Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What's not a Wynn, not even a Win, but a victory nonetheless? (VEGASTORY 2 of 6)

ZooZa Crackers Deli (Wynn Property)
When the alarm from my phone makes noise at 7:00 AM it never crosses my mind to snooze it or go back to the Penthouse Bed.  I'm not here to sleep, although I will admit a longer than usual shower was needed to help mend any fatigue that a sub-two-hour sleep didn't cure.  However, by the time I emerge from IP there is a definite pep in my step as I trek north on the strip to my destination: Wynn Property.

One of the benefits of solo walks in Vegas is that my gait is held hostage by no one.  I step quick and I step long.  Of course, the biggest drawback of walking alone in Vegas is the cartoonish "$$$" symbol prostitutes see above my head causing rampant, "Heeeey, where you goin'" calls...  But this is before 8:00 AM, the only hooks you'll see are expressed as half points on the wall of a Sports Book.

Iggy Pop - Lust for Life by Thobias

Wynn Las Vegas has been my favorite casino since I first stepped inside it months after its opening.  I think it has an awesome Poker Room, a chill Sports Book, and Zooza Crackers Deli.  The plan was to place my sports bets and watch the action from either inside the Sports Book or in the Poker Room before their daily noon poker tournament.  Baring that, I'll just settle for a Roast Beef Sandwich and bide my time elsewhere.  Absolutely none of that happened.

The line to place bets stretched clear out of the Sports Book and even past the deli counter (which borders the Sports Book).  Luckily someone called the guy standing ahead of me in line to inform him that there was zero line at the Encore Sports Book.  I didn't even know the Encore had a sports book!?  Hot Route!  I walk away from the line with the splinter group.  Turns out the Encore has a Sports Book Desk, where bets can be placed and cashed: no seats and no televisions... but also nobody else there.

a google doc screen capture saved on my phone
All normal daily tournaments were canceled in lieu of their "Wynn Poker Classic" which was taking place over on the main casino floor.  I had noticed a large section of the casino floor usually home to slot machines replaced with many poker tables behind a velvet rope border.  Of course I could have bought into one of those tournaments, but they were more expensive and weren't around close TVs playing NCAA action, as is the case in the Poker Room.  So even though my self made Daily Tournament Chart (picture included) had already failed me, I decided to trust it to guide me elsewhere.  I chose the 11:00 AM Mirage Tournament to be the first tournament to enter.

52 people entered the 11:00 AM Daily No Limit Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament on March 17.  It cost $60 to enter.  My fourth place finish won me $281.  Finally cashing in a poker tournament in Vegas made me happy.  All those parlays that Louisville screwed me on no longer mattered.  After I took my prize money, I was able to watch the end of Richmond's upset victory (my only successful sports bet of the day) from the fringes of the packed Sports Book at The Mirage.

I walked back to the Wynn to cash that Richmond [Money Line Bet!] ticket and turned around to head back to IP.  That was the last time I stepped foot on Wynn Property that trip... Although if it wasn't for a "meaningless" 3 by Wofford against BYU at the buzzer I would've been back to cash in my 4 team teaser parlay.

By this time its just about 4:00 PM.  I was told by IP that I had to find out my new room between 1 - 4.  Not knowing any better, and not wanting to get charged a Penthouse rate, I called the front desk and was told my new [non Penthouse] room is ready.  The instant I see my "normal" IP room I instantly regret my decision and wish I could have held onto that Penthouse.  For me, a hotel room has to be somewhat attractive because I can't spend all my time on a casino floor.  I need a place to relax and recharge while taking gaming breaks.

Phone charging, I crash asleep for a much needed nap.  During my walk back to the room I had fielded a call from a friend who was off the Strip, but planning to return soon and wanted to meet up...  I had told him to call me when he was in the cab on his way...

At just before 6:00 PM when I wake up rather hungry.  I walk out of IP with no particular direction in mind when my phone rings...  It's him... I tell him I'll meet him in the Bally's Poker Room...

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