January 3rd, 2008


They Shot Me In Reno, Just To Watch Me Die

I'm like the Indians and all of you scurvy bastards are giving me smallpox in your blankets!

I ended up staying awake all night watching six hours of Jericho on DVD because I couldn't sleep. This was the morning of the 30th, Sunday, smoking cigarettes and eating spaghetti and waiting for my dad to get up so we could drive up to SeaTac for our 10am flight.

In an hour, I had two big-ass glasses of Alaskan Winter Ale, then we made our way to the gate minutes before Pre-Flight Loading. The Hammer had a Bloody Mary and a bagel.

Due to circumstances mysterious, we were able to book a first-class flight down to Reno on Alaska (I believe), but for some reason our first-class ticket home was changed to a middle-class ticket on Horizon. Fly into Reno in style; fly out in shame, that seems about right.

While in First Class (seats 1A and 1C), I proceeded to guzzle the red red wine while expecting the cabin to lose pressure and the engines to fall off any minute now. She was a bumpy ride for most of the 90 minutes, but I managed to take down three or four cups of wine while many of the rabble behind us were denied even water! Savages! Choke on your lower-class status you vile worms! I am Luxury! I am The Light!

The Circus Circus. In Reno, she's connected to two other casinos, the Silver Legacy and something else (the El Dorado or something, I dunno, we never went over there). I guess, you know, if you're looking for a "Good Time" you're probably not gonna find one at the Circus Circus; unless your idea of a "Good Time" involves 14 year old Mexican girls, so in that sense, we had a "GREAT Time". We were on the fifth floor of the Sky Tower (which has itself a mono-type-rail train that will carry you the less-than-100-yards from the main building to the Sky Tower. Reno is nothing if not Fatty-Friendly, I'll give it that.

When we got to our room, we proceeded to nap. For me, that meant sleeping until around 7pm. Then, I managed to find the most expensive Steak Restaurant the world has ever seen - inside the Circus Circus no less - and I got my babyback ribs on. From there, we wandered around, saw each and every table from Craps to Roulette to Black Jack to Poker of all kinds packed to the gills, so after a little hemming and hawing, we went back to the room. The Hammer bought a little bottle of vodka and some beers, I bought a fifth of Southern Comfort and a liter of cola.

On the television, ESPN2 was televising a H.O.R.S.E. tournament, which is Hold 'Em, Omaha, Razz (low-hand stud), Stud, and Eight-High Split Stud (I think), so we did that until about 10:30 before we finally made our way down to the floor to do some real gambling.

We were down there for a little while before we decided to go back upstairs around midnight and drink for "Free" on our own shit. An hour or two later, we were back down to considerably lighter crowds. That first night, I don't think we went to bed until 7am.

Which led to me sleeping in until 7pm the next night. Hoo doggies. New Years Eve. At the Silver Legacy, we went to the Catch A Rising Star stage where they started off with this Jack-Of-All-Douches behind piano. Imagine if you crossed Weird Al Yankovic with Paul F. Tompkins. Only, you know, the unfunniness of Paul F. Tompkins (along with a fat little douche face and demeanor), with Weird Al's ability to play a bunch of different instruments (from piano to guitar to trombone to trumpet to fiddle) and his proclivity toward playing cheesy covers (like Margaritaville and Tequila and the Devil Went Down To Georgia). Oh, and his name was Steve. Kill me now.

This was the lead-up to the Stand Up Comedy Act we've been waiting for since we made plans to come to Reno. The first guy was pretty funny, he won the Seattle International Stand Up Comedy Festival and he put on a good show. The second guy was a TOTAL lounge comic, very average, only he did a bunch of impressions that were all right.

Admittedly, I was pretty hung over on this night, so I only had a couple Budweisers while at the show. In fact, it wasn't until midnight or so when I finally polished off the SoCo, but I never did get more than a light buzz the entire night. In fact, when the ball dropped (or, rather, the 20-minute Reno Fireworks Show happened) we weren't even outside or at a bar or anything. When 2008 left the starting gate, I was waiting for a personal pepperoni pizza. Is that some kind of ominous sign for things to come this year?

We knew we had to get up relatively early the next day (1pm for the Rose Bowl), so we tried to go to bed at 3am. This led to me rolling around for an hour before getting up and doing some late-late-night roulette playing by myself. I made $44 before heading back upstairs and crashing sometime around 6am. Up at 1, had a lunch, made a losing bet, watched a losing game, made more losing bets, made some winning bets, made another losing bet, watched another losing game, fiddled around for the rest of the night on the Casino floor, not drinking, tried to call it a night around 1 or 2am, but yet again couldn't fall asleep until 5 or 6, got two hours of sleep, rode back on a plane that still uses propellers, landed, rode home, stayed up for a while, went to sleep, and that was that.