March 26, 2007

Accounting 101

I've always had this fantasy that when I die I'll be given a massive book containing an accounting of everything I've ever done in my life. I think it was my early infatuation with baseball that taught me to love compiling statistics about anything and everything. It strikes me as tragic that I'll never know, for example, how many glasses of water a day I averaged over the course of my life. Here's a list of the things I'd most like to know:

1. How many bowls of cereal did I eat in my life? Which did I eat the most? Cap'n Crunch? Cocoa Krispies?

2. How many times did I have sex? The last time I had sex, did it occur to me that it might be my last time? (I worry about this with old people all the time.)

3. Have I seen every episode of Law & Order?

4. How many times did I listen to Ice Cube's Death Certificate?

5. Did I ever tell my grandmother I loved her?

6. How many successful jokes have I told? How many bombed? A ratio would be nice.

7. How many books did I read in my life? Fiction/non-fiction breakdown, please.

8. How many beers did I drink? Was it more or less than all my buddies?

9. How many miles did I drive in my life? What percentage of those miles were driven above the speed limit? 99?

10. How many times did I watch the sneezing panda?

11. How's my gambling? Was I in the black when I kicked the bucket?

Tell me you wouldn't read this book.

March 21, 2007

Las Vegas 2007: Mistakes Were Made

Dave and I found each other in the airport and sized each other up. It was past 11:00 on the west coast, Sunday night. We were the last two players remaining in a dangerous four-day game of basketball watching and beer drinking. Secretly, we were proud of each other.

"Well Dave," I said, "Here we are. We made some mistakes, no doubt, but I had a pretty good time."

"Oh yes," he replied. "Mistakes WERE made..." It looked like he was ready to say something else but then he thought better of it. Those three words said enough:

Mistake #1 The Imperial Palace

My friends did most of the organizing. They had heard rumors of a sweet sounding deal at the Imperial Palace, a second-rate casino across from Caesar's Palace. Two conference rooms would be converted into a basketball fan's paradise: Multiple high definition TVs, showing every game live. $1 hot dogs. $1 beers. Right across from the sports book, where we would bet on all of the 48 games.

The reality? There were multiple TVs showing every game, but they were decidedly low definition, and inconveniently located 20 feet apart, such that no one could watch more than 2 games at the same time. Every sports book, every sports bar-- hell, every sports fan with multiple TVs-- knows every TV needs to be visible at all times. But not the Imperial Palace. The beers? $4 domestic, $5 imported. The sports book? Down the hall. Wait in line half an hour to place your bets. Put $500 on the games and in return the cashier gives you coupons for 2 free drinks. DOMESTIC only drinks. Corona and Heineken not available. And by the way, the Imperial Palace is a $10 cab ride (or 3 stops on the monorail, for you bargain hunters!) from our perfectly acceptable hotel and casino.

Did I mention other casinos have cocktail waitresses who serve free drinks to gamblers?

Mistake #2 Not Speaking Up

I stayed at the Imperial Palace a couple of years ago. It sucked then, too. Its blackjack pit offers a gimmick called, I shit you not, The Dealertainers. The dealers would dress up like music stars-- Michael Jackson, Dolly Parton, Louis Armstrong, Alice Cooper-- and in return for this horrific service, they pay you 6 to 5 on blackjack instead of 3 to 2. When I was there, the IP offered a buffet that featured all-you-can-drink champagne. At the end of the buffet, there was a tap-- a tap!-- where each customer could pull himself a nice frothy glass of draft champagne.

Mercifully, this buffet has been replaced. Mercilessly, they added a seafood restaurant called, I shit you not, The Cockeyed Clam.

I should have spoken up.

Mistake #3 Going Back To The Imperial Palace On Friday

Groupthink at its best.

Mistake #4 Eating One Meal A Day

The desire to watch every single minute of basketball is understandable. Not waking up early enough to sneak in a meal beforehand is unacceptable.

Mistake #5 Time Zones

Drinking beer during every game is all part of the deal. But when the games start at 9:00 a.m., things get a little rough. Thursday is fun. Friday is tough, but peer pressure gets you through it. Saturday is horrible. By Sunday you've given up drinking forever.

Mistake #6 Passing out before your large mushroom pizza and 40 hot chicken wings arrive at your hotel room. I can't think of a title for this one, but god dammit was it ever a mistake. (Not A Mistake At All: Telling the operator you'll pay with cash.)

Mistake #7 Waiting Until You're Too Drunk To Learn How To Play Craps To Learn How To Play Craps.

It doesn't matter that I made $240 in half an hour. What matters is that I still don't know how to play craps.

Mistake #8 The Sunday Night Red Eye

I swore last July I would never fly a Sunday night Vegas red eye again. I was wrong.

Mistake #9 Waiting 26 Years Before Going To Vegas For March Madness

Mistakes were made.

March 20, 2007

certain asides

you know how your pilot always reminds you to turn off your cell phone and other electronic devices before taking off and landing? well that's complete bullshit.

what exactly is the airline trying to say? are they saying your cell phone is SO DANGEROUS that flight attendants will simply TAKE YOUR WORD FOR IT that you turned it off? all you have to do-- all everyone does-- is ignore the warning and leave the phone in your pocket, where it stays on the entire goddamn flight.

of course nothing ever happens. every time my flight lands, i feel my blackberry vibrating in my pocket, telling me i have 7000 new emails from irate supervisors. did the signals interfere with the landing? of course not.

if there were a .001% chance that a cell phone signal could endanger a flight, would the airlines have such a lax enforcement policy? remember, this is the same place where a bottle of baby formula can get you arrested.

so the next time your pilot tells you to turn off your cell phone, kindly tell him to eat a bowl of nuts. at first he'll think you've resorted to crudely insulting him, but assure him that you really want him to eat a bowl of nuts. the flight attendants will run around frantically searching for a bowl of nuts, but of course they won't find any because NUTS, UNLIKE CELL PHONES, ARE TOO DANGEROUS TO BE ALLOWED ON PLANES. then use your cell phone to call domino's and order some hot chicken wings.

god chicken wings are delicious.

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March 14, 2007

Breaking News

Well, I've spent the last 2 weeks with a severed internet connection and 2 house guests on an extremely prolonged visit. Aside from that, I've been working 99.9 hours a day lately and ASIDE FROM THAT, I ran out of things to say about six months ago. So, imaginary reader, my sincerest apologies.

To make it up to you, here's a little nugget my officemate sent me yesterday.

And on that note, I'm off to Vegas for a long weekend of drinking too much and waking up naked with a rubber ball in my mouth. Step aside, Butch.

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