Hey there ‘Redheads… Happy Tax Day. Any of you guys and gals partaking in the unfortunately named protest of “teabagging” your elected officials?
I’d love for the leader of the protest to be a guy who goes by “Hot Carl”. Holy crap, it’s been awhile since I fired up the blog and written anything halfway interestingish. In this era of immediate access to even the most mundane information, this blog is getting left behind like a fat kid in a 5K. I’d like to draw a line in the sand and say that I never have, nor will I ever, tweet. Let me get this straight, a website that does the same thing Facebook does…without any of the cool stuff that Facebook does. I don’t know if Billy Mays could sell that. I’m actually in the process of developing a new social networking site that focuses on the size and frequency of your friends’ bowel movements, called Shitter. People will be able to follow your regular flow with farts. In the interest of full disclosure, I should let you know that I’m not at 100% as I type this. I’m allergic to something that turns my lungs into a goo farm. This morning, I coughed up something so green, if a banjo was handy, it would’ve sang Rainbow Connection. But, I’m soldiering on, so I don’t neglect you any further.
So, the big happening in the last of these blog-free weeks is my trip to Vegas. I got a rare chance to go on the cheap. Just had to pay for the flight, since I was tagging along with my funny little honey, who was going for a business convention. We stayed at The Venetian, which is easily the nicest place I’ve stayed in Vegas. It helps the ranking that I wasn’t sharing the room with 4 sweaty comics this time around. I’ll take my funny little honey over Jay Hastings any day of the week and twice on Sunday. The room was opulent. You could actually say, “I’m going upstairs to bed.” There were 3 flat screen tvs, two in the main room and one in the bathroom. The curtains were on a remote control. We were nestled comfortably in luxury’s cushy lap. Like any of my previous trips to Sin City, my goal was to get the most bang for my gambling buck. That meant tournament poker and lots of it. My week of poking went reasonably well. I cashed in one tourney, which pretty much paid for the couple others I got ousted from before the money. I took 5th at Caesar’s, by far my favorite place on the strip to play…mostly because I’ve cashed there twice. Here’s the major highlight of the tournament for me, then I’ll move on. I was at a full table of ten players, first to act, blinds at 200/400. I got dealt Q-10 offsuit. I call. A guy five players down from me attempts to raise 1000 on top, but he string bets, which means he didn’t push all of his raise in at once. This isn’t allowed, so he only ended up raising 600 to 1000 total. I was going to fold to his original raise, but I figured another 600 wasn’t that big a deal and I called. The flop came out Q-Q-10. Can’t do much better than flopping the full house. There’s no way he has anything than can beat me. In poker parlance, we call this “the nuts”. I checked and let him bet into me. He obliges and pushes all in. I don’t think he got the “in” out before I called. He flips over aces. I break the bad news. Technically, if another ace hit, he would’ve hit a better full house, but that didn’t happen and I was Scrooge McDuck swimmin’ in chips. I think I would’ve had an aneurysm if I folded that hand and saw that flop hit.
I already felt like a winner before I did any gambling. When we landed on Tuesday morning, one of my missions was to find a pair of pants that I could wear to my funny little honey’s fancy business dinner. We hit the mall inside The Venetian, hoping to find a deal. We struck gold with Banana Republic, who was discounting their already on-sale items another 20%. I’m not a big clothes shopper, but even I knew this was pretty sweet. I got a sweater for $7, a nice t-shirt for $7, and a roomy pair of pants for $15. The cash register should’ve had a slot crank on it.
One of the things I love about Vegas is that it embodies the scramble for fame on any level. It reminds me of the joke where the guy shoveling elephant crap in the circus is asked why not quit and he responds, “And quit show business?” There are some truly talented people in Vegas who are busting their humps in front of gawking slack-jawed tourists, hoping for that big break. In The Venetian, for example, they offer gondola rides through their fake Venice. The gondoliers are trained opera singers, who serenade you while they paddle. So here’s a guy who has honed his craft for years and now he’s dressed like he belongs on a jar of Ragu while he ferries people who’s only experience with opera is seeing Elmer Fudd sing Kill Da Wabbit. I also encountered a small troupe of actors while I was killing time before a poker tourney, who were singing That’s Amore to a smattering of confused onlookers in the mall.
I know I’ve always dreamt of one day playing in front of the Banana Republic. I can just imagine the pitch they got… The good news is you’ll be playing in front of a standing room only crowd in Vegas… The bad news is…here’s the outfit.
So, I came to a realization in Vegas. I will never understand the Tao of WOOO!! Allow me to explain. We got to Vegas during the week, so the casinos and nightclubs were relatively quiet for the bulk of our stay. Then Friday hit. Then a Fantasia broomstick army of popped collar douchebags and scantily clad gals who couldn’t get past the table read for Girls Gone Wild lined up outside the nightclubs to get ready to put on Date Rape: The Musical. Their primary means of expression was, “WOOOOO!!” Oh, and, “VEGAS BABY!!” (as a sidenote, I think there’s legislation in the works to make it legal to punch someone in the throat if they shout that within 10 feet of you on the strip) I don’t get it. I’m old.
Here are a couple other random Vegas pix…
A good time was had by all. More coming soon. ‘Til then…