Saturday, September 12, 2009

Monday - nothing to see here

Binh, Mike and I were basically the only people left in the morning. Jose and Dan left at about 8:30 and Gabe had left even earlier than that. The three of us made a run across the street to McDonalds for fabulous breakfast before checking out and getting a cab. Binh ordered a sausage burrito, but couldn't finish it after having flashbacks to last year's bonus night incident that resulted in her sleeping in the bathtub next to a pool of vomit.

We put our keys in the express checkout box and hailed a cab and were on our way to the airport. We blogged a little bit with the free WiFi, then all went our separate ways to catch our flights.

Before we took off, Binh requested a Band Alumni road trip to Reno, so maybe we'll blog about it on here in December! So far, Jose, Binh, Dirty Niiiikki, and I are in for sure, and we're a group that can get into a lot of trouble!

Thanks for reading, sorry these last few posts were so boring, I've been tired!

Sunday! Sunday! Sunday!

I was hoping that the other STBE bloggers would pick up some of the slack here and recap some of the days on the trip, but alas, that apparently isn't going to happen.

Anyhoo, the Shooters took off fairly early on Sunday, as they had an early afternoon flight to Santa Barbara. Mike had drunkenly told me the night before that he was going down to the strip to hang out with Christine and Steve, but didn't remember saying that to me at all when we told him we were planning to head out to the strip to go to the Excalibur Buffet. He said he didn't want to go to the Strip, and was gonna go gamble with Ryan while we all went.

So it was me, Binh, Gabe, Jose, and Dan, as the married Skidmores had also taken off that morning to head back to Thousand Oaks. We stopped at a gift shop on our way to the Deuce stop and grabbed some bottled water and Jose got a couple of tallboys for the road.

We know the Deuce is slow, but this had to be the slowest Deuce ride we had ever taken! Our first clue that it was gonna be a long ride came when the g-d driver stopped for TEN MINUTES! at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club. There was no one at the Deuce stop waiting to get on and no one got off the Deuce!

The g-d driver proceeded to stop at every g-d Deuce stop whether it warranted it or not and it took FOREVER!

We had finally had it and got off at New York, New York where I was about to wet my pants. I sprinted to the nearest bathroom and then we made our way through the hotel and across the skyway to the 'bur where we headed straight to the buffet. In front of us in line was a group of people who had just been to (and in) a wedding. That is right! Wedding reception at a buffet!

This is the very same buffet where I was told to "be a lady! You need to act like a lady!" Helleau, as evidenced back then by the KEG of champagne, and by the wedding party in front of us in line, THERE ARE NO LADIES AT THE EXCALIBUR BUFFET!!!

The 'bur buffet is all self-serve. No one brings you drinks or anything, which is kind of nice, because you aren't at the mercy of a waiter/waitress to get your drinks. Unfortunately, there was no champagne brunch! WTD!? We went there for a keg of champagne! They did, however, offer gatorade as a drink choice, which was awesome, since we had all drank a lot at the lady MJ show the night before.

We all agreed that the 'bur buffet was much better than our usual Main Street Station buffet and filled up quite a few plates before making our way to Mandalay Bay to get some Volcanoes at Rumjungle.

On our way, we saw a guy wearing a really bad wig. I don't know if I was able to capture how bad it was, but thank God Gabe was sitting next to him on the tram so I was able to get a picture somewhat on the sly.

Anyhoo, we finally got to Rumjungle (after walking the wrong direction, which we do every year) and ordered Volcanoes. Apparently, they aren't on the menu anymore as the waiter who looked like McSteamy said, "oh, you guys know about Volcanoes, huh?!" Then he walked up to the bartender and said, "4 Volcanoes," to which the bartender replied, "what the hell is a Volcano?" McSteamy ended up having to make the Volcanoes himself. Binh told Dan that Volcanoes "have 12 kinds of rum!" Which isn't true. There are 4 rums, 3 of which are 151 proof. Needless to say, I only made it halfway through mine. I always forget how strong those things are. Woof.

After our Volcanoes, we saw a dried out fountain and began launching pennies into it while making wishes. Jose was taking a bathroom break, we had to find some way to entertain ourselves. We also saw a parade of douchebags (seriously, they looked like Gotti brothers) walking in from the pool area.

Apparently, there are girls out there who find this look attractive! All of the d-bags we saw had d-bag girlfriends!

Anyhoo, we decided we should probably forgo our annual trek to the Tropicana to get our coupon book and cash in all the drink-related ones so we could get back to Fremont Street at a reasonable time to say goodbye to Ryan before he left. Alas, we were too late and missed him, so we had to text our goodbyes.

We stopped at the same gift shop we had stopped at before and got a 3 pack of Bud Light tallboys and some more bottled water and met up with Mike at Binion's. Binh fell asleep and blamed her lack of appetite for booze later on in the evening on our allowing her to sleep. For the record, I tried to wake her up twice and she looked piiiiiiissed!, so I let her keep sleeping.

Mike and I were the only people who brought clothes for former fatty night, so we went ahead and put our giant pants on over our regular pants and made our way to our annual fancy steak dinner at Tony Roma's. Binh ordered the $12.99 steak and lobster tail special and none of us could figure out what cut of meat they had given her. We called it the mystery steak. My ribs didn't stay with me long, and Mike and I took that opportunity to ditch our giant pants back at Binion's before we all settled in at the Golden Gate for penny slots while Jose and Dan played craps. We also left briefly to get some stiff drinks at Mermaids before calling it a night. I had been in Vegas for far too long and was ready to go home, as was Mike, for the same reason.

Binh complained that she was ready to party, but her nap ruined it for her, haha. Gabe also retired to his room, because he had a long drive ahead of him in the morning.

That was basically the rest of the trip! SLEEP!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

the Deuce ride home

Mike had long since ditched us after proclaiming he didn't even care about Michael Jackson anymore.

After Lady Jacko was done, we decided we had no real reason to stay at the Hawaiian Tropic Zone (we had also finished our rum, too, and weren't about to pay club prices for cocktails). The dude who knew nothing and cleared tables was also quite rude to us when we were leaving. The second we stood up and it was apparent we were leaving, he was practically pushing us out of the way so he could clear the table.

We made our way to the Deuce and some drunk girls posed for pictures with Gabe. He was a big hit in his bathrobe and wizard hat combo. I think people really enjoyed seeing a grown man walk around Vegas in a bathrobe. I know we all did.

Anyhoo, we got on the first Deuce we saw and went to the seating area upstairs (as we always do). When we got up there, a sassy black lady in the front started taking pictures (and why not, the bus was suddenly being invaded by magicians). We told her there were more on the way, so she kept her camera at the ready.

Sitting in front of me was some weird girl who we couldn't tell if she was crazy, retarded, or on drugs. She was acting very strangely, and tried to steal Brian's rabbit and my magic wand.

I'm trying to remember when we started cheering things on the bus. I think someone made some comment about Jerry Springer, because someone had mentioned a baby-daddy, and I was all, "no, that's Maury. Maury is all about giant babies and baby-daddies." The sassy black lady was all, "that's right!" And everyone started chanting "Maury! Maury! Maury!"

After that, we were chanting all kinds of random things, and the sassy black lady and her friends told us to slow down so they could figure out what we were saying so they could join in. I think the chant they were having a hard time with was "ass & titties!"

At one point, some people were getting off the Deuce and we were chanting, "you get off! you get off!" At the end of every chant, someone would yell, "and titties!" Toward the end of the Deuce ride, a Euro-couple got off and looked totally annoyed with us, and the weird/crazy/drugged out girl started yelling, "you get off!" So then we all joined in and were pointing at them not realizing that we needed to get off the Deuce, too. At the end of that chant, we yelled, "and titties!" Then the sassy black lady yelled, "SMALL titties!" and we all cackled. Then we all stood up and chanted, "we're getting off! we're getting off! and titties!"

Once we were all de-Deuced, the sassy black lady and her friends started chanting, "fuck the Deuce!" so we joined in and we were all flipping off the Deuce driver. I'm not sure why, but it seemed like the right thing to do. Maybe they were mad because the Deuce driver walked up the stairs at one of the stops and told us to watch our language.

Either way, it was the most entertaining Deuce ride ever.

Shoot, Gabe, Binh, can you guys expand on this? I can't remember why we started chanting!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

the bribery attempt!!!

Christine says we glossed over the incident involving the bouncer trying to extort money (or possibly sexual favors...based on what I was told, he didn't specify that it was cash he was after!) in order for Steve (of the non-Caltrains variety) to gain entry into the Hawaiian Tropic Zone.

My apologies if this is inaccurate, but I was busy dealing with the whole "treating us like shit because we're dressed like assholes" situation.

From my understanding, Mike, Christine, and Steve were the last to enter the Hawaiian Tropic Zone for some hot MJ action. When Steve got to the front of the line, he presented his ID, which had expired 3 days prior to the incident. He also presented the DMV printout stating that his ID was valid, but the bouncer was having none of it!

Christine argued that they had used it at the airport and at casinos all day, so it shouldn't be any different at the HTZ. The bouncer was all, "oh hell to the N-O! It may be good enough for the casino that this very bar is located in, but we here at the Hawaiian Tropic Zone have standards! Despite these alleged standards, I might be able to make an exception for you, little lady (insert creepy wink here). If you take care of me, I'll take care of your husband!" SUCIO!!!

Needless to say, Christine, being the fine upstanding citizen she is, was shocked and appalled by the behavior and sucio-ness of the bouncer! She called suit guy over and demanded satisfaction! Which, in the case of Steve, was never received!

Christine joined us and enjoyed classy VIP status while Steve gambled away their life savings and diaper money in the casino. That seems fair.

I have no idea what happened after that, but I imagine it was sucio.

It should also be noted that while I was giving the "look, I know we're dressed like assholes, but..." speech, I also demanded that they let Steve in. Suit guy was all, "I can help you with this situation, but I can't even touch the bribery thing." Possibly because it was too...SUCIO!?!?!?!?!?!?

how we became VIPs

After Mike and his sister demanded satisfaction about Steve getting left outside due to a ridiculous ID discrepancy (and bribery attempt!), we all seated ourselves at what we knew was a VIP table. It was unattended, so we didn't care about its status and sat right down. We sat there for what seemed like an eternity waiting for a waitress to come take our order. Sensing that we were being ignored because of our magical attire, Dan decided to take matters into his own hands and went to the bar to order a round of Bud Lights.

What he came back with was most certainly not Bud Lights. They gave him 12 mixed drinks, none of which were the same thing. I was totally annoyed by this and went to find the nearest employee in a suit to demand satisfaction.

I talked to the guy that Mike and Christine talked to about the bribe and began making the "look, I know were dressed like assholes, but..." speech. Yes, it has a name, because I've made that speech before, and it resulted in 2 free drinks for everyone in our party. I told the guy that we were being treated poorly because we were dressed like magicians, and we had only come to this dive for the MJ tribute. I told him that the guy whose job it was to clear tables was totally rude to us and could have just asked us to leave the table instead of being all rude about it, and then told him about the ridiculous drink order. Those drinks they gave us were seriously undrinkable. I also told him that this event was advertised to include free sparkly gloves for the ladies, and everyone we had talked to seemed to have no idea that the MJ thing was even happening at all. I concluded by saying that they were obviously trying to get rid of us because our magician attire was cramping the style of their lame nightclub, and he assured me that he wanted us to stay. Despite this:

After about 5 minutes of painting ourselves as the victims of anti-magic discrimination, he offered us a VIP table free of charge, and a free bottle if we purchased bottle service (one bottle of Captain, please!). I told him I'd have to check with the troops, and I'd get back to him. Needless to say, the prospect of VIP status and two bottles of Captain were acceptable to the rest of the group, so we accepted.

When we were seated, we were told that we would be in the front row for all the MJ action, and some bikini-clad waitresses began mixing drinks for us. Now that's VIP service.

As the night went on, we all kept asking each other and whatever employee we could flag down when MJ would be performing. It was getting later and later and there was never any sign of Jacko! I made the mistake of asking the jerk who clears tables when it started and he replied, "you're asking the wrong person." What exactly is his job if he knows nothing about anything? I finally flagged down suit guy who told me, "the show's starting late because of the MMA thing," which made no sense because the MMA fight ended before 10:30, and it was now getting close to midnight.

There was a photographer sitting next to us, and I asked him if he knew what the deal was. He said the MJ impersonator was at some other hotel and was making their way to the rathole we were now obliged to stay in due to our VIP status. He looked really annoyed, as he had arrived before we did.

I flagged down suit guy again who said, "midnight, MJ will be on at midnight." Finally. Well, midnight came and went and there was no MJ, and suddenly, the photographer was gone. It wasn't looking good.

Randomly, some MJ music started playing, and the Jacko impersonator walked out and waved to the crowd from the walkway perched in front of the multi-screen TVs. I don't know what you call those things where a bunch of TVs form one huge TV. Anyhoo, as Jacko was waving at the crowd, the DJ was all, "just 40 more minutes!" What the deuce???

We were annoyed, but were willing to wait since we had taken the trouble to go all the way down there and argue our way into the VIP section. Mike, however, wasn't having it. And he was drunk. Right before MJ came on, Mike slurred, "I'm over it! I don't even care about Michael Jackson anymore! This is never gonna happen, I'm leaving."

The second he left, like seriously, literally the second he left, Jacko hit the little catwalk thing and began dancing and lip syncing and we all danced along wildly, waving our wands around and gettin' down. Oh, remember those "front row" seats? Jacko was performing mainly on the other side of the bar, which was where the photographer went. The Hawaiian Tropic Zone is full of liars! We got no gloves, and no VIP front row access! But we did at least get to finally see some Jacko impersonator action.

Amber said Jacko was a lady, and I argued that it was a dude who looked like a lady. This continued on our Deuce ride home, which totally deserves its own post.

Again, Shoot, Gabe, Mike, or Binh, please feel free to fill in the blanks!

Michael Jackson VIP night

I believe the evite said that if you're the type of person who likes to go to trendy night clubs then this trip isn't for you. Well that was a wrong, because as trashy as the Hawaiian Tropic Zone was, it is a trendy night club. Albeit in Planet Hollywood - the slut of the Las Vegas Strip (and that's saying something).

*note from Ginger: VIP tables and bottle service may not be in the spirit of STBE, but the way we ended up there definitely was! I demanded satisfaction, and we got it!

As mentioned previously we got not-deucedfaced by the weak drinks at the penny slots waiting for the UFC bout to end. Yawn. It ends and we waltz in at a quarter to 10pm - fifteen minutes before the MJ show, perfect. 10pm comes and goes and we're still watching a highlight DVD of homoerotic takedowns. The whole time Mike kept yelling, "Just make out already!"
Mike's brother-in-law (Steve? I'm bad at names.) was denied entry into the exclusive Hawaiian Tropic Zone (hereinafter HTZ) because his identification had expired last week and the state issued piece of paper stating it was in fact current was not enough for the bouncer. Sorry, you must be <21.

Well, extortion is an STBE tradition, but normally we're the ones threatening. So Mike wisely decides its time to speak to a manager. This is a problem, however, because Mike is dressed like a female circus ringmaster. Fear not, it is Las Vegas, and only the tourists are surprized by our silliness - the employees have seen much crazier/sadder lots than us.

Anyway Mike and sis go to the manager and explain the situation. Mike is trying to get some sympathy to get maybe-Steve in the (crappy) club. But his sister blurts out, "And then he asked for a bribe! Can you believe it!" At which point the manager switches from customer service mode to supervisor mode and shuts down. He no longer hears a complaint about a policy but a complaint about his employee. So he leaves to repremand the bouncer, and maybe-Steve never gets in. However, this may have contributed to the Demand for Satisfaction situation that came later (<-Foreshadowing!). I'll let Ginger elaborate.

Meanwhile, this was our Michael:

So those who called "she" win. Congrats. Here's what she looked like in costume (with a free glove we didn't receive):

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Saturday Recap

Let's see, where to start...where to start...

Shooter, Binh, and I went to Krispy Kreme to take advantage of the free WiFi. While there, we looked up Michael Jackson tributes since it would have been his birthday. We found one that looked good at the Hawaiian Tropic Zone at Planet Hollywood. A: it was free, and B: free sparkly gloves for the first 150 ladies! More on that later...maybe it deserves a separate post. Yeah, definitely getting its own post.

Anyhoo, after our research session was over, we met up with Mike and Ryan and gathered the troops to go get champagne brunch at Main Street Station. The Skidmores were nowhere to be found, so we texted them and made our way to the Station. Mike and I tried to introduce our guests to the champagne float (it's exactly what you think it is), but no one was impressed enough to make one of their own. For shame!

Our waitress was very good about making sure we always had full champagne glasses and enough OJ to make mimosas with, so we tipped her way more than anyone should tip a buffet waitress. When we left, we were feeling pretty good, and had located the Skidmores. We also met up with Jose in the lobby and headed upstairs to show him the deluxe accommodations.

After that, we all got in our swimsuits and rolled the cooler of beer that Jose had brought with him to the rooftop pool. This is a legitimate rooftop pool, up on the 24th floor, not the 6th floor like the Plaza. When we got up there, the pool attendant girl (she wasn't a lifeguard and she wasn't a bartender, so we'll call her an attendant) was all, "how many beers are in there?" Trying to make it seem like we didn't have a lot of beers (we had 36), I was all, "I don't know...6 or 12?" Seeing the crowns on my head and Mike's head, she told Mike, "clearly, you guys are celebrating something, so I'll let this one slide. We usually don't allow you to have your own alcohol up here since we have a bartender."

With that business out of the way, we hopped into the pool with the beach ball I got from the Target dollar section and had several close calls before it finally flew off the side of the building. I wonder what the people on the street thought when a beach ball randomly fell from the sky.

Gabe met us on the rooftop and said he found us by reading the blog. Awesome!

We all went back down to the 20th floor VIP suites and took (individual) showers and hung out for a while before getting into our magician getups in preparation for the MJ tribute. We knew the Deuce would take a while, so we left at like 7 or 7:30.

Ryan stayed behind to gamble and reported back to us later that he didn't do well in the poker tournament and was "raped" at the black jack tables.

Meanwhile, at Planet Hollywood, we sat down at some penny slots since we got there too early for the MJ thing. There was an MMA fight on the big screens there, so no one was allowed in. Our waitress figured out that it was our birthdays, so she brought our whole group raspberry lemon drop shots, which were delicious, in addition to the drinks she had served us before.

I'll end it here, because there's a lot to talk about with regard to the Hawaiian Tropic Zone.

Peace out, homies!

Also? Mike, Shooter, Binh, and Gabe: please feel free to fill in the blanks!!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

STBE '09 recap: Friday

Since Mike had joined me at Caesar's on Thursday night, we were the first guests to "arrive" at STBE '09 (Gabe was there on Wed, but left on Thursday morning to visit friends in Arizona, and he didn't come back until Saturday).

Because we enjoyed our Night Train Spritzers after midnight, we technically opened STBE with the official drink of the Gaucho Pep Band (drink slogan: "If you didn't know it was Night Train, you'd think it was good!").

Bringin' some class to the Palace!

You should know that in order to make this drink, we had to buy Sprite from the Pussycat Dolls sundry shop that plays Pussycat Dolls videos 24/7 and sells Ed Hardy clothing AND alcohol. D-bags have their own liquor now! We asked the guy at the counter if he enjoyed listening to the Pussycat Dolls nonstop and he told us he was over it after a couple of days. He also said he liked the Ed Hardy shit, so he lost major points there.

Anyhoo, fast forward to Friday morning, we woke up and watched trash on TV (Maury! Maury! Maury!) and checked out at 12 (I called for a late checkout so we wouldn't have to rush) and walked across the street where a Deuce was waiting for us.

We hopped on with our luggage and were immediately amused by the bus driver's old timey gangster accent. Every time he announced a stop, I would repeat it and say, "we're gonna stop at da Riviera, shee!" while wiggling an imaginary cigar by my mouth. These old ladies wanted to get to the outlet mall, and Mike and I couldn't stop laughing when he gave them transfer instructions. "You're gonna cross da street, shee! Then you're gonna go behind da old Denny's, shee! Then you're gonna get on da 109, shee! Thank you for riding.....the-Deuce!"

Anyhoo, by the time we got to the Fremont Street Experience stop, we were starving and talking about how we were gonna go get some food, shee! We tried checking in at Binion's, but apparently, they don't allow you to check in early. We did, however, arrange for our rooms to be put close together. After we got that all worked out, we checked our bags at the Bell Desk and went off in search of food, which, since we were lazy, ended up being McDonald's at the Plaza.

After that, we found some cheap cocktails and penny slots and hung out for a few hours until we noticed that it was 3pm. We checked in and went upstairs to inspect our deluxe rooms. After comparing the mismatched linens and TVs, we decided to take a nap until 5. I tried to connect to some WiFi networks, but couldn't get an internet connection, so I gave up and watched the People's Court. After our 5pm deadline, we cut out the CD covers (see what you miss out on when you don't go?) for the official soundtrack of STBE '09 and watched crap on TV until the Shooters arrived.

Upon the arrival of the Shooters, we decided to go get some dinner since it wouldn't be until 9 or 10 until the arrival of the next guests. We went over to the Fremont where I had a $5.99 steak dinner, the Shooters had the all-you-can-eat salad bar, and Mike had some sort of Ramen with shrimp and pink fishcakes or something in it. Somehow, it was the idea of Top Ramen being the base that grossed him out. Not the bright pink "fishcakes".

Anyhoo, Binh and the Skidmores (Stephanie, her husband Brian, and his brother Dan) all arrived shortly after we finished eating, so we headed back over to Binion's to greet them. I forgot to mention that we put fliers on the doors of our hotel rooms, which confused the maid. Check it.

We all changed into our "patriotic" outfits and headed over to Mermaids where we knew we'd get a ton of drinks. Kristen (aka Kate Gosselin because of her haircut) remembered us from the past 2 STBEs and Master's Degree Madness, while another waitress who I've seen on past Vegas trips served us all Captain and Cokes while we dined on fried Twinkies.

While there, some girl accosted us and started screaming at us that we were "fucking awesome!" and "the shit." "Oh my god, I can't believe you guys are doing this! I've always wanted to do this, you're so fucking awesome!" She also said she had debated coming up to us because she wasn't sure if we were serious or not. What she also didn't realize, was that we were kind of dressing up like her.

We stayed for a while because the drink service is ridiculous there. Kate Gosselin would take our drink orders (or force shots on us), and while she was off getting our drinks, the waitress who greeted us with the Captain and Cokes would come by and take a second drink order. On a couple of occasions, they both showed up to our corner at the same time and had to re-route so they wouldn't get in trouble for serving us too much. Seriously, if you want a free drink (tip $1 a drink, I'm sure these girls get paid minimum wage), go to Mermaids, they hook it up. While it's hard to flag down a cocktail waitress at a lot of places, these people literally do force shots on you. "You guys want Kamikaze shots? OK, I'm coming back with 12 Kamikaze shots." And we never said yes! She just came back with shots! Not that we were complaining or anything, haha.

Anyhoo, I think we ended up at the Fremont, because Dan was playing craps there and Mike, Ryan, and Shooter were playing black jack and not getting served drinks. We, meanwhile, purchased some $2 Coronas and played penny slots (where we were served!) while people admired our display of "patriotism".

It sounds pretty uneventful, but we all had an awesome time.

To prove we had an awesome time, here are pictures of Mike and I activating our Sugar Twin powers, and then some sort of random butt dance during the light show:

Shooter? Binh? Gabe? Mike? Care to jump in here and add more details of our shenanigans?

Oh yeah! The Crozier Clan joined us, as well! They came in wearing Uncle Sam beards and sideburns, it was good times. Some of us chose to go with the Walmart variety of patriots (I was constantly telling people to "love it or leave it"), while others either missed the quotation marks around the word or just decided to go with the "I'm going to a 4th of July parade" brand of patriotism.

OK revelers, jump in and fill in the blanks! I'll try to recap Saturday tomorrow!

when klass meets class

Here are some side by side comparison shots of Binion's and Caesar's. As if it needs to be said, Binion's is on the left. Click the image for a closer look.

The first shot is of the sleeping area, note the height of the Caesar's beds. Also note that while there are 8 pillows on those beds, there are 2 on the Binion's beds. Also note the mirrored headboards on those Caesar's beds. That's a bold choice for a room with 2 beds, if you're catching my drift.

The second shot showcases the TV/desk/dresser area with the nearby seating area. I didn't really have any use for the big square chair in the Caesar's room, but I did enjoy the rolling desk chair that reclined. Sorry, I didn't think to take a picture of it. I didn't include a lot of shots at Caesar's that showed just how much bigger the room was than the room at Binion's. Fun fact about the curtains at Caesar's: you open and close them with a button on the wall. Seems overly lazy to me.

And in the third shot, check out the ultimate sign of a classy hotel room: the toilet phone. Nothing says class like "my phone calls are so important, they can't wait for me to get off the toilet to make them." Clearly, I am not classy, since I had no use for the toilet phone. There didn't seem to be a button to call the phone in the living area of the room, otherwise, I'd have called Mike or Gabe when they were staying there with me. The toilet was in a separate room at Caesar's, they know you need privacy for toilet calls.

One area Binion's wins? A coffeemaker in the room. I'm being totally serious. Caesar's set up the room so if I wanted to eat or drink anything, I either had to bust into the minibar (haha, like that was gonna happen), or spend a bunch of money downstairs (again, yeah right). Thank you, Binion's, for allowing me to brew some hot tea before bed and in the morning!

What $32 buys you

I had planned to post this shortly after checking in at Binion's on Friday afternoon, but Mike and I had kind of a late night on Thursday and were too tired to hunt down the free WiFi needed to make the post. Get ready to be impressed! You should note that the guy at the front desk said that the "hot tip" I got online to ask for a room in the "Old Mint Tower" was a good tip. The rooms in here are allegedly bigger and nicer than the rooms in the other tower. BETTER and BIGGER. Please keep those words in mind when you look at these pictures.

The first thing I noticed was color scheme.

OK, I lied, the first thing I noticed was the awesome TV.

I also went to the bathroom to see if Binion's featured a fabulous walk-in shower with two shower heads and a TV built into the mirror and a toilet phone.

Mike's room had a different TV and different bed linens, which we thought was weird.

Finally, some shots of a cigarette burn on one of the bed comforters and the motheaten curtains. How do you spell class? B-I-N-I-O-N-S!!!

OK, I spoke too soon, I'll end this post with Binh showcasing the open screenless window. We were on the 20th floor, and each night before we went out, we said, "remember the suicide pact at the end of the night!"

I'll put up some comparison shots between Caesar's and Binion's later on. I really don't think Binion's was all that bad, but it was definitely much different than Caesar's!