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LAS VEGAS BLOG #6: LUCY RULES

Aria Resort

Tried to post all this last night but the Internet signal was screwing up, and I was tired anyway.

That was a long day. Still so very happy I didn’t lose my wallet and/or my car keys.

Going to work on this a bit, figure out how much money I have and don’t have.

Figure out how to drive to Santa Cruz from here and then hit the road.

Can I go by way of Bishop/Yosemite/Reno? I wouldn’t mind going fishing.

Anyone know the fastest way back to Santa Cruz from Lost Wages?

Call me.

I am tempted to play it safe and drive to Malibu and save money and get to work on the skateboard book, which is hovering around me like a black cloud.

But I want to go to Santa Cruz and see the homies and see pops and go to San Francisco, and cruise on the SUP and then drive back and see some mighty fine Central Cal folks and just have a road trip.

Danny D invited me to Christmas even dinner with all 60 of the Clan Digirolimo, and promised all the Cioppino I could eat. That’s an offer I don’t want to refuse.

I’m not going to Seattle as I have poisoned the vibe up there, like Russians dropping poison canisters into Afghani water holes.

I should have loaded up on goodies at the pastry shop at Aria last night, but I didn’t. For the Digiralimo thing.

So last night was kind of cool, and my weird luck did continue.

Drove to Aria which is still vast.

I felt like the black guy in Gladiator seeing the Colosseum for the first time:

“I did not know men could build such things.”

It’s all pretty astounding, financed by seeming limitless amounts of money,

When oil was $150 a barrel two summers ago, it’s hard to imagine how many billions of dollars were flowing into the Middle East, every day. America alone uses 20,000,000 barrels of oil a day, every day, so that’s $3,000,000,000 there alone, and that’s just the US. So looking at it like that, even if only half of that flows into the Middle East, that was $1.5 billion a day. I am told that City Center cost a grand total of $12 billion, so that was maybe a month’s worth of oil receipts.

Crude numbers, so to speak, but its clear that whoever financed and built the place had limitless money. The whole joint is impossibly huge and lavish and classy, and I have only seen small parts of it.

The parking spaces are weird. Seems like they could have put in twice as many but don’t allow parking in front of the supporting structures. But I got lucky and found a space on the Second Level which has direct access to the casino, although they still need some marker signs in the parking area pointing people to the bridge to the Aria casino.

I think I went to get something to eat first, because I was starving after noshing on Digiorno’s Pizza from the CostCo lady all day, and that was it. Went upstairs to American Fish where I had seen the Smoked Salmon BLT the night before.

The place is staffed by 20-something hotties and I sat at the bar and ordered a Coke, because I needed to wake up.

They brought two nice pieces of bread and some olive oil and butter and that was nice. All of the restaurants in Aria are very Euro and sleek. Very nice considering how many people filter through there in an hour and a day.

The smoked salmon BLT wasn’t a big sandwich, however, but a kind of nouveau dish with a bit of bacon and smoked salmon puree. It was nice, but I needed to grind so I asked for more bread.

Not too expensive, like under $20 and then I got out of there to go pillage and plunder at poker.

I got into a $3-6 limit game right away and started making mistakes right away.

Tossed my first hand which had a 4 in it. The number 4 in Chinese sounds like the word for “death” and so it’s bad luck to the Chinese. It was bad luck for me. The final board have a pair of 4s and a pairs of 9s and I would have had a full house, but I’d folded, although I think the chap across from me had a 9.

I’ll never know.

I have been winning on chased straights so I chased a straight on the next hand but the guy to my left had a full house and The Lady had four 10s, so I wasted some money there.

Won hands with bad cards and lost hands with good cards but that’s how it goes. I kept throwing away 4s and regretting it, so it was bad luck for me.

I walked out of there about $110 down. I am playing with my own money now as I have spent the $200 the publisher gave me on $100 in hotels and food and other stuff.

And I don’t have money to burn.

So I wandered around the casino and found the $1 roulette video games. Earlier as I was driving back from Lake Mead – so deeply relieved I hadn’t lost my car key – I had called Lucy to tell her the news. Lucy is a First Point Wahine of the first order. I told her I was going to play the names of girls who were nice and she hoped I would “get lucky.”

Well I played 3 12 21 25 = LUCY on a $1 roulette game and hit the 25 right away,.

And then it happened again, on the second spin and all of a sudden I had $60 of the $110 back, and that felt good.

So I played other names ATHENA and AMY and they didn’t work, and then I played JENY A and that hit.

I didn’t want to push my luck so I wandered around, played video poker and went up to take the tram which runs from Monte Carlo to Bellagio. I stopped at Crystals which is a shopping area that is as huge as Saint Paul’s Cathederal.

But if I wanted to pay $1200 for a shirt I would have stayed in Malibu, so I ended up back in the Casino at Aria.

It’s hard to tell where you are in all that space, but maybe that is intentional. The whole place looks like the future, like the space ship I have in my head for that opera I would like to write some day:¬†Deus ex Machina.

At one point I played 3 12 21 25 18 = LUCY R and hit the 12. I played $2 one time and almost played $5 and hit the 18.

I also started playing JONI C and hit on the 10, but I got crossed up when I played LUCY R and JONI C wrong.

If I had done it backwards, I would have won more.

Oh well, it was still cool and I won back some of the money I lost at poker.

I had a sugar-free coconut cake at Cafe Vettro and again felt bad for all the middle aged and older women I had seen today, running their legs off and working hard. The Digiornos pizza lady at CostCo must have been 70-plus.

All of that makes me feel guilty with the thought of A______ working at Marie Callender’s, but oh well. Hopefully I can make it up to her some day.

On the way out I stopped at the epic pattiserie which is so like Paris. Bought a couple of truffles from the two shop girls who didn’t have it together, really, or maybe they were tired.

I wanted to play more poker because I knew I was leaving but I was tired and wanted to walk out with a little of the $110 I had won back.

If I ever sell la screenplay or win the Lottery or something I will come back to City Center and go big, because the place is BIG.

Now it’s 8:30 AM on Sunday morning and the plan is to get cleaned up, go to City Center for breakfast, try not to gamble, maybe go up to the top of the tower, look around, and then split by 11:00 – check out time.

I need to get that Toyota key copied because the Gods warned me.

I need to figure out how to get to Santa Cruz from here. I would like to go up through Bishop and maybe fish because I have my gear, but I don’t know how to get over that way. Maybe through Reno?

Anyone have any advice on that?

I’m going to email B_________ and K________ and suggest they bring their¬†wahine to City Center because they both are card players and they have the dough to do it right.

Also J______ and S________ and certainly F___________

8:41. Time to clean up, get some breakfast and get out of here.

I want to send all this to the London publisher, but yesterday’s description of standing around at CostCo with my finger in my ear – and stealing the posters – might be a little too snide and negative, so maybe I shan’t.

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