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Doc's Blog

Welcome to Diana 'The Doc' Thomas' official Blog ... A radio interviewer once referred to Diana as being a 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana has indeed filled the shoes (or fire boots) as truly being America's foremost 'Celebrity Drag Racing Authority & Visionary'... Diana is known for being somewhat controversial at times... She speaks the TRUTH!!... Nobody else on the web possesses the ability to speak the Truth, and 'TELL IT LIKE IT REALLY IS' the way she does!!-- Diana tells it like it is about drag racing and other topical issues-- You've seen Diana 'The Doc' Thomas on our DVDs, with Bret Kepner on ESPN, and in all the major media-- Don't miss your opportunity to read her daily blog here at DRAG RACING UNDERGROUND... Diana's Blog gives you a daily does of TRUTH and REALITY with HEART... Diana's unique and refreshing perspective is unlike anything else on the web... We strongly recommend that you bookmark this page NOW!!-- Be sure YOU check in daily to experience & enjoy Diana's unique insight, worldly wisdom and perspective...

As some of you already know, I've occasionally watched the popular TODDLERS & TIARAS television show on THE LEARNING CHANNEL (TLC). Well, I can guarantee you that I won't be watching it anymore. Recently it's been exposed that many of the "pageant moms" are forcing their young daughters participating in the pageants, to consume a severely sugared-up Mountain Dew based concoction called "Go-Go Juice", and also "wolf down" multiple sugar based "pixie stixs", also known as "Pageant Crack", to give their daughters an intense "Pageant Buzz", and fire them up into a state of extreme overdrive, so they can "perform" with an added boost of energy and enthusiasm... I find this pretty darn appalling, I mean, are these mothers really THAT unloving??-- Do they want there precious daughters to develop diabetes??-- Do they want to start their daughters on a habit of relying on narcotics and illegal stimulants to give them an added "boost" for the rest of their lives?!?... Y'all know that BIG STICK and I released our anti-crack inspired "CRACK ATTACK" tracks several years ago, so you know that I have zero tolerance for "Pageant Crack", street crack, or any type of substance abuse like that... With 2012 being the official 20th anniversary of NHRA's Junior Drag Racing League, I implore parents who are looking for a safer and saner competitive alternative for their daughters to participate in, to consider putting their little girls in a Junior Dragster. It's certainly a far more morally and ethically sound environment than pageants. From what I've personally witnessed, Jr. Drag Racing teaches kids the importance of good sportsmanship, and there's definitely not the widespread "Go-Go Juice" and "Pixie Stix Pageant Crack" abuse that's currently plaguing the young girls pageant circuit! Sure, you have to pay out the initial investment of buying your daughter a Jr. Dragster, however, if you compare it to the money you spend on custom pageant dresses, flippers (false teeth for the little ones), tanning, pageant coaching, wigs, entry fees, etc, you might find Jr. Drag Racing to be even slightly more economically feasible for your family... Give up the glitz, glamour, and the "pageant crack", and come on over to the drag strip, we've got a far more superior program for your daughters, a program that will give them the tools necessary to become better young women, and more stable and secure adults...


DRAG RACING "PIZZA PRINTS"??... SOME PRUDHOMME WITH YOUR PEPPERONI??...

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There's a commercial that I keep seeing on TV for something called "Pizza Prints". The TV advertisement sells round, disc shaped, color images of the NFL football teams helmets that are "edible", and that you put on your pizza. Supposedly "Pizza Prints" compliment the pizza's flavor.  When your pizza is hot, you simply apply the "Pizza Print" image right on top of the hot cheese, the pizza image then melds with the cheese, so you're able to eat your pizza with your favorite NFL team's image melted into it... Yum Yum, ya think??-- I dunno, I have no idea of what it actually tastes like. However, I do know that lots of NFL football fans are buying this new novelty item in droves, especially in anticipation of the Super Bowl... I have to ask, if this is such a huge hit with NFL football fans, would this sort of thing also appeal to NHRA drag racing fans?-- Would you want John Force's likeness melted into your pizza pie? How about a grinning Larry Dixon to spice up your pizza? Or why not a Pro Stock pizza with Greg Anderson and anchovies? How 'bout Don Prudhomme with your pepperoni and peppers?... I have to wonder what kind of ingredients "Pizza Prints" are really made of?-- I wonder what sort of flavor they really bring to a pizza?... I think if I was given my choice of drag racing oriented "Pizza Prints", I'd like an outlaw doorslammer version with Dave Hance's face gracing my pizza, or maybe a "nostalgia" pie with Bruce Larson's likeness, or better yet, NHRA's winningest drag racer of all time, Frank Manzo's magnificent mug perfectly placed to gallantly garnish my mightiest of meatball pizza pies... I guess in reality, drag racing isn't quite "mainstream" enough for us to ever expect the "Pizza Prints" people to cater to our whims with a frequently running TV commercial, after all, we're not quite as massive of a market as professional football... But hey, I don't think that I really need "Pizza Prints" to prove my love for drag racing, I think just eating normal pizza while watching drag racing is more than an adequate expression of my love for the sport... And for my love of pizza...

 

 


Very rarely do I use this blog to call out municipalities in New Jersey that fall miserably short of what I believe to be the standard of acceptable moral and ethical protocol. My most recent criticism of Belmar NJ, for being a town that masquerades itself as a quaint shore community, while harboring a livid juvenile population that violently preys on women, the homeless, and the elderly started a behind the scenes firestorm between the town and I, and I won't back down until I see the crime stats come down. That's just how I am, I fight when I want things done right. Belmar NJ is where John Gill's late father was brutally attacked and wounded... Once again, Sayreville, NJ is back on the hot seat with me. Previously on this blog, I cited Sayreville for allowing several of their historic and cherished landmark eating, drinking and entertainment establishments to rot and deteriorate. The newest problem that I have with Sayerville's blowhard bureaucrats is their failure to step-up and do something to save the town's no-kill animal shelter. The nonprofit Sayreville Pet Adoption Center, owned by veterinarian Dr. Joseph Chiosi, receives no government funding or assistance. And currently, the shelter has lost, or is in the process of losing its contracts with Sayreville, Helmetta, Spotswood, and South River, towns that paid SPAC to house and care for their stray animals. Evidently an animal shelter that doesn't adhere to a strict "no kill" policy has lowballed SPAC, and taken away their contracts with Sayreville (their own town, gee whiz), Helmetta, Spotswood, and South River, leaving SPAC in financial dire straits. Y'all might remember my blog of last year, when I told you about my attending and supporting of  SPAC's "Jammin' for the Animals" benefit. Today, January 7th, there will be a Flap-jack fundraiser at Applebee's restaurant in Milltown NJ, from 9 to 11am. Tickets are $15 each with proceeds going to SPAC. Look, while fundraisers are all well and good, I'm getting tired of seeing places like SPAC have to claw their way (pun intended) to financial stability, the town of Sayreville should use some of their bloated property tax income, and direct a small fraction of it to help keep SPAC afloat. I urge those politicians in Sayreville who have the power to make a difference for the town's "no kill" shelter to do so RIGHT NOW... At least grant SPAC the town's stray animal contract back!!-- Would it kill you to do something right for your own town's "no kill" animal shelter?!?...


FEEDBACK FRIDAY... WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY ABOUT MY RECENT BLOGS...

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Today is "FEEDBACK FRIDAY", meaning I deal with emails that my assistant Stephanie and I receive from readers regarding my most recent blogs... Let's get to it.... Yesterday's blog concerning the woman from the National Geographic TV show who wants a surgeon to cut her spinal cord, so she can be a "real" paraplegic, resulted in a slew of emails from folks who believe she's crazy, and agreed with me that she should speak to Darrell Gwynn and ask him what he thinks about her twisted idea... Several of you wrote me, thanking me for remembering those who passed away last year from the drag racing and music world , my "Goodbye 2011, Hello 2012" blog prompted Gerald from Allentown, PA to write, "Ken Nelson and his Cool Bus School Bus are going to be sorely missed."... My blog describing my annual New Year's Day walk with my sister at Sandy Hook beach, where I met a whole family wearing Raceway Park jackets, caused the dad from the family, Michael, to write that next time he sees me at E'Town, he wants me to sign his RP jacket. Will do, Michael!...  My blog encouraging people NOT to drink and drive on New Year's Eve brought in a few responses from members of MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), one mom named Katherine from Bowling Green, KY told of how she lost her son to an intoxicated driver, and she genuinely appreciated me for discouraging drunk driving. I'm very sorry for your loss, Brenda... My blog comparing the similarities of the 2012 dippy doomsayers to the lackadaisical geezers who constantly preach a future of doom for drag racing was a big hit with my readers. My good friend, Michelle, who works at Raceway Park, thanked me for mentioning the successful SHAKEDOWN AT E'TOWN event, and NHRA's Junior Drag Racing League remaining strong for 20 years, that's definitely a living testament to the late, great Vinnie Napp's visionary ability...  My blog paying tribute to Peter Steele, of TYPE O NEGATIVE, who would've turned 50 a couple of days ago prompted some pretty emotional emails from you folks. Clara from Minneapolis, Minn said that Peter was an inspiration to her during a very difficult time in her life. Thanks for sending me your touching email, Clara. I posted another pic of Peter below. I'm thankful for TYPE O NEGATIVE's Johnny Kelly recording guest drums on our (BIG STICK's) upcoming 2012 record release... Keep those emails comin', whether you agree or disagree with my opinions, I'm genuinely interested in your feedback... I just ask that you please keep your emails short and to the point, no rambling please, and please also include where you're from, I often find the location of where folks are writing me from to be sort of interesting... Thanks...


WHAT WOULD DARRELL GWYNN THINK OF THIS?...

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I remember touring the U.K. one year with BIG STICK, and having a day off from our grueling schedule to visit Santa Pod Raceway in England. Upon my return home back in the U.S., I heard that only a week after my visit to Santa Pod, Top Fuel racer Darrell Gwynn had his horrible accident at Santa Pod, leaving his lower body paralyzed. I remember how that news hit me like a ton of bricks. Over the years we've seen how Darrell's been courageously championing the cause of finding a cure for paralysis, and putting those who are paralyzed and can't afford one, in a power wheelchair of their very own. Much of Darrell's admirable efforts stem from his Darrell Gwynn Foundation, his charity organization that heroically promotes support for people with paralysis, and the prevention of spinal cord injuries.... Which brings me to the subject of what I witnessed the other night on an episode of the National Geographic channel's TABOO program. There was a woman featured on the show who spends a majority of her time "pretending" to be a paraplegic. That's right, she uses a wheelchair, at home, at work, etc, and deceives people into thinking that she can't walk, but the truth is that she CAN walk, she actually enjoys the idea, and "lifestyle" of her being a paraplegic. This same woman, who in my opinion is absolutely vacant in the head, although she does work as an accomplished chemist, also wants doctors to perform a sick surgery for her, a surgery that would slice her spinal cord and make her a paraplegic FOR REAL. So far, she's been unsuccessful in finding a surgeon willing to fulfill her body altering desire. According to the National Geographic program, she's not the only person who wants for this twisted alteration of life, there's others among our population who share her ambition... Maybe this woman and the others like her should sit down with Darrell and people who REALLY have this sort of physical affliction and handicap, maybe that would change their mind??-- I dunno, I really don't get it-- I really don't. There's no way I can make any sense of this at all. It kind of makes me sick to think this sort of thing exists... While people like Darrell Gwynn are working so hard to fight this affliction, and help those handicapped by it, there are other people with perfectly healthy bodies, wishing they could get surgery that wound render them a paraplegic. It's just not right... If you would like to learn more about the Darrell Gwynn Foundation, and even possibly make a donation as well, please visit darrellgwynnfoundation.org


TODAY PETER STEELE WOULD HAVE TURNED 50... WE REALLY MISS HIM A LOT...

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It was 50 years ago today, January 4th, 1962 that Peter Thomas Ratajczyk, better known as Peter Steele was born. Steele was born in Red Hook, Brooklyn to a family of Polish, Russian, Icelandic and Scottish heritage. He was the youngest of six children, with five older sisters. Some folks might know of his time spent fronting the band Carnivore. Most people who follow "rock" music are aware of Peter being the lead singer, bass player, and primary songwriter for Type O Negative. He stood a giant-like 6'8", and although his towering appearance may have intimidated some people, he was an approachable guy that so many of us in the music community genuinely loved, respected, and admired. I still listen to Type O Negative almost every single day, especially in my cars, all my cars are stocked with Type O Negative, the music never grows old with me. One thing I admire most about Peter Steele was his ability to write songs that really put his emotions and feelings, no matter how somber, out in the open with a clear and unobstructed view. Steele shared his inner-self with listeners in a way that so few other recording artists do, and he did so without being soapy or sappy, but with his own unique technique that connects directly to your psyche in a straightforward intrepid manner. Call what he did "Goth Metal", "Doom Metal", or whatever you want, I call it exceptional music that will stand the test of time, and probably endure among serious music aficionados far longer than most other bands of similar genres. Peter Steele's brand of extraordinarily versatile baritone vocalization talent was pretty damn special, and he did lots of innovative recording with it. I really can say that I'm a "fan", John Gill is too. We (Big Stick) are friends with Johnny Kelly, the drummer from Type O Negative, who is also a drag racing enthusiast, and owns a sweet '70 Dodge "Super Bee" that he occasionally races at E'Town. Johnny Kelly recorded guest drums with us on our new Big Stick music that we're releasing in 2012. I'm not exaggerating when I say that it's my belief that Johnny is one of the most naturally talented percussionists in all of rock 'n' roll. The other two fellows who played with Peter in the band, guitarist Kenny Hickey, and keyboardist Josh Silver are also incredibly talented and gifted musicians. They all worked with Peter Steele to create Type O Negative's strong repertoire over the years. While there's no denying that Peter had his problems with alcohol and substance abuse, he was actually clean, sober, and back to fine form for a long period of time when he died of heart failure on April 14th in 2010, and he was readying to write and record new music with the band... Oh, how the people who knew him and love him now miss him so damn much... Peter was one man and musician I don't want us to forget...

 

 

 


Every New Year's day, my sister and I have a tradition of walking the beach in Sandy Hook, NJ. No matter what the weather brings, we brave the elements and do our annual walk. Fortunately for us, this past New Year's day was rather mild, and we took advantage of the favorable weather, by walking for a much longer distance than we usually do. We certainly weren't the only people at the beach that day. There were a healthy number of folks walking, riding bikes on the designated bike trail, and just spending quality family time together. One family that caught my attention were a Mom & Dad, with two young kids, all wearing Raceway Park jackets! When our paths crossed on the beach, I just had to start a friendly conversation with them. I did the proper introductions, and told them that  I'm "The Doc" of Drag Racing Underground. The family Dad, Michael, knew who I was, and even flattered me by saying that he occasionally reads the blog. Mom, Brenda, and their two boys, Greg, and Roger had no idea of who I was, but were friendly just as well, and eager to engage in New Year's conversation. I complimented them all on their spiffy, sporty and ultra-fashionable Raceway Park jackets. They in turn replied with how warm and comfortable they were in their E'Town apparel. Michael said how he used to help out a buddy of his who raced Super Comp. Even though Michael no longer does pit duty with his buddy, he still takes the family to the strip at least twice a year for select events. I asked the kids what's their favorite thing at the track, and they enthusiastically replied, "Jet Cars!!". We chatted a bit about non drag racing related stuff, like how beautiful the ocean looked and sounded that day. I told them how happy I was that they were wearing their Raceway Park jackets, because that's why I starting talking to them, and subsequently made some new friends to start off the New Year. After our trip to Sandy Hook, my sister and I want to Sissy's restaurant in the Atlantic Highlands for a late lunch. My sister and I were pretty exhausted from our long and extended walk on the beach, however, it was still a joy for us to share the day together... For those of you looking for some Raceway Park jackets to keep YOU warm and cozy this winter (they're great conversation ice breakers when walking the beach on New Year's day!), or, if you're looking for stylish Raceway Park sweaters, T-shirts, hats, racer gear, gift cards, etc, simply just aim your computer's mouse in the direction of the official Old Bridge Township Raceway Park e-store at http://www.racewayparkstore.com (copy & paste the url address to your browser).


Now that 2012 has arrived, there's plenty of dippy and demented people claiming that our final doom is imminent. Extremist religious fanatics and pseudo-scientists are insisting that 2012 is the year that our run on Earth comes to a cataclysmic demise... These sort of false prophets of doom don't really have any impact on me, heck, those of us in the drag racing business have been putting up with demented, degenerate doomsayers for decades. Almost as soon as the internet was born, and drag racing found its little "neurotic niche" on the worldwide web, we've been hearing people (mostly grumpy geezers) telling us how NHRA, IHRA, and the sport of drag racing is rapidly self imploding, and how there's NO FUTURE whatsoever for the sport... And while I'll be the first to admit that drag racing's heyday, when it was a bigger part of our nation's more mainstream culture is indeed long gone, and that the "golden era", when drag racing was relatively "fresh" and  "new", and embraced by more of the common populace is also now far behind us, the truth is that drag racing is still going pretty darn strong. Sure, it's changed in some ways, it's definitely not the same as when those cantankerous crocks who spill their daily dose of drag racing doom on their computer keyboards were young and virile-- I get that-- However, we're far from seeing drag racing's extinction from the planet. Take it from me, I've recently been to SHAKEDOWN AT E'TOWN, and some big night time THRILL SHOWS, and I've seen the pits packed with racers, and the grandstands filled to the brim with fans-- There are some sectors of the drag racing world that are unequivocally alive and well, no matter how much that upsets those who insist on constantly driveling otherwise. Also take note that NHRA's Junior Drag Racing League turns 20 years old this year (2012), proof that there's still youthful folk coming into our sport and having genuine fun with it.... So, let the 2012 doomsayers have their fun, let 'em chatter of their black hole suns, we know their kind, they're just bitter, clueless, blowhards who really don't have any idea of what the heck they're talking about...


GOODBYE 2011... HELLO 2012!!... THANKS, REMEMBRANCE, AND HOPE...

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Happy New Year!!... I'm very thankful for those in my life who helped make 2011 a pretty darn good year... Thanks to my friend Fred Schneider of the B-52s for singing lead vocals with Big Stick on our "HOT SAUCE" song to be released in 2012. Thanks to Johnny Kelly (Type O Negative, Danzig, Black Label Society, A Pale Horse Named Death) for recording drums on Big Stick's "HOOCHIE EXPRESS" track to be released in 2012. Thanks to Tom Timko (Aretha Franklin, Shakira, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Springsteen) for playing baritone saxophone on our "DRAGUMENTARY" track, a song also to be released in 2012, and that's already been previewed on NPR'S (National Public Radio's) HEARING VOICES show-- Thanks to Barrett Golding, the producer of the special "ENGINE OVERDRIVE" edition of the HEARING VOICES program that previewed the "DRAGUMENTARY" track, and also featured a couple other "classic" Big Stick songs-- You can listen to a FREE mp3 of the show in its entirety by going here......  http://hearingvoices.com/news/2011/08/hv121-engine-overdrive/  (copy & paste to your browser)... I'd like to mention some dear music friends we lost in 2011... Zoogz Rift, we (Big Stick) played a show with Zoogz at Amsterdam's historic Paradiso music hall, he was a great guy. Nick Ashford of Ashford & Simpson fame. I met Nick once at a NYC recording studio. The towering musician was a soul pop master. "Solid as a Rock" remains a great and unique soulful love song. Phoebe Snow of "Poetry Man" fame is gone. Saxophonist Clarence Clemons. Laura Kennedy, the creative bassist and co-founder of NY "no wave" band Bush Tetras.  Barbara Orbison, Roy Orbison's widow died on the anniversary of her late husband's death. Carl Gardner, lead singer of the Coasters. Bluesman Willie "Big Eyes" Smith... In the drag racing world we lost Bob Plumer, Ken "Cool Bus School Bus" Nelson, Al Olster, Don "Lefty" Little, Cal Jackson, Huston "Dixie Twister" Platt, R.L. "Wildman" Peyton, Phil Castronovo, and Bobby Langley... In my family, I lost my beloved, Terri, she was such a great friend and inspiration to me over the last few years. She was a big help to Drag Racing Underground. I miss Terri an awful lot... I apologize for all the departed who I didn't have the space to mention here... In closing, please permit me to raise my morning coffee cup, as I toast to the memory of all those who we've lost in 2011, and in this same emotional morning toast, please also allow me to acknowledge, and show my love and appreciation for all who still remain in our lives, and bring us joy... Here's to hoping that 2012 ushers in renewed hope, good health, peace, and prosperity... Let's try to be thankful for all the good things in our lives as we embark on our journey into the New Year...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


I don't mean to be a "wet blanket", but I feel somewhat compelled to say what I'm gonna say, for the reason that even if what I'm about to say, saves just one life, or keeps one of my readers out of the hospital emergency room, I believe it's well worth it. And if you're one of those blowharded, bigoted sort of guys (like a few of the imbecile manchilds from the "classic" F/C scene, ha ha), who are so darn scared of a woman's blatant candor, brutal honesty, and ability to "tell it like it is", I strongly suggest you aim your mouse elsewhere and leave this page immediately, because yes, I am using today's blog to discourage excessive alcohol consumption for those people who will be driving this evening. Yeah, I know, there's some fools who think drinking and driving on New Year's Eve is "Far Out", and wrapping your car around a tree and killing yourself (or someone else) is just a "guy thing", that us frilly gals simply don't understand, blah, blah, blah-- I don't buy that backwards "macho schtick" for one minute. If you plan on "partying up" tonight to celebrate the ushering in of the New Year, please value your life enough to NOT get behind the wheel of a car, if not for your safety, please do so for the safety of the innocent others who will be on the roads too, and who don't deserve you plowing into their car and taking their life. I've been in a hospital's emergency waiting room on New Year's Day, and I gotta tell you, seeing the crying families and friends of patients severely injured, disfigured, or dead, as a result of driving drunk on New Year's Eve is NOT a pretty sight... I also suggest if you're partying tonight not to drink past your limit. You don't want a painful hangover plaguing you on New Year's day. One way to help avoid a hangover is to retard the absorption of alcohol by eating before and during drinking (especially foods such as cheese, that contain fatty proteins)... I'm scheduled to attend and appear at no less than four different parties tonight, and I DO plan to "party" a bit, so I hired myself a chauffeured limousine for me and my friends, and I explicitly told the limo company that I DO NOT want a driver who is a drunk!-- And yes, it's gonna cost me some bucks, but, you know what?-- At least I know there's a better chance of me still being around tomorrow to write my first blog of 2012...