Derby Diary #4

OK, this is how the other half lives.

After sweating my way through the hoi polloi — and they’re thick enough to spread out there — I finally found my editor for the day and he performed the necessary miracle, involving several types of arm waving and incantation, and produced not just one, but two special stickers that get me wherever the hell I  need to go. And where I needed to go was the Jockey Club Suites to meet Gary Knapp.

It was cooler, instantly cooler, when I walked through the door. A sign said something about proper attire, and I hoped I would make the grade. I am sure few people on these floors bought their dresses at a consignment shop, or sewed their roses to the hat brim last night. But they might have. I shouldn’t judge.

Someone came racing after me, calling the “Hey! Hey!” I knew wasn’t meant for the very funky looking hipster standing next to me. He was not a “hey.” He was a someone. I, however, am not the type of person who can tell one someone from another.

Can they tell this is a consignment dress? But no. The “hey” person was the woman who had refused me entry earlier. She recognized me and guessed I had hoodwinked her staff into letting me in. I flashed my new purple sticker. She was all smiles.  And they let me pass. I belonged.

Here are my observations.

1. Everything is beige. Some shade of beige.

2. The elevator operator wished everyone “Happy Derby.” When a man completed elaborate introductions of his wife and himself to another couple, the elevator introduced herself as well.

3. The biggest hats are here. I am looking at a woman whose purple hat has a two-foot-tall feature.

4. There is a woman with a hat made out of paper scraps. I admire it.

5. Kentucky has an abnormal number of people who find it acceptable to look like Col. Sanders. What did I expect?

6. There are more beautiful dresses in a single room than is probably acceptable by the laws of physics.

7. What is it with beige?

8. Do you think I could walk up to that bar and get a drink?

9. Would you believe I haven’t had a drink all day?

10. That would be true.

11. A man in a lime green suit with a diamond pattern — sort of like Picasso’s Harlequin clown outfits — just walked past. I am so glad I am not married to him.

12. I must look like the help. Someone just asked me where the restrooms were. I told her to sod off. I’m not sure what that means.

13. I am sure there is a 13th point, but I have to run.

More anon.

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