I’m convinced that racetrack crowds are the very same people holographically transmitted or somehow beamed over time & space.
These good folks at I saw at Sam Houston Race Park here is Houston two nights ago are the exact same folks I saw at Narragansett Park in Rhode Island in the 70’s & at River Downs in Cincinnati in the 80’s & 90’s.
There is an atmosphere of apathy and rest at racetracks that I’ve long found helpful to my state of mind.
At least some portion of the remains of Hurricane Isaac are currently over River Downs race track just outside Cincinnati.
You see here horses on parade on the rain-soaked sloppy track in advance of the 2nd race this afternoon. You also see the American Flag blowing about.
The misty backdrop are Kentucky hills across the Ohio River.
I’m sorry for persons who have been strongly impacted by Hurricane Isaac.
Here in the Cincinnati-area the storm has brought needed rain.
I hope folks are having a nice Labor Day. Please treat people who are working the holiday well. Respect for our fellow working people and self-respect are the very same thing.
Wanting A Quiet Place To Think, I Went To The Houston Astros Game—The Right Mix Of Factors To Get Some Thinking Done In A Public Place
Wanting a quiet place to think where I could have some space, I attended the Houston Astros game this past Monday evening.
Above you see a picture I took in the second inning.
With the roof open on a warm spring evening, the game was a nice and relaxing spot for contemplation.
There was just the right mix of people around to look at and ponder, while at the same time enough room to have your distance from others. The game and the stadium offered all sorts of things to look at while not breaking your train of thought.
The Astros have in 2012 already had the smallest crowd ever recorded at Minute Maid Park for a game. With this being just April, there is plenty of time for that record to be broken again.
It is great to have a public place where you can think.
When I lived in Cincinnati, I enjoyed going to the River Downs horse track with my father. There were always some people around, but the track was built for the larger crowds that attended horse racing years ago.
You’d sit off by yourself and look at the people. Across the way there were some hills. This was just as how you can see tall Downtown Houston buildings with the roof open at Minute Maid.
At the race track you would sit there and be peaceful, and every so often some horses would run past.
Below you see a picture I took at River Downs in 2011. There was no racing that day. You could go to clubhouse and place bets on races at other tracks.
That was a fine quiet snowy day.
What I look for in a public place where I want to get some thinking done is the right combination of action, apathy, things to see such as trees or buildings or horses or a baseball game, and personal space.
I don’t want to be a hermit, but there is only a certain extent to which I want others around.
One to be fully engaged in the world is to make sure that you have some space.
The picture you see is of River Downs racetrack in Cincinnati, Ohio.
No races are being run at River Downs today.
However, in the clubhouse you can watch and bet on races taking place at other tracks across the U.S.
I made some bets this afternoon. One bet, a boxed trifecta on a race run at Gulfstream Park in Miami, was a winner. It paid $51.
This put me $20 ahead for the afternoon. I left the track at that point becuase all cliches are correct.
The cliche I followed today says “Quit while you are ahead.”
This is what I did.
Now, I can spend that $20 on booze, chili dogs, and lottery tickets.
(Blogger’s note—This is a post I ran in 2007. I’m giving it another go today.)
Below is where and when in life that I’ve felt at ease and like I was fitting in with the world around me.
You’ll have your own list of where you fit in. Everybody has a place where they feel they are meant to be.
1. When I’m alone.
2. When I’m with my wife.
3. When I’m alone in a crowd. Such as sitting by myself at a restaurant reading a book or taking a walk along the ocean in Galveston.
4. When I’m reading. A good book to read is Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson.
5. When I used to go to the racetrack. A racetrack is a place of such apathy that it would be hard not to fit in. I would go to River Downs in Cincinnati. I don’t go to Sam Houston in Houston.
6. When I’m riding some form of mass transportation. A bus or an airplane. I’m just one of the people leaving one place and headed to some other place. I like airports.
When I was in college, I took a number of long Greyhound Bus trips to see friends. Cincinnati to Reno was my longest trip. That was a long ride, but it was fun. I remember I was reading a history of Hawaii on that ride. I can’t recall the specific title.
The bus in the picture says it is going to Atlantic City. I got off a Greyhound bus once in Atlantic City and some people were having a fist fight in the bus station.
Though honestly, I’m not sure I could ride the Greyhound Bus anymore.
7. At the punk rock club. Those days are past as well.
8. When I’m talking to a waitress or a clerk at a store and no more is expected from me than courtesy. I’m good at courtesy.
9. When I’m with the few people in life I’ve come to know well enough and like enough to feel at ease with. It happens with different people for different reasons.
That about covers it.
Where ever you fit in, it’s okay. The person you are is (most likely at least) okay.