Commentary

NASCAR kids say the darndest things

Originally Published: June 14, 2014
By Marty Smith | ESPN.com

At my daughter's preschool there is a designated spring morning each year when the fathers of the students join the class for doughnuts. It is called Doughnuts for Dads. And it is quite the festive occasion.

[+] EnlargeDad's Day Survey
Marty Smith/ESPNMarty Smith's daughter Mia sheds light on her daddy's likes and dislikes.

The kids are thrilled to share with Daddy their daily routines, things like pouring imaginary coffee into thimble-sized pink plastic mugs and serving it with plastic croissants and singing "Let It Go" loud enough to crack the steeple bell out in front of the church.

Some kids perform. Some watch. Most play. And verbally ramble. The dads play for a bit, but mostly make small talk with each other while nibbling Dunkin' Donuts Munchkins and sipping OJ from those paper Dixie cups reserved for bathroom swishing post-brushing.

The highlight of this outing for many dads is the survey hanging on the wall upon entrance to the room. The perspective of a 5-year-old child tells you a lot about a man.

For example: I am 73 years old, tell my Mia "I love your face!" a lot and, naturally, I love to drink beer.

Seeing my daughter's responses about me gave my wife a keen idea: Ask the drivers' kids about their daddies. So I did. But I took the approach that the drivers' wives should conduct the surveys. That way, the kids would be totally comfortable with their mothers and thus the answers would be completely honest and unreserved.

The result is hilarity. In racing we really love our kids and they love when we play with them. And man, do we love tacos.

Ella Gordon (age: soon to be 7); father -- Jeff Gordon

[+] EnlargeJeff Gordon
Jerry Markland/Getty ImagesJeff Gordon and daughter Ella

1. My dad's name is Jeff Gordon.
2. He is 42 years old.
3. Dad has brown hair and blue eyes.
4. His favorite food is tacos.
5. And he likes to drink wine.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is watch a show with us.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is poker.
8. My dad's favorite song is "I Like To Move It."
9. It makes him happy when I smile.
10. My dad does not like when my brother and I are arguing.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be a win!
12. Dad always says "Eat your food."
13. My dad and I like to play games.
14. I love my daddy because he loves me.

Emma Biffle (age: turns 3 in July); father -- Greg Biffle

1. My dad's name is Greg Biffle.
2. He is 10 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and blue eyes.
4. His favorite food is oatmeal.
5. And he likes to drink coffee.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is goes swimming.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is the news.
8. My dad's favorite song is "Country Girl."
9. It makes him happy when ...
10. My dad does not like honey bees.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be oatmeal.
12. Dad always says "I love you."
13. My dad and I like to go swimming.
14. I love my daddy because he's so special.

Evie Johnson (age: soon to be 4); father -- Jimmie Johnson

[+] EnlargeJimmie Johnson
Chris Graythen/Getty ImagesJimmie Johnson and daughter Genevieve

1. My dad's name is Jimmie.
2. He is 48 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and brown eyes.
4. His favorite food is fish, potatoes and apples.
5. And he likes to drink tablet water.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is eat.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is fetch.
8. My dad's favorite song is [by] Adele.
9. It makes him happy when we dance.
10. My dad does not like to waste food.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be pink bubbles.
12. Dad always says "I love you."
13. My dad and I like to swim and race to the garage.
14. I love my daddy because he's special ... and we ride on airplanes.

Wyatt Sadler (age 4); father -- Elliott Sadler

1. My dad's name is Elliott.
2. He is, I think, 32 years old.
3. Daddy has brown hair and white and brown eyes.
4. His favorite food is salad and bologna.
5. He likes to drink Coke.
6. When my daddy wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is get dressed and go to the living room.
7. My daddy's favorite game to play is T-ball.
8. My daddy's favorite song is Uncle Blake's brown song. (Referring to Blake Shelton's song "Boys Round Here" because the album cover on iTunes is tan)
9. It makes him happy when I sing and he coaches T-ball.
10. My daddy doesn't like for me and Austee to be mean.
11. If I could give my daddy anything, it would be chocolate candy, and I think I can ask Santa to bring him some toys if he is nice.
12. Daddy always says "Sharkbait, Oooh ... Ha! Ha!"
13. My daddy and I like to play pirates.
14. I love my daddy because he's my best friend.

Austyn Sadler (age 2); father -- Elliott Sadler

1. My dad's name is Elliott Rose Sadler.
2. He is 3 but I am 2 years old.
3. Daddy has black hair and brown eyes.
4. His favorite food is popcorn.
5. He likes to drink Coke.
6. When my daddy wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is put a shirt on.
7. My daddy's favorite game to play is T-ball.
8. My daddy's favorite song is "Big, Bright, Beautiful World" (from "Shrek the Musical").
9. It makes him happy when I have a ponytail.
10. My daddy doesn't like peanuts (because Wyatt is allergic).
11. If I could give my daddy anything, it would be food.
12. Daddy always says "Tootsie Roll!"
13. My daddy and I like to play.
14. I love my daddy because he's funny.

Kaylin Kenseth (turns 5 in July); father -- Matt Kenseth

[+] EnlargeMatt Kenseth
Patrick Smith/Getty ImagesMatt Kenseth and daughter Kaylin

1. My dad's name is Matt.
2. He is 42 years old.
3. Dad has brownish hair and greenish eyes.
4. His favorite food is key lime pie.
5. And he likes to drink coffee.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is shaves.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is "free the cat."
8. My dad's favorite song is "Let It Go."
9. It makes him happy when he tickles us.
10. My dad does not like pepperoni.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be a hug and a kiss.
12. Dad always says he wants to play with us.
13. My dad and I like to play at the park.
14. I love my daddy because he loves me.

Grace Kenseth (age 3); father - Matt Kenseth

1. My dad's name is Matt Kenseth.
2. He is 42 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and I forgot about his eyes.
4. His favorite food is jalapenos.
5. And he likes to drink coffee.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is make coffee.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is memory matching with faces.
8. My dad's favorite song is the "ice song."
9. It makes him happy when I give him hugs.
10. My dad does not like snakes.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be boots.
12. Dad always says "Whoop-whoop!"
13. My dad and I like to make coffee.
14. I love my daddy because he plays with me.

Marco Papis (age 7); father -- Max Papis

1. My dad's name is Max Papis.
2. He is 44 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and green eyes.
4. His favorite food is sushi.
5. And he likes to drink wine and beer and Coke.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is farts.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is soccer.
8. My dad's favorite song is "Monster" (Eminem).
9. It makes him happy when we give him hugs when he comes back from his trips.
10. My dad does not like a dirty car.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be a tractor.
12. Dad always says "I love you."
13. My dad and I like to wrestle.
14. I love my daddy because we ride our motocross together.


Matteo Papis (age 5): father -- Max Papis

1. My dad's name is Daddy.
2. He is 44 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and green eyes.
4. His favorite food is pizza.
5. And he likes to drink Coke.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is eat breakfast.
7. My dad's favorite game to play is hot potato.
8. My dad's favorite song is "XOXO" (Black Eyed Peas).
9. It makes him happy when I give him kisses and hugs.
10. My dad does not like when I punch him.
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be a tractor.
12. Dad always says "Go get dressed!"
13. My dad and I like to ride the Moto X.
14. I love my daddy because he gives me kisses.

Carter McMurray (age 3); father -- Jamie McMurray

1. My dad's name is Jamie.
2. He is 3 years old.
3. Dad has black hair and blue eyes.
4. His favorite food is tacos.
5. And he likes to drink coffee.
6. When my dad wakes up in the morning, the first thing he does is ...
7. My dad's favorite game to play is NASCAR on Xbox.
8. My dad's favorite song is the "Happy" song.
9. It makes him happy when he has M&Ms.
10. My dad does not like ...
11. If I could give my dad anything, it would be a race car.
12. Dad always says "Happy birthday!"
13. My dad and I like to go fishing.
14. I love my daddy because ...

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