Sunday, October 18, 2015

Good News/Bad News from high above the finish line

Don Kieger likes to say that he’s lost so much money at the Canterbury Park Race Book that they’ll give him anything he wants just to keep him around. Today he got into the glazed donuts. Again.
A month ago Melissa said she wanted to move to beautiful Colorado.
We hadn't seen our Canterbury server since and figured she'd gone and done it.
We're glad she didn't. She's really nice -- and remembers how we like our eggs.
If you wait for it, Don will get to the good news. But first the bad:
1. There are so many detours in St. Paul these days that the stress of working around them almost caused heart failure last week. Even Snelling was closed. It took hours to get his pulse and breathing back to normal.
2. Another Racebook friend has died, he's bet his last horse, his everyday table over there is  vacant now. And no one seems to know what took him. More ashes to scatter on the finish line.
And so on.
But if you prod him enough, eventually our favorite player at the Canterbury Park Third Floor Race Book will give it up:
The Good News: Yesterday Don Kieger and Co. won the fabulous Pick Four at Keeneland. Don could barely suppress the grin tugging at the corner of his mouth as he recounted this high achievement to a couple of casual inquisitors this morning. Choosing the winning horse in four consecutive races is very good indeed. Careful study, hard work and keen observation paying off at last. Life is good.
But before we got too happy for him, Don quickly brought us back.
They had actually missed the really big money by a nose, he explained. They would have won really big if just one horse had finished differently. But, that would have been a problem, he continued, because no one in his cartel had agreed to accept the IRS form that would have accompanied the lucre. This inconvenient event could have pushed somebody into a higher tax bracket.
"So, it was good that you lost then?" we asked, somewhat incredulously. "Well, then we certainly hope you fellows never make so much money here that you have to pay more taxes, right?"
We got a knowing grin from the player, still working on his complimentary donut.
Sometimes, when you're sitting in the rarified air high up in the Third Floor Racebook, it's really hard to separate what's good from what's bad.

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