Friday, May 12, 2006

Vegas Observations 2006

I returned back from Vegas late Wednesday night, still in a bit of a fog. I heart Vegas (in doses) but the place is soo artificial, it leaves you feeling like it was all a dream, and not real.
More than anything else, this week brought back really strong memories of my last trip to Vegas, which was in January 2004 for CES. I wish I had a blog back then because those were 4 of the most interesting/challenging/yet rewarding days of my career. I was getting by on nothing but 2 hours of sleep and pure adrenaline. Completely stressed out but also having the time of my life. (I would send these daily observations back to my colleagues back at the office and I wish I would have kept the mails. But anyway, I digress...)

I could write a long entry here about my trip there this week (and I will write a separate entry on the National Hardware Show, my reason for being there in the first place), but essentially, my 41 hours in Vegas can be boiled down to these pithy observations:

  1. McCarran International Airport has to be the only US airport that smells like tobacco smoke. Seriously, the whole place smells like a cigarette.
  2. The look of Treasure Island BEFORE the recent re-branding/million-dollar marketing campaign as a hip, happening Vegas hotel: gussied-up whore house.
  3. The look of Treasure Island AFTER the recent re-branding/million-dollar marketing campaign as a hip, happening Vegas hotel: gussied-up bordello.
  4. A gallon of gas may be $3.50 in some places, but in Vegas you can still get a prime-rib steak* for $7.
  5. No longer confined to street corners and 1-800 numbers, prostitutes are now apparently allowed to wander the lobbies, casinos and clubs of reputable hotels. [Or maybe they always have been, and I just finally got propositioned in one.]
  6. It gets harder and harder to tell the difference these days between prostitutes and, say, middle-aged women from Tucson here to celebrate their friend's 40th birthday "Vegas style."
  7. Cab drivers here are friendly and polite. They sometimes get out of the cab to open the car door for you. After accidentally running into and slightly over a concrete median (he was lost in the rapture of singing along to Elton John's "Philadelphia Freedom" - no joke), my cab driver put his hand on my shoulder to make sure I was OK.
  8. Has anyone in the real world (outside of Las Vegas) heard of this Danny Gans character? Why is there a 100-ft image of him on the Strip?

I've got a few photos from my trip which I wil post here and on Flickr this weekend.

* because you couldn't get me to eat a $7 prime-rib steak, even if my life depended on it, I cannot vouch for the quality of such steak.


CHW said...

Classic material. I was just down there for two analyst conventions -- totally laughed at the Danny Gans comment. I thought the same thing!

darci said...

Lol, what a great post. Better than my morning coffee as a pick me up. I especially love #6 and the reality that the the $7 steak is a bit scary. If there were herds and herds of cows around Vegas maybe, but umm last time I checked this wasn't cow country.