It won’t be long now. Until what, you ask? Until my absolute favorite time of year and the time that makes me proud to be a Kentuckian, especially a Louisvillian and I get super-competitive and lose a lot of money.
OK so the competitive thing is kind of a lie. I’m always competitive. To the point where I am, at times accused of cheating. I can’t help it, I was brought up that way, to strive for No. 1 – now whether I get it or not is another story.
Don’t believe me?
Let me run down some of my accomplishments:
• Second cutest baby at the Hart County Fair, age 1.
• Valedictorian of kindergarten class – yes, really. It meant I got a special part where I got to read something during the graduation and the other kids didn’t.
• Second place at the STATE spelling bee in second grade. My Achilles? TURKEY. Son of a bitch…one of my favorite meats and I can’t spell it right. I blame the pressure and maybe some stage fright and the way the inside of the fairgrounds smells during the fair. I spelled it T-U-R-C-K-E-Y, effectively losing my family ownership of a complete set of encyclopedias. My mom’s still pissed about that, by the way. She brought it up just the other day! AT EASTER BRUNCH!
But this isn’t about how competitive I am, really..it’s about the best sporting event in the world, The Kentucky Derby.
My family’s had Derby parties for as long as I can remember. Back in the day there were little wooden horses we raced down the sidewalk and it’s evolved into a full day of eating, betting, games, smoking cigars and my dad asking me for the millionth time if I want a Mint Julep even though I tell him every year that I’d rather eat the cigar than drink one of those.
The season kicked off the week of my birthday – not because of my birthday, though Thunder Over Louisville has been held that day before – with a luncheon where I was like, the best daughter ever and told a 50-something-year-old famous weatherman that my mom went to college with and now loves him and got his autograph for her.
Then there was Thunder, which, due to the fact that downtown looks like the Atlantic Ocean only a million times dirtier, my family and I watched on TV. Fireworks on TV is not the same, people, and you won’t catch me doing that on July 4, but for this, I’ll do it. ‘Cause it’s THUNDER.
Starting Sunday, which is approximately six days from The Main Event, the fun kicks into overdrive. My week is almost full, you guys. And I can’t wait!
What am I doing? Well. We’ve got a Waterfront Concert (provided there is a waterfront and it’s not just…water), Run for the Rose (a relay race with full wine glasses and three of my awesome co-workers), the Pegasus Parade (for which I have baller seats), oh, and the best Derby party you’ll ever go to on Saturday with my family, some friends and a bunch of people I don’t know!
And at that Derby party I can assure you the following things will happen: I will eat too much; I will drink more than I have in a while; I will bet on at least two horses every race; I will smoke a cigar and then probably taste said cigar for the next three days (note to self, bring the sweet ones); and I will second-guess my choice for Derby winner and pick a different one and the original pick will win it all.
CAN. NOT. WAIT.