Louisville’s ready. All 650 thunderpots are in place to be at the beck and call of all Thunderians this Saturday. Thunder Over Louisville will draw them out by the hundreds of thousands. I bet they can’t wait to use a thunderpot.
Me? I’ll be at home. Watching it on TV. Or maybe sitting on the deck hearing the loud pops from nine miles away. I don’t do Thunder. As much as I love the Kentucky Derby Festival, I don’t like Thunder. I’ve tried it twice; me no likey.
Sure, who doesn’t enjoy fighter jets flying overhead and watching 60 tons of fireworks go off over the Ohio River. I like those things. But two things, two BIG things, keep me from heading down to the Waterfront to kickoff the Festival: people and people who drive cars.
I always thought that Thunder was a way to bring the community together, for neighbors to become friends, to celebrate by lighting up the sky and littering the river with fireworks. Part of that’s true. But most people have no sense of camaraderie, they could give two shits where you’re from (unless they’re the type that yells “Go back to your side of the river!”) and they don’t want to be your friend.
Why? Because all that sun turns people into sunburned assholes.
I remember snaking through a crowd with friends. The crowd’s so big you can lose people in the blink of an eye, so we were on each others’ tails like white on rice. But then some fat old lady threw her stumpy sunburned leg up on a cooler, blocking my path. “GO AROUND!” I just stared at her, then the crowd around us.
Where, exactly, am I to go around? Apparently I was walking through “her camp”, “her territory” and she didn’t like it. Now, I’m all about personal space (believe me, I don’t want to smell you) but this isn’t the Oklahoma Land Rush and we don’t get to stake our take.
Though, it can be compared because there are some Sooners that camp out the night before. To get “the best plot on the park grass”. Dumbasses.
So I backed up, and walked around “her area”. Which was another person’s camp and I proceeded to get yelled at again. Really? This is public property and you parked your beach lounger and cooler on a sidewalk. Get a clue. And try to be polite. And wear some sunscreen because your Pantone 485 C face is unbecoming. And someone please tell me where you are and are not allowed to walk. Because this is a cluster.
I’ve never been very fond of big crowds but this is everything I hate about big crowds. I never knew you could fit so many assholes into a hundred or so acres. But they squeeze themselves in there to have a fun day of spectating and turning into raisins.
People Who Drive Cars
After the last firework has blown up, you trek back to your house. With everybody and their extended family on both sides. Roughly 700,000 people [give or take 200½] all leaving at the same time. It makes me queasy just thinking about it.
When I attended Thunder, we walked three miles to UofL to wait for the traffic to die. It was like being bounced around a dance club. Sweaty people bump into, you shimmy past people that post themselves on the sidewalk, in the way, where people walk, but they have a right to do so, dammit. I even caught a little guy slapping my butt one year. Not cool, yo.
But I cannot imagine the agony of sitting behind the wheel for 3+ hours in bumper-to-bumper traffic to get home. I can’t even stand driving in rush hour traffic, how would I handle this?! And I’m known to frequent the thunderpot more often than others. This is a recipe for disaster in my eyes. And I will not subject myself or my sanity to this kind of punishment.
I say, let them have their marked off areas/camps/territories. Let them eat fried food and keg beer all the live long day. Let them forget to apply more sunscreen. Let them have their thunderpots.
I’ll stay home. In the air conditioning, with a glass of sweet tea. And indoor plumbing. And I can go to bed at 11:30pm instead of pulling in the drive at 3am. Yep, this sounds much, much better.