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There Will Be No Escape

Tonight, I went out to dinner for my birthday at a Portuguese restaurant.  Before we’d even had a chance to order our food, in the middle of a pleasant conversation, my spider sense started tingling.  “What is this strange disturbance in The Force?” I wondered.  I looked around, not wanting to be too ridiculously rude as I tried to discover the source.

My eyes were drawn to the TV mounted on the opposite side of the room.  There, I saw a mildly attractive, bespectacled man being interviewed.  And then I knew the cause of this unwelcome disruption in my otherwise-pleasant birthday dinner.

“Stefano. Domenicali.”

My friend looked politely confused.  “Who?”

I straightened in my chair and pointed an accusing finger at the television.  “HIM,” I sputtered.  “HIM.  Remember the thing I was telling you about?  At the German Grand Prix?”  I think some other words came out, but mostly what I kept doing was stabbing my finger in the general direction of the television, repeating “HIM.  TEAM PRINCIPAL.  HIM.”

The report, which I think might have been on a Brazilian TV station, then switched to visuals of Felipe Massa’s accident last year, an ambulance at the scene, shots of Massa himself at Sunday’s post-race press conference, shots of one Ferrari F1 car cruising casually past another.  At this point, I was practically bouncing out of my seat.  “SEE?  SEE?  I can only imagine what they’re saying about him!”  I swear to God, at that point I almost flagged down our waiter, who I thought might be Brazilian, to see whether he’d been following the coverage and what he made of it all.  (I’m happy to report that I didn’t actually do that.)

My friend (who knows nothing about F1) very gamely discussed the whole thing with me at length and eventually got me calmed down enough to move on to other conversational topics.  What a good sport!  But holy crap, what are the odds?

Well, I don’t know!  Maybe they’re very good.  F1 might not be even a blip on the English-speaking news radar here in the US, but whatever station this was — and I think I saw a Brazilian flag down in the corner of the screen — was  devoting a decent amount of air time to the story three days after the fact.  And what they were saying about poor Felipe Massa, it’s possible I don’t even really want to know…


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