Two years is a long time.
Two years ago, no one knew who Jamie Gold was. The Detroit Tigers were 28 games over .500 while Tampa Bay was 12 games under. Oh, and they were still the Devil Rays. Andrea Bargnani was the #1 pick in the NBA draft. Yeah, I still haven't heard of him. The nation was preparing for a Hillary vs. Rudy presidential election.
And that's the last time I was in Vegas.
The good news is that until the terrorists win, or some Socialist takes over the White House, Vegas will be exactly the same every time I go. You can change the curtains all you want, but the grime is there forever.
Lucky in life, unlucky in flights.
I think that's probably the slogan I live by. My problems on planes have been long discussed. This time, my flight to connect in Charlotte was diverted to Greensboro because we were running out of fuel as we waited for a storm to clear. After an hour on the ground, we were finally headed back to Charlotte and eventually to Vegas. I lost at least a couple of hours of gambling time... maybe that's a good thing.
I stepped off the plane a tired man. It only took one breath of the energy-infused Vegas air to change that. Or maybe it was the sound of the Wheel of Fortune slot machine which triggered my brain to boost my adrenaline.
Coming down the escalator, I saw three massive billboards side-by-side: Bette Middler, Elton John and Cher. I was 12% more gay by the time I got to the bottom. I stopped and stared at the sign for Bite just to return to normal.
It's a blur, but isn't every visit it to Vegas? I was there for about 66 hours. I spent about 20 hours sleeping. But those are just numbers. Numbers like this:
The house edge on the first game I played in Vegas, Texas Hold 'Em Bonus: 2.037%
That's not so bad, especially since the bets go up during each hand which brings down the element of risk to just 0.5335%. Of course, we're degenerates. We needed action. That meant shelling out even more for the BONUS bet. The house edge on that bet is 8.5405%. That's a bad bet.
I lost money. Bad Blood cashed out ahead by more than $3000.
Odds my flopped two pair with K5 would double up against the jackass who called me with top pair: 83%
The 5 on the turn sealed it and the table ATM pushed nearly $700 my way. Before the end of the night, he would double up Bad Blood and he would get in a three-way all-in with Otis with the sickest river card I saw all trip. I'll let him tell you that story. In just 2 1/2 hours, the three of us took almost five grand off that table. Blind monkeys were crushing that game. G-Rob dropped $1500.
Number of times my set lost to a lower pair that became quads: 2
Telling bad beat stories is no fun. And no one wants to hear them anyway. Thankfully, the first time it happened it was a $4/$8 limit game and the second time was the $340 nightly tournament at the Rio while I was already short-stacked. Losing to quads in a NL game would be much more costly.
All trips to Vegas come to an end, and most of them at least a day after they should. Sin City has a way of getting your heart pumping at the beginning just so it can suck the life out of you by the end. These casinos don't just take your money, they trade on your soul. You rarely feel the same at the end as you did at the beginning.
And yet I can't wait to get back. I love it there... even when I'm hating it.