December 26, 2006

December 26th: Hitting the Vegas Strip

It's hard to believe that just after 5 tonight, it's already dark here in Las Vegas. That's not to say the strip itself is dark. All the neon signs are still up, so much so that you can't see stars in the night sky - made doubly difficult by the arrival of an overcast layer of clouds that settled in this morning. Yet, although dusk has fallen early, there's still much more to do tonight in a city that never sleeps.

After catching "Menopause" last night and teaching Kristine's family the card game "Diminishing Bridge", we set off this morning to hit The Strip and see Las Vegas proper. We stopped off at the sportsbook, where I learned just how simple it would be to put my hard-earned cash to work to make a mega-bet on the Oakland A's winning the 2007 World Series, or a simple one that would take the side of Cal beating Texas A&M in the Holiday Bowl this Thursday. Now that I've seen how easy it is, I better stay out of that place, or I'll be betting my heart over my head, and that's never good in Vegas.

After hitting Harrah's, we walked up the strip, going to The Mirage, ostensibly to see if the Cirque de Soleil piece "Love", featuring Beatles tunes, was having a matinee. No such luck. Only comedian Danny Gains was playing, tonight at 8. So, we walked on, and I took Kristine to the Venetian, where amusingly to me, I half expected to bump into colleagues, and didn't. After a fair share of trade shows in the Venetian the last two years, it was equally as tempting to show her the convention floors and say "that's where our booth was!" as it was to even less productively plunk down in front of the quarter slots.

Leaving the Venetian, we went on to The Wynn, the newest Vegas resort hotel, which rises magnificently above the skyline. I'll have to make sure to stay there at some point. It's a great addition to the area. We had a late lunch, looked around, and then headed back. Now, we're a few hours away from catching one of Vegas's most storied franchises, Penn & Teller, which plays at 9. Should be a lot of fun.

Somehow, I managed to smack the Internet around enough this morning to get enough pages to load consecutively to buy tickets And now, I've taken Kristine's iBook into a far corner of the condo, where we've been lucky enough to maintain two bars of access for the better part of an hour. Of course, my Powerbook is sitting, dumbly, in awe of the iBook's power, and does nothing. Stupid Internet.