Friday, April 30, 2010

And They're Off

Cousin Jackal will resume posting a DP response next week.  I know, it's been a while.

Tomorrow is Derby Day!  That means it's time for Cousin Jackal's Last Minute Picks.  Let's run down the list of obvious contenders:
- Lookin At Lucky:  He's a good horse.  Probably the best of the lot quality-wise.  But he's drawn the No. 1 slot and he's known to have a hard time dealing with trouble; stuck on the rail, trouble will find him in spades.  He's either going to have to run against type and make a speedy opening move to get clear of the main pack, or else he's going to have to catch a break dodging between horses.  Luck ain't this pony's strong suit.  Look for him to make a strong closing rally but ultimately fail due to being hemmed in for too long...unless he pulls a diva move and decides to quit because he got a little dirt kicked in his face.  Doubt this one will do better than show.
- Sidney's Candy:  Raw speed on the hoof.  A bunch of idiots got together and decided to lob four or five sprinters into the Derby--like that ever works.  This one, though, looks like trouble; or he would, if he hadn't drawn the outside No. 20 slot.  He's got the speed to go straight to the front, but he's going to have to work twice as hard to get there and I doubt he'll have enough juice to go a mile and a quarter after that.  My guess, he'll fade quickly after the final turn.  No money.
- Line of David:  This little sprinter gives Jackal the creeps.  Lumped in with the speed horses, he's expected to be among the four or five dueling for the pace.  Something about the way he's built makes me think this horse may pull out some major staying power, though; he's heavy on the forehand, suggesting he's matured a little better than some of the rangier horses in the field.  Whether that will power him to victory or just weigh him down remains to be seen.  I'd bet place or show here, depending on how the rest of the race shakes out.
- Devil May Care:  As much as I'd love a filly--especially one with an awesome name like Devil May Care--to take the Derby and then the Triple Crown, it's not happening this year.  You might remember last year's Rachel Alexandra; Rachel Alexandra is built like a colt, no difference between her and the boys, and that lets her compete alongside them without disadvantage.  By contrast, Devil May Care is a slim dainty horse...which is good, in a way, because at least she's not built like behemoth-on-stilts Eight Belles, so there's little likelihood of her breaking down strictly on structure.  No, Devil May Care won't be in the money because she just doesn't really have what it takes.  Her previous competition was lightweight compared to what she'll face on Saturday and she's a known loafer once she gets in the clear.  Doubt she has the motivation for a long stretch run past spread-out horses.
- Super Saver:  A speed horse, but I like him.  If he gets snugged up in fourth place under a tight rein, saving speed, this is the one to watch out for in the homestretch.  Cousin Jackal is getting the hoodoo-voodoo tingle that there's untapped quality here.  Win or place, my bet.
- Ice Box:  He was the second-favorite this morning, and to my mind with good reason.  He's set up perfectly for a Derby win--good gate slot, a stretch runner, and well built.  May place if his stretch run comes to late to close the distance, but shy of a jockey's mistake like that, here's your winner.

So I predict a possible showdown between Ice Box and Super Saver for the win.  For third place I'd say Lookin At Lucky if he gets clear, but possibly Line of David.  Mix yourself a mint julep, don your outrageous hat, and kick back to watch the Sport of Kings.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A Day Trip 'Round The Crunch

Today has been a great steaming pile of liquid shit.  It is ninety flippin' degrees in my den because the condo board hasn't decided to turn on the AC yet.  There is a fire raging two buildings down, so to keep my smoke alarms from going off, the windows have to be shut.  This morning my office building's transformer blew, so our computers and phones were taken down--meaning I'm now behind schedule when I had been nicely ahead.  AND, to top it all off, I give you THE CRUNCH:  As seen on Wednesday night's airing of "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon," it's confirmed true...Noel Fielding of The Mighty Boosh has bleached his gorgeous black glam-rock shag to a dead Straw Blond.  It's awful. It's tragic.  *Sigh*  I may weep. 

But enough frivolity; it's Prudie Day, and that means fresh carcasses to gnaw on.  This week's letters look to be full of amusing fools....

Letter 1:
I live in an apartment with four women who have no clue how completely superior I am to them.  I'm practically perfect.  I drive an alternative fuel vehicle that runs on the tears of Robert Smith (totally sustainable!). I'm a fifth-level vegan; I don't eat anything that casts a shadow.  My roommates, however, are lesser quality beings.  We get along in a coolly civil way, but one of them is actually a pregnant teenager!  And she smokes! Can you imagine?!  Please, please, may I bombard her with pamphlets outlining the error of her ways? Can I try to adopt her nicotine-deformed offspring when it arrives--before Angelina Jolie has a chance to?

Dear Communal Living Manifesto:
Move out.  Please.  For the love of every god that never was, please move the fuck out.  Pack up your self-righteousness and take it with you.  If you want to start a roommate war then by all means slide "some information" under her door...just be prepared to have it shredded into confetti, piled outside your door, doused in kerosene and lit ablaze.  You know what your problem is?  Here it is in a nutshell: you're too fucking self-absorbed to even try to make friends with your own bloody roommate, but you're willing to take a stand for her unborn offspring.  Priorities, honey.  Straighten yours out.  And mind your own fucking business.

Oh, and thanks to Prudie's flagrant overuse of the term, allow me to add "innocent child" to the list of words and phrases I can't stand.

Letter 2:
My daughter "C" is so very very bright and sweet and special.  She has Asperger's.  I wanted you to know this right off because it's her defining characteristic, the most interesting thing about her.  It's her whole identity. She's my pwecious widdle baby flower and Mama Bear's special widdle cub, and if you don't play nicely with her I will eat you.  No kidding, I will hunt you down and flay you and make a Silence Of The Lambs-style human suit from your skin.  And your children?  They have to play nicely with her too.  I don't want to hear anything about them not liking her, no matter what the reason.  She's SPECIAL, do you understand me?! SPECIAL!!!!!  Now invite her to your child's birthday party, or so help me....!

Dear Hurricane Pain,
You are out of your fucking mind.  Do not--repeat, DO NOT--email the other kids' parents letting them know how much of AN OUTRAAAAGE it is that little Pwecious Bear Cub was the only kid in class not invited to a birthday party.  You are, without a doubt, the psychotic ur-helicopter parent who honestly believes her widdle darling is entitled to a conflict-free, frown-free existence of pure sunshine and candyfloss.  Friendships among children are fluid.  Do you seriously not understand that no amount of forcing your kid on these other children will *make* them like her, and if you try you'll only wind up embarrassing her or inviting their swift cruel retribution?  It really doesn't matter whether she has Asperger's or not; you'd be dealing with this for any kid.  Quit obsessing over her as "Your [Pwecious Widdle] Child" and realize she's more like "The Neat Proto-Adult You Get To Teach How To Navigate Life (Some Assembly Required)."  You want her to have a normal life, right?  Well, part of a normal life is learning to deal with disappointment, and learning to be discerning about who you call a friend.  I hate to think what you'll be like in ten years when Pwecious tries to go to college or get a job.  Now pop a Xanax, put on The Orb's third album, and chill the fuck out. 

Letter 3:
I'm 30, and married, but I'm, like, soooo attracted to my incredibly hot coworker!  I, like, read Twilight, and, like, we're sooo like Bella and Edward, because I'm totally hot for him but he keeps me at arm's length, and that's soooo romantic!  Can I, like, totally cheat on my husband?  This is soooo meant to be!  It's, like, destiny!

Dear Bitch In Heat,
Where's my frickin' tree branch?  A swat to the skull will sort you right out.  Keeps you at arm's length, does he?  I'll bet he does.  There is no way you've been keeping this (completely one-sided) infatuation a secret.  And now ask yourself how many of your other coworkers know about your crush.  All of them?  Dingdingding, we have a winner!  Do yourself a favor and quit embarrassing yourself.  It's pathetic.  Really.

Letter 4:
My bestest bestie is in jail and I adopted her pet sugar gliders while she's gone.  One of them died, and if I tell my friend I'm afraid she might get very depressed.  What should I do?

Dear Sugar Mama,
Well, the first thing you should do is disregard everything Prudie said, because the bitch didn't even bother to read your letter.  She just looked up "sugar glider", spotted an animal she didn't recognize, and wigged out.  Frankly I think those little critters are completely adorable.  You do need to tell your friend that one of them died, though.  Break the news gently.  Then--and this is important--ask her what you should do with the other one.  If she doesn't know that they don't do well alone, tell her.  You can suggest giving it to a sugar glider rescue, or someone who has a couple of them already, whatever is available--but please allow her to make that decision.  If she cares about her pet at all then it's going to make her sad, but not nearly as sad as getting out of jail to find that it's been given away without her knowledge.  Find it a good home for her and keep her updated on the process.  Take a photo of it for her to keep.  Best of luck to you, her, and the little bundle of fuzz.

Well, that's it for today.  I'm going to go put on some Gary Numan and light a candle in mourning for the beautiful Boosh 'do.  *Sigh*