And For Vegas

Las Vegas is back at full strength


 

Well it’s been a while since I posted here at And For What, and for good reason, too many reasons, really.

We can start with the Screwers, now mired in last place in the NLComedy Central, proud owners of 2-11 record in the month of May, 1-5 on their current road killed trip, struggling tonight against the Mighty Pirates.

The Blewers roller coaster season continues, highlighted by the escapades of the Kingsford Bullpen, base running gaffes that would embarrass little leaguers, and untimely hitting night after night. When Carlos Gomez is the guy carrying your team, the result is a 16-22 record and last place behind the Cubbies. Wow, only 124 games to go.

Secondly we can attribute my lack of stabbing at this out dated keyboard to the fine Wisconsin “Spring” we’ve been having. The grass has finally begun to grow after ridiculous stretches of cold days and nights that extended the winter much longer than necessary and deprived my 28 year old mower a shot at another season of cutting grass. Old Red finally stumbled onto the turf two weeks ago, about six weeks later than last year, and has logged all of three mows in 2013. His record breaking status is under review by the Mowing Commission Of America, so no official word has been announced yet, but there may be cause for celebration soon, or if anything, a new mower before me, and my neighbors, go deaf.

(Oh-oh, the Pirates just jumped ahead, 3-1, imagine that).

Anyway, the real reason I haven’t been blah-gging is good ‘ol Las Vegas got in the way again. As per my usual tendency, trips to Las Vegas are becoming, shall we say, somewhat of a regular occurence since 1999. All told, I have logged some 37 trips to the desert since then, trouncing around The Strip and Fremont Street as a single man in the early stages of these adventures and as a married man since 2006. Luckily for me, Cyndi is a fan of Sin City, if for anything at all, certainly the restaurants more than anything else.

Thus we just returned from our second trip to Vegas for Vegas UnCork’d, a food and wine extravaganza sponsored by Bon Appetit, and hosted by properties like the MGM Grand, Bellagio, Caesars Palace and Mandalay Bay.

If you love food and booze and are hip to the idea that with one flat ticket price you can dine and quaff to your hearts delight in the company of celebrity chefs and people dressed way better than you, than Vegas UnCork’d will work.

It does for us, as it did last Thursday, by ushering us into the newly constructed Hakkasan nightclub, the world’s largest nightclub, mind you, nicely flexing its muscle at the entrance of the MGM and towering five floors escalating skyward. “Decadence” would be one way to describe the 88 million dollar joint, “five floors and a maze of fun” doesn’t do it justice, “amazing beyond belief” probably fits in there somewhere. After six or seven or eight Baby Guinness (don’t ask), four pounds of never before seen appetizers and go-go dancers shimmying in our faces, we finally had enough, slithering out somewhere in the wee hours of the new day, Friday.

That was Thursday night, we waited until Saturday to tee up ticketed event number 2, the Bellagio Block Party, hosted by none other than Todd English, he of culinary fame, and a mess of other fine chefs that lay claim to the names of restaurants like Prime, Yellowtail, Picasso’s and other elite dining monsters that will bring you to your knees when the check arrives.

You see, when you attend these events, you still get to sample as much food as you can possible stomach from all these high priced establishments, plus you’re treated to liquid refreshments from the likes of Patron, Stella Artois, Skyy Vodka and a host of exceptional vineyards.

The Bellagio Block Party, situated between the infamous Jockey Club and Bellagio, is discreetly tucked away from the ogling masses, and lasts from 8pm until 11pm, featuring some listenable noise from the local cover band king, Zowie Bowie, and this year it even threw in a full blown Top Chef style cooking competition to distract those in the crowd interested enough to put down their Patron popsicle and push themselves away from the Skyy Vodka Sno Cone station for a look see. Yes, by 11pm, most everyone in attendance was stumbling out back onto the Strip, where, of course, they fit right in.

Throw in 95 degree blue sky days at the pools during the day at Mandalay, a dinner at the new Nobu restaurant on Friday and another wallet depleter at the “casual” RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay, and you get the drift. We came, we ate, we survived.

(BTW, Pittsburgh 7, Blew Crew 1, top of the 8th)

Lest I forget, there was of course, the MLB, NHL and the NBA playoffs to wager on in the sports book and a few trips to the felt and video poker machines for good measure.

And yes, and for what, the mandatory trip to Fremont Street for Sigma Derby at the D, shrimp cocktails at Golden Gate, and the obligatory Elvis impersonator World Championship regional finals.

Needless to say, the Stones were in town too, so was Elton John, and, in case you were wondering, yes, the PBR Bull Riding championships, “Last Man Standing”. In fact, that catch phrase could easily have been the theme for our group. As it turned out, Cyndi and me, along with Michael and Mark from LA, we were indeed, the last ones standing when all was said and done. Or in Mark’s case, the first one sleeping Saturday night.

Ladies and gentleman, Vegas is back. Viva Las Vegas!

And For What

And For Vegas

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