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Sunday, May 8, 2022

Press the Little Button for Panic Mode

Day 8 and I can hardly believe I've been here a week. It seems like a day and it seems like a month. And only down $550.

If I have just a bit of luck, I can think about breaking even this trip. I suppose I can also think about going in the dumper.

With no income anymore, as a retired grommetsmith, my perspective on bankroll has changed. If I have a bad trip, there's no working to generate income to replenish it, although the local Boxmart does need senior greeters.

I've been playing almost exclusively quarters on video poker, and minimums or next to minimums on slots. Think like a maximum of 30 hands at anything higher. I'm coasting more, I'm playing less.

It's a lot more relaxed, but that's because I've had a royal, some strong keno wins, and a good slot win to keep me going.

My rough sort of budget for each day is around $300 but obviously that's a line to be crossed on some occasions.

So far, though, generally it's been enough.

For day 8, accordingly, I took a gambling stake of $400.

But first things first - Little Giant coffee in the room, and about two and a half hours updating the blog. Then anti-social media. Then explaining to the Quad Queen.

Funkhouser has no such restrictions on his bankroll right now, as he is flush as the result of a buyout of his chain of dodgy convenience store franchises in questionable locations. The scratcher lottery ticket in those businesses made them very lucrative indeed.

The guy's got it made, and his gambling prowess has resulted in a very deep pool of resort credit, enough to feed both of us in very fine style indeed.

Occasionally, I pay for the tip, but usually I just make certain that I only have hundred dollar bills on me when the bill comes out, so I can shirk even that much responsibility for the meal.

And just like the generous guy he is, I got a text right on time that we should meet for breakfast at the House of Blues. They have a 'very reasonable' $17 breakfast.

Besides having the world's most uncomfortable wooden chairs, the HOB does put on a good breakfast. The sausages were particularly tubular!

"Hey Funk, it's Derby day, eh?" I said, speaking my best Canadian, given that Dan Aykroyd owns the HOB.

"Yeah, I'm gonna hole up and watch races and drink Juleps," Funkhouser replied.

"You've been around barns and stuff right? Ever hear this one? 'She was only the farmer's daughter, and all the horse manure'?" I said, guffawing and slapping my knee with glee.

Funkhouser had ordered his eggs sunny side up and spent some time chasing yolk on the plate.

"Beauty one, eh?" I said.

I think he really wanted to laugh at that one and was just holding it back. Because I'm pretty funny. Pretty goddamn funny.

He called for the bill, and when it arrived in it's special little bill wallet, I fished around in mine, unsuccessfully.

"I'd put in for the tip, but I only have hundreds. Sorry. I'll get you next time."

We chatted some more on the casino floor and Funk played a few bits of this and that. He wanted to go mid-strip, and I planned to go out in the car somewhere, so we split up to reconvene at a later time.

A fist bump and exchanged 'good luck's and off we went. Me straight to my 'lucky' Buffalo machine.

It was so lucky that I played $100 through before getting a bonus. I won some amount not worth taking a photo of. There were two similar bonuses, and finally a good one just in the nick of time to get me back in it.

In the end, I dumped through $100. That'll learn me for doing more than the bare minimum per spin.

Parking - I can't believe that I have to pay for parking as a hotel guest. It's really obscene. $15 for the day. This is not Vegas. Or maybe it is, now.

On the website, they indicated I could scan my room key and get parking charged to my room. I have a history of dramatic incidents around trying to get out of MGM parking garages and this was no different.

The little kiosk where you pay baffled me. How... my room key? Scan?...

Last resort - The Little Button that connects with the Parking Wizard behind the curtain. It rang about four times.

A disemboweled voice from the beyond crackled at me and explained to just go to the gate and they'd sort it there.

So, I retrieved the car (deftly remembering which floor it was on, and where on that floor it was located) and proceeded to the Gate of Hell.

I put the ticket in. I took the ticket out. I put the ticket in and I shook it. All about.

I futzed with my room key, waving it at anything that looked remotely like a sensor.

Complete failure, as I furtively checked the rear view to see how many cars were held up behind me.

Time to press... The Little Button. I would throw myself on the Parking Wizards' mercy.

It rang about four times. And then four more times. And then a bunch more times, as I sat, tense, sweat pouring down my face.

It went on and on and on, ringing, ringing, ringing.

And then, the blessings of the Wizards were bestowed upon me. The gate opened and I was free and on my way, and I suspect I may have dodged the $15 fee!

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