Monday, February 11, 2013

Misc Las Vegas Musings and Observations

As I looked back on my most recent trip to Las Vegas, a number of random thoughts came to mind:

1) The number of d-bags at the poker tables was as great as any I have experienced in previous trips. The commonality they had was a bitter disposition or an uncalled for nastiness in dealing with fellow players and the dealers. Nobody, however, was really over the top except for the skinny little Asian guy who wanted to get into TBC's face.

2) Since poker can oftentimes be a social game, some of the most fun moments on my trip came from banter at the table. At Bellagio, the table consisted of mostly USA players, a couple of Aussies, and a dealer from Europe. The subject became soccer, or, as most of the world calls it, "football." The dealer was trying to defend his position that soccer is the best sport in the world. Of course, in the USA, many of us see soccer as being boring and filled with drama queens. One of the guys at the table said "Soccer sucks. Look at the guys from the USA at the table. They are all smiling." And we were.

At Luxor I was sitting next to a Baltimore Orioles fan. We were discussing the Birds and their recent history when the dealer entered the conversation. He was a baseball encyclopedia! We were talking about Orioles teams from the 1960's and 1970's. How can you get into that kind of conversation in everyday life?

3) If I lived in Las Vegas I would so be hanging out at places like the Boyd Gaming casinos (Sam's Town, The Orleans, Suncoast). Lots of cheap eats options, plenty of other things to do (bowling, movies), calm, laid back atmosphere.

4) Got a back scratch from a female dealer who commiserated with me when I saw that my pocket Kings were going to go down in flames when an Ace appeared on the flop. Being friendly and nice sometimes yields benefits!

5) Over the years I have made a number of trips to Las Vegas by myself. I just don't like doing that nearly as much anymore. Having a base of friends who live in or are frequently in Las Vegas makes for a nice vacation -- at least for me.

6) I rented a car this past trip -- the third time in my last four visits, I believe. I enjoy Las Vegas much more when I am able to explore. Many of my trips in the past rarely saw me leaving The Strip.

7) Ever since I became director of my department at work I have made few visits to casino poker rooms. I felt like my play really suffered because of that this past trip. I am thinking that I might need to ditch my current "home game," which is starting to have some issues, and instead invest in more trips to the closest casino.

8) Southwest Airlines remains high on my list of excellent businesses. On my return trip from Las Vegas we left a tad late, landed in nasty weather with ice and snow coming down, and still got in a few minutes early.

9) I really hate it when individualism is lost in the casinos. I always enjoyed different themed casinos as opposed to generic ones (see Luxor --> new Luxor and Aladdin --> Planet Hollywood). The different Caesars Corp poker rooms all had different high hand jackpots and other promotions. Now they are all part of the same bad beat jackpot promotion.

10) I totally crashed on slots this trip. Some trips I have even used slot winning to make up for poker losses. This trip, however, I took a huge bath on the one-armed bandits. I played some of my usual nickle slots and some Deuces Wild video poker. Not one really decent score. Maybe I should try video blackjack?


Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

As to point 6, I've never rented a car during my trips. Perhaps this summer when I stay for 10 days. I've actually thought about splitting that trip -- half staying at Red Rock and spending time driving around to the local casinos; and then half at Aria or another strip casino.

4:19 PM  
Blogger Lucki Duck said...

We always rent a car when visiting Vegas. It allows us to hit all the "local" casinos such as the ones you mentioned. I can't imagine going back to riding the "deuce."

4:48 PM  
Blogger grrouchie said...

I rented a car once in Vegas, because mine got impounded because I accidentally let my tags expire and someone noticed like 18 months after moving here.

I recommend against my method :)

5:41 PM  
Blogger cokeboy99 said...

I might be up for a trip to Joliet or Hammond the week after Easter if you'll be around. It would be a weekday/night however, as I'll be on vacation and only available that Tuesday-Thursday after getting back from a short trip to Wisconsin. April 2-4, let me know if any of those days would be possible.

6:14 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

I rented a car this past trip -- the third time in my last four visits, I believe. I enjoy Las Vegas much more when I am able to explore.

I think you rent it so you can hit the In-and-out Burger place!

7:09 PM  
Blogger nailedontheriver said...

I am thinking that I might need to ditch my current "home game," which is starting to have some issues,

scandal please!

7:21 PM  
Blogger The Neophyte said...

You definitely should go the video blackjack route. Make sure you keep upping your bets if you're losing too. Renting a car is the way to go. We will be doing it this summer when we return to the happy (poker) hunting grounds.

8:04 PM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

Since car rental seems to be a popular theme from this post, let me recommend E-Z Rent-A-Car in Las Vegas. It is one of the several companies the operate out of the car rental facility. You just take a shuttle from the airport and get there in less than ten minutes. If you sign up on the company's website you can get discounts. This past trip I had my a compact car for four complete days and nights and paid less than $70 total. The actual rental rate per day was less than $7, but of course, there are the many taxes you pay when you rent cars.

I rented from this same agency last Nov/Dec and had a nice upgrade since they were short on compact cars.

8:18 PM  
Blogger sevencard2003 said...

the real reason he rented the car was so we could go to casinos together, otherwise i never leave samstown because i dont want to waste hours riding multiple buses to go to casinos id rather play at when i get fed up with $2-6 and want to get even in NL.

12:45 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

Instead of renting a car, try renting a Video Blackjack machine. Just sayin'

12:50 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...


Is there a way to view older posts of your's? I did't catch the one you did about your recent visit to Vegas and your interactions with Tony.



p.s. - I'd love to hang a bit next time you're in Vegas. You seem like a good bloke.

2:07 AM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

@ s.i.: The last Las Vegas trips post: If you are looking at the blog itself, there is a link to previous months posts on the right-hand side.

I was in Las Vegas at the end of November/beginning of December and wrote a four-part trip report. The post that focused on Tony is at

We met very briefly this summer at the TBC tournament at Riviera, I believe. That was not one of my finest days. lol Nut yeah -- maybe we can connect up next trip, which will probably be June/July.

8:07 AM  
Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

Rob scores with the comment of the month . . .

P.S. Don't let it bloat your ego . . . it's only the 12th . . .

8:07 AM  
Blogger Pete P. Peters said...

s.i., Lightning was the guy double fisting bourbon, with tears in his eyes, trying to hit up TBC for a loan . . .

8:09 AM  
Blogger lightning36 said...

Naw -- I was the guy who just took nasty beats at Bally's and Flamingo and who still had steam coming off his head at Riviera. Of course, pretending to hock a loogie in Very Josie's drink while she was away helped calm me down a tad ...

9:33 AM  
Blogger ManInBlack said...

Sams Town's room are nice also. And pretty cheap

5:45 PM  
Blogger PokahDave said...

I told you Baccarat or mini baccarat...easiest game in the land....

1:10 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I don’t mind the usual banter when on the tables, but when someone’s just trash talking to try to intimidate other players, that’s just not right. And yes, being a nice guy does help sometimes. At least you’ll be seen as the lucky bastard of the night or the graceful loser, rather than “that jerk who was next to me”.

Never really rented a car when I go there, because most of the time we just drive to Vegas. But when we are feeling lazy or have a short timeframe to play around, we do fly and just take a gamble on the taxis. Might try renting next time, sounds more convenient.

Georgiana Jarvis

3:47 PM  
Blogger Tony Bigcharles said...

hey lightning, are u ever gonna do anything about this nonstop spam? its annoying as fuck when someone subscribes to the comments, and i need to figure out what to do about my sons birthday june 4, mom suggested i send $20 now in a card.

8:39 AM  

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