My old grand-dad from Geebung taught me from his his stool in the Zillman Waterholes pub-tab and bar a whole lotta things that young blokes who wanna grow up to buy bookmakers fine houses and flash cars need to know.
They were the kind of skills that they don’t teach the yuppies in private schools, a sort of ‘How To’ guide for the modern race going man., and included how to:
- read a form guide
- dodge a debt collector
- get a drink in a bar at age of 12
- roll your own tobacco from bumpers after a bad day at Bundamba
- avoid the ticket collector on the train home from the races
- jump the fence at the trots if you’re bank’s light
- take a pick pockets legs out and kick him in head without anyone seeing
- carry your bank in a concealed pocket when you’re flush to keep the snipping school of sharks at bay
- pick up a bird or two at the Hammo after the last at the Farm
- talk them into shouting you a night on the booze when you’re skint, then then entice them back to the Polo Club and into the King-sized bed
- speak to police officers (‘Yes Sir, my name is, my DOB is, my address is, and now I’ve got nothing more at all to say)
- find a bank to back up on Sunday at the provincials after waking up the morning after a blackout that caused you to declare you’d given up the punt for life
- jump on a Henry Davis plunge runner at second top odds the minute the commission agents move
- spot a boat race from a 100 paces
- work hard and be good to your mother, or give the appearance that you’re doing the first at least while trying not to give away your devotion to the other
- be a man
- hand on to chivalry in an age where hairy legged femmos and blokes who don’t pull roots say its archaic and slag you as they sit at home wanking while you’re shooting the breeze at age 47 with a couple of naked 21 year olds a couple of hours after the tenth at Te Rapa
- assess the odds in a heartbeat and rate a race or a situation right
- hold em
- fold em
- perform on top and under the sheets
- time your run so you’re out by the time the hubby gets home from night shift
- treat every bastard at the track equally, except for toff spivs taking advantage of the bias and using the inside run to make themselves rich
- appear to tell plenty while never actually giving too much away
- understand the nautical rules about loose lips and ships
- know when you’ve f*cked up, accept that it’s part of the human condition, front foot your mistakes, be a man and say you were wrong.
I loved my grand-dad, and respected every maxim that he was kind enough to sling me and took heed of each single wise word he did so generously impart.
So I wanna tell you Sportfans that last Saturday I f*cked up, and gave a bloke a spray that he didn’t deserve and that made be look like a dill for giving. It wasn’t the first time of course, and it won’t be the last, but like old JC said after almost losing Jerusalem the colt’s final against Cairo back in the year 17AD when he dropped the ball in his in goal 30 seconds before the hooter:
To err may be human, and to forgive is no doubt divine;
If you wanna be a true man, put your hand up and say ‘the f*ck up was mine’
Last Saturday morning I bagged Racin’ Nathan Exelby for tipping a filly named Cellar Girl in a race at Doomben, and went to town on him saying that he was a clown who’d tipped the world a winner when the horse had actually been scratched the night before.
Racin’ Nathan is a clown, but not for the reason I stated last Saturday because Cellar Girl was actually a dual acceptor, and being light in the way of cabbage and not wanting to beat myself up by by rating 20-1 winners as 6-4 shots that I may not have the ammo to back I’d only done the form for the first half of the program, and thus didn’t realise the Cedric Rocker of an error I’d made and the injustice upon Racin’ Nathan that I’d wrought.
Mud in my face, and a bit of egg mixed in too.
Mr Racin’ Nathan Exelby, I apologise without qualification for the sledge, and I’m sorry.
I took the spray down immediately I realised that I’d f*cked it up, but that merely mitigated my mistake and in no way excuses the error.
Cellar Girl was sh*t tip and got beat, but at least at bloody ran.
So I will say it once more for posterity, and because it’s the right thing to do, and then we can all move forward to discussing the next race.
I was wrong on this one, and I’m sorry. I hope you can forgive me enough that I can buy you a beer at the track on Saturday to make amends.
Just do me a favor while we’re knocking back the Forex bitter will you mate, if you don’t mind.
Keep your tips under your hat old son.
Archie doesn’t bet each way.
He only plays that way.