|Las Vegas Trip Report Part 1: So Far, So Good
||[Dec. 30th, 2014|02:19 pm]
In which the writer has an auspicious beginning of his trip to Las Vegas.|
We left for Las Vegas on a sunny Sunday morning. Flight was fine, though there was some terrifying turbulence over TX/NM. Luckily, we were right on the wing so I could see it bouncing alarmingly in the wind. In no small part to my intense concentration, the wing held together and we eventually smoothed out.
This time, we're staying at the Gold Nugget on the Gold Club floors. Holy cow, these rooms are nice! Also, we get free access to the spa, free coffee and wifi, and can cut in line at the buffet, and various other things like that. By far the best perq was getting to do VIP check-in, which meant we didn't have to wait in line. So that was sweet. Also, we have to use our room key to get the elevator to get to this floor, which tends to start conversations in the elevator, which is kind of amusing.
Our first meal was at the pizza/brew pub in Four Queens. Deep dish and IPA FTW! We also signed up for the GN player's club card and got our $5 free play each, which we haven't used yet.
Okay, time for gamble. I played poker in two rooms on Sunday: GN and Binion's. Apparently all of the NLHE games at GN are uncapped, because there was a bafflingly deep-stacked 2-5 game going. Like, there were those banded stacks of hundos that you see on TV in play. I just stuck with 1-3 with drunken Canadians. The only hand of note is when I had KsQs on the button and raised to $10 and got a couple of callers. Flop was all middle spades. Guy bets like $20, I raise to $60, and only he calls. Turn is the Ac. He checks, I go all-in and he thinks a bit and calls. Obviously I am sweating any spade since he clearly has the dry ace. River is a black card, but it's a club, and sure enough he shows the As and I scoop a big pot.
After a break to check on my wife (asleep, obv) I headed to Binion's. They had a 3-6 and a 1-3 game running, along with the ends of a tournament. I fart around in 3-6 for a while, winning $20 before I get moved to the 1-3 game. I didn't do a whole lot, but did get up a little bit by flopping a straight that held up. Then the next big hand happened. I'm in the SB with 53o. After a million limpers, I call the extra 2 and we see a flop. The flop is pretty okay, 553 with two spades. I check, and drunk guy bets $10. Drunk girl raises to $25. Solid reg guy goes all-in for $56. I tank for a little bit and then call the $56. Drunk guy agonizes and folds, and drunk lady calls. Turn is a Jc, and I shove for $175, and she snap-calls. I turn over 53, and she shows As3c. Luckily, I manage to dodge the one out (sudden brain aneurysm) on the river and win a pretty huge pot. The only other hand I played was KsKd -- I raised, got called in a couple of spots, and the flop was AcTc7c. Great. Turn is Jc. Sheesh! Finally someone bet and I folded.
Eventually, I ate some overpriced tacos and went to bed.
We got up pretty early and headed to Binion's for breakfast. Turns out I have enough comps from BARGE and whatnot that breakfast was totally free. Sweet! We explored Freemont street a bit. Shae had never seen most of the casinos, so we had a nice time walking around. I never realized how pretty Main Street Station is on the inside. We also got tricked into doing the "free spin" thing. That turned out okay, though. We got a $10 match play, and after extricating ourselves from the timeshare(or whatever) spiel, we took that to the Plaza for some blackjack. My first hand was a push, which means I got to keep the coupon. Second hand I got a 9 and doubled down on it vs the dealer's J. Yeah, I know. I spike a 10, and the dealer had a 7 down. See? I know what I'm doing. I win the next hand or two and am at $140 (bought in for $100), so I set aside the $100 and do $40 for my last bet, winning with another 19. Time to bail -- I tip the dealer $5 and color up.
The Plaza also has a promo where first-time players club members can lose up to $100 and get it back in free play over the next two days. So Shae and I both did that. I won like $60 before quitting while I was ahead, and Shae lost her $100 by hitting no bonuses or anything at all fun on her machines. So unlucky!
After a quick Chaos refill at the Ice Bar (love this place), we head to Bellagio via the bus. Shae has never been on the strip (that she can remember, anyway) and it's been a long-ass time for me, too. Seriously, the strip (especially the fancy parts) is way, way different than downtown.
Eventually, we wind up in the poker room. There's a seat at the $40-$80 mix games, so I sit down with my measly $1000 (the last $40 or so was in tens and fives, so I looked really, really balla) and try to play tight. The giant Beam on the rocks calmed my nerves, that's for sure.
We're playing Badeucy. I have a 6 Badugi from the initial deal, but my 7 hand never improves against 2 opponents and I show down 6532A (or whatever) on the river and say I have a 653A. Everyone is like, "Uh, this is Badeucy!" and is pointing at the sign that says that. So I start to think I'm getting scooped because I'm an idiot, but it turns out they just think I'm trying to call the Ace as low for my 7 hand and I get my half of the pot. The guy to my left tells me that people do that all the time, and Morris (if someone put a gun to your head and had you guess which guy at the table was named Morris, you wouldn't even be nervous for a second) actually raised, bet, and patted the whole way down with a 65432 in 2-7 the day before.
The other Badeucy hand I played was 632 rainbow (no spade) all the way down to the river and wound up with two spades(finally!) on the 3rd draw -- the 2 and the 3. Thanks.
Eventually we switched to O8. Nothing too exciting here -- I played Ah3h6hJ to a 3-bet (yeah, I know). Flop was one low, one heart, one broadway, so I feel I can call one bet to close the action with 3 people in the hand. Turn is another broadway heart card, so now I have the nut flush draw along with the broadway gutterball, so I call a bet again. River is the 9h (gin!) and I bet and get called.
The last game we played was Badaecy. I get dealt 8742A with a 7 Badugi. I call a 3-bet but then I'm not sure what to do. I know it's strong, and I can't break it, but as this is literally the first hand of Badacey that I've ever played (as opposed to folded) I wasn't sure how strong it actually was. I've definitely played enough Badeucy to know that a hand that's pretty strong both ways can get faceholed. Is an 8-7 that great in A-5 triple-draw lowball? Is a 7 Badugi that great? I just don't know.
Anyway, I obviously scoop, but leave like $160 in bets I probably could have gotten called. Whatevs.
By this point we are starving, and so we eat at the Bellagio Cafe, which is more of a "Cafe" in that it is fancy and expensive. Still quite tasty, though. We take the Deuce back to GN and crash way, way early.
Tuesday (so far):
We get up and get ANOTHER free breakfast at Binion's (I must have played there way more than I thought!). We go to Plaza and get Shae's first $50 in free play rebate (winning $0, obv) and then hit up those small Mardi Gras casinos on Freemont. We miss the drawing at the first one, though I do win $10 in quarters. At the second one, I'm playing and winning small (but very pleasant) amounts while we wait for the next drawing. We have a couple of drinks and surprise the heck out of the waitress by tipping her. So with like 2 minutes 'til the next drawing, I play some sort of fire 7-themed penny slot. The Fireball(I love Fireball, it's like the only spell a wizard needs) bonus keeps taunting me by almost hitting. Right as the start to call the drawing, it hits and the screen starts spinning other reels and whatnot. The first bonus goes 9x multiplier...9x multiplier!... 9x multiplier!!!!!.... BLANK. So I'm like aw. And then they call Shae's number for the drawing! And then I realize that bonus was $100! Sweet. So I cash out of that machine up like $160 total as Shae gets her free cash spin and wins... $2.
I've always maintained that I'm way, way luckier than she is, in more ways than one.
More soon, I hope!