I hate to say it, but the past two months have been the worst I’ve had since starting my “List of Promises.”

I’ve literally felt used and mentally abused, to the point that I didn’t make any damn progress on my goals. Even the driving aspect has taken a huge backseat due to timing constraints with my crappy non-media weekly job and just other stuff happening.

The only saving graces was the wedding of my closest friends, going to a wedding shower for another friend and this past weekend taking photos of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race at Evergreen and watching Without A Cause wrestling the following day.

Other than that, it has been nothing but struggles and plans not going through.

For years, I’ve been nice about the lack of communication, promises and even trust but how much long do I have to let other people use me that way?

I know I’ll be heading to St. Louis to cover the IndyCar race at Gateway to start off a three-race grind in a span of five weeks, which is what the doctor ordered because I need to head back into what makes me happy and that’s doing on-assignments.

There are some stuff I’d like to share but it’s entirely confidential until I’m willing to allow myself to explain certain projects and ideas. Some having to do with my personal frustrations I’ve dealt the past two months.

For now, here’s some updates regarding my promises as of August 21, 2019.

And yes, welcome to my new site if you haven’t seen it yet. This is the new home for the blogs. Much better than the Wix one right?

Promise No. 1: 500 Miles (Completed)

Thinking ahead, I still have some interest of doing the Daytona 500 once again in 2020 but that is entirely up in the air. That’s really because I’ve yet to decide which racing discipline I’m covering next year – NASCAR or IndyCar.

If I go with the latter and these next three races (Gateway, Portland and Laguna Seca) will really tell me if I’m meant to do Indy car racing or not.

The sport is slowly shifting into a young man’s game and at 24 years old, I may be arriving at the right time. Whereas in NASCAR, I fear that I’ve missed the transition by a country mile and probably may not have a place in the sport I’ve followed since 2003.

That being said, the ultimate goal for next year is to cover the Indianapolis 500. It’s part of my three-year plan I made in 2017 that I’ll be at Indy by 2020. Well, that year is coming soon and I know I have to kick serious ass to meet this daunting goal.

While others are living the dream, whether it’s writing for magazines or producing podcasts, I’m just barely making by with little to no fanfare.

Calling it a spade of spade, people simply don’t care what I do. That’s for damn sure real from the colleagues I worked with at my alma mater.

However, these next six weekends, you’ll never see someone that’ll pour their damn heart into a profession like I will and you can bank on that!

Promise No. 2: Profiling with the Videoscope (Struggling)

I simply had to record my own footage when I was at Evergreen Speedway this past Friday. I’ve done hype videos on the K&N West all season, but I knew this one had to be different. Also, it’s only the fourth LEGIT video I actually recorded stuff since graduating from Idaho in 2016. Not good and in dire straits of having people to help me out to get their story across.

There’s only four months left and this concept has been a constant burden, especially when I don’t have people to work with on having their stories being told.

I mean the video here should sort of count, but it’s not profiling anyone. This is more than my crack at doing opening intros like I work at some network and see where it really goes.

Yeah, I brought up two drivers in particular but it’s still not profiling them. There, I save you that question.

Again, if you have a story that would like to be told or help a business out. Never hesitate to ask and we’ll try to come up with a way to make it possible. That’s why this site exists!

Promise No. 3: Eastbound & Down (Complete)

As of today, Daytona may be the only East Coast race I’ll be covering this year. There has been some change of plans regarding Charlotte, which was the last leg of a seven-week marathon.

Now, it’s a four leg marathon that spans six weekends and Gateway will be the halfway point. Hopefully, I can find a consolation prize and do at least another NASCAR race weekend as Phoenix may be the only one.

This is one where I won’t go into details as to why that changed as it shall stay confidential from my end.

Which reminds me, what happened to Iowa and/or Mid-Ohio?

Simple. Financial constraints and such short amount of time to find a place and flight that is reasonable. Plus, I refuse to stop in Chicago. That’s one town I would never touch based on the bad rep it has gotten over the past few years.

Sure, they’re not East Coast races but it played a big role why I’m going to Gateway this weekend. As a way to make up lost ground because I was already set for Iowa but I just couldn’t sort it out like I would’ve liked.

Rent money, ladies and gentlemen. That eats up a great chunk of the amount I’ll have for the coming month. Might as well get used to it in the foreseeable future.

Promise No. 4: SoCal Vibes (Completed)

It’s been a minute, but I’m unsure when I intend to visit the SoCal area in the future.

I think about that time being there often and realize how enjoyable was being surrounded by the vibrant nature of the area.

Whether it’s Long Beach or Ocean Beach, the feel I had for those places is what drove me to keep my chin up and kick ass in what I love when those opportunities arrive.

Even looking at the photo you’ve saw (if you’re still reading this), I know that 2019 has still been a pretty stout year. I may not have shown it in this entry with so much gloomy and agonizing crap going on, but boy do I really want to get back on a monstrous roll.

Promise No. 5: Autism Awareness (Complete)

I often think about how should I continue helping out those with autism become stronger and not let it be as a bad thing.

The video I made several months ago was definitely a start, but I know going forward I have to do more and it’s something I must take time to figure out.

I’ll say this though, I don’t use it as an excuse for my struggles. I know I have it but it’s something I refuse to use as the reason why XYZ didn’t happen. It’s just unhealthy for my body and brain to say something like that.

Once I revealed this to the world a few years ago, I knew that it doesn’t bother me and while some have a hard time finding a way to not let it be what defines them, it shouldn’t be ignored.

Take some time to read information about autism and how it’s not one dimensional like many make us ought to be.

Promise No. 6: Last Note of Freedom (Maybe?)

There are three promises (Last Note of Freedom, Belongingness and Knowing My Worth) that has suddenly become a bit intertwined due to one of those confidential situations I’m currently dealing with at the moment.

Personally, this “thing” I can’t share could symbolize true freedom and perhaps my relatives can respect me for what I do.

So what’s keeping me from putting a check mark at the moment?

The setbacks I’ve dealt lately like feeling used or not feeling valued from my family when I take photos or cover events such as auto racing for Motorsports Tribune.

I hate being used for other’s gain. I’ve had enough of that shit even when I was at college and totally not want this to be the theme of my life, being used.

This is one of the main reasons why I can’t put that check mark. Until I feel respected without any questioning, then that elusive freedom will usher in a brand new era of genuine positivity.

When I’m at the track, that freedom kicks in and totally ready to go these next five weekends. I mean, it’s crunch time for the NTT IndyCar Series and a champion will be crown soon.

Also, “BECAUSE RACE CAR!”

Promise No. 7: Driving at Last (On Hold…FH!)

“This time for real!” “Finally, this week is gonna be the week!” “I’m doing it now, don’t care if you like it or not!”

All a big fat negative because other crap has gotten in the way from actually being a man of my word and I honestly feel damn awful for not doing this time and time again.

Hopefully when I’m done covering the last three IndyCar races, I can finally stop with the bullshit and get on this promise before the cold hard winter rolls along to ruin another year.

I’m embarrassed at almost 25 that I’ve still yet to get a damn license!

Perhaps a lot having to do with the lack of pure motivation to get it is again being used for other’s gain.

I was told that I would be helped getting my own car in some capacity. It turned out the one who wanted to help is only using me because of my credit score and actually want to get a car of their own.

Excuse me?

As if I’ve helped people only to take advantage of my reputation and the things I hold extremely sacred ends up suffering.

Well that was a huge middle finger to me and dignity, I’m no damn puppet! If you meant to help me, then be a man of your word. Don’t use me just to put my name and ultimately find out that my score could face some ramifications.

I doubt it but it’s my ultimate baby and refuse to let it be touched for other people’s gain. Even if it’s my family, I don’t mess with my credit score. Cut and dry.

Maybe this off-season, I can save up and get that car myself unassisted. It’s for the best and not rely on others.

Promise No. 8: Bi-Monthly Reports (In Progress)

At times this month, I felt not writing this blog because of how difficult this time period has been for me.

Then I looked back at the blog introducing these promises for 2019 and forgot that it’s about covering races every other month is what keeps this active.

Gateway will be a symbol of getting my motivation back after being angry these past two months about a lot of things. Portland is a sign of redemption and a year into the long and consistent grind I’ve done. Laguna Seca will be another year of championship coverage but also closure of a long and winding IndyCar season.

Phoenix this November will accomplish this promise and when I’m done covering the final race before the Championship 4 and championship deciding K&N West race, I’ll look back at this journey with fond memories.

Promise No. 9: Photography Expansion (Still Going)

As you see with this photo, I decided to give this wrestling thing a go. I know I’ll be going to next month’s Without A Cause show during the two off weekends I have in this marathon.

Front row this time to see how much more I can capture from the fan point of view. Who knows, maybe it could lead into something where I may expand my versatility in photography.

What would be nice if I go back in time and try volleyball or even basketball.

Since I did video for both, I think photography will be an even fun challenge to do. Thing is as a up and comer, finding a way to do both volleyball and basketball photography as freelance is new territory.

Maybe this is what could bring me back to Idaho, doing photos but I highly doubt it. A definite “Only in Your Dreams” moment for the time being.

Same goes for wrestling, but since it’s an independent promotion, bringing my camera to the shows is a good start to see what I can do within the limited confines.

Promise No. 10: Belongingess (Maybe?)

With so much stuff going on regarding the future of my career, I wonder if I’ll ever reach this goal.

I know that I don’t really belong in the quote-on-quote NASCAR YouTube community. The numbers have gone down and simply don’t have a passion or even desire of continuing my channel as an active entity anymore.

My little show about K&N West has ran its course at this rate and so has trying to find time on counting red flags in both the NASCAR Xfinity and Gander Outdoors Truck Series before 2019. Even the NASCAR TV Graphics, what proved to be my downfall of a hot run I had from November 2017 to July 2018, is probably dead in the water.

Not that anyone cares, but I’m basically done after 2019. I’ll wrap up “West Coast Wednesday,” indefinitely put a hold on the graphics series and will only focus on red flags at the end of every season.

Maybe one last video to signal the end of a nice 11-year run is in the works, but I don’t even know if I have it in my to start working on them.

I don’t belong on YouTube and that is okay. I’m an old fart anyways.

In the world of racing media however, one thing can make a total difference.

If luck is on my side for once since June, I may feel like I’ve finally fulfilled that need which has been the most elusive component in my life.

Time will tell, but hopefully it’s what I just needed to reach this promise and say, I do belong in this profession.

Friends come and go, often stab me in the back, but this could be an everlasting moment I sorely need right now.

As soon as that falls through (once again confidential), I’ll feel awful and perhaps fought so hard just for nothing. Hopefully, it doesn’t have to come down to that moment.

Promise No. 11: Building a Connecting Audience (In Progress)

One writer I’ve met in my young media career have something in common, we agree that no matter how hard you work, the audience may not come like you’d hope. Even if it’s high quality writing and/or photography. He isn’t wrong.

Who would’ve thought a simply live tweet about the Slinger Nationals that I saw at home would give my biggest boost of Twitter followers.

It’s silly that something like a super late model race can make a difference. I call it the “Walton Effect,” where live tweeting an event can attract new followers overnight. I’m not friends with the person who’s effect was named after by any means, but it has stuck with me to this very day.

Like that Priscilla Kelly photo a couple of promises ago, over 2600 likes (and yet no gain in followers, go figure). Even the damn Friday practice photos at Evergreen is an all-time high of 155 likes.

Who plugged my Instagram to get those likes?

Sadly, I’ll never know because I would totally admire the person who did it because I never get those numbers, let alone hit 20 likes on a consistent basis.

Again, strong likes but little gain in followers. I’ll still try to get my stuff out there so I can eventually reach the 100 likes status on my posts.

Feels good that my photography is getting traction and even tweeting something like SLMs can bring some followers.

Maybe I should ask one of my writing colleagues how it feels to get a real “Walton Effect.” I think that person did stuff for the Indy Star this past weekend at Pocono.

Promise No. 12: Pitch Memoir Project (On Hold)

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Wedding views #RompingWithThePontings

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This particular day man, a glass case of emotions seeing one of my best friends getting married and everything else about that day. It made me think I’ll have a hard time choosing which days or time periods I’ll discuss in my memoir. One thing is certain, this day will be a part of the project because of how it went.

Like finding a way to freelance volleyball and basketball, this memoir project isn’t easy and felt it was best to put it on hold.

I don’t know how to get my life story pitched to a book publishing company without any form of connections except for one person?

There was a video I saw that wasn’t good but still informative where a writer published a set of books that easy.

Seriously though, I don’t see it as an easy task. First of all, I need one person to do a photoshoot of me which won’t be for a good ass while. Like 2020 good ass while.

I know what I want my photos to look like and it has plenty to do with the memoir, capturing the sides of me that’s either defined me or what people should see in me.

From the very beginning, I knew this was no easy task and still haven’t properly found time to investigate how to make the memoir from a being a vision into reality.

What parts of my life should be documented? Is there stuff I need to cross out or not mention for the sake of relevance and progress?

Those are questions I think about regularly and continue to do so.

Promise No. 13: Securing A Home (Completed)

Since I moved in June, I haven’t taken my photos of the new home. Like at all except for this one and when I got the keys hours after covering the IndyCar race at Texas Motor Speedway.

Now what? I got the new home.

Next project is to get the room all fixed up to my liking. Since my non-media job and race weekends coming up has gotten in the way, there hasn’t been time to get it organized.

I call my room as the second garage and the goal is have it all done before turning 25 this October 2nd. The same day the Lana Del Rey concert takes place and no I haven’t decided if that’s a nice birthday gift by going to the NFR Tour.

Old magazines and books are all ready to be put on shelves, it’s just now moving containers and boxes of stuff I don’t need to display in my room before doing the mass overhaul.

Once the time is there, I’ll do updates of my room. That’s if I remember to do so.

Promise No. 14: Knowing My Worth (Maybe?)

I know what I can bring to the table, but after 2019 is a complete mystery.

Who knows what life will hold for me, especially in the motorsports side as the future is up in the air.

Like I’ve said, the 2020 Indianapolis 500 is an absolute must and continuing the grind for as long as I can is essential to prove everyone that I’ve made it in this profession.

That’s all I really ask for my life, finding a purpose to live and doing what I do for Motorsports Tribune or even have chances to cover events when things go my way is one of those purposes.

It’s also the third “maybe” because that one confidential thing could allow me to stick around longer and perhaps the national breakthrough opportunity to make a true living in the business.

Without hesitating, what I do for MT is a passion and an amazing outlet to keep the drive going.

I’ve given it my all and now more than ever, will continue giving it my all. I know what it’ll take to understand my worth is valuable, I’ve shown it so far for MT and whatever lies ahead, I hope to be valued from others.

I’m a hard working SOB. Always have been and always will be. Especially, in the world of motorsports I’m going to showcase what I can bring to the table and they’ll notice my craft.

Just watch me!

For now, doubt me if you insist, prove me wrong if I give consent.

Published by Luis Torres

I'm a graduate from the University of Idaho, currently pursuing the dream of becoming a motorsports media personnel.

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