What Happens in Vegas Remains Lodged in Your Colon Like Expired Pork
Las Vegas must be the most successful marketing campaign in the history of mankind. Along with diamonds and the Kardashians, Las Vegas represents the most inflated value for an impoverished property since the Denver Broncos’ purchase of Peyton Manning. But while diamonds and the Kardashians are at least inherently beautiful (less one Khloe Kardashian), if not inherently valuable, Las Vegas is instead the ugly and displeasurable destination of last resort for parole violators, desperate strippers, and aging magicians—all of whom share a common appreciation for the compensatory opulence of a city built on big dreams, bigger disappointments, and only the most meager of double-digit IQs.
To think that an arid, nearly inaccessible desert menagerie of Mafiosi, the worst kind of Eurotrash, and the self-obsessed twenty-something narcissists spawned by the most self-obsessed narcissist baby-boomers should have come to epitomize awe-inspiring beauty, lavish entertainment, and the very best of hypersexualized fantasies can only really represent the very saddest American naïvete or, at worst and far more likely, American stupidity.
Writing at present from a room in Las Vegas overlooking the pool of the Cosmopolitan, I’m confident that my presence here can only be a consequence of my naïveté. As a writer I am at no time allowed to concede even the slightest degree of ignorance, despite the fact that this is only the latest of several visits to this city. But for every other traveler who finds their way to the desperate, sex-trafficked-hooker laden Las Vegas strip, it must surely be a matter of an incomparable intellectual deficit. And it is this particular brand of Las Vegas ignorance that I intend to plumb with the remainder of this barbed probe into their heretofore untouched mental cavities.
Firstly there’s the testosterone-juiced generation of assholes who don’t know who Frank Sinatra and the rest of the Rat Pack were but, having seen The Hangover parts one and two, believe that their intoxicated rampages through the many glittering Las Vegas casinos and thundering nightclubs dressed only in the finest Ed Hardy and Affliction designer ware somehow makes them equally as charming as the aforementioned Las Vegas crooners. And having spent the better part of a community college career in the gym, these ardent Nickelback fans comport themselves with an unparalleled conviction in their status as indomitable manifestations of sexual virility deserving of only the most undivided of attentions from the endless parade of estrous cocktail waitresses slinking their way across the Las Vegas landscape.
It is no wonder, then, that these same women temper their life’s misfortunes with handfuls of Xanax and copious servings of Belvedere vodka in order to tolerate as best they can the simian hoots and fumbling gropings of their Reality TV-fed customers.
To be sure, Las Vegas is a paradise of sorts for every douchebag with fistfuls of money that could be better spent on occupational training or outstanding child support payments. But this trust fund income is instead wasted on three feet tall neon-colored plastic chalices that are filled with lukewarm bottom-tier beer and strapped about the sunburned necks of Las Vegas’ errant pride of rejects from the recent season of VH1’s Tool Academy. This noxious mixture of alcohol and plastic carcinogens fuels the meandering parades down the Las Vegas strip as these men high-five each other while leering at 15-year-old girls whose parents dress them in the latest Jersey Shore slut-wear ostensibly in preparation for a life of disappointing sexual encounters with men who use their GED diploma as a form of birth control, holding it before them like some sort of talisman against the blight of sexual reproduction as if to avoid the prospect of insemination through a denial by ignorance of basic reproductive biology.
And of course every 15-29 year-old girl not above a size six and caked in neon eye-shadow and the vestigial marks of an abusive stepfather provide an endless supply of potential sex partners for these, America’s newly minted cache of video store employees.
However for those of us with a different conception of paradise, one perhaps not so redolent of the sexual exploitation of minors governed by eastern European pimps, such cheap thrills are somewhat lacking in appeal. But fear not! For the more prudent thrillseekers yet eager to part with their money in such a way as to support the opulent histrionics of casino moguls’ self aggrandizing arrogance, there are the extravagant, coke-fueled theatrical assaults on the senses, reasonably priced per pair of tickets at about three-fifths the average tourist’s monthly paycheck. So for the same cost as a one month’s out-of-pocket dental plan, Las Vegas patrons with no discernable concern for oral hygiene can consider themselves a part of the nation’s vast and most ardent supporters of the arts, flocking to performances by today’s top comedian magicians, drag queens, and losing acts from the previous year’s un-aptly named America’s Got Talent.
And when bombastic entertainments, sprawling gambling floors, and legalized prostitution prove insufficient to satiate the ravenous needs of America’s bottom-feeding detritus, there are of course Las Vegas’s world famous feeding troughs, better known by their more charitable moniker as ‘buffets’. Here is where any good anthropologist might observe troops of overfed women who might better be cast as bloated gorgons in an updated version of The Odyssey and gangs of men vying for the role of Marlon Brando in an updated biopic of the late actor’s exorbitantly rotund later years greedily circulating about feeding stations in abject denial of the diabetes and slowly calcifying arteries visibly limiting their movements.
One need only follow the sounds of labored breathing carried along the labyrinthine casino halls from any of the seemingly countless buffets where one may patiently wait in line with dozens of other equally depressed diners who, surrounded by the Las Vegas aesthetic and its relentlessly oppressive climate, have likewise forfeited any and all vestiges of self-respect to be herded like autistic cattle into a dining room saturated with the lingering odors of partially digested seafood shot in intermittent explosions from deep inside the most cavernous oral and anal cavities of Las Vegas’s most corpulent food enthusiasts.
And though verboten in casino guidebooks and Las Vegas adverts, knowing patrons will arrive equipped with a hand-cloth from their hotel room prepared to wipe the seat of their chair before commencing their Las Vegas dining experience, as this will invariably be marred by a thin residue of the most fetid and sodium-rich sweat left smeared upon the vinyl through contact with the massive surface area of the previous diner’s unshaven thighs. And this is true even when seated at a table not previously occupied by Khloe Kardashian—it’s a feature endemic to the entire buffet-going population of Las Vegas, and travelers should beware.
Thus, dear reader, you are best advised to avoid the scourge of Las Vegas bedlam and instead plan a destination of more palatable qualities. I recommend someplace like Branson or even Detroit, where you can at least score some decent methamphetamine. Because in my experience Las Vegas methamphetamine is cut with too much Crisco.