Its after midnight here in Sin City as this will be wrapping up my third night of blogger hijinxs while in town for the WPBT Winter Classic. To the front and center Ron Jaworski and Merrill Hoge are explaining the NFL lineup that will be viewed tomorrow at Laggasse stadium in the Venetian (Palazzo). To my right are the silky concrete structures of the Belliago and Caesar's Palace. Viewable are dancing water, drive-by ads for 1-877-sex-4-you, and the Penthouse that Terrance Wantabe prceeded to give Harrah's 6% of their net earning via all the negative expectation games his alcohol-soaked brain could handle.
Caesar's Palace was also where I spent approximently half the day today. No, not from playing the annual WPBT Winter Classic Poker Tournament sponsored in part by PokerStars. That part took about 10 minutes for me to walk into the poker room, pay my $100 entry fee, and promptly ignore Derek's signs that hey YOUR TWO PAIR ISN'T ANY GOOD. I may have claimed such a hand was a cooler, and busting out 2nd from the tourney wasn't what I had in mind when I explained that I did not want to last long today. There was time to say hi to the table, clap for the annoncements and muck Ace-King while slinking over to CJ to inform him that my loser ass was done.
Could not sit afterwards. Instant grafication from slots further showed just how big of a drain those are on my gambling bankroll. No bonus game could dig me out of the hole, no fun was emitted from the cold machines as I was on the verge of packing it in for the day to further detox from a non-stop beginning (this part of the trip will be told at a later time). Back to the Palace part of the casino to attempt some Pai Gow-infused adrenaline. Push, lose, win, win, lose, push. End up winning $14 after a few hours of getting dangerously close to busting my buy-in for the day ($500). Instead those chips were better used back at the poker room.
Sitting down at a $1/$3 NLHE table with $300, I made small talk with a older figure that was soon-to-be divorced gentleman and couldn't understand why Omaha was such an action game. Not much materialized since NLHE live cash games in a casino are completely foreign to those who call Minnesota home. Until things went very right in a hurry, calling a small raise in the big blind with KdTd and four players in the hand we would see a bet to $30, a raise by the cutoff, putting the decision on the Qd Jd 8c flop. For those of you at home who know a bit about poker that is called an Open-Ending Straight and Royal flush draw. I couldn't call because he "only" at $120ish behind.
$30 better went back to rockin his fedora and the other guy pondered on what to do. He would make the call with a set of queens? Sure there's a straight posible but not prombable.
turn Ts, river Ad.
Suckout complete chips acquired), begin the ride to winning. Went back to the Palace casino station to sweat the St.Louis/G-Vegas/LA Douchebags convergence on a three-card poker table. No spots became open so I thru a hundred on the $10 craps table for shits and giggles and took a $40 profit from five shooters. By the time I turned around the lure of the sleek looking sirens Maigrey and Betty Underground were there to direct me to the unused $10 craps table and play our selves. And we would do so for the next two hours. An ultra-high roller would find himself stuck $12K while trying breach our run by putting those chips in play only AFTER the phenomial roll of the hazelnut-skinned lady hit hard sixes with the ease of getting your pajamas on before bed. He would leave at least $30K-$50K in lost bets on the table, but we would not. Actually amount will not be disclosed but we were able to make Derek's nipples raise from the texture of a $500 chip hitting his ribbed shirt while railing the final table as Astin, AlCantHand, and Speaker battled it out for the upside-down golden hammer.
From there our group would float from Casino Royale's e-coli caked roulette chips and back to the IP for a nightcap. I instead took leave from the group to enjoy a few moments in front this laptop screen and admire my view towards this town that has been the focial point of many extreme highs and lows of my life. Yes, I am and always will be a child wrapped up in adult clothing, I may cheer a little too loudly while a $5 blackjack hand becomes a winner, but my time in Vegas a growing experience with each visit. There's more I learn from the conversations over General Tso's chicken in a food court, leaning against a vacant poker table, or just admiring my newly found sense of seeking conversations with others simply because their voices make complete sentences (except for CK who for some reason I have the hardest time understanding despite her crystal-clear voice).
The journey continues from here as I sign off this evening as NFL Sunday is coming in few hours for yet another awakening from this pair of bionic ears I now possess. My thoughts are for a few friends who are having inner-struggles that could be much similar to my own over the past seven years, and if they need to sit down in that quiet corner or at the bank of Reel Em' Slot Machines, I'll be there with a good set of ears and hoping some words of encourgement for him or her.