Lucky Louie

by Ed Meyer

posted on November 30, 2009 in General Discussion | 1 Comment >>

Sometimes, I think there are angels that walk among us. They are disguised as regular people, but do the little extra things that make life easier for those needing it the most. Or, at least that is what I would like to think.

Louie was from France. The word “was” has led you to believe that he is not with us anymore. But, that is not the total truth.

He was a waiter in some of the finest restaurants in his country. He attended the races ever since he was a boy. He loved the action, but more importantly he loved the people. He was a bachelor, who did quite well most of his life. He was one of the luckiest people I have ever met. He has hit three pick-6’s, and had won over $100,000 in the lottery. You could say that Louie lives the dream.

The part I did not tell you about is that Louie lived in a modest apartment. He takes the bus to the track daily; never misses a day.

Louie never tells anyone about his deeds. He has helped countless people just to my knowledge. Oh, he doesn’t make you a millionaire overnight. But, he does make that extra effort to make someone’s life better, if only for a little while….

He told me a story about his grandmother once. She was the one responsible for taking him to the track. She taught him how to cook, and more importantly taught him about the helping hand. He credits her with anything good he has ever done in his life. It was she that took in over eight children over the years, and showed him first hand the love of life. More than anything, she taught him how to handicap. He told me of her notes. Long before anyone had access of a one button world for information, she had meticulous notes. This was her secret, and now we may call it trip handicapping.

He carried on with her efforts, and did cheat a bit by purchasing a computer to assist him with gathering wisdom.  He is a tribute to racing in many ways. I loved his stories of how he keeps daily notes. I love how he would be one of the first in the door each day. I admired him for the quiet way he kept his grandmother’s tradition.

The reason for the story was that it was at the end of November some years back, that Louie shook my hand for the last time. He said he had a sick friend in Nevada that he wanted to look in on. He wanted to bid me goodbye, and thank me for the many years we had talked at the track.

When Louie stopped coming to the track, I finally believed that he was gone. I would like to think that he is playing races somewhere and tending to his friend. I would like to think that he has imparted the note keeping element to an aspiring horse player. I would like to think that someone has taken the time to get to know such a kind man. Wherever the races run, and friends are in need, I would hope Louie would be there. He made many of my days a kinder place to be.