Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Vegas - Winter 2007 International Incident

I'm not an amateur. I'm not a doucheball. I don't wear my sunglasses or wifebeater on the plane, I don't drink from a plastic yard glass in the airport, or anywhere else for that matter, and I don't scream "Vegas Baby!" Ever. The main goal on the mentally and physically taxing flight from NYC to Vegas is always the same: 1) don't get tilted and 2) try to get some rest.
Why then, are the Black Car companies constantly trying to violate the first of the two very simple rules? Mrs. Dynamite doesn't like to take a car - she just hails a cab. However, since nothing tilts me faster than NYC taxis, and a town car only costs a buck more, I go that route almost every time. The main method the car services provide in terms of tilt induction is to show up late. While I've been on a hot streak lately, with my last several cars coming on time, I can't seem to avoid the most powerful weapon the drivers employ: SMELL. I know what you're thinking - this isn't a toxic curry b.o. I get assaulted by - it's the uber-perfume of fake flowers or air cleaner so vicious it makes my medulla throb.
So I get in the car, and am immediately in a quandary. I can't breathe solely through my mouth for an hour, and I'm only wearing a sweatshirt in the 30 degree weather, so I can't open the window to alleviate the floral assault. I fight it for as long as I can, then, like Luke leaning toward the Dark Side, I embrace the odor and give in to it. It's like the smell at the Venetian - only much much worse. On the bright side, I can't even smell it after 20 minutes. Unfortunately, I also can't feel my toes or remember my name.
Arriving at the airport for my noon flight, the doucheballs are not hard to find. There is a pack of d-balls, clearly of Da Bronx variety, annoyingly eyeing my Red Sox sweatshirt. I send Dirty Dave a quick text notifying him of the doucheballiness that is abundant already, and he responds "GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Terps!" I quickly explain that these are not the ACC variety of doucheballs, but rather, the much lower class Fordham sub-sector, easily identifiable by flat-brimmed Yankee hats. If you EVER see someone with a flat-brimmed Yankee hat, you know you're dealing with a special kind of doucheball.
Then, like something out of a nature movie, an entirely different species of douche strolled up - the douche-WASP. Identified by their casual business attire, the douche-WASPs were carrying Bud Light bottles at the airport gate, prominently displaying the bottles much like the way a poison frog displays bright colors to advertise it's wares - only I guess this was the opposite - they were trying to attract attention, not repel it. I was in awe. Hey guys - really? You felt the need to show everyone how cool you were by hanging out at the gate an hour before your flight drinking Bud Lights? Is the hot airport pussy flocking to you like a moth to a flame? No? Didn't think so.
I can deal with doucheballs, but I can't deal with SARS, and after moving my seat to get away from the young dude coughing with his mouth open, I inadvertently planted myself in close proximity to a party of 7 Chinamen hacking some sort of serious shit, without covering their mouths of course. Talk about tilt. Kid Dynamite is a germaphobe - there you have it.
After I suffered through the latest issue of Newsweek, which chugged cock, Delta began the boarding process. I couldn't figure out the system - they board by zone, and you'd assume they board from the back of the plane to the front, right? No. I think it's completely random. Fuckwads. Patiently awaiting my turn, I handed the gate agent my boarding pass, which she scanned. The machine beeped and she told me "seat change - lots of those today." Before objecting, I noticed that I still had an aisle seat, and elected not to whip out the DYKWTFIA? Karmically, the tide quickly turned in my favor when, despite the "full flight" the flight attendants kept preaching about, I had an empty middle seat next to me. Jackpot.
The Fordham D-balls were several rows in front of me, and, amongst the group of 6 I counted the following: 1 desert camouflage bandana. 1 jungle camouflage zip down sweatshirt. 1 pair of sunglasses worn on board. 1 wool knit cap. 1 face-frame style beard (WICKED douchey). 1 spankhound chanting "Mayweather!" And of course, 1 wifebeater t-shirt. I calmly put in my headphones and resolved to endure the 5 1/2 hour flight, and that's really what it is: endurance. This is a long, painful flight.
I make it to Vegas and breeze through the empty cab line at the airport, arriving at the Venetian in short order. The room is comped, somehow, courtesy of the Big Show, who will be arriving in short order, and I check in, activate my line of credit, and drop my bags in the room before heading to the poker room.
The 2-5NL game was nit central. The players do not believe it's legal to raise from first position with The Vortex (68s), and the mere verbal claim that I had done so resulted in a near lynch mob. Later, a somewhat bizarre guy on the button bumped it to $30, and had the small blind re-pop him to $130. Action came back around to the cutoff, who smooth called the $130, and now the button made it $430 to go. I was sitting all the way across the table, and the guy to my right whispered "he has aces." I threw out a $5 chip and said "I'll take "NOT ACES." He faded in a hurry, but the guy to my left quickly took the action, explaining to me, seriously, "The third raise means aces 95% of the time." I asked him if he wanted any more action, but he declined. Now the small blind popped it one more time, all in for $680, the cutoff folded, and the button stopped to think.
"Ship it," I told Mr. 95%. "What? We won't know until we see his hand!" "He's thinking. That means NOT ACES," you dipshit. Turns out the button called with TT, which held up against the sb's AK. At least the nit-factor is going down a little!
I ran over the game for a little while, sucked out with QQ vs AA when I spiked a set, and was starving by the time Big Show showed up around 7pm. We quickly hit the Panda Express in the food court, which was clearly a mistake, resulting in gastrointestinal trauma for the rest of the night. Fueled up, we returned to the Venetian casino floor to dominate their double deck blackjack game.
After several hours of play, we were each holding a nice win, and the cigar girl strolled by. We knew from prior experience that the pit boss should be more than willing to comp us a simple cigar, which Big Show requested.
"Sorry, I can't," the pit boss replied, "I can buy you a pack of smokes though."
"But we don't smoke," Big Show replied, and we stared at her like she had 3 heads. Standoff.
"We don't control the cigar concession, sorry," the pit boss continued.
"Wait a second," I chimed in, "You can buy us dinner at Grand Luxe, but you can't buy us a cigar?" We were seriously confused, and starting to get severely tilted.
"That's correct," from the pit boss, but no logical explanation.
Big Show and I looked at each other, and the TILT factor was palpable. "How much money are we going to steam off at this table because we don't want to pay for a $15 cigar ourselves?" I asked him.
"At LEAST a full buy in," he knew it was gonna happen, but we maintained our focus and continued to grind up our win.
An hour later, the cigar girl strolled by again, and the pit boss chimed in, "I can buy you one of those cigars!"
"What did you think we were talking about?!?!?!" We were incredulous, as that's all we'd wanted in the first place. "Ohh - I thought you wanted one of the special ones from the Salon," the pit boss explained, as we were in the pit right outside the high limit salon area. So we finally got our cigars, free of charge (SHIP IT!), and smoked them as we again encountered a communications breakdown, this time with our dealer.
"How much do we have to bet in baccarat if we want to tear up the cards?" I asked him, as this would give us great pleasure - in baccarat, you are allowed to destroy the cards as you look at them. "I've seen guys bet $200,000 a hand," he explained.
"No no, what's the MINIMUM?" Big Show tried to help this idiot understand the question.
"Some guys bet $15k a hand, some guys bet more," the dealer replied. What the fuck language am I speaking?
"I understand that," I interrupted again. "What is the minimum we have to bet though to rip the cards up?"
"A lot of guys just bet $5,000," the dealer was really trying to tilt me by completely ignoring the question and feigning ignorance of the US American language. He appeared to be Bulgarian or Croatian or something like that, but was no fool, and seemed to comprehend fine.
"Say WHAT again!" Big Show grunted, imitating Jules from Pulp Fiction, as I laughed and gave up the line of questioning, and put aside my dreams of shredding a baccarat shoe for the moment.
Having thrashed the double deck game, we made a quick hit and run at the Pai Gow pit, before deciding to play some late night drunken low-limit no limit hold'em.
We sat down next to each other at a 1-2 NL table which became 7 handed, and I won the first 8 hands in a row by raising and re-raising, firing at flops. Big Show eventually laughed "that's EIGHT in a row." "Maybe I should slow down?" I inquired. "Why? Wait until they put money in the pot." If someone called a flop bet, or bet into you, it was an easy laydown. Otherwise, we'd continue to abuse the game. One Canadian doucheball tilted Big Show by wearing a big dopey ski hat, and thinking he was a pro. Big Show was in the bathroom when this idiot raised with JTs, and then explained to me, with his loony accent, "That's a good hand, a money making hand, eh?" "You're a douche, EH?" I muttered to myself, and resumed my abuse of him and the other helpless ducklings, before we quickly tired and retired to the room to refuel for the night.
more to come.

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