the course and then he said ‘I’ve got a race to run. Where I’m going you can’t follow. What I’ve got to do you want no part of.’”
    I don’t think he said that.
Dakar Rally Dumped: Terriorists Win by Stan Silliman humor sports comedy cartoons articles
    “Oh yes he did. Rick, before he opened up his American Café in Casablanca, was an international race car driver. And Sam, his piano player was in his pit crew. ‘C’mon Sam, you changed a tire for her. You can change one for me. Of all the garages and lube joints in Paris, she walks into mine.’ Don’t you remember that, Silliman?”
    Were we watching the same movie?   

    “It’s the French, Silliman. This is their race. They organized it and then a few of their citizens are killed in Mauritania and they surrender. The French don’t have the willpower to provide security for the event even after Mauritania said they would provide 3000 security forces for race safety through that leg of the race. If we back away from our sporting events because internet bloggers toss out threats, then it’s all over. If we lose, I blame the French.”
    But isn’t that your heritage? Aren’t you of French descent?

    “Yeah, but I’m not from the white flag French. I’m from the revolutionary French and the ones that gave us the Statue... and the big sloppy kisses.”

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