I am not a gambler. In fact I am a pretty cautious person. However, when Derby day comes around, it’s a different story.
I remember being a child waking up on the day of the Kentucky Derby and searching the newspaper for the horse names. Very rarely did I look at the odds. I picked based on the name. My mom’s cousin would come over and take our bets. He’d ask if I wanted the horse to win, place or show? If I wanted a trifecta bet (I still don’t know what that means)? And of course asked about money.
Now that I don’t live at home this doesn’t happen. But this year my aunt and uncle called to ask if I wanted to join them at Off Track Betting for the Derby. So off I went with my $20 in hand.
It was a madhouse when we walked in. So many people, some in lines to talk to a person to place their bets, some in line to place bets on a computer, some just standing around talking and others actually paying attention to the other races being televised.
We made our way to the line to talk to a person to place our bets. After all, this was a new experience for all of us. After 10 minutes the line hadn’t moved. “I’m sorry. Our computer keeps shutting down. You might be better at the ones that you do it yourself,” they announced. We waited another 5 minutes and decided to forget it. We’d just watch and pretend we placed our bets.
But with about 8 minutes before the race I couldn’t take it. I made my way over to the machine and tried on my own. I was unsuccessful. I started to turn around, bummed. “Do you need help?” the gigantic man next to me said.
“How could you tell?” I said laughing. “Yes! I have no clue what I’m doing.”
“You better hurry,” said the man. “I’ll do it for you. What do you want to do?”
“Uhhhhh….I’d like Win-Win-Win to show,” I said.
“Yup! That’s what my gut says and I’m sticking to it.”
“Oookkk,” he said pressing several buttons. “You’re all set. Good luck!”
The race started moments later.