branching out

i created this corner of the internet in January of 2014 to keep myself plugged into horse racing once the fall meet at Hawthorne ended, during the seven and a half weeks before the next season started. yes, even in 2014 racing started back up in February in Chicago. i created this to be about horse racing, and only horse racing.

when i created it, i knew very little about the sport. i was teaching myself how to read the program, and still in the process of making sense of all those little numbers squenched into the smallest space possible. i wrote my way through my confusion, into a new obsession.

there is little inevitable in my life, but one of those constants is my inability to build lasting walls to separate the aspects of my life. the personal becomes the professional, or the other way around. interests overlap, mingle, make arbitrary boundaries obsolete. just as physical systems tend toward entropy, so it goes with the places my mind decides to bounce. disorder reigns sooner or later.

almost nine years after i carved out this corner of the internet, this becomes no exception.

i hated that i wasn’t writing here much anymore, and i finally figured out why, or at least why for now. i had begun to see this as a mostly-impersonal place for mostly-impersonal horse racing ideas, and nothing more.

my horse racing life is nothing i could have ever imagined in January of 2014. back then, i needed a dedicated place to make sense of the sport. as i kept coming to the track and kept writing about horse racing, i needed a place that was only for that.

i’ve been working in horse racing for five and a half years now. most of the writing i do about horse racing comes in the scope of my jobs. horse racing used to be the thing i do in my spare time. now, i still watch racing and go through some pedigree rabbit holes in my spare time, but writing about the sport isn’t what i spend all of my spare time the way it was when my working hours were not all about horse racing. i’ve always been a person who liked some variety, and writing about horse racing professionally has, in a sense, opened up time and mental space to do other things as well.

and yet, i’d like a place to write about…things. perhaps, about horse racing. perhaps, about other things that i want to share with people instead of squirreling away in a journal, destined to gather dust until whoever goes through my stuff after i die either reads it or sets it on fire. definitely, in a longer and less ethereal form than Facebook or my increasingly precarious internet home, Twitter. and i’ve caught myself deliberately choosing to do other things than write at all. part of it has been burnout. part of it has been that there wasn’t a place i was happy to do it.

absurd, since this was right here all along.

i thought on and off of starting somewhere else, but why do that? i love what i’ve written here over the years. it’s writing that taught me a lot, and in many cases, writing i’m still elated to share. if i can evolve over the years, why can’t my home on the internet?

this is just to say…no, nothing about plums in an icebox, though that remains one of my favourite poems-turned-internet-memes. no, this is just to say that this site belongs to me, and i can broaden its purpose if that makes me happy. right now, i think it does.

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