I had no favorite in mind Saturday when I went to the track. Sure, I had heard about Big Brown and Colonel John — but who wants an easy bet? I wanted the longshot, the underdog, the one that could turn my $5 into $500, if that’s even possible.
After patrolling for celebrities and open bars, I settled in at the Jockey Club Suites with my program and mint julep. I scanned the names of the Derby contenders, and there it was — horse No. 5, the astutely named Eight Belles. Was it a sign from the big watering hole in the sky? I thought so, so I plunked my $5 on No. 5 to win.
The gossipy yet mostly happy (read: drunk) bluebloods, who conveniently blocked the wind with their hideous, color-saturated hats, laughed at my No. 5 bet (or perhaps it was the $5). But as my horse pulled away from the group near the last turn, they looked at me like I was Miley Cyrus on a photo shoot — too young to know any better but rich enough to own Switzerland.
Of course, you know how it turned out. Belles finished second, then took a tumble and broke her two front ankles; Belle finished her third julep, then took a stumble and broke her pride. Only one had to be put down.
Drink of the Week
A friend recently turned me on to the virtues of cherry vodka and Diet Coke. It’s low in calories and tastes fabulous — like drinking a Dr. Pepper upside down while circus clowns ransack your apartment looking for a copy of “Romancing the Stone.” Most bars around here carry several brands of cherry-flavored vodka — UV Red and Effen seem to be the most common. Try it. If you don’t like it, hand it over. You owe many anyway.
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