I've always hated New Years Eve. The whole proceedings have such a sense of enforced fun that it feels like, in the words of Hunter Davies, what the whole world would do on a Saturday night if the Nazis had won the war. No wait, that was Hunter S. Thompson. Hunter Davies writes bollocks about Martin Chivers. I'd like to see Ralph Steadman illustrate that. Anyway, I might have a gamble later on or I might just leave everyone to it and get some sleep. In the meantime I'm here and, in the spirit of the fantastic "Is It Just Me Or Is Everything Shit" book I have just finished, I'm going to vent about everything that needs venting about.
It is a very funny book if you haven't read it, a totally inspired collection of rants. A sample joke about bling-heavy hip-hoppers : Once it took a nation of millions to hold them back, now it takes a nation of millions to hold their coats. Admit it, that's funny. While the authors do admit the irony of writing an essentially anti-capitalist book and hoping to trouser a lot from the sales, I have counter-bluffed them by borrowing it from the library which, even more ironically, is one of the things they say is shit. Levelled !
I have always thought that none of these new rap guys can hold a candle to Tone Loc anyway. He ruled. It is surely no coincidence that when Funky Cold Medina came on in the Venetian the other day, I picked up Aces on the very next hand. Any Vegas visitors are aware of the strange late 80s timewarp that all the casinos are stuck in with regard to the music they pipe in. And this has been the case ever since I came here for the first time in 2001. It's not like x years back, so that by now we should be catching up to Britpop, it's just stuck in 1988, presumably forever. When Magnus Pyke added special guest vocals to Thomas Dolby's "She Blinded Me With Science", who would have guessed that 20 years later it would be piped down the Las Vegas Strip on an hourly basis, accompanied by the flick flick flick of those skanky dudes with the stripper cards ?
One exception, however, is the Venetian which has taken to piping Phantom Of The Opera into its elevators on a continuous loop. Imagine being stuck between floors. I think I'd jump after 10 minutes. The Venetian's current Phantom production has, I am told, been improved by paring the show down to an hour and 35 minutes. Frankly anything by Andrew Lloyd Webber would be greatly improved by being pared down to a minute and 35 seconds. Musicals are all shit, except the Producers which is allowed because it's about musicals being shit. Levelled once again.
The Orleans break the mould every now and then, as suddenly you see that KT Tunstall is warbling away in the background, out of nowhere. On the downside they also play that fucking Snow Patrol song all the time. If I just lay here. Yeah, if you just lay there and SHUT UP, DAMMIT. Half way round the world and I still can't escape that dirge. It was even on the radio in the cab to the airport on Christmas morning. I don't know why they even bothered with Slade and Shakin Stevens, why not just stick on OK Computer for the kiddies to open their presents to.
I'm having a day off poker today, so I went up to the cinema in the Orleans to see what was on and it all looked so dire I had to settle for Casino Royale. However, I must admit that I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would. Of course the poker is all ridiculous hands but they did manage to fit in a sort of nip, a good slow-roll and an absolutely fantastic rubdown which I won't spoil just in case you haven't seen it. If that was Dr. Tom's work, the boy done good.
Especially when compared to poker's flagship publication, fucking CardPlayer. Does no one on that magazine have a single clue ? When they "sign up the world champion" and they first read the aimless babbling that he brings forth for them, does anyone involved think "Oh bugger. That was a bit of a waste of money" ? Or do they have no shame at all ? Still, they're trying to go upmarket too. Jim McManus' guest article is entitled "Jeanne d'Arc and La Hire to the Naked Singularity of Spades". Not too far up himself then. Go on, read that title again. It doesn't make any more sense the second time does it ? And yes, that's really it, because I just copied it out. My brain has such a low tolerance level for bullshit I knew there was no way I could remember that in the time it takes me to get to my laptop from the cardroom. I could have read the article to help me remember the title but, on the other hand, fuck off.
So at this point I was faced with a dilemma. I could write that down in the cardroom, but then someone might think I was copying out Bad Beat Stories From A Broke Author Who The Game Passed By Five Years Before Internet Poker Never Mind Now, er I mean Tom McEvoy's Tournament Trail. But surely it would be even more embarrassing to pick the thing up and walk through the casino with it ? Dilemma. In the end I hid it in a copy of Pervo Spank Monthly - Readers' Grannies Special. Phew.
Hmm, what now ? Maybe a bit of blackjack ? I am definitely becoming a real poker pro. A couple of days ago I tried to get out of it on the blackjack after losing $70 in a cash game. Then today I bet four NFL games at random and watched them in the sportsbook going "Yeah ! Touchdown ! " and "Boo-ya ! Tackle for loss on the 33-yard line ! That's Schmartenheimer's 14th in the regular season which places him equal 137th in the whole AFC" and so on. And I would have won if it wasn't for the so-called Titans. How can you call yourselves the Titans when you don't have a single 30-foot tall three-headed fire-breathing monster in your offensive line ? Damn them to hell. Maybe I can get out of it on the college basketball. Or the trotters. See you later ...