I'm back from Vegas. I'm poorer than I was at this time last week, of course, but I don't mind. Both times I have gone to Vegas, I have expected to lose. That seems to make it easier to accept.
The only other time I was there was last August, and that was a quick 48 hour visit. This was a little longer visit and it gave me the chance to see more than I did last time. I learned more about Vegas during this trip, certainly. And I found that for every good thing about Vegas, there's something bad.
For example, there's gambling. I brought a few hundred bucks with me for the express purpose of testing my luck, and mostly on the video poker machines. Every time I sat down at a machine, I did very well, for the first half hour or so, but instead of walking away with a little more than I began with, I decided to keep playing, and walk away with a lot more than I began with. Of course, I wound up losing everything. We're not talking more than fifty dollars or so, but still, in hindsight, if I had quit every time I was up on a machine, I probably would have won three hundred dollars or so. The economist in me realizes that I lost a lot more than what I went out there with.
I did a majority of my gambling in the Mirage, where we were staying. The only table game I usually play is blackjack, but this casino has the oldest dealers I have ever seen. I think the youngest dealer I saw there was 80. With a full table (six players) and four decks, how long do you think it should take to go through a shuffle? I got up and walked away from a table after half an hour and the dealer had yet to make it halfway through. The Mirage ought to have a big replica of a snail on the outside of their building.
Of course, if I hadn't lost my shirt in the process of that half hour, I probably wouldn't care about the speed of the dealer. Alas, it was a very slow striptease.