After settling in to Vegas, I had a free day on Friday.
First, I hit the Neon Boneyard in downtown. It was cool to see all the old signs that once made up the Vegas skyline. They're grouped in two lots along Las Vegas Boulevard, their faded bling representing fenced-in memories.
Then it was time to get out of town.
I drove up to Red Rock Casino to get more of the local gambling flavor. To be sure, the players there weren't tourists, but that doesn't mean they were much better at poker. The lineup looked like avatars from Party Poker: a gentleman in a black suit with a hat, two dudes wearing baseball caps, one guy bundled up in a jacket and knit hat.
The game was fun, with stupid arguments breaking out sporadically. The table got into it over whether the game should be 2/5 or 3/5 NL, which the floor had ruled could only be spread from Monday to Thursday. They weren't just discussing a difference of $1 though -- the 3/5 game had a $1,500 cap and a mandatory straddle.
Another point of contention was the college football bowl system. I want to see the top eight teams go at it in a playoff, but one guy wouldn't hear it. In his view, it had to be a 12-team playoff or nothing, with four teams getting a bye and the conference championships abolished. He erupted his point and then wouldn't hear any further debate. Right on, dude.
I fetched a rack when I was ugt+1, but I kept it on my lap so that everyone wouldn't know I was leaving after this round unless they had seen me return to the table with the rack. I picked up 22 utg and thought about simply folding it and getting out of there, but that didn't make sense. You play for the chance to make a big hand, and if you pass up too many opportunities you can't win.
Short story: I raised to $15, got a few callers, flopped a set, called the BB's bet on the flop, raised the turn when a flush draw appeared and snapcalled a shove. I think the board was 942J. The BB said he had a monster draw on the turn and didn't see the point of calling (rather than shoving) even though he knew I wouldn't fold. Love the logic. He was pissed off when he learned I was leaving, but I had the rack right there. I was leaving after that hand no matter what.
From there, I still had time to drive through Red Rock Canyon.
Tiny spots of rain and snow fell from the sky, a new sight for me in the normally dry Nevada landscape. It was definitely worth visiting Red Rock Canyon, and I'd like to return to hike on the trails. As it was, I stopped at a few lookouts and drove along winding roads before exiting onto a highway leading back toward the Strip.
Then I hit the Hard Rock Casino, which spread two tables of 1/2 NL and PLO mixed games for us bloggers. They even pitched in free food. Thanks Dan for setting it up! I had a good time.
From there, it was on for drinks at the MGM and the Imperial Palace, followed by the WPBT tourney on Saturday and additional hanging out Saturday night.
As I was drinking, I seemed to recall that some blogger had bought Patrick Swayze a drink at the IP Hooker Bar last year. Did that happen? I asked Iggy, who probably thought I was out of my mind. But I wasn't crazy. I had this memory somehow.
After fiddling with my phone's Web browser for a few minutes, I found that I had been remembering Derek's post about buying a drink for a guy at the end of the bar who looked like Swayze. As it turns out, that guy (who "looks more like Gilligan after a 3 hour tour") was Iggy himself. I had fallen for it. To be honest, I don't know how you can mistake a midget for either Gilligan or Swayze.
I'll end the trip report here, although not for lack of content. There are a few dozen more bloggers who I had good times with who I haven't mentioned in these recaps, and I want y'all to know you made it a lot of fun. Hope to see everyone next year!