8 Things You MUST Avoid On Kentucky Derby Day

Baby Mop Sweeper

The Baby Mop Sweeper sells for $44.95 (baby not included).

Lists are big these days and I’ll give you 12 reasons why… no, I’m kidding. But it does amaze me how often we gravitate to someone’s thoughts if — and only if — they are enumerated.

Hear a crazy guy at the bus stop prattling on about the end of times and we turn a deaf ear. Have that same guy post “The 10 signs of Armageddon” on a Web site and we’ll stop reading about the three uses for celery to click on the headline and brace ourselves for the worst.

So, because I like to consider myself a trendy guy — my car still has a tape deck, but I converted my MC Hammer cassettes to MP3 files and, thus, rarely ever use it — I have created my own list. However, unlike a lot of lists that tell you what you need to do or buy (check out this utterly ridiculous scale, number 17 of “23 Unexpected Things You Didn’t Know Your Bathroom Needed”), my list contains eight things you should avoid on Kentucky Derby Day.

Look, it’s easy to tell somebody what they need to have or do — of course I think the Baby Mop is a stroke of genius, but unless I can find a place to purchase a baby as well (I haven’t checked recently) — I’m out of luck. In my opinion, it is far more helpful, not to mention less expensive, to help people learn the items and events to steer clear of.

Hence, without further ado, here is my list of the 8 things to avoid on Kentucky Derby Day:

1) Mint juleps made by, well, anybody. Frankly they’re not very good. Have a breath mind, wash it down with some kerosene and you’re good.

2) People who fancy themselves horse racing experts. In other words, guys like me. Ever since I talked my daughter out of Mine That Bird in the 2009 Run for the Roses, I refuse to be in the same room with myself on the first Saturday in May.

3) Lying shirtless on a lawn chair having a beer and watching the big race. If this sounds like a great idea to you — at one time, I wholeheartedly agreed. But, apparently, Wal-Mart has a “policy” against people hanging out in the electronics department.

4) Taking advice from that guy at the OTB who’s always asking to borrow a “five-spot.” Call me a cynic, but I’m as dubious of financial advice from broke people as I am of morality lessons from politicians.

5) Axe murderers. True, they should probably be avoided on other days too, but nothing spoils a festive Derby Day party like a corpse in the living room. It gets very annoying having to constantly sidestep it to get to the bean dip.

6) Girls who had horses when they were young. Mind you, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. But, on Derby Day, they will insist on telling you endless stories about “Blaze” and how he would eat sugar cubes out of their nostrils when they were little (but still old enough to know not to stick sugar cubes up their nose).

7) Guys who know… or knew… or are vaguely connected to anybody that works on the backstretch of a major or minor racetrack. Again, typically this is not a bad thing, but, on Derby Day, it is guaranteed to transform one into a walking encyclopedia of “insider” information and leave anyone within earshot literally pining for the axe murderer we nixed earlier.

8) Anybody trying to talk you off the horse you like. It’s the Derby! Bet your favorite number, your favorite color — it doesn’t matter. The point is to have fun.

For the latest Kentucky Derby odds from US Racing, click HERE.

Derek Simon
Derek Simon is the Senior Editor and Handicapper at US Racing.
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