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Monday, August 26, 2019

Salsa Matter Por You?

The WAX bus leaves downtown just outside Binions, so naturally I stopped to play a twenty in my lucky machine from the other day, which naturally was occupied. So I naturally played some other machine and naturally lost.

The day was stinking hot just like every other day this late August, the unbearable sun lighting everything up to just under combustion point. You expect the whole place to erupt into flame at any moment.

The bus ride was uneventful, and dumped me inauspiciously outside the Tropicana, from where it's a pretty easy walk to Luxor. Just pop into Excalibur across the street, and from there it's all indoors.

MGM Resorts sent various communications to my piPhone 3.14 saying this and that about mobile check-in blah blah blah all of which was a complete fail the time before, and almost got me into a fight with three irate black women, something about me cutting the huge check-in line (which was true, but I was told to) and was not a good start to the trip and something that was kind of embarrassing to talk about.

But this time... it was perfect. In the lobby, I checked my phone out and it had given me a room number and an option to get a virtual key - whereupon it did its spinny icon thing, which went on for long enough that I was sure it would fail and I would have to potentially fight three irate black women to get checked in.

After grinding for some time, a Happy Message popped up and apparently, my phone was now my key. All done without having to talk to or otherwise engage in fisticuffs with anyone.

Up I went to annoint the suite and check it out - everything was fine and dandy. It's the reverse floor plan from the previous one, which will no doubt fuck me up in the middle of the night, but whatever. I promptly bade it farewell and set about my next chore.

Try and re-theme Exqalibur, Linq bitches. Just TRY. HA!
This is one of those travel annoyances from my previous stay that, in the manner of Notfromconcentrate, I will not let go because It Just Ain't Right. I'll summarize in bullet form:

  • promised $100 Moon Dollars resort credit
  • studiously retained receipts and confirmed the use of some $85 worth
  • ate breakfast on the last morning billed at $17, $15 of which should have been covered by resort credit
  • $17 billed to my credit card, making me as irate as three large black women who have been cut in front of in the interminable check-in line at midnight
  • phoned the appropriate number, on hold for 15 minutes, admonished every minute to email arsupport@mgmresorts.com
  • gave up on being on hold (because vacation) and emailed said address
  • automated response said 2 business day response time
  • no further response
  • at Luxor check with concierge - cannot help
  • at Luxor check with check-in boothing - cannot help but provided printout
  • at Luxor MLife (is it still called that?) booth, skip the line because Gold, whilst scanning for irate underlings on my case
  • boothling makes two phone calls and sets it straight. I'll be issued a $15 refund
  • we'll just see about that, won't we.
Hopefully this fight for my $15 is done and dusted.

This would have been a pic of some Mariachi-pants musicians playing. Except they stopped.
I also got my $75 freeplay loaded onto my card, so guess what I did next?

Yep, played $75 worth of video keno and got no hits.

Then I played $20 in old-school Buffalo, winning $20 and blowing it back at $1.20 a spin, trying to win some decent money.

Then move losing video keno. I was now sitting at -$380 for the day. Part of my plan was to get to a Caesars property and get my Diamond card, and visit Cosmo. But with the heat, I scratched that idea and instead ate lunch at Diablo's Cantina.

It was 'okay' and the service was 'not okay'. The guy took my order, barely speaking to me, and I didn't see him again until he was shoving a check at me. Actually, I did see him again, visiting other tables with his back to me. Never asked me if I needed anything, or checked how the food was.




Al pastor. Shouldn't have.
I don't know why I bothered tipping this doofus but he got exactly 15% because I don't want to have a confrontation and get shot or have to fight three... etc.

Time to head back downtown. Barring missing WAX buses and street-side arrests going on, I'd catch the bus in 40 minutes or so. At Excalibur, I made a quick pit-stop to visit the bank of Lucky Keno Machines.

I like the atmosphere in Excalibur better than Luxor. Particularly the music, which doesn't sound like the thump thump twerky-grind hump hump music coming from the strip club next door music they play in the Egyptian Pyramid, for some reason.

I set up a simple video keno card - straight 5-spot, 75 cents a pull. $20 in. Hit a 4 for a few coins, but no 5 and went out.

Now I'm $400 in the hole and I know I'm not going past $500 today. I'm just not.

But I shoved a hundred in there, going all in. I'd either win, or I wouldn't. I felt just generally pissed off and disappointed and sick of the heat.

I changed up the numbers and thought I'd just bet 50 cents, for more spins. Then I pumped it up to 75 cents. Then I thought, well, what the fuck, if it's going to hit, make it worth it, and pumped it up to the max for one card, $1.

As I spun and watched the last of my days bankroll disappearing, I tried to imagine what I would do when all 5 numbers came in and my day was rescued. I couldn't. I thought I might just sit there, emotionless other than relief.

With less than half of my final hundy to go, I found out. I shouted the word 'yes' a number of times, quite emphatically, and physically pounded the rubbery armrest at the front of the machine.

Holy shit in a castle, I'd done it again. And this time, for the biggest win of the trip thus far, over $700.





Just like that, I was up on the day and a huge weight was lifted. One observation - the winning is that much sweeter after losing for a couple of days. Perhaps you need one to appreciate the other. One wouldn't want to win all the time, would one?

Don't be a dumbass, Flushiepants, of course one would.

I shlepped to the bus stop for the appointed time, roasting like a pair of Planter's nuts in a sack. My God it was hot. 

The phone app showed the WAX arriving in 12 minutes, which was odd, since I thought I was bang on time. I went into NY NY to stay cool.

A couple of minutes before the arrival time, I went back to the stop, only to witness an arrest.


The phone app dealy showed the WAX approaching, and then at the stop - except it was a different bus. The 201 or some shit. It left and then the app said the next bus was like an hour off.

We prospective bus riders wondered if the bus had had the wrong signage on it, or if the WAX just wasn't coming.

I gave it a few more minutes and then bailed. I hailed a Lyft from inside NY NY,, and opted for a Self Driving Lyft.

No photos allowed, but it was a very cool experience. There was a safety driver behind the wheel, and an expert in the other front seat. We had a spirited discussion about all the things I wanted to tell somebody about myself, and about Jimmy Poon and his technological interests and general boolean wizardry.

There are preset routes programmed in, so we had to suffer going up the strip. The whole thing took quite a bit longer than the bus would have, but it I didn't mind. The whole experiences was very interesting indeed.

I had them dump me at the Plaza (easy to get to, and has winning Buffalo machines). I tried $40 on Buffalo but didn't take anything out. I didn't mind much.


Circa is coming along.

The new video screen on the canopy is finally what it should be. Blue with green.
Break time in the room, feet up, and a cold celebration drink. And pondering what the evening would bring.

Playing it safe, I stashed most of my winnings, taking just $140 down with me to the California casino. First stop, you guessed it. Video keno along side a really sweet Island Senior Girlfriend who had to be 85, and played just 4 numbers at a time.

We had a nice chat and I almost felt bad when by what-the-hell-sheer-luck-yet-again I hit five out of five on some numbers I didn't even choose. They were set up when I loaded the game, and they looked good to me, so I kept them.

Another $200!


I played a couple of machines here and there, including Flashy.


A comment on an earlier post asked 'Do you never play craps?' and by God they were right. Why wasn't I shooting craps???

For some reason, I've gotten out of touch with the game. Maybe I'm just too addicted to machines - it kind of seemed dull to me, now.

Well, I went and bought in for $100 and re-learned why this game is so much fun and can be as exciting as anything you can do in a casino, short of pissing in an open Goldfish machine.

(I don't know where these things come from, I'm just a typist, ok?)

The session lasted an hour and a quarter, and was great fun. The first three points were 4, 10, and 4 and two out of three passed.

I had a pretty good roll, making three points or so, and hitting lots of numbers.

For a lot of it I was up $50 or so, but lost my way down to $50 left when the woman next to me took the dice.

Man could she shoot! She had a very deliberate 3V dice set and a nice toss. She hit number after number and made a bunch of points.

By the time she sevened, I was across all the numbers and on the hardways (which never came).

I colored after that, because I knew nobody was going to top her roll.

I had $175 and had $47 on the table that went when she went out. Another win!


I played a $20 or two at the bar to just settle down and have another drink, and then headed to get some dinner as it was getting late.


On the way to the coffee shop, I remembered Speedy, one of my new machines. Speedy plays fast. There's no way to change the setting, either.

I went for Double Double Bonus and hit four threes, Jon Hansen style.



After the quad, I bumped to 50 cents and went for it. I got close, but Speedy wouldn't give up the goods, and I lost back the $100. I felt kind of dumb after, because the machine was in dump mode - but sometimes you have to go for it, and sometimes it works out. This time it didn't. Is there a right answer?

Yes, but only after you know what the outcome of your decisions is.


This time, for reals, I went to eat. I got the Eye Table, and had the Hawaiian Hamburger Steak. It was just what I wanted.




I ate, tipped, and left, and ten minutes later, I was asleep after one of the most interesting and exciting days this trip.




After being down $460, I finished up $420 (and it could have been $520 except degenerate). That's a turnaround of $880!

Right now, I'm down $540 for the trip, which is excellent, considering the amount of comps I've gotten.

This trip is a winner as far as I'm concerned.

As long as I don't fuck it up on the last day. Stay Tuned!



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