Wednesday, May 7, 2014


Dat's my cousin runnin' right dere.
So my friends and I ventured to the 68th running of the Blockhouse Steeplechase in Tryon, NC, this past weekend. It's horse race that serves as a front for a shit show of drunken debutantes, frat boys, and Spartanburg hicks. I lean more towards the latter.

Southerners take horse races to epic heights of pageantry and ridiculousness. The most infamous in South Carolina is the Carolina Cup, where the only horse race most participants ever see at the event is a beer chugging contest between some USC coeds. The Blockhouse isn't as epic of an event, but we hold our own every year with a dash of stupidity in our mint juleps. As you can see above, I make sure bring along my horse mask each year.

Amidst the usual smorgasbord of beer pong, cornhole, and some Wofford freshman passed out on a camouflage cot, the Blockhouse offers an assortment of unique goodies. There's a British PA man who drips of sarcasm and smack talk. They release several white doves, which causes most of the good ole boys with shotguns in their cars to exercise some restraint. A pack of hounds does a couple of laps around the track beforehand, and old bitties compete in a hat contest. There's a tailgating contest as well, but I think that's for whomever has the nicest setup, not the tailgate with the drunkest idiots. So we don't compete.

One of my favorite Blockhouse memories as a kid of 10 or 11 was waiting in line at the portable toilets. Two  drunk good ole boys decided they should push over a john--which contained another drunk good ole boy friend of theirs--into the creek. He emerged faster than a filly that had dropped her load before a race, covered in blue water and shit, both fists swinging. His friends had a head start and retreated into the mass of tailgates.

I don't have to tell you that folks up in Kentucky take it seriously. In fact, we had to miss out on a Kentucky friend's Derby Party in Charleston where people dressed to the nines--to watch a race on TV. And that's what makes the South awesome.

An even more redneck SC horse race event is the Elloree Trials, where your tailgate is notably out of place if it lacks a Confederate battle flag. Our entourage had a shotgun cocked at us at the after party by a nearby meth head, so we called it a fun outing.

The best part about these races? You get into the event with one car and as many people as you can fit on the vehicle. So if you want to join us next year, holler at me. I have bungee cords and a luggage rack.