Friday, July 28, 2006

We're blowin' up....

I can't even blink these days without another blogger signing up for our little TBA thing.

Welcome to Shawn over at "At the Spa." Give him a visit and say hello.

And because I am such a hack at keeping this blog fresh and up to date, go check out Alan's new Saratoga news project over at Racing Saratoga

Now leave me alone, don't you know I'm a big star?

Thursday, July 27, 2006

New TBA Member: another nw knucklehead

Welcome and check out our newest blogging lunatic right here.

Be gentle though, he just suffered what has to be one of the worst losses a horse player can have: the shoulddda, wouldda, couldda that we all dread.

Don't worry, it always comes back around.

At least you've got Jason beat.

Welcome dood!!

Re-Pimping Myself..

Back by popular demand (and when I say popular, I mean one request) yours truly in the Portland Tribune

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Will Barbaro make a trip to Portland?

Ok, probably not, but maybe this guy can lend a hand....

Good story today from the Trib.

Friday, July 14, 2006

"Good" news day..

So it looks like the Barbaro roller coaster housed at UPenn is back on its way up. That really is great news. Hopefully, it will stay that way.

In other good horsie news, it looks like someone is actually being pro-active in a horse related marketing department:

Drew Walker & Rodney Atkins Bet On The Ponies
CBS RADIO Country )/CHICAGO afternoon stud DREW WALKER will be doing his show live today (3p-7p) with RODNEY ATKINS from the WINDY CITY's gorgeous horse track, ARLINGTON PARK. Country star ATKINS will be on hand to sign autographs, dole out hugs, and teach DREW how to bet a superfecta.

Here is the host's homepage:
Drew Walker

I guess Rodney Atkins is a country music star, although HIS marketing staff might need a little nudge. Doesn't look like there is any mention of his appearance at AP on his site.

And of course, AP makes sure to put it on their site

Is it me, or does it always seem like AP is an island, seemingly always doing the right things when it comes to promotion and marketing?

Just curious.

Apologies for the triteness of this post, I really do hope Barbaro gets through this. If he does, this only adds to his mystique and is only good for the game.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Uplifting Story

I came across this on Craigslist. I think you'll enjoy it....

Mayonnaise jar & 2 cups of coffee . . .

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle,
when 24 hours in a day is not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him.

When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students if the jar was full.

They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar.

He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls.

He then asked the students again if the jar was full…. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.

Of course, the sand filled up everything else.

He asked once more if the jar was full.

The students responded with a unanimous…. " yes."

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand.

The students laughed.

"Now," said the professor, as the laughter subsided…..

"I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things God, family, children, health, friends, and favorite passions…. things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter…. like your job, house, and car.

The sand is everything else….the small stuff."

"If you put the sand into the jar first," he continued . . . "there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.

The same goes for life.

If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you."

"So . Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness . . play with your children.

Take time to get medical checkups. Take your partner out to dinner. Play another 18.

There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal.
Take care of the golf balls first . . the things that really matter.

Set your priorities . . . the rest is just sand."

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.
The professor smiled. "I'm glad you asked . . . it just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem…..

…there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend."

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

"Looking good Billy Ray....."

Why start with horse racing when I don’t have to? One of my favorite Hollywood ladies had a surprise announcement this morning.

Sorry to say, she is now off the market.

In case you didn’t know, I’ve had this blog for about a year and a half – blogging more regularly over the past 12 months. I thought I had a pretty good grasp of all the horse racing that was available on the internets. Turns out. Wrong.

Looking for nothing in particular, I stumbled onto a "genre specific site."

Has anyone who happens to venture across this abyss of a domain name heard of this site? It is written in a Craigslist style of simplistic usability and is called The Derby List.

It looks like a very basic horse racing message board. Currently, I am in the process of figuring the whole thing out. I sent an email (as directed) to sign up for the mailing list and also gain access to said message board.

What prompted this? One of my favorite sites, due to its scope of coverage, is Equidaily. I always feel like those guys have there finger on the pulse. Do I go EVERYDAY? No. Do they do a great job? Yes. Politics aside, Equidaily is the horse-racing version of The Drudge Report.

Today, Equidaily had on their banner headline: “Anne: "I do have a marketing idea to throw out to you NTRA, DRF, Racetrack Executive types... tracks could have 'Date Day/Night' promotions (bring one with you or meet one there) that includes discounted services, giveaways, drawings from sponsoring local restaurants for a romantic dinner for two, etc."

The "quote" was actually a link that sent you here which then took me here.
It’s amazing how the internets often function as a Blade Runner -esque “Choose Your Own Adventure.”

Currently listening to Widespread Panic's new album, Earth to America. Panic is playing at a very cool local spot that has never hosted an outdoor show before. Should be interesting as showtime is listed for 5:45pm. Hopefully, as the mush weathermen are predicting, it doesn't rain. The forecast calls for a seasonal anonamly "chance of a shower."

If you'll notice, the McMenamins boys have never put on an outdoor show and their site reflects it. McMenamins can be known to be tight-asses at times. I am very curious to see how it goes. If you happen to have a few minutes and have never heard of McMenamins, you should read about the company. They own some really cool venues, but some of thier business philosophies falter as you slide down the ladder of importance with the organization. Everyone has a McMenamins story (or two). They have a specific brand that I assume they are proud of. Some of its practices have rubbed me the wrong way when I was unfrotunately forced to come face to face with them. That story is for another time. It is more enjoyable if you understand more about the McMenamins name brand of business.

Nonetheless, outdoor summer music ranks right up there with box seats for the Derby or a prime seat for The Breeders Cup or hitting the winner's circle for the first time as an owner. This week its Panic in Portland. Next week it's Pearl Jam at one of this countries top 3 outdoor music venues.....

"...feelin' good Louis!"

So, what did you do last night?

Instead of pouring over suspended trainer quotes, or rehashing short-fieled stakes races from the previous weekend, I geeked out and updated my blog roll/links.

Funny thing though, somehow I managed to completely move the entire column down a few yards.


Now I have to figure out how to move it back up the page where it belongs.

Any coding suggestions would be much appreciated.

Now back to "work."

UPDATE: So the wonders of the internets never cease to amaze me. Looks like my column is back hoome where it belongs. Feel free to puruse the updated links as I have reorganized and added soem of my daily internet(s) stops.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Am I once a week?

It saddens me to think my blogging rate has dropped off faster than a GW approval rating. Face the facts I must – it’s been a tough stretch of putting together coherent, consistent thoughts for all the world to ingest over the past few weeks.

Where have I been? What have I been doing? Actually, I am not quite sure the answer to either of those questions. For sure, though, I haven’t been where I want to be – comfortably alone with my thoughts for a few hours a day. Just enough time to write and re-write, providing some sort of fodder for the few folks who saunter through this site.

I spent last weekend down at the Jersey shore. I was in town for a wedding, but got to stay at my old man’s house located about four blocks from the Atlantic (ocean that is) and around 3.75 miles from Monmouth Park.

After arriving in NJ on a Friday am red-eye, I managed to head on over to MP for the last few races on Saturday. Hosting one of my Portland friends* who I am (was) in the process of converting into a horse fan, I didn’t quite settle into the day like I would have preferred. Nonetheless, it was a great few hours. No cash's, but as the track was closing at 6pm due to the lame-ass budget crisis, I threw $20 down (def. a big bet for me) on the last race at Belmont Park. I thought I had the tout cold (thus the large win bet), but came up a nose short. Oh well, sometimes being hat close to being right is good enough for me.

Sunday we arrived prepared to “spend a day.” MP allows unlimited coolers into the grandstand and they have a huge picnic are with tables and umbrellas that span the entire backstretch. With the rumors of the track being closed due to the budget crisis, it wasn’t too difficult finding a table. With us, we had a brand new $20 cooler from K-Mart stocked with a dozen Bud Lights (aka the Portland Cosmo), a flask of Canadian Club and a small Gatorade bottle filled with tequila…..

Needless to say, by the 9th race, the 90+ degree temperature and the foggy-thick humidity deteriorated both my body and mind. No cashes later, we headed home.

It was fantastic to get a chance to sit down and meet the one and only Patrick P. of Pulling Hair. We were graced with Patrick’s presence sometime just before the 4th or 5th race. Patrick, toting his lovely 1 yr-old daughter, Molly, proceeded to pick a nice winner on his first tout (sans form nonetheless). Patrick loved the #3, and needless to say we didn’t pool our money for a 3-all-all triple, as place came in at 70-1 and show at a measly 75-1. YIKES!! At least my buddy had the 75-1 to show and was able to cash.

I’ll end my story here as long form bios usually bore me….

It is so awesome when the Internet can bring “virtual connections” into the real world leading to human interactions that would have never taken place were there no Internet. Patrick: how dare you compare blogging to internet dating!!! I think it’s awesome that people can communicate and learn about each other (sometimes thousands of miles away) only to have that relationship cemented with an actual meeting.

Ok, so maybe it is like Internet dating, but so what. I’m not looking for a date, just a few winners.

*This friend (Dale) informed me that there is a an "OTB" that is a Chinese Restaurant pretty close to my house. This I never knew and nearly blew me off my seat. With my new bike (given to me by a another friend) I will surely be checking out that joint and reporting back.