(RaceTalkRadio.com; May 2, 2012)
Graphic by Lori Munro of War-Wagon.com
Tuesday night on the THUNDER CREW radio show on RaceTalkRadio.com host Mike Harper started a discussion about Tony Stewart’s bullying of ESPN reporter David Newton after the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Richmond International Raceway. We were all in agreement that Newton’s question was not the main reason for Tony Stewart’s behavior. I suggested that Stewart’s behavior was due to his desire to go home and by beating up on Newton he encouraged the other media members to leave him alone. Mike Harper suggested someone in the media should ask him a question challenging his performance or ask if he is in a pissy mood. Lori Munro had the best comment of the night when she said media members should call him Anthony since he is acting like a six year old. As a public service to the NASCAR media members that feel intimidated by Tony Stewart I present “Tony Stewart Questions for Dummies.”
Lori Munro pointed out that by giving in to Tony Stewart’s bullying the NASCAR media members were providing positive reinforcement. She suggested he needs to be trained as one would train a dog. There is no need to smack Stewart on the nose with a newspaper; all you have to do is not to allow Stewart to win. Ask the most asinine and basic questions and show no response when he attacks you is Lori’s advice.
Lesson One: Add Cesar Millan to the National Motorsports Press Association and train Stewart like one would train a dog.
Drop the Smoke
When you were a kid and got your parents mad when did you realize they were REALLY ticked off at you? If I ever heard my name spoken slowly and precisely using my middle name I got ready to duck! Instead of feeding Tony Stewart’s ego by calling him “Smoke,” NASCAR media should refer to Stewart by his complete middle name instead before every question.
Lesson Two: Call the subject by his complete given name…Anthony Aloysius Stewart.
Tony Stewart tends to pick on reporters that he knows will buckle to his will and allow him to beat on him while they back down. NASCAR media members know they can’t do anything outlandish back to Stewart since they have their credentials on the line if they do anything wrong. In hockey you never see a star player retaliate because a team doesn’t want to lose their goal scorers. But each team has an enforcer. Each media outlet should have a designated enforcer who can rush the stage when their guy is beaten up by Tony Stewart.
Lesson Three: Hire an enforcer to rush the stage and take control.
NASCAR media members have a busy schedule and they also want to wrap up media center interviews quickly. But there is no reason media outlets can’t let their “A-List” guys ask their questions first and then have the designated question askers take over. Just a few obnoxious people (And maybe even Carbon Super Sport, the official spokes dog of RaceTalkRadio) can keep Tony Stewart in the seat answering insane questions for an hour! (ESPN, I am a available at an affordable rate)
Lesson Four: Send in the clowns to ask Tony Stewart stranger questions until he snaps.
Sample Questions for Stewart
There are twenty-seven more races to go in the NASCAR schedule and between pre-race and post race interviews the NASCAR media can expect another 25 Tony Stewart appearances in formal interview segments. Reporters can use the following questions to establish a more positive rapport with Anthony Aloysius Stewart. Remember it is always crucial to use his complete name with substituted middle name before every question no matter how many you end up asking. (Great monogram too)
Method One: Lori’s Three-Part Recipe
There is only one thing more annoying than asking a multi-part question…intentionally leaving out one of the parts while asking the most insane combination possible.
Sample Question: Anthony Aloysius Stewart…firstly, I was wondering whether when you are sitting at a campfire you choose the three legged stool or a four legged chair. Thirdly, if you were a tree what type of tree do you think you would be?
Method Two: Dennis’ More Detail is More Annoying Theory
In addition to using multiple parts try to find the most obscure things possible to ask a question about.
Sample Question: Anthony Aloysius Stewart I noticed that before the race when you were cleaning your tires off you started by weaving to the left first and then back to the right and did so 14 times. When you were under caution I noticed you were cleaning off your tires by weaving to the right first and then back to the left but there didn’t seem to be certain number of times you weaved. Firstly, does the choice of weaving back and forth make a difference in the cleaning of your tires and do you weave 14 times to honor your favorite driver or is it just a coincidence? Thirdly, what is your favorite type of barn animal?
Method Three: Ask questions that have absolutely no bearing to the race that just occurred.
If Anthony Aloysius Stewart thinks the questions he is being asked are worthless and idiotic the only way to counter his tantrums is to come up with questions that have no bearing on the race or anything else.
Sample Question: Anthony Aloysius Stewart, do you know the best way to get to Toledo, Ohio from here?
Method Four: Bring up past questions that caused past tantrums
NASCAR media members have long memories and can often tell you about obscure interactions from the distant past. Surely they will remember the top ten questions that set Tony Stewart off in the past. Since everyone is into recycling these days why not recycle the best irritating questions.
Sample Question: Anthony Aloysius Stewart, how much did your former dead weight weigh and how did getting rid of that dead weight actually help to improve your performance?
Method Five: Use phony voices to set the tone and give the appearance of having multiple personalities to confuse Tony Stewart even more
Confusion is an excellent tool in setting the mood of any confrontation with Tony Stewart. Use of caricature masks is optional but using phony voices when you ask your question will add a level of confusion to your interaction with Stewart.
Sample Question: Using your best Ronald Reagan voice impersonation, “Well, Anthony Aloysius Stewart…Nancy told me she thinks you are the best driver in the history in NASCAR history, do you believe your performance tonight will solidify your chances for making the NASCAR Hall of Fame?
All it will take is some simple training to get Anthony Aloysius Stewart to behave in a more proper way with NASCAR media in the future. It is vital not to show any emotion or any reaction to a Tony Stewart tirade! NASCAR will not punish those choosing to use the methods mentioned in our “Tony Stewart Questions for Dummies” handbook because they seem generally irritated by his treatment of the media too. An intensive four to six week use of such a guide is guaranteed to improve the environment in the media center for all. Electronic copies of the complete guide are available on demand and I can provide a five step training course for just $99.
Sign up today!
“Tony Stewart Questions for Dummies” is not affiliated with or endorsed by the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) or its parent companies. “Tony Stewart Questions for Dummies” is not associated with John Wiley and Sons and was simply used for comedic effect. Actual copies of the guide are not for sale although Dennis Michelsen is available for designated extra question asking duties on a week by week basis. All opinions displayed above are those of Dennis Michelsen and do not reflect the views of RaceTalkRadio.com LLC or its sponsors. (They have more sense than Dennis) Use of the middle name “Aloysius” was meant for humorous effect and is not implied as a criticism of the use of the name for middle or first name duty. The author realizes that Tony Stewart’s real middle name is not “Aloysius” so Tony Stewart fans are advised to not waste your time feeling important by including such comment in your venomous emails.