Power Cap

Power cap- existential handicapping

31 July 2008

Trip To Yonkers Raceway

You could call me a horse racing fanatic, a student of the game or even a gambling degenerate. I look at a race card 4 or 5 days a week, the sport crosses my mind many times a day and I even took step to make this web page to express my constant thoughts of racing. I love blackjack, have entered poker tournaments, have been playing dice for almost 20 years and I am not even in my mid-thirties. As someone that lives a stones throw from Yonkers you would figure that I would be there on a weekly basis, perhaps I could even be the customer of the month and have some reserved spot near the door. That is not the case, I have only had been there two times and last night made the third time.

With some time to kill the wife and I headed out there to check the place out and see what goes on there. The auto parking is on the backstretch which is a big hike from the doors. They have shuttle buses to get you from your car to the action. The female driver of the bus took to time to launch an official sounding announcement that warned us to leave with the loot if we hit for big and not to give it back. The first thing you see when you walk in the door is rows and rows of slots. You have to walk past hundreds of slots before you see a horse. The slots have various references to TV like Wheel Of Fortune slots and other things that may appeal to the targeted blue hair demographic. Yonkers offers slots in denominations of 1 cent to $5. I pulled some cash out of my bankroll and funded my wife so she could test the machines out. In Vegas a slot player can usually can last a little while before the bankroll taps out but this was like a dropping a crisp $100 bill in a toilet bowl. You just watched as the money spins around and it is soon gone. These things where tighter than a ducks rump. I could not imagine that any person with an IQ above 80 would enjoy this form of gambling or think they could grind out a profit. The reels were spinning but nothing was hitting. It was not only mindless but it was laughably hopeless. Maybe it was the time of the month(the first of the month is a key day for the patrons there) but the slots were pretty empty at 9PM on a Wednesday evening. I could not understand how this experience could appeal to anyone.

Then we went outside for the races. I am a gambler, I started gambling when I was 5 years old playing gin rummy with the old ladies that lived in my building. Then there was ceilo at lunch and after school in High School and trips to Aqueduct/Belmont every Saturday. With all of this gambling over the last 27 years I have never placed a wager on a harness race. I was all set to bet on the the trotters at Yonkers. I go to the window to make an exacta part wheel with 5 minutes to post. There must have been 10 people in line. I got shut out with 5 minutes to post! The patrons and tellers were so slow and there was so much line capping that I never made it to the window. I look up and the win pool was a minuscule $1700 which I thought was pathetic. The race goes off and #2 Blue Boy breaks first and is 5/2. Blue Boy easily makes the lead and is all of a sudden drops from 5/2 down to 3/2 when they hit the far turn. Considering the size of the pool I guess a $20 win bet could have knocked the winner down 3 or 4 ticks.

Needless to say I will not be returning to Yonkers anytime soon.


Wind Gatherer said...

I think you're being too generous with that IQ estimation.

I don't think that there is a court in the land that would convict you if you took out every one of those line 'cappers at the knees.

New York Experience said...

I loved your story, and know that you're not alone...


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