by Clance' McClannahan, Special To NASCAR commentary and driver pictures, 2012 NASCAR schedule, video, Bench Racing With Steve and CharlieAugust 23, 2010 4:42 pm UTC 6 Comments
Bristol will never be the same for me, not as long as I live. Not because Kyle Busch made history by sweeping all 3 races at the track, but because the morning of the Bristol Cup race, I received news that Marc Boland, the author of Full Throttle , a highly respected and valued member of The Thunder Lounge Network, THE Motorsports Blogger Extraordinare, had passed away a week and a half ago in The Phillipines.
Marc was best known for his extensive knowledge and coverage of every Motorsport there is. His personality, snarky, cocky and sometimes offensive, was known to all who were a fan or not. He was a member of many forums, from Nascar to Asian Drifting. Marc’s discussions and down right arguments were one of his claim’s to fame.
Marc spent hours and hours scouring the Internet news feeds. He was not only looking for your everyday news about racing, but the news no one bothers to report. He had a passion for discovering and calling attention many young and unknown racers. He had a penchant especially, for the racers of the female type.
Marc’s reader’s and forum members either loved him, or hated him. There was no in between. He loved to debate, and his acrimonious wit made a lot of people furious. Marc loved, when he found someone’s button’s, to egg it on. On occasion the lucky person he had locked horns with, found themselves the subject of a post which had them on their feet and bound.
That was the Marc Boland most people knew.
I was blessed to know another side of Marc. Through the years, Marc and I became very good friends. I knew a soft hearted man, who adored and lived for his beautiful wife and two little girls. He had a little farm, and his prized feinting goats (look them up) were the next loves of his life. He had chickens, ducks, assorted cats and other odd animals who showed up and moved in with the family. His home was fully prepared for any emergency and he could live for a long period of time without ever leaving his home, should he be trapped by any natural disaster. He rolled with the tide.
Marc’s days were my nights. We spent many of my early AM hours, when insomnia ruled, emailing and chatting back and forth about myriads of issues. I lived off the grid on and off for years, and we shared many an idea, and the common love for the simplicity that kind of lifestyle brings to your soul. We talked about politics and found quite quickly that we were on opposing sides in that arena. We agreed to disagree to continue our friendship. We both knew each other well, and one of us was going to be pissed. More than likely, ME.
Marc retired from the military after serving our country many years. I believe this is where his acerbic wit came from. He had seen more things than any human being should ever see. He had traveled the world, and was adept in umpteen languages. Many people don’t realize that Marc was a Drug and Alcohol Counselor with a Masters Degree in Psych. He knew his stuff. He was a great support to me during my separation, divorce and the ensuing tragic deaths in my family within a matter of days. I want to give a shout out out to Jerry Wilson, The Die Cast Dude here too. Without the emotional support I have received from Marc and Jerry through the years, I truly know I would have lost my mind. When there would be long gaps in my writing, or he hadn’t heard from me, he would email me with the Header: ARE YOU DEAD? The body of the email would say “Jes’ checkin.”
We would stay up all night and day chasing down sploggers and get them shut down. Marc knew his internet law, and they were not going to get around it. “Take the stolen posts down or your website will be down within 24 hours.” Then he would do it. He taught me a lot. He was vigilant about watching out for his blogging bud’s. People weren’t going to be plagiarizing them, let alone making money off of it. Loyalty was one of Marc’s finest qualities.
Marc would frequently find out “things” and give me the tip so I could get the honor of being first to break the news. Of course there was a challenge to it. He would tip me off in an email often received at 4 or 5 am my time and give me 1or 2 hours to publish it or he was going to. He knew the nights I had insomnia, because we were always talking. The tips never came then. They came when I was sleeping. I was lucky and got a couple of them.
Marc’s death leaves a huge hole in the Motorsport’s Universe. He was followed closely by many around the world. His death leaves a huge hole in my life. I know he knew he meant a lot to me and that I cherished our friendship. Marc’s passing made me think about something I hadn’t before. Many of us, as bloggers, have dedicated and loyal followers. Mine are always there, no matter how long it has been since I have written. I have become friends with many other writers and many of what I call my Loyal Lugnut Parishioners. (Marc’s Official position in The Church of The Great Oval was “The King of Curmudgeon”) If something happened to me, there would be no way for my family to let anyone know. I decided to make sure there was a document in my important papers with the passwords to the places I write, Facebook and Twitter. I hadn’t worried about Marc not posting on his blog, because I knew he was taking his Harley and his wife on a trip. I assumed wrongly, that he had decided to extend it.
I also made sure I told several people I had never told, how much they mean to me. You never know when you won’t get that chance.
I know what the Hot Dog Avatar really meant. How many of you do?
I keep expecting to get an email or a comment or a tweet from him saying “April Fools in August. HAHA!” I even put something in this post that I know would get his dander up. If he read it, he wouldn’t be able to resist answering back somehow. I want to think he just decided to stop blogging and talking and take some space and this is all a big joke. Alas, Marc was not that cruel. I wish now that he was.
Marc’s last word’s to me? A little tweet about his daughter becoming a real teenager and “BTW? How are YOU?”
My last words to Marc in this life are written everywhere I can find to put them.