Al Gore tells Sharknado joke at NASCAR Green Summit



Al Gore, speaking in Chicago at the 2013 NASCAR Green Summit, opened his keynote speech by telling a Sharknado joke. No, he didn’t poke fun at how the film was destroyed on Twitter, or the (lack of) acting skills possessed by Tara Reid.

Former Vice President of the United States & Chairman of The Climate Reality Project, Al Gore said that he used to think NASCAR and green were as closely related as sharks and tornadoes.

Gore then went on to say how auto racing and environmentalism are now synonymous, thanks to the initiative that he and NASCAR CEO Brian France started five years ago.

Al Gore also said Sharknado was the sleeper hit of the summer.

(I’m assuming he meant that sarcastically??)

Yes, the film was a way for us to all get through the annual summer doldrums where sports news is very slow for four months.

It should be also be noted that I used the word synonymous as defined by Merriam-Webster- “strongly suggesting a particular idea, quality, etc. : very strongly associated with something.” Remember, I used the word synonymous, not Gore. And the general tone of his speech, and the NASCAR Green Summit all day was essentially: “We did it, we made it green, and we’re doing more. We have a ways to go, but we’re celebrating five years of this.”


Gore reiterated a lot of talking points from his 2006 film “An Inconvenient Truth.” He brought up the climate paradox we’re experiencing of record drought and record flooding. Al Gore came to town coincidentally the day after a string of near record high temperatures in Chicago. The event held at the Spertus Museum on Michigan Avenue examined the initiatives that have helped make NASCAR the sports sustainability leader.

Among those who spoke today were: the man who won the 2000 Presidential Election popular vote, but lost the Supreme Court vote 5-4, Retired U.S. Army 4-star General Wesley K. Clark; U.S. Hockey Hall of Famer and Wisconsin Badgers icon Mike Richter; Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) Lead Scientist Allen Hershkowitz; Deputy Undersecretary for Science and Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy Dr. Michael Knotek; and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Senior Policy Counsel in the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention Matt Bogoshian.


Al Gore had a good speech, but it didn’t have the killer quotes of General Clark. The military man knocked it out of the park at Venue 610 today.

The Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup opener is at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet on Sunday, Sept. 15 (1 p.m. CDT, ESPN).

By the way, Sharknado was released on DVD eight days ago, in case you’re interested. Expect a Miley Cyrus twerking joke when Gore gives a speech in December.

Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports, an affiliate of Fox Sports. An analyst for 95.7 The Fan, he also writes on Chicago sports media for Chicago Now. Follow him on Twitter (@paulmbanks) and Facebook.

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