Monday, May 07, 2007

Camp town ladies sing this song

So, the Kentucky Derby is coming up soon, (or maybe it already happened. I dunno and I’m too lazy to check). Does anybody besides the Elmer’s Glue Corporation (motto: You’re rubber, We’re Glue!) and your local McDonald’s remember Barbaro? In case you don’t remember who I’m talking about, Barbaro is the horse who won the last (next to last? Man I should start doing some research before I just type these things) Kentucky Derby, but during the next race (The Preakness? Hanna Barbara’s Wacky Race? The Cannonball?) Barbaro faltered, either because he was taking too many steroids, or he corked his bat –one of the two- and broke a leg. The bone was sticking out and everything. I could barely watch it more than seventy three times.

Because he was a Kentucky Derby winner, his owners decided to go all out and hook Barbaro up with the best treatment Dr. Doolittle could give. Naturally, God hates horses, which is why he made them so brittle, so they ended up having to kill Barbaro anyway. It wasn’t a shining endorsement for the veterinarian business.

For some reason, during his convalescent period, people felt it necessary to send letters to Barbaro telling a horse that they hoped he got better. I’m sure all those letters meant a lot to him as his was being killed for having a broken leg.

Anyway, I’m here to talk about the Derby, not any particular horse, (although the new McBarbaro bites they have down at McDonald’s are great!). If you’ve never been to the Kentucky Derby, you should go. A good time will be had by all.

I went once, a few years ago. The Army base I was stationed at decided to do a group trip. So we all (and by all I mean everybody who decided to participate, not all 23,000 people at the base) piled in a bus and made our way to Churchill Downs. Once we arrived we were given betting money (your tax dollars at work suckers!) and told where to be when it was time to go at the end of the day.

If you’ve never been then you don’t know how much of a party it can be. Sure there are all those uptight Southern Belles and Gents who show up dressed to the nines (a phrase I’ve never understood), wave their little fans, drink their mint juleps and go around saying “I do declare Mr. Beauregard!” But you’ve also got the crazy college-age, drink until your BAC is 1.35 crowd there as well. Located inside the track (what is that called, centerfield? I honestly had a brain fart and couldn’t think up anything better than “inside the track.” It’s a good thing I’m not getting paid to do this) this crowd loves to drink, party and display various body parts at the slightest provocation. It’s much like Mardi Gras that way. When you go, be sure to bring your own alcohol, because the Churchill Downs people are brutal with some prices. I bought a mint julep in a commemorative glass and the damn thing cost me eight dollars! What a rip off! It’s a good thing I had plenty of Everclear and coke.

Which reminds me, drinking heavily in the blazing hot Kentucky sun is a recipe for severe overheating. I’m talking overheating to the level where the skin on your face and arms cooks and release delightful aromas that have nearby fat people liking their lips in hunger. And you can’t do anything about it because you’re lying on the ground drunk, trying not to lose your balance on a world that’s spinning too much. So make sure to bring an umbrella, or at least a hat. Drink safe!

Oh and bring beads, because just like cigarettes in prison, they can buy you many things, if you know what I’m talking about. Wink wink. A camera would also be advantageous.

My fondest memory of the Kentucky Derby is not watching it at all. When the main race was announced everybody ran up to the fence to get the best view possible. I was able to get excellent positioning and I even brought a chair, (standing on one’s feet is so pedestrian) then, as soon as the race started I purposely decided to read a book instead of paying attention to the race. Because that’s just the kind of guy I am. I don’t really know why I did it. In retrospect it seems kinda stupid. I mean, who goes to see Fourth of July fireworks then lies on their stomach and looks at blades of grass during the big finale? Man, what was I thinking? I went to the Kentucky Derby and didn’t even watch the damn horses run! I’m an idiot! I think it’s time for me to go on another road trip. Where the hell did I put my beads?

1 comment:

Connie said...

i didnt know that horse died! thanks for the news.. well, old news i suppose. but you know me - i dont watch the dang news.