Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Pedaling Your Ass Downtown







Day 12 - part 3


Back to the job at hand - as much coin in as possible on Bonus Poker at Starship Binion's Gambling Hall. After losing $20 at Mermaid's (Mermaids?) (Does it matter anymore?) I was up $100 on the day. This is significant for this trip.

I played $20 and hit a couple of interesting hands but drained away the profits. Still though, my point count was nearing where I needed to be to earn my third Mop 'n Flip 'Mother Load' swipe.



Video poker, why do you torment me? Not a Royal, not a straight flush...
The couple from before came back and sat down two machines away. They were having a blast, flying up and down on dollar Double Double.

I took a look sidewise, checking the hubby out and all of a sudden something clicked. It was that thing in my brain that makes a clicking sound when things fall into place. A little lightbulb appeared above my head as well.

That... that... I knew that guy.... that was.... a guy from the internets. I recognized him from his avatar on one of the Vegas boards I frequent. I took another look and sure enough, it was him - Timspeed.

Timspeed had held a get-together the day before that I had unfortunately not been able to attend, and he's been following the blog for years.

He'd just missed a draw and he and wifey were cussin' and laughing.

"Here," I said. "You need this."

He looked up at me, a little startled, and I gently tossed a version 2.0 Official Royal Flusher business card down on the machine in front of him. His eyes widened.

"You.... Holy shit!!!! Honey look!!!! Holy shit!!! Jesus Christ!!!!...."

Timspeed stood up and shook my hand.

"Not Jesus Christ, Timspeed. Flusher. Royal Flusher."

It was great to meet Timspeed (or can I call him Tim?) and his wife. We talked for a while about all kinds of things. I have been wanting to get Timspeed's views on a couple of things regarding machine settings and he filled me in on what he knew.

I think this trip was a record for one-on-one meeting fans-o-the-blog. And it's super fun when it happens as a surprise, out of the blue.

Timspeed and Co. cashed a couple of really nice tickets and went on their way. Meanwhile, drained my credits, but had earned enough for a swipe, so I took a little break and did that and won... not $50 cash, not promo chips... no, I won the stupid gift.

I went to collect the stupid gift, or anyway, to just see how stupid it was. Would it be a set of casino-used Cocktail Waitress Sheila Collector Swizzle Sticks? A joke 'measure yer penis' metric ruler?

No, it was a shirt. Actually, a pretty nice shirt, if you don't watch much Star Trek.

I'd done $2,400 coin in and was still up $80 on the day. It was going pretty well, really. Back at it!

As you can see, all I got was teased.

I played through the four twenties I was up and didn't hit anything else. Even on the day. I sat back to think about what I wanted to do.

So, I was even, I'd had a good run, and I could put more money in and go for more coin-in. I wanted to grab dinner downtown (I had more than enough comp dollars from my Binion's play to cover it) and I'd grab the Wax back down to Mandalay Bay after.

I played one more twenty and it just drained. It didn't feel right to keep chasing Binion's coin-in - my luck seemed to have turned.

Time for a change in venue. But I'd done well, and the final tally was $3000 coin-in on $60. That's 98% return without a Royal (worth 2%) on a 99.17% game. It would be interesting to see if my coin-in this trip turned on the free play offer taps again.

I headed over to the Fremont, witnessing probably the single worst way to spend your time in Las Vegas in the summer. Pedaling your ass all over town in 106 degree heat.
See the guy steering? See his shit-eating grin? That's because he's not pedaling.
The 4 Quee.
I went and checked the times for the WAX bus so that I could use my chronometer to hit things right to the minute. The plan was to play at Fremont, then grab dinner at Binion's rib joint, and then grab the Wax back south strip.

So what to play at Fremont? There was no question. I headed straight for the machines just off the lobby and good ole prime Pick'em aka Pick-a-pair Poker.

I had a few drinks from the gorgeous Cocktail бабенка or Sheila and first chance I got, I did some doubling up, sending pictures to the Quad Queen just to torment her.
Quad Queen! And I thought you were a real gambler! I played through a twenty, and another, and put in another.

Well, I'm happy to be able to say, with words that are written down here in this blog post, that I, Royal Flusher, did OK at the Fremont. Look!



The big one was the quad ducks - that's worth 600 credits, or for you non-Math non-Poindexters, $150 US dollars credit money, which I turned into voucher money, which I turned into cash money.
I cashed out $160 and the long and short of it was I was back up on the day, $80 worth! For what it's worth, I had three Royal attempts at Pick'em - they are pretty rare.

Next stop was Binion's rib joint, or more specifically, Benny's Smokin BBQ & Brews.
It's unfortunate that the joint isn't clearly marked.
The sign said please seat yourself. So I did. It was pretty quiet, with only three other tables in use.

The Server Sheila walked over (the full 15 feet from the end of the bar to my table, which was just behind the left door in the picture above, and I put my order in immediately.

I ran out to use the john, keeping a close eye on the clock, so that I could hit the WAX bus stop just before it arrived.

And when I made it back to the table, my meal was there.

So here's the thing. These guys obtained from somewhere a proper smoker, which they run in a greasy alley between what used to be the old Horseshoe and what used to be the old Mint. But you don't really need to think about that.

They could be producing absolutely amazing stuff out of that smoker. I've had the ribs a few times and they are okay, but honestly, the frozen ribs I thawed out and threw on my gas grill for 15 minutes were more deliciouser than Benny's smoked ribs.

Looks okay right? but they were tough tough tough on top, and not very warm. And just... so so. And I absolutely hate the plastic plates they use. Everything slides around when you try to cut a rib.

The sides were ho-hum. The corn a bit gluey and old. The slaw was acceptable. The beans... too sweet. It all looks like I might have pulled it off a steam table at a bad wedding reception. Which is probably what they did in back.

I was disappointed but I had to eat, so I did. The Server Sheila spent the entire time gabbing up a storm and watching the TV at the end of the bar.

Not once did she come back to the table to ask how everything was, to fill up my drink, whatever. I could have called her over but what was the point? I was being ignored and I knew it and I hate that.

I finished eating with about 6 minutes to spare before the bus. I got up and went to the end of the bar and she ran my card through so I could pay on points. Never asked how anything was.

I seriously thought about stiffing her, but I didn't. I went back to the table and put out about a dollar seventeen in change.

If you can't walk fifteen feet to a table to ask how everything is, you don't deserve 15%.

My tummy was full, I had avoided the guilt of completely stiffing the waitress, and I was on time for the bus with a nice margin to spare.

I'd grab it when it swung by and in 20 minutes or so, I'd get off at Tropicana and walk off those ribs to Mandalay Bay. I'd be in the casino 35 minutes from now.

Well, anyway, that's what I thought. What I guess you'll think is I'm so awful goddamn glad I'm not in your shoes, Bus Rider.

 Day 12, will it never end?! More to come!

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