I live in a cocoon of my own invention. A womb. Perhaps it's the years I spent in the military or an entire adult life lived rigidly in the only way I know; my own. I don't let new people into my world easily. Several years ago, before I ever heard the term "social media" I lamented that for someone as outgoing as I was in my 20's, I became stodgy and unapproachable in my 40's. After I started The Turk and the Little Turk in 2008 I began meeting horse racing fans online, at my blog, at Facebook, now Twitter and maybe Google + next.
I met Tim "Tiznow" Reynolds not quite two years ago. He was outgoing, funny, easy to talk to. I can't claim to have known him well, but we exchanged messages more often than I even realized, that is until I went back and reread my Facebook wall and realized we spoke many times a week. The comments we shared ranged the whole gamut of male conversation, from humorous to raunchy, almost always about food/horses/booze. I considered Tim my friend.
The world lost Tim this week. The damage his death brought rippled out from its epicenter and touched hundreds of people who knew him like I knew him, on the fringes of life where daily human contact and friends via "social media" merge.
I mourn for the loved ones Tim left behind. My heart was genuinely touched seeing the world of online horse racing fans converge around Tim's family during these difficult days. A scholarship fund has already been set up, and with the help of the wonderful people at The Thorofan, contributions for young Lauren, Tim's daughter, are tax deductible. I'm going to miss Tim's comments, and I'm going to miss seeing him in the paddock at the Breeders' Cup in seven weeks, I'm just going to miss the young man who oozed passion for life and his loves.
Tomorrow is Tim's wake and then he will be buried on Saturday. Please keep the family in your prayers, a family that already buried their other son two short years ago.
The great people at Charles Town named Friday night's first race in honor of Tim, and never has a race deserved a Turk nomination as this one does.
Let's get after it!
It's a $5,000 Claimer for West Virginia bred Fillies and Mares 3 YO and Up. I've handicapped and will build my bet after I see the odds closer to post. Mama Turk is liking Blingtastic and Little Turk is all over J.J's Devil.
Saturday night I'm going to tie a good drunk on. I'll be sitting at my kitchen table, with a bottle of 'Ol Number 7, playing the ponies on Super Saturday at Belmont, but mourning in my own way. A good cigar later on Sunday and I'll try and banish the darkness of the past week and only remember the funny exchanges that Tim and I shared, like the one about how Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey leaves an aftertaste like pancakes.
I don't know about you all, but music helps and nobody mourns like the Irish.