11 February 2006

A Man Has To Have a Hobby

Avid readers of this disturbing journal may have noticed the occasioanal equine reference and asked themselves, "I wonder if that dumb motherfucking Mr. Beer N. Hockey plays the ponies?" The answer: A man has to have a hobby.

Today after work I drove into Dope City to play a few races and pick up the Daily Racing Form for my serious day's play tomorow. I have evolved over the years into something of a longshot player. The first few bets this afternoon helped out the game but did nothing for my wallet. My last bet was on a horse never before seen on any racetrack. The creature had cost its rich owners a pile but it went ignored in the betting pool at 18-1. That horse had beer and hockey written all over it!

The jockey let the horse take its sweet time getting going when the gate opened. I thought, "atta boy." I like a horse to go slow in the early stages of a grass race. As the race progressed the jockey only asked the horse to keep ahead of the other horse which trailed the large field. I sipped my coffee and my confidence in my bet grew. (Do not drink when you are gambling!) When the real racing began the jockey took the horse wide around the final turn and laid the whip on the Kilkenny coloured horse with his left hand as they headed into the stretch. You could see the horse's connections were not fucking around when they entered it in today's race. They won by a long neck.

I usually try and stay calm whether my bet horses win or lose. This afternoon I may have yahoo'd like I do at the hockey rink when my team scores a late goal. The races will never go your way every time you play but when they do, for me, it is the only feeling to match the gutter highs of my punk rock youth.

We are surrounded by all forms of gambling these days. (Take Brazil at 3-1 to win the World Cup!) I support horse racing because it lets you use your imagination as you envision how a race might unfold and because of the immense amount of labour that goes into getting horses into competition. Thousands of real hard working people's lives are supported by horse racing. My local racetracks are union. Nothing wrong with that.

See you at the Finish Line Bar motherfuckers.

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