Winter Vegas Recap

Yesterday marked the three week anniversary of when my brother, Glen, and I got on a 6am flight out of Spokane and flew to Las Vegas for a “Reser Brothers Vegas Getaway.” I wanted to write this post a short time after the actual trip but as I have chronicled in previous posts, things were just busy and I never got the chance to.  But with the three week “cool down” period so to speak after our Vegas trip, I think it has given me a better perspective of our three days there. Here is a recap of the trip.
We were in Las Vegas from the early afternoon of Thursday, December 15 through the early morning of Sunday, December 18. One thing to note about Vegas in mid December: It is their slow time of the year. The city has a totally different vibe than during the summer or really any other time of the year. The place definitely still has that Vegas attitude but things are just a little more relaxed. The streets are less crowded, more shows and clubs are dark, girls are covered up more, solicitation is not as intense, gambling limits are a little lower, and check in lines are shorter. So as you can plainly see, there are both good and bad things about going to LV during their slow season.
 All in all though, it was the perfect time for Glen and I to go. As I mentioned in my post the morning of our trip, our main reason for going was to just have a relaxing time of gambling, people watching, and sharing a few beers. I would like to say we pretty much stuck to that plan.
After going to bed at around 1:30am on Wednesday night (or more appropriately Thursday morning) I got up at 3:30am so I could get ready, do some last minute packing, and then be ready for our ride out to the airport. Glen’s friend (and my friend now too), Miss Caitlin, was kind enough to show up at our parents’ house at 4:30am and drive us out to Spokane International Airport. Everything went smoothly as we got on our initial plane that was going to take us to Salt Lake City. Glen had an aisle seat and I had a middle seat. My whole goal of the trip was just to get some sleep. However, as fate would have it, to my left at the window seat was a woman probably in her mid-fifties who talked my ear off the whole flight. Usually I am up for a little bit of “stranger airplane banter” if either it is past 10am or if my plane neighbor happens to be an attractive young female but both of these conditions were unmet.  After the lady asked me twenty questions about my occupation she preceded to bash social media for the whole flight  and talk about what she was going to buy her daughter for Christmas. Not the best couple of hours of my life.
After our layover in Utah we got on our plane to LV and all went well. When we landed in Vegas, my brother and I made the joint decision to take it easy for the first several hours we were in the city. We got on our shuttle and drove to our hotel, Harrah’s. With both of us clutching onto a cold Blue Moon, check in was a breeze. We got up to our room, threw our stuff down inside, and then hit the strip. Now, I said we made a choice to kind of go soft during the late afternoon/early evening part of that first day…that was thrown out probably the second we walked into Harrah’s. The Las Vegas attitude I mentioned above just kind of gets into you and it is hard to fight off. When we hit the strip we played at a variety of tables. We then went to O’Sheas, an Irish dumpy casino in the middle of the strip, where my brother and I played in a beer pong tournament. For $40 we got put in a bracket against other teams with the chance to win $300. Little did I know, but probably should have figured, the bracket was filled with locals who go to the tournament each Thursday to play the game they literally practice every single day. The first round, my brother and I were paired against one of these local teams. We got smoked. We were making cups, but we were not making every single cup. They beat us easily. Despite the loss, it was a lot of fun so we did the re-buy option for $20. Our next opponents were a couple of dudes from Chicago. In a close game we defeated them in overtime, it was pretty sweet. We then played another local team and they put us out of our misery.

                                            Checking in at Harrah’s and my first beer!

After the tournament we went to Caesar’s where we watched the Thursday Night NFL game between Jacksonville and Atlanta. We had a great time as we watched the game in its entirety.  After the game we went to Margaritaville and played at their tables which was actually a lot of fun. After eating at Nathan’s we hopped on a cab and we headed out to Downtown Vegas. The attractive thing about Downtown Vegas is that it is much less crowded than the strip and there are always tables open of all different kinds of games. It is also fun because the casinos and dealers are much more liberal and relaxed. On a side note, the whole atmosphere in downtown is a little quirkier than the strip, which makes it fun as well. This particular night though was not our night. We got our clocks cleaned at pretty much every table we sat down at. It was a good old fashioned annihilation. At around 2am, we took a cab back to the strip. One thing that I have learned in my old age is when to stop for the night…my brother has not. Once back at the strip we ended up at the Casino Royale where my brother preceded to lose more money on this gimmicky Black Jack Switch game. After watching him for a while I went elsewhere for a little bit. I made it back to the hotel by 5am while Glen came in at around 6:30am.

                                           I love downtown Vegas!

I was up at 8am that Friday doing some stuff for work. As it was the day Montana was playing in the FCS Semi-final game, I had stuff to do on our website and social media. At around10:30am Glen was up and ready to go for the day. After the beating we took the night before we knew we had to regroup a little bit and get ready to win some of that money back. Before playing again, we walked around the strip some and then ate at the buffet at Planet Hollywood. By the time we finished eating we were ready to try our luck again. We entered in a poker tournament at Bill’s Gambling Hall. Poker tournaments are so much fun because the action is slow, the players are usually dumb because they are all tourists without a clue on what they are doing, and the drinks come often. In this tournament there were around twenty-five people. It was a lot of fun playing in that atmosphere. I went out one person short of the final table but my brother was kicking ass. He made the final table and one by one more players started to go out. Once it was down to just three players, my brother included, the finalists made a decision that is common in tournament poker: They decided to chop the pot. What this meant was that all three people took a pretty much equal portion of the tournament cash pool. My brother even got a few extra bucks because he was the chip leader at the time of the chop.
Once the tournament was over we hustled over to Harrah’s where we watched the Montana vs. Sam Houston FCS Playoff game. We made pretty much the whole viewing area Griz fans as we yelled and cheered our hearts out the whole game. Unfortunately, Montana came up three points short, 31-28, after a spectacular comeback.
By this time we had been joined by a couple of Glen’s friends, Brandon and Madison, who he met in Walla Walla during his junior college baseball days who now happened to live in Las Vegas. After the game we went back downtown. That night we had a wonderful time. We got the inspiration to Tebow with pretty much everyone we saw. Let me tell you, asking a girl if she would Tebow with you is probably one of the best pick up lines a guy can pull out. For whatever reason, every person we asked not just did it with us, they enthusiastically did it with us. Since it was a Friday night, it was busier than usual downtown but it was cool because it was pretty much a circus freak show. The people and things we saw. Our luck was also much better at the tables as well. We quickly established friendships with the cowgirl dealers at the Fremont Casino where we spent most of our time. Glen and I ended up taking a taxi back to the strip as his friends had long since left by that time. We stuck together that night and ended up going back to the hotel at around 4am.

                              Glen and some randos Tebowing

Saturday started off with us once again walking around the strip to clear our heads and get some much needed fresh air. When we were feeling decent we went and ate lunch at a restaurant called Blondies.It was a sports themed place where the waitresses are dressed in cheerleading uniforms. We had a good time and afterwards we went back to Bill’s Gambling Hall where we once again entered another Texas Hold’em tournament. Now you might be asking what the chances were that Glen could repeat his success from the day before. Most gaming theorists would tell you not very good. But defy the odds he did as he made it to the final table once again and cruised to another top three finish where the participants decided to chop the pot. I once again busted out right before the final table was set.
 Once Glen had collected his winnings we went to Caesar’s where we watched the Dallas Cowboys vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers game. We had a good time watching the game and watching the people right in front of us who had much invested in the game. They treated every play like it was life or death. Once the game concluded we went to an open air Mexican restaurant perched on top of Planet Hollywood that overlooks the strip called Cabo Wabo. By this time we were starving and we went to town on our meals. Coincidently, we sat right next to two girls who had just graduated from Washington State. It did not take long for us to become friends as we chatted throughout the meal.

                                               Glen enjoying Cabo Wabo

That night we spent majority of our time on the south side of the strip where we had previously not explored too much. We walked through and people watched at the top tier hotels such as the Wynn, Venetian, and Encore. Taking class down a bit, we eventually found ourselves at the Riviera where we played Blackjack in one of the party pits. It was a pretty good time…you can’t really go wrong when you have gorgeous girls dancing around you and gorgeous girls dealing to you. Also, it sweetens the deal just a little bit when you win as well (which I did). That is how most of the night went until we made it back to our hotel in the early morning.

                                                Tebowing all trip long.

 Sunday we got up (or were we already up to begin with), packed our bags, and took our shuttle to the airport. Nothing sucks more than checking in and going through security at the Vegas airport…nothing. We managed and after another stop in Salt Lake City, we made it back to Spokane where my parents picked us up at the airport and brought us back home.
It was definitely a successful Vegas trip with my brother. We came away with some great stories and memories that we will share forever. Now it is time to look ahead and plan our next Vegas trip. It will only be my seventh time going. Don’t Blink.

                                                   Had a great Vegas trip!

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