The Engineer

The Life and Times of Donald F. Simmons

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Daylight second

Here's a neat phrase I'm going to use from now on whenever the opportunity beckons - "daylight second".

In the King Kaufman sports column in (which I read not because I'm a sports fan, but because Kaufman is a very good writer), he's been running a baseball stat a day for a week to show just how far ahead of everyone else Barry Bonds is in the baseball MVP race. Bonds has been so far ahead in some of these stats the gap between him and the guy in second has been the same as the gap between the guy in second and the guy in 19th, or 32nd, or something staggering like that. Kaufman's been lamenting that saying 'X is in first place, Y is in second' doesn't come close to telling the whole story and there should be some term for second place which does.

Today a reader suggested "daylight second", an Australian horse-racing term, which means that first is so far ahead there's nothing but daylight behind him. So you'd call Secretariat's 31-length win in the 1973 Belmont Stakes as, "At the wire it's Secretariat first, daylight second."

I just plain like this phrase.


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