Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Vegas pt. 3: absinthe makes the wand grow harder

Wednesday was my final full day in Las Vegas, and it began with almost 3 hours' worth of pampering at the Mandara Spa, conveniently located on the mezzanine level of Planet Hollywood. After checking in and changing into a robe, I was ushered into the waiting room, which was stocked with current magazines and a fridge full of refreshments. I helped myself to a bottle of water and settled down with Marie Claire.

When my masseuse walked in, she led me to a dimly lit room and then left for a few minutes while I got undressed, climbed onto the table, and pulled the sheet over me. When she walked back in, she proceeded to lavishly coat my body with a lime ginger scrub, and belatedly I remembered why you're not supposed to shave your legs before a salt scrub. That shit fucking STUNG! But the feeling soon passed, and when she was done, she went in the other room and got the shower started for me. I rinsed the scrub off and then returned for my massage.

Oh, god. Sweet Jesus! I drooled copiously through the face cradle as she proceeded to work every last kink and knot out of my body. When she worked on my scalp, I almost groaned with delight. I'm like a cat in that if you rub my head the right way, I will press into your hand and hiss if you try to stop. And when she reached my poor abused feet, oh! I almost wept with joy.

Finally, the masseuse led me to another room and said, "The wrap is included with the cost of your treatment today. However, if you'd prefer, for an additional thirty dollars..."

Oh boy, here comes the upsell, I thought, mentally rolling my eyes.

" can choose the ocean float." She motioned at something about the size of a twin bed. "Would you like to touch it?"

I laid my hand on it and instantly said, "I'll take it."

I don't really know how to describe this thing, but basically, I laid down, she pulled the sides around me, and it filled up with warm water. It was like floating without actually getting wet, and it felt like fucking heaven. One of those things probably costs more than my car, but if I ever win the lottery, I'm installing one in my mansion immediately. The masseuse quietly took her leave, and I floated dreamily for a half-hour inside my cozy cocoon.

It was over all too soon, and I sadly got dressed. After all those oils and scrubs, my skin was so soft and dewy that I made newborn babies look like Magda from There's Something About Mary.

I returned to my room, showered yet again because I still had so much oil in my hair, changed clothes (pro travel tip: always bring at least one more shirt, one more pair of underwear, and one more dose of prescription meds than you think you'll need; this advice has saved my bacon on more than one occasion), and headed out to the Strip for gambling and sightseeing. I had an absolutely awful grilled cheese sandwich, and I wish I could remember the name of the restaurant so I could tell you to avoid it. Seriously, how do you fuck up grilled cheese?

In the evening, I went to Pink's for dinner (god, so good) and then walked over to Caesar's Palace to see Absinthe.

It's been described as a raunchier and funnier Cirque du Soleil, and that's pretty dead on. I'm glad I read the Yelp reviews before buying my ticket, because they warned against paying more for "good" seats. The venue was so small that every seat was a good one, and I actually would have preferred to be a bit further back. (White people problems!)

Aside from a blowjob joke that went on way too long, the show was phenomenal. The MC was filthy and picked on people in the audience as well as the performers. (Referring to the smokingly hot Asian tightrope walker, he said "Fucking Chinese guy doesn't understand anything I'm saying." Hot Asian guy: "I'm not Chinese, asshole!" MC: "See? Not a word of English!")

The following pictures were all swiped from Absinthe's website. Photobucket is still being a stinky butthole as far as resizing, but these aren't too distractingly huge.

This performer stacked the chairs in front of us; they weren't glued or nailed together in any way. You could actually see them wobble!

At one point, the dude was swinging her around and her head was maybe three inches away from the floor.

During their routine, the guy in the middle slipped and just barely caught himself. I would have thought he did it for dramatic effect, but I was close enough to see the look on his face, and unless he's an Oscar caliber actor, he was definitely freaked out. As you can see, there's no safety net.

Anyway, I very highly recommend Absinthe to all but the easily offended; it was well worth the money.

After the show, I called J and we decided not to get together because I was leaving the next day and had to make it an early night. We talked for a while and reaffirmed our mad platonic love for each other, and he asked me to text him once I got back to my hotel so he'd know I got back safely. I promised, and then I started walking back to Planet Hollywood.

Here's where I cursed leaving my camera in the room: on one of the pedestrian bridges, there was a dude holding a sign saying "Kick me in the nuts for $20" and people were actually doing it! He'd fall to the ground, moan and writhe around a bit, and then stand back up on wobbly legs and take some more abuse. I checked to see if he was one of the Jackass dudes or Horse (the nut kickee from last season of America's Got Talent), but he wasn't. Probably not the greatest way to make money, but props nonetheless!

On Thursday morning, I checked out and then took a cab to McCarran, where I had plenty of time to kill. Even though I'd heard that the slot machines at the Vegas airport have just about the worst odds, thanks to a captive audience, I sat down and inserted my last twenty dollar bill.

Within three spins, I'd tripled my money.

My finger hovered over the "repeat bet" button, and then I shook my head and thought, You got to do everything on your list and then some, you spent tons of quality time with your oldest friend in the world, you ate lots of delicious foodz, and you saw an awesome show. Cash out and end this fabulous trip on a happy note.

And I did.