Friday, October 08, 2004

Debauchery, Vegas Style

"So, New York, New York?" I asked my buddy.

"Yep, when you see ESPN Zone, you’re gonna wet yourself." He replied.

"I already have," I said. "Did you see that blonde in the bikini? I love this fucking place. Usually when I wet myself the only excuse I had was that I was either too lazy or drunk to make the pilgrimage to the bathroom."

After I took a shower, primped, preened and made myself presentable (ok, all I did was throw some gel in my hair), off we went to become extremely inebriated. On the way out of the Stardust, I stopped by the lobby gift shop and picked up a HUGE fucking can of Coors for the car ride over to New York, New York, open container laws be damned. After all, I wasn’t driving, and the can can double as a urinal should the need arise, and we both know it will.

Upon arriving at NY, NY, we all piled out of our rented mini vans, gave the valet $10 to park them and all 14 of us sauntered through the front doors like we were VIPs. Now, my experience with Vegas casinos to this point has been the Stardust, which looks like the 70's puked and left it on the side of the road for all to see. This place, however, is un-fucking-believable. First of all, it’s so big that you could get lost if you’re not paying attention to where you’re going. There’s no "You Are Here" maps anywhere to be found. Second of all, there’s no clocks on the wall. Third, once you leave the doorway and head past the first bank of slot machines, you cannot see the light from the doorway any further.

We all head back to the ESPN Zone. The place is packed. Filled to capacity. My buddy goes in to see what the deal is and how long it would take us to get a table. First, he was informed that when the ESPN Zone is filled, it costs you $10 per hour, per person to sit at a table. In other words, if you don’t order $10 per hour, per person worth of beer, or whatever, they charge you that much anyhow. Ok, $140 an hour (there are 14 of us) to watch Sunday Night Football seems a little extreme to us. So, we all congregate and try to come up with an alternative plan.

We all decided to go ride the Manhattan Express, the huge roller coaster that’s one of the first things you see and hear when you arrive.

I’m totally into roller coasters. Love them to death. I haven’t ridden one in about 3 years (the last time I took the kids to Disney). So, we all pair up and get in line.We had managed to find some 2-for-1 tickets, so instead of $12.50 each, it’s going to be $6.25 each. Not too bad. I end up sitting with our aforementioned stud female third baseman and her pulled hammy. Well, unbeknownst to me, she is terrified of roller coasters. However, she neglects to tell me this until we’re on our way up the first drop. And when I say she tells me, I don’t mean she verbalized it. I mean she grabbed my hand and torqued my wrist backward until it was facing the wrong way. Great, we haven’t even made it to the top yet and my wrist is broken! This coaster ride is off to a rockin good start.

Once we’re at the top, you can see forever. The sun was setting over the strip. The whole city was bathed in a mixture of orange and yellow sunset mixed with all the searchlights that clicked on to light up each individual casino. After the initial drop, she seemed to ease her grip a little more and relax. However when we got to the loop-de-loop, she wrenched my hand so badly that it made the last time seem like we were just casually holding hands. Fuck! Ok, now I’m totally upside down, but my wrist seems to be right side up. I’m desperately trying to jerk my hand away from her, but she’s got the frickin’ vise grip of death on it, rendering me useless. The rest of the coaster ride was the same - hit a lull, she’d relax, hit a corkscrew, rip JP’s arm out of its socket, lather, rinse, repeat. When we returned to the starting point, she let go of my arm, which was barely operable by now.

As we exited the ride, they have a kiosk that are selling pictures that they managed to snap at some point. I look at our picture. There she is, mid-scream, eyes closed, terrified. There I am, definite look of pain, maybe terror. But not terror in the "I’m scared shitless" way. Terror in the "I'm really going to miss my left wrist" way. I decline to purchase it. My buddy declines to buy his picture as well, since it looks like they snapped his picture while he was taking a huge dump.

After we gathered our belongings from the locker (you can’t take anything on the coaster with you, lest it will end up on the ground at some point), we all decide to go to the Stratosphere and ride the coaster that’s 90 stories up and shoots you over the edge of the building.


However, it’s Sunday and they shut that coaster down at 8 p.m., so we settle for going back to the Stardust to eat dinner. After dinner (Tony Roma’s, not terribly exciting), about 8 of us decide to go to the Mandalay Bay and either go to Red Square, which is an ultra-cool vodka bar that features the top of the bar coated in a thick layer of ice, or Rum Jungle, which is an ultra-cool dance club.


We settle on the dance club. We each pony up the $20 cover charge (although some of my teammates were bitching loudly about it) and went in. I will spare you the details, since it was only us drinking (I scarfing down $10 Sapphire and tonics like they were going out of style), dancing and peeing (where is that Coors can when I need it?). I will say that one of my male teammates can cut a mean fucking rug. So much so that when he was on the dance floor, people stopped and watched him do his thang. I, however, am not so fortunate. Don’t get me wrong, I can carry a beat and shake my ass, but nothing like that dude. We closed the place down. Let me say that it was an absolute blast and I had more fun than I had in years.

We piled back into the van and headed back to the Stardust. Once there, two people had enough. They went back to the room to go to sleep. Two more wanted to gamble, which I most definitely did not. The remaining four of us ended up in the lounge, two fisting Sapphire and tonics along with Jaegermeister shots. This is where the night gets a little fuzzy for me. I do know at some point, I made my way back up to my room, because I woke up on the floor of it. The details of how I got there I really couldn’t tell you at all. I’m pretty sure that at some point crawling was involved.

We all woke up around 8 a.m., having to be at the airport at 10 to make our flight at noon. I spent that day staring at things through my sunglasses, no matter whether I was indoors or outdoors. I paid for my little drunkenness, but I really didn’t care. I’d do it all over again. Actually, I’d love to do it again real soon.

All in all, Vegas is a strange place. However, it is my new favorite place in the world. I will be returning soon. I just hope my next trip there is half as good as this one was.

Enjoyed a lot! here
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