Sunday, March 02, 2008

Writing About Las Vegas While Avoiding the Phrase "Vegas Baby"

After this sentence, I will attempt to keep the words "Vegas" and "baby" a minimum of four words apart...

So, I'm going to Vegas next weekend to meet up with a bunch of college friends, many of whom live in far-flung locations and whom I get to see rarely. It promises to be a lot of fun, and as if the reunion aspect weren't enough, I'm getting an excellent rate on a suite at the Venetian. So a good time will hopefully be had by all.

I always drive to Vegas. I hate everything about air travel, for starters, and would almost always prefer to just control my own itinerary by driving myself. Not having to subject myself to ritual humiliation at the hands of TSA employees (us Semitic bearded guys tend to get a bit of extra attention these days) is an added bonus. Also, it just seems silly to spend hundreds of dollars on a flight when it's only 4-5 hours away by car.

My only concern is this: several years ago, I drove back from Vegas on a Sunday night at it took forever. Granted, that was a holiday weekend (Thanksgiving), but still...I'd prefer to not have to inch through several hundred miles of desert for 8+ hours again if at all possible.

There is nothing in this world more frustrating and depressing than sitting in traffic in the middle of the desert. (It took us about an hour to get through Baker! Population: 12 if you include the Bun Boy!) It made me feel so predictable, like a robot. This massive expanse of land all around me, and I'm waiting in a workday-length line to follow the identical single path everyone else is following, towards our mutual destination. Plus, it's not like you can just pull off the road and wait it out, unless you'd enjoy the company of salamanders and meth labs for the evening. (I don't even want to know what's down Zzyzx Road).

So I'll either have to leave Vegas way way early on Sunday to beat the crowds (an unappealing option, as I'm only arriving late on Friday), or I'll have to wait until way way late on Sunday to avoid the crowds. I'll probably go for the latter and just show up late for work the next day, but then there's the question of how late I should wait? 8 p.m.? 10 p.m.? Midnight? It's just a shitty situation to be in, trying to outguess my fellow LA visitors to Vegas.

If only we could organize it somehow...Like, everyone who will be driving to Vegas this weekend signs up on a website and picks their three favored departure times, and then they get an e-mail telling them when they've been assigned to leave for LA to allow for maximum traffic dispersal. I guess it's unenforceable, but at least people would have some kind of clue. This way, I'll just end up falling asleep at the wheel before I can hit Barstow, or foregoing the return trip altogether in favor of a new life as a slot jockey. Anything's better than sitting in one of those Vegas-to-LA traffic jams.


BradleyB said...

Sup Lons, maybe you should write an article for Mahalo about a LA-Vegas Maglev train. I heard about the trip - it sounds totally sweet. I urge you to do no drinking, gambling, or women watching (naked or otherwise).

Nathan said...

Lonszors, plane tix are not "hundreds" of dollars. I would guess mabes 110, back in the day I could get 'em for 90 or so. Driving Dolo will cost you around $75 in gas.
C U in Wayyyyygussssssssss!