Vegas Journal; night one
It was an eventful day to say the least. I woke up at home in Atlanta, hungover, fearful I’d missed my flight and unsure if my job had payed me enough money to sufficiently drink and drug myself into another year of mind-numbing servitude. The mistake as it turned out was mine and thankfully, they corrected the inaccurate balance. Unfortunately, I would not be seeing that correction until the end of my stay but hopefully in time to pick up any extra debt I will most likely incur. From there I proceeded to the airport where upon I was greeted with a near two-hour delay in my flight. This led to me being forced into a dank smoking area in the back corner of the airport with overpriced beer that tasted like shit and a bunch of travelers straight out of some dime store novel. Characters to pathetic to even describe here as it would lend them to much credit.
I did however meet several people who were pilgrimaging to Vegas to witness what we wrestling fans hope is a turning of the tide for professional wrestling. To say that this has been the absolute highlight of my trip thus far would be an understatement. While waiting in line to board the plane I befriended the partner of one of the combatants in this once in a lifetime wrestling event. We hit it off so well that she offered me a free shirt and exchanged social media the way people do in this day and age. From there would begin this strange journey. I don’t know exactly what I set out for; a vacation, a holy experience, a cathartic release. It doesn’t really matter if I was searching for some Hunter S. Thompson fantasy wish fulfillment in a Vegas that no longer exist or always existed. Who’s to say. I took some acid and walked around looking at the pretty lights and feeling special. But legit I was just on drugs and spending money I don’t have. Along the way I saw some things I thought I should write down.
Before we get to me blindly wandering a desolate downtown Las Vegas, or sitting alone in a room of lights and sound giggling to my self like a little school girl, let’s rewind to my trip from the Airport to this lovely corner of the Freemont Experience. After several turnarounds I and misstep’s I made it to the bus stop. And yes, I take the city bus in Vegas because if you can find a way to say a buck you better do it because this city will bleed you dry every chance it gets. So, you better believe I take the city bus and visit every all you can eat buffet in town! At the bus stop I met a lovely young couple from Dallas/Fort Worth. It was there first Punk Rock Bowling and they were also going to the aforementioned seminal wrestling event. I should mention that in preparation for my trip I decided it would be funny if I bought a Adidas track suit and matching shell toes ala Run DMC circa whenever the hell you imagine Run DMC. So, to say that they were not expecting me to not only be attending the very same punk rock festival they had traveled so far to experience, but I also I had full and extensive knowledge of the professional wrestling world as well must have seemed to them at first like a shock. After all who assumes a six foot 40-year-old black man dressed like Run DMC at the airport would know all of that. But I did and we talked and talked on the winding bus ride until it must have felt like I was grifting them for some personal information. At least that’s how I would have perceived it. But they did not and continued on the bus trip to detail their entire lives up until that point. It was weird to say the least but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I derived some sort of satisfaction in having broken some of their previously held notions on race and appearance and taste.
High on my own arrogance and running low on time and money I checked in to my hotel. Found my tiny room nestled away in a windowless corner and set about the true task; taking drugs. Now I don’t claim to have even a tiny morsel of the drugs Hunter S. Thompson rattled off in Fear and Loathing, and honestly, I don’t want to. Whiskey and a touch of LSD is enough for me. To be quite honest I could have probably gone with a little bit less of one or the other, but whose to say. With very little time to turn around just enough to slightly charge up my phone, I headed off into the night with an empty stomach and a head full of drugs. What could possibly go wrong? Well nothing is the short answer to that. I was cool, talked to people, strangers who I more than otherwise have just glared at with the thousand-yard death stare I have spent the last few years refining. Funny thing though, my roommate had giving me a bit of advice before I departed. Her reasoning for this advice was in hopes that it would help me get laid and not be such and overbearing psychopath that I’ve become. A sentiment apparently shared by every single person who deals with me on a day by day basis. But her advice helped me in other ways, because I wasn’t befriending any attractive single ladies looking to shack up with an odd old man on drugs in Vegas for the night. I was befriending people. I was having conversations that didn’t have to do with things like work or bills or relationships. I mean those things can come up, but they weren’t the focal point. Mainly because that’s why we’re all here is to forget about that shit for a weekend and just pretend that everything isn’t constantly falling apart all over the place. Her advice was simple. So simple I think I already thought about it which is why no one calls me by the name my mother gave me outside of my immediate family, and that was to; try and not be you for once.
So simple, so elegant. I do believe I’ve tried this concept once or twice. I do have the tendency to get in my own way. To put my foot in my mouth, to be my own worst enemy. And that is evident most importantly in my nonexistent sex life. I am the architect of my own demise. There has been no greater threat to me than me. I attack my body with booze daily, hourly to be honest. I neglect my own health and well being to further some idealized version of myself that hasn’t existed in 20 years if it ever existed at all. The very idea of who L is in my mind has become the biggest determinant to actually finding out who L is. I realized in all of these tiny interactions I had throughout my day and my drug fueled night that I was just a collection of these stories. Some where cool or they would be if you were 17 but for the most part it’s just a pretty sad depressing story of a guy with nothing left to lose so he goes out to the desert to fuck off and do drugs and drink until hopefully it kills him and ends his misery. And that’s fucked up. That’s me? That’s what I’ve allowed myself to become. I cried and stared into the mirror for a while. Then I ate some more acid and went back into the casino. I made it out okay. I got twenty dollars in poker chips on the night stand and no new scars. I just took a shower and I’m still tripping pretty good. Thinking maybe I’ll go find breakfast somewhere. I’m in the mood for steak and eggs.
Vegas Journal; night one