Round and round the Emerald Downs track the horses galloped on Sunday, stealth fighters with fragile landing gear navigated by homunculi in shiny shirts. (

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Equine Noise

Round and round the Emerald Downs track the horses galloped on Sunday, stealth fighters with fragile landing gear navigated by homunculi in shiny shirts. (Contemporary hiphop fashion seems to have taken inspiration from the jockey chic line.) If you were of a certain mind and education, you might have thought of the terrible efficiency of De Quincey’s English mail-coach; such was the ecstatic, if ephemeral (races don’t last much more than a minute), reverie many of the onlookers were driven to by the looping proceedings. Or maybe the excitement was owed to the fact that everyone was hammered and betting on the races. It’s so hard to tell the difference between the contents of my Victorian snuff box brain and that which actually happens before my eyes.

Alas, before I could settle the issue, I was violently snapped back into heat of the day and of the reality contained therein by these guys:

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And this dude:

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And these ones:

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And, yup, them:

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Besides that GNR should never be played on the Sabbath--a true sin against the Lord Our God--I couldn’t help but briefly consider, before buying a corndog, the place of music during American sporting activities. In the pro leagues not opposed by P.E.T.A.--football, baseball, basketball, et al--the music serves as both hype and filler, a way to keep the howling masses calm when they cut to commercial and remind them to get involved in unison at a particularly charged moment. As such, while the songs often don’t play all the way through, they do play long enough to get the job done, whether it’s to keep the audience sated or excited.

But at Emerald Downs, the songs played for seemingly less time than the races last--which means they’re really, really short. Besides being a musical cock-tease (I don’t know about you, but when “Billy Jean” or “Intergalactic” or “Paradise City” or “Saturday in the Park” comes on, I wanna hear the whole damn thing), the music served no vital purpose. The Call to the Post’s bugle lets you know the race is going to start and music isn’t played when the gates loose the horses, presumably, so as not to spook the beasts. So what gives here? I’ll tell you what: bad DJing. Like this:

 
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