By Mark Bell | June 22, 2006

This was originally supposed to be posted on Friday, June 16th. Due to internet issues, it did not make its way to the site… UNTIL NOW!!!!

It’s amazing how maddening lack of internet access can be when you work for a website. All I want to do is update the podcast, post a review, SOMETHING but… no, I sit in the corner of the HQ, listening to Fiona Apple on the loudspeaker while the TV plays “Viva Las Vegas” for the 50th time (Ann-Margeret is officially the hottest woman on the face of the Earth… of maybe it’s Elvis… I JUST DON’T KNOW!!!). 

No tales of debauchery for me to tell this entry. I didn’t do anything last night but go back to the hotel room and get a good night’s rest. There was a party, but I did not partake in the festivities. Have I finally hit the wall? Is my festival strength sapped? No, not really. See, I know tonight is going to rock, I know tomorrow night is the grand finale and I want to be prepared for whatever madness is about to assault us. Start strong, stay strong, finish strong.

Gore is finally among us with the G4 crew in tow, getting interviews and various b-roll. Hopefully we’ll get some good pics or video of that special brand of nonsense that is Gore at a festival party. Sure, I dance on bar-tops and sure, Michael killed a carny in front of the “Show in the Sky” crowd at the Rio, but Gore… he’s insane… 

Speaking of that “Show in the Sky” crap, part of their “charm” is that they throw beads from these platforms that hover above the casino floor. Unlike Mardi Gras, you do not have to show your tits to get beads (which is nice, because sometimes I get shy). Anyway, folks go nuts for this… but not me. I don’t want beads. I don’t want beads so I don’t look up and give them the “throw me a bead” look, nor do I stop walking. I get through the casino as fast as possible. But they still throw beads at me. Take this tale from a couple days ago:

I’m walking along and suddenly I hear beads hit the floor right behind me. I spin around and no one’s there… so I keep walking. And then I see beads hit the ground in front of me. No one in front of me is clamoring for beads. A few steps more and the beads hit again… and I realize the danger I’m in. They are targeting me. I am a game to them, like shooting the dancing bear. So I begin walking all over the place, dodging between the slot machines as the bead-bombs continue to fall, each one maliciously determined to hit me in the head. I know if I can get to the escalator and the second floor, I should be safe… but there’s a ton of open space between me and escalator, and the moving platform is right above my path. This could be the end, and I begin to run the headlines through my head: 

“Journalist Brained By Beads”

“Death by Severe Beading” 

“Game of Hit the Big Guy Goes Awry”

“Holy S**t, That Guy’s Dead… only at the Rio’s Show in the Sky!”

But I’m not one to stand there and do nothing. No, I’ve got one shot, like Eminem rapped about, and I have to make my move. So I drop the ball-cap low, flex the shoulder muscles and stride across the room. And the beads fall. And they miss. And I’m on the escalator.

I get to the second floor and relax. No more bead-death from above. Life is good… until a string of beads go whizzing by my head. I look up and the clown with the handful of beads is now baseball throwing the beads at me. Luckily I manage to dodge behind the pillar at Weinershnitzel as another beadery whizzes by and then I round the corner, out of range. Visibly shaken, sweating more than usual, I make my way to my car… only to notice that the driver’s side is unlocked. 

I locked my car, this is not correct. I open the door and all over the passenger seat are the contents of my glove compartment. I begin rifling through everything, making sure my registration is still there, which it is. Looking around the car, the iPod adapter is still there, as is the loose change. So what did they steal? Seeing everything where it should be, I realize the only thing of value in my entire car is the pair of dress shoes in the trunk. So I open the trunk and… they stole my dress shoes. Someone broke into my car and stole my dress shoes.

Who does that sort of thing? Various theories exist, one being that the strict dress club at certain Vegas clubs causes folks who do no have the proper attire to steal said attire as soon as they are able. Being the extremely handsome, well-dressed individual that I am (did I mention my modestly tight a*s?), I was a perfect target. I was the type of guy dress shoe thieves look out for. Now that I know this, I intend to dress less awesome. I mean, still awesome but not well-dressed awesome. More like “hella-awesome-f**k-stud-cool.” 

This blog is going on forever, so I want to recount my meeting with Penn from Penn and Teller to end this on the proper note. 

On the way to the Shark Reef, as I wound my way through Mandalay Bay (horses eat hay, while they say neigh, it’s a beautiful day, splash), I was jostled by a very disturbing sound. It sounded like the last moan of a dying man. My face scrunched up in disturbed disgust, just in time to see Penn rounding the corner. He saw my scrunched face, so to explain I mentioned that I thought the music was a real person singing in the casino, instead of a song playing on the speakers. His response? “Yeah, Sinatra.”

Make of that what you will, but my first reaction was embarassment…   

SHAKIRA SHAKIRA! (*Shakira warbles in response*)

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  1. Mark Bell says:

    I am practicing my Elvis “walking-in-place” dance right now, and I hope to move into epileptic shakes like Ann-Margret in a minute…

  2. That Shakira song makes me want to slit my wrists. Now I have it stuck in my head. Damn you Bell.

    If we were still living in that press office, I’d throw a salmon-covered bagel your way.

    …then I’d look to the TV screen and watch Viva Las Vegas for the 80th time, followed by another helping of Showgirls.

  3. Very funny entry. Sounds like fun.

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