Monthly Archives: August 2004

08.30.04 – Las Vegas, My Least Favorite Place On Earth

The tour we’re a part of on the west coast hasn’t been breaking any box office records. Lackluster ticket sales forced the Portland show to move to a smaller venue and the San Diego show to be cancelled outright. So when we arrived this morning in Vegas for a day off we were in an unfortunate state of fiscal awareness. Simply put: If we didn’t win big at the blackjack tables of the Hard Rock Casino today, we would have no choice but to raise t-shirt prices 700%.

Upon arriving, Pasty delivered the blow that we weren’t actually staying at the Hard Rock hotel, like we usually do, with its legendary lagoon-like pool, fake-tittied clientelle, and in-house Nobu restaurant (best sushi this side of the Sahara)…. no, we were staying at the motel across the street, which had “Air Conditioning,” “Color TV,” and “little tiny red ants all over the bathroom sink counter.”

I also discovered that it had a stream running alongside its parking lot. The Rio Las Vegas, if you will. If I’d brought my fly-fishing rod with me, I’d be out there right now, wading through the beer bottles and transvestite escort cards, basking in the 106 degree sun. But I didn’t bring my fly-fishing rod with me, and the Hard Rock Casino beckoned…

The Rio Las Vegas

Long story short, I got reamed at blackjack and Guster t-shirts are now seventy-five bucks apiece. Jenna Jameson was playing blackjack at the table two over from mine with her bodyguards. Every up-and-coming young author needs a pair of bodyguards. Jenna didn’t recognize me (or at least she *acted* that way) and took off for the aforementioned legendary lagoon-like pool with her thugs. I followed. But at the pool entrance there was a pool bouncer, checking to make sure that everyone entering the pool had a key to prove they were staying at the Hard Rock Hotel. My “O.A.R. Support” laminate didn’t help me at all. I went back and lost more money.

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08.06.04 – Support Our Troops

Aren’t these camera phones awesome? This is a photo of Mike, our new bus driver for the next three days. And this is what you get when you try to snap a casual shot of Mike with your camera-phone without Mike noticing.

Sure, in the past I’ve had no problem asking our bus drivers to strike a pose for a website photo, but Mike is different. I know Mike is different because I opened the drawer on the bus with his DVD collection in it, and it scared the shit out of me…

Aren’t these camera phones awesome? In case you couldn’t read all the titles, here they are:

Hamburger Hill, The Green Berets, Casualties of War, Behind Enemy Lines, Pearl Harbor, Band of Brothers, Windtalkers, Kelly’s Heroes, The Thin Red Line, Under Heavy Fire, and Tora! Tora! Tora!

All war movies. Every last one of them. It’s okay to like war movies, don’t get me wrong… but not one “Fried Green Tomatoes” or “Cocoon” in the bunch? Even Sarge liked a good chick flick now and then. I specifically remember him getting really into “Amelie” until I stopped reading the subtitles aloud for him.


And I know what you’re thinking — you’re thinking “at least Mike isn’t afraid to embrace his Jewish heritage,” what with the inclusion of “Tora! Tora! Tora!” among his war DVDs… but it’s not what you think. Tora is the Japanese word for tiger, and Tora! Tora! Tora! was used as a battle cry during the attack on Pearl Harbor. Torah with an H at the end is the Jewish holy book that we read from at our Bar Mitzvahs…

June 14th, 1986

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