Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Labyrinth of Avarice

By Pauly
Las Vegas, NV

After spending a substantial amount of time within the milieu of Las Vegas, partying and gambling as a temporary visitor is a millions times more enjoyable than living in Las Vegas for work. I understand the plight of the unfortunate souls who have to toil in resort towns or other holiday hotspots as the resentment builds against those they have to serve and be around daily... tourists.

I travel frequently and I prefer hanging out with travelers more than tourists. There's a vast difference between a traveler and tourist and if you have to ask me to clarify that gap, then I'm afraid that you're a tourist in life.

Sadly, I grew frustrated with the slew of slack-jawed tourists that flooded the Strip the past few days. It was super ugly one morning at the IP or the Imperial Palace for Inbred Peasants that I've renamed it after the scene I witnessed. It was around 9am, the nasty hour where the early risers clash with the skewed populous on the tail end of their all night benders. I headed to work at the Bellagio and had to fight my way through a dense jungle of slot machines and table games in order to clear the labyrinth of avarice.

In front of the Wheel of Fortune slots, a woman with fake nails spilling out of her jean shorts and wearing one black flip flop screamed at the top of her lungs to a hagged out waitresses wearing a one-size too large hooker pink cocktail dress circa Peggy Sue Gets Married. The accent of the smashed woman was southern, perhaps with a heavy Appalachian twang. Obviously up all night drinking, the waitress wanted no more part of her as a customer cut and her off. When she refused to give her a drink the redneck got right in her face and said, "Fuck you bitch. Where's my fuckin' Bud Light!"

The waitress walked away in the most amazing display of Buddhist tolerance and patience that I had seen in a very long time. Then again, she might not be religious, just jacked up on diazepam.

Everyone's high in Las Vegas. If you're not high, you're looking to get high. You didn't come to Las Vegas not to get off somehow. Otherwise you would have gone to see Mt. Rushmore instead.

Then there was the incident with the wasted chick who ran down the hallway at the Castle (now there's a fall from grace... just a month ago I was eating 23 Euro cheeseburgers on my terrace overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at Le Meridien Beach Hotel in Monte Carlo. Now I was shuffling in between the Legionnaire's Disease infested IP then the magical Excalibur. Good thing I bought a wife beater t-shirt and a pack of Skoal in to blend in). She was so shitfaced that she stumbled or crashed into every door that had a Do Not Disturb Sign on it and ripped them all off. When I walked down the hall ten minutes later, dozens and dozens of torn signs cluttered the hallway.

On the weekend, I escaped to the outskirts of Las Vegas into the gated suburbs of Henderson and Summerlin in desperate attempt to avoid the hordes of slow walking mobs and soused oafs that pillage and clutter the Strip 24 hours a day. Sure there's not as many hot pieces of ass sauntering around at Green Valley or Red Rock, but the lack of eye candy is minor compared to the seclusion and more laid back atmosphere. The best part of those casinos are the numerous locals... the more upscale ones. Although tweakers and miscreants do pop up from time to time in those places, it's nothing like the clientele at casinos such as the Silver Nugget in North Las Vegas where it's like Boyz in the Hood meets Casino on a nightly basis. Just don't get shanked on your way to the buffet.

It's tough to work in a casino when you're a complete degenerate and want to play poker, throw dice, bet on games, drink at the Hooker Bar, and donk off a few bucks at the Pai Gow tables... at every moment you are inside that very casino. I love writing but having to work inside a haven for the majority of my vices for 16 hours a day is an enteral struggle. The excuse I've been using for my deviant sports betting the last two weeks has been... I have to work so much that I don't have time to play poker, so I bet on the games instead.

That's a good justification and unfortunately due to my weakness for action, I'm stuck big time. I nearly doubled my losses on a stormy Monday. I bet both home dogs in the NBA playoffs and got burned. Like four degree burns. The hardest beat was the Wizards losing by 7 when the spread was 6. I rarely write about bad beats that I endure in poker, but that was one of the toughest beats I took in a while. March Madness was crazy this year, however I expected huge swings to occur such as that one day when UNC lost. Man, that was a six grand swing. College hoops has extreme variance.

I should have bet Miami Don's baseball picks, but only the ultimate degenerates bet on baseball at the lowest depths of their descent into utter madness. I'd bet on baseball if the games were shorter. I crave that instant fix.

Erick Lindgren is a big time sports better. He liked Denver, so I went with Denver. I do whatever Lindgren does, because he's so dreamy. Since Lindgren has been running bad, I only bet a little less than I normally do. I figured both our luck was due to change. Nope. Bad fortune hath beseeched thee. Indeed, it was a rough Monday.

Tomorrow is another day. Another chance to lose more money on the NBA playoffs. Another opportunity to get caught walking in the middle of an AARP convention where I slowly want to rip my eye balls out and shove them in my ears because those geriatrics walk so fuckin' slow that if I abruptly cut one of them off, then a dozen of them will crash into each other and fall like dominos in a gruesome octogenarian pile up in front of the Let It Ride table at Caesar's Palace.

Dead man walking straight for the penny slots.

* * * * *

Day 1 of the $5K WSOP Circuit event at Caesar's Palace is complete. Only 75 players remaining out of the initial 336. They play down to 9 on Day 2 and the final table is Wednesday.

Stop by Poker News to read the live updates of Day 2 starting at noon local time. There's photos from BJ and Amy in the coverage along with more videos from Shronk and Tiffany. This one from Gavin Smith was friggin' hilarious.

Click here to view the Gavin Smith interview.

Two more days of work for me, then I'm off for the rest of the month. Then I get to move back for two long months of non-stop poker and gambling action a the WSOP.

Original content written and provided by Pauly from Tao of Poker. All rights reserved. RSS feeds are for non-commercial use only.

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