An Instagram Longread

October 12, 2015

I posted a short story on Instagram. It's my first longread there as I normally just post short captions. If you're on Instagram, give me a follow!

I went to a dirt racetrack last night and watched several heats. It was nearly a cross-cultural experience! I enjoyed the races, but the prayer ... Oh, Lord. // "There are only two people who have voluntarily given their lives for you: Jesus and the United States armed forces," the pastor started. "One shed his blood for your salvation, the other for your freedom." // I stared out at the track, my eyes for some reason searching in vain for a glimpse of this pastor. I'm not sure what I expected to see. Probably just an average pastor. Heads around me went down for the prayer. I couldn't quite bring myself to close my eyes. // My three-and-a-half-year-old son normally does well during prayers. About halfway through this one, he started loudly asking me a question. He wanted popcorn. I whispered that we needed to be quiet since we were praying. He looked around and then back at me with a confused look. Then he asked again about popcorn. He wasn't buying the prayer either. // After the problematic introduction, most of the prayer was fine. Until we got to the end. The pastor worked a patriotic statement into his prayer. "God bless America. Amen." His words roared out of the speakers and bounced around with the setting sun. // The races started. Lots of yellow flags came out as cars wrecked, spun out, or stalled. The guy behind me became the interpreter of racing for my father-in-law and myself. He explained the early heats were 'b' racers and not as good as the ones to come later. So with each mishap, we watched as the cars sputtered around for several laps while waiting for a car to be towed off the track. This was my son's favorite part as he called the tow truck "Mater." Then a green flag would finally replace the yellow one, and the cars roared again. During one heat, the yellow flag went out four times in just three laps. // I didn't look at the flag guy during the prayer. I wonder if he would ever fly the yellow caution flag. #longreads #race #prayer #yellowflag
A photo posted by BrianKaylor (@briankaylor) on

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