November 15, 2007

Las Vegas, Day 1

I cannot think of a time when I've had more fun on someone else's birthday (observed).

Ms Scandwaiian invited me to go with her and Mr Finn, who had a trade show around the time of her birthday. I'd never been Las Vegas, I never go do girl stuff with a friend, this was deluxe.

I got to the LV airport a little before they did, hung out at baggage claim, pulled out my uke, and was joined by an older tweedy hippie man who offered me a pick. Victor had come to Las Vegas to visit his money. Knew Leadbelly and Woody Guthrie back in the day. I introduced him to my friends and we took off. I hope he won big.

We dropped Mr Finn off at his hotel, parked our bags at Treasure Island, consulted Ms S's annotated map of thrift stores and headed for the nearest antique mall. The first one was a bust, but payback was #2, a slice of resale heaven. There we found the foxy beer hat: slices of beer can stitched together with red yarn, accented with two home made pom poms. When I put it on, both the hat and I were transformed. I call it Holly Golightly meets the Lovin' Hands of Home. Almost immediately people were drawn to me...

I believe we found a Savers after that

and made our way to TI. We bought beer. We descended the escalator, which features a jumbo-tron sized video display of advertisements. It could not hold the gaze of fully half of the people on the escalator. It was as if they'd never seen a beer hat before. Smiles, points, frowns, punctuated by the occasional open fly-catching mouth. It was awesome. Never had ten dollars been spent so wisely. The pure entertainment value was beyond price.

At the taxi stand, a tipsy couple guffawed and initiated a conversation about the hat. The t-shirt guy at the Hawaiian mall loved it. The guys who shill for shows, ditto. Regular peeps. The lady at the ABC store. All a friend of the hat. As we left Las Vegas, the lady at the rental car return exclaimed "You are WEARING that hat!!" Yup.

We walked for miles, we ate dinner at Trader Vic's on their third day of business. We played Wheel of Fortune slot machines and made audio recordings of the sounds of Las Vegas. I stayed up later than I usually do.

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