Friday, July 27, 2007
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Crap! Vegas Baby thought to himself, his ride home fell through. His dealing buddy got called to get home to his baby fast.
He took another pull on his Bud Light as he sat at the bar at O'Sheas, the casino next to his. They had this midget dressed as a leprechaun who got up on the bar blasting this whistle and giving willing gamblers a free shot of some green concoction. He waved the little guy away as he stood over him in bright green shorts and a green bowler.
He didn't like waiting for a bus when it was 100` after dark. Dealer Buddy was a tamed hellion, who's hard drinking and gambling ways were brought to heel by the birth of his baby boy. Vegas Baby had never seen a soul so turned around so deeply. He could tell Dealer Buddy was totally committed to his new family.
He drained the last of his cold beer and left the leprechaun to his act. He had a bus to catch. He swam through the crowded sidewalk and made his way to the Deuce stop in front of the Flamingo. He almost argued with the bored bus driver over the cost of a transfer fare being $5 almost 2 1/2 times the normal fare. Instead he looked the bus driver in the eyes and paid the one way fare.
Dealer Buddy and he formed an instant friendship the first day they met during Orientation. He was half Vegas Baby's age yet there was a strong equanimity between them. He offered him a place to stay at a decent price. He even found a used car for sale. Except it was an old Bronco and if he was gonna pay $1200 ( and where the hell was he gonna fine that money?) on a car he wanted something Asian due to their durability.
Tomorrow was payday and he wanted to delay any money decisions until he saw the dough in his Acct. He often had to do things in simplified and segmented ways to better sort through the dizzying minutiae of detail which easily boggled his ADD brain.
He was driving his international lover to despair with his convoluted ways. She would go back and forth between romantic delight in his poetic ways and utter agony over his idiosyncracies. Weeks before meeting her a dear friend in Second Life once asked why he was lonely, given his looks and what she saw of his character, he was at a loss for words at the time but after witnessing Loverbabe's reactions he was once again reminded of the maddening reasons. One of his favorite ex's, Singerbabe, told him at the end of their love affair, "I love you but I can't live with you."
He leaned against the glass resting his forehead on his arm and looked at the wedding chapels pass by and listening to a tourist telling another about that chapel where Brittany Spears got married for a whole 23 hours. He looked at the cars on the darkened street and thought about how he was gonna have his one splurge once he made over $60,000 a year: a brand new red Corvette. And how he would install a very loud foghorn in it for the idiots on the road as well as a powerful loudspeaker also for the ever-present fool.
Almost the entire bus emptied at the Fremont Street stop. The tourists were on their way to more of the rougher glories of Vegas. He was left alone in the upper deck of the Deuce.
He looked at his watch and thought he might make the bus that goes closest to the Compound without running 6 miles out of the way first. He had 7 minutes.
He looked at all the different people at the DTC at 10 30 PM on a Wednesday night and wondered how many stories they had to tell.
How did the old man get crippled?
What was the drunk Indian's father like?
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Vegas baby wakes up to realize he has no money for the bus.................
He calls a friend for a ride to work and she initially agrees then berates him for his lifestyle and retracts her offer.
He calls his daughter who hasn't the time.
He finally calls one of his sons who is on the way.
Vegas Baby knows one must suffer in this life, especially if one is trying to achieve a big win. Especially if one has bipolar and the deep impulsitivity of ADD.
Sometimes, when it is darkest, he wonders how much he can take.
He turned the car rental in last night. He got a message from the mechanic who charged him $2000 for overheating the past 6 weeks that he was incurring storage charges on the car that died of overheating problems.
He listened to his friend berate him for dropping the intense prayer lifestyle he led for the past couple years. "This is God telling you to get back right with him." Ugh.
He has to call the sods at Enterprise to tell them the car is still on the Stolen Vehicle list. And that it needs to be recovered by the police or the next driver can get stopped at gunpoint with them thinking he's the car thief.
He has good friends and he thanks God for them. But he sure has his dark moments....
Things will get better, he thought to himself, they have to, right?
Sunday, July 22, 2007
I went to my old haunts tonight with my lovely 18 year old daughter and her beau for my birthday dinner. She mentioned she was low on money and I was dead broke so I decided to go to my old casino where I worked closely with the floormen and pit bosses as a lowly pit clerk.
I was a bit anxious at exposing myself and mooching for dinner and wondered if it would take me an embarrassingly long time. But at my first stop in pit 10 I saw Nancy, the dual floorman and pit boss. She had always been excellent in her customer service to me as a boss and the day she discovered I got hired to deal at the Imperial Princess she confronted me and told me to see her after I dealt for a year and she would get me a job at one of a couple of Strip casinos (my guess is the tips at them average around $60k/yr) which honored me to no end.
Well, I told her it was my birthday and she asked me if I was hungry and then wrote a comp for the 3 of us and 2 rounds of drinks. What a fine boss!
So, we went to the casino coffee shop, which, folks, is quite a thing at a posh Strip casino, one of the largest in Las Vegas. Well, you can see from the pictures that it was a great meal. Steak and lobster (filet, that is), Rib Eye steak, chicken fajitas and 3, count em, 3 appetizers. The waiter kept trying to give us more and more food, all for a better tip, of course. Huge Scampi, chicken wings and the best Brushceta I've had in years.... The check was over $200. This joint knows how to treat you nice.
My daughter kept expressing guilt over the extravagance, and asked me how I knew the bosses here and all. I just explained to her that this how Vegas worked. We take care of each other.
I told her it's like we are building covens of followers whom we help along the way in the casino industry. I told her about Milo (true name since this is post-humous), the man I never met but who benefited my family economically for 20 years. Mom would always talk about how Milo did this for her and did that. As he prospered and went from a better casino to another better casino he always took my mom with him. And she made more and more money. One day she told us that Milo died. Our juice who had prospered our family for 2 decades was gone.
But by then she had widened her juice network and eventually landed jobs at the top casinos in town, earning almost six figures. Yes, folks, I said six figures. In fact, it was a six-figure amount she showed me that fateful day last summer when she took me out for lunch to compare our incomes and illustrate my need to jump on the Vegas money train.
Now, she has juice waiting for me when my dealing skills get to par, especially my roulette. But, she wisely suggested to take the pit clerk job at the famous casino I mentioned where I have generated my own juice.
You see, folks, if you have a commitment to excellent customer service and you work hard at it, which wasn't hard for me cuz I got joy out of giving it, and you learn the basic dealing skills casino bosses are going to go way out of their way to further your career.
So, Johnny Lee, the young chinese pit boss who earned my favor by deliberately learning the names of all his lowly pit clerks and just establishing a warm human connection with everybody, told me on my last day there that he would juice me in as a dealer. I was floored. I thought he was joking but he made it clear that he was dead serious.
Sometimes it floors me to think how easy it is to get a job earning $70,000 a year at merely 40 hours a week. It feels surreal, folks, like I'm cheating somehow.
In many circles such talk would be quickly labeled pipe dreams and boyish fantasy. "You think you're just gonna waltz in there and in a year be earning over $60 grand a year as a dealer? HA!”
But, my mom is doing it, my step-dad did it, and I see hundreds of dealers doing it every day here! I mean, you gotta be stupid to shun the job opportunities in Vegas! If you like people and can add to 21, are willing to give excellent customer service and give up holidays, it's a cinch.
Saturday, July 21, 2007
He just turned 26 all over again.
The guys at PC Mechanic set up for Vegas Baby a hearty Happy Birthday thread.
His international lover sent him a QuickCam for international video messaging.
Because of his casino shift he's gonna miss his family's big birthday dinner at an Italian restaurant they have each year cuz several members of his family have birthdays in July. This is common for Vegas families, casino workers often don't celebrate Christmas and such on the proper day due to their inflexible work requirements.
But Vegas Mom called him this morning and wished him a happy birthday and said she'd take him out for sushi next week.
So even though Vegas Baby's still terribly broke, he's rather happy today.
.....................Happy Birthday, Mr. Dealer Extraordinaire..................
Friday, July 20, 2007
Jeez, I go to work the next day and find my car. Now I have to get Metro, my favorite organization, to clear the car off of the Stolen Vehicles list and turn the damn thing in and somehow pay for it!
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Damn, It's Hot
Crap, either his rental car was stolen or they frickin repoed it! How rude is that?
They called twice today while he was at work, going on about how he was only supposed to have it for 3 days- which was a damn lie.
These new cars have those GPS chips n they may have located it that way. Either way it spelled trouble for Vegas Baby- just what he needed.
He searched the parking garage for several hot, stuffy minutes before concluding it was stolen or repoed. So he walked up to the Flamingo bus stop drenched in sweat with the above 100 degree night air.
He caught the gargantuan Deuce, the double Decker bus that ran up and down the Strip. It was full of tourists and whatnot. He eventually worked his way to the upper level, amazed at the coolness of the air conditioning in this behemoth.
He passed his mother's casino where she makes triple his income which late last year inspired him to starve for a year to earn the same. And it looked like he would indeed starve, well, not literally, since he got free food, as employees in all Vegas casinos do.
But no car, having to move behind his casino, which may mean an apt.with hot air conditioning, and other deprivations came to visit him. Like tonight, he was sick earlier at work and felt very fatigued and worn out. So naturally this would be the night he would have no ride home.
He dreaded the last part of the ride home from the Downtown Transportation Center to his ghetto house. The bus went way out of his neighborhood before it swung back to his area which was usually inhabited by a sundry and varied dark denizens of the night, whose nerve-wracking habit of approaching him for money for sexual favors or drugs or just simple pan-handling he didn't look forward to.
He would have to rely on the kindness of his co-workers for rides to his casino or leave 3 hours early to catch the bus or risk failing probation, until he could move into a new hovel with new rude vagaries he'd have to tolerate. Man, becoming a casino maven sure was taking a toll on his person!
He was exhausted and wanted to lay his head down but this buxom babe in front of him might take offense to his proximity. Besides he needed both hands to type this text into his smartphone. Otherwise, how would his readers hear about the plight of Vegas Baby?
The Deuce belched Vegas Baby out onto the dark, heated concrete of the Downtown Transportation Center and he quickly discovered another late night bus route that will take him directly to his hovel, well, a couple of blocks away anyways. And it leaves in only 15 minutes. So he parks himself on a hot brick wall waiting for the 403 Northbound with all sorts of black people around him. One super-short white girl who is at least in her twenties though she is the size of a 12 year old, walks by him carrying a tiny black chihuahua in her arms.
Vegas Baby is getting thirsty and he's sure he's gonna have to wash his sweat-drenched uniform shirt. A guy is sitting on the brick wall with a bottle of red Gatorade only to remind him of his thirst.
The 403 is nowhere to be seen and it's due to depart in 3 mins. Fuck, the last thing he needs is a canceled bus!
Dammit! He misread the route times and he had already missed the last 403 No. Now he has to take the 208 W at 1031 pm which would make him have to walk at least 15 mins.
Crap- he may as well have walked this whole last leg. His head was starting to hurt. What he would give right now for a cold drink of water.
A fat, bearded black man next to him fanned himself vainly with his hand in a pathetic gesture. Vegas Baby was tired and grouchy and just wanted to get home into his cool bed.
He felt guilty about how cool his room was when he barely paid any rent and the landlord asked him to make it warmer because the electric bill was over $300 last month and he thought it would be a great idea to pay a couple hundred more in rent to compensate especially since his rent has been so very low for the past 7 months. Only problem with that bright idea was he couldn't even pay his normal rent this month. In fact, he was over $700 in the hole. He had no idea how he was gonna cover that. His car payment got covered thanks to the charitable contribution of a good friend, who turned out to be a real mensch.
But not so his cc bill or cable or 6 others on his never-ending list. He felt he was really gonna sink this time....
The bus was only 8 minutes late. A homeless guy was on their that he
recognized. He used to own a motor scooter and would come early on 'stew day' to get extra portions, telling Becky, volunteer worker that it was better than sex.
He gave his seat up for an elderly Philippino woman who thanked him and sat down. He could almost taste the cold water sitting in his fridge.
The bus let him off at Washington and D street. Now, to walk the gauntlet, Vegas baby thinks to himself, as he turned the corner to E street....
...............................Vegas Baby's E street shadow...................
He found E Street to be almost deserted, much better than F Street, which he took the other night. Only one soul came near to crossing his path. He took some pics of the desolate neighborhood.
..............................Ye Ole Cycle Shoppe....................
...................................The Compound at Night..........................
He finally came to the Compound relieved at how fast and uneventful the walk was.
When he got home and fired up his computer he found out that there were more fraudulent transactions that got to his bank account via Second Life. Another fucking $500 + with $198 more in overlimit fees! Omg, when does it ever end?
Then after the police representative came over the next morning and took his stolen car report, he realized that he had canceled his car insurance policy when he found out his car was dead, forgetting that the car rental was covered by this policy....
Vegas Baby sure managed to screw himself this time....
Sunday, July 15, 2007
For all you prospective dealers out there. Take it from mom, a dealer with 30+ years experience. She opened the Treasure Island, Bellagio, and the super-posh casino, the Manhattan (pseudonym).
She was earning triple my income last summer when she told me that I needed to get a better job.
Here she is in a voicemail.
"Hey,this is your mom. I'm gonna tell you how to keep your job. When you make a mistake at the table, don't fix it yourself, always call the floor. It's an important thing to remember. So that way you're off the hook.
"I know sometimes when you make too many mistakes you don't want to call them over every time, but you just have to do it. So that way no one can say anything bad about you."
What's funny is, I was just thinking the day before she gave me this advice, under what circumstances should I alert my supervisor when I've done one of my many (often ADD-induced) errors.... And believe me, there are many- I could really use my ADD medicine....
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Next, is the Longhorn Casino, home of the only dollar blackjack table in Vegas. Used to be lots of houses that featured dollar tables- hell, the Sahara used to have 7 tables every night of the week just 4 yrs ago. But that is a thing of the past now.
So, in the quaint Longhorn Casino , I secretly evaluate the dealers on the $1 BJ table. And I think to myself, this one will make it... or, oh no, this one will never cut the mustard.... And who comes to deal at my table? Jessica, the quixotic tattooed Princess dealer.
She has these awesome tattoos on her arms, mostly on her left arm with an interesting Asian caricature on the inside of her right forearm.... Very interesting, indeed. After she dealt only 2 hands, I piped up, “Honey, you're in the wrong place...”
She looked at me briefly and continued to deal lightning fast.... Eventually we had a good chat going on. She had only been working there for 5 days. She actually worked for 5 years at the very casino I work in and knew one of my big bosses. Folks, Vegas is a small town if you've been there for more than 5 years.
Jessica took this job at the flea-bitten Longhorn casino after taking a year off to party. Hence, she was concerned that she couldn't pass the chemical substance test. She did, while applying at this rinky-dink casino.
After watching her skills and surmising what she must be making in tips, about 1/3 of what she made at the Imperial Princess and hearing that she also taught table games at the Las Vegas Professional Gaming Academy, I told her to just walk out of this joint. She wouldn't have enough time to find a good dealing job wasting her precious hours at this dive. She mentioned that she was afraid to go to her car at night when she got off and judging by her reaction when I told her to have Security walk her to the car I repeated my suggestion that she leave this job.
I don't know if anything I said was helpful to her but one day I hope to see her dealing at a posh Strip casino. I suppose it will have to be a house that has long sleeved uniforms like we do at the Imperial Princess to cover her quixotic tattoos.
So, here's the Vegas Baby's shout-out to the uber sharp dealer, Jessica: Hey there, girl, you're too hot a dealer to swim with the goldfish, get over here into the shark tank! Believe. Walk tall. And never look back.
I lived on W. Charleston and got off at 4 am. The Strip bus stopped running at 2 am until 5 am. I often got off at 2 and would be so tired and hot with no place to go for hours.
The Sierra Circle casino had no breakroom where I could nap or at least hang out.
This time I hope to have a better go at it. I suppose I have to try to move into the dingy-ass apartments behind the Imperial Princess.
So, my Friday is over. I've decided to turn in the rental tomorrow after I renew my driver's license- I really couldn't afford to keep it this long.
Now , I'm feeling it, folks....
I'm broke as hell, I got bills up the ying yang that I can't pay for for the first time since beginning this casino venture. Three weeks ago I spent the last of my savings for the car repair- 14 fucking hundred dollars on my lovely Cadillac which I cannot drive or repair. All I can do with that car is pay off the $5400 I owe on it at 29% interest.
Sigh... It sucks to be poor, folks.
I feel deflated. My neck twitch is all up and running strong, makes me look like an idiot, I'm sure.
But I'm not despondent. I'm hurting that's for sure, but I see a very strong light at the end of this tunnel. It's called a posh dealing job. If I can manage to pass probation and learn pai gow poker and strengthen my roulette I know I can win a position at the Golden Nugget or the MGM Grand and that's without my mother's juice. With it... who knows?
So, it's July- 6 months will be January, then I truly have the chance to make over $60,000/yr! And this is no pipe dream, dealers are doing it EVERY DAY here in Vegas. I got 18 months experience and just have to get the rust out of my roulette and 21 game and pick up pai gow- learning craps would help lot but I don't think I can wrap my ADD brain around that game- hell, I can't even play it. But I got all t ingredients to truly be a dealer extraordinaire. And I aim to do it! Like I told my international lover the other day- nothing is going to stop me.
So, I am screwed on a car loan I gotta repay though I can't drive or repair it- so what?
I mean, what would you do for $60,000/yr? Hell, I would shovel chicken shit for that- Man,I would separate the colors for that much! And what do I have to do for that income? Sleep with the casino manager? Kill someone?
All I gotta do is learn my games, be teachable, be proactive, keep my nose clean and sort of play a game with my customers and make them feel good which I LOVE to do and am good at! And that is all for only 40 hrs/ wk. I don't have to work 60 hrs/wk, don't have to take my job home and be on my computer for 3 hrs/night like some corporate weenie....
Sometimes when I think about it, I feel like I'm cheating somehow.
But t thing is, dealers are doing it by the hundreds EVERY DAY in Vegas.
"Psst, hey buddy! Wanna triple your income?"
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Out of the corner of my eye I see the silhouette of a man on all fours on the shoulder. I pulled over and got out of the car- it looked like he was injured.
I jog about 60 yards to the scene of the accident and find him sitting on the ground with his back resting on the freeway divider with the freeway truck driver and a girl who is crying. I ask him where it hurts and as I wait for his answer I hear the squeal of brakes and turn to see a speeding car that is trying to get out of the far right lane where his smashed car was. The girl starts to run then stops when the car avoids causing another accident. I turn my attention back to the man who has now stood up but hear another squeal of brakes and turn to see a pickup truck narrowly miss his wrecked car by veering onto the shoulder we were standing on.
I shout to the two car occupants to move further down the freeway and I turn to the driver and ask him if he has any flares. He says they are behind the seat of his truck and for me to get them because he is calling 911.
I run to the truck and can't get behind the seat. Two other drivers from two other trucks come walking up slowly and I wave at them to come over and direct them to get the flares. The lead driver looks at me stupidly and I turn and go back to the first driver and tell him to get the flares and I'll call 911.
So, in a couple minutes the flares go up as I try to get the 911 operator not to put me on fucking hold. WTF is that all about? Jesus Christ, this was an accident waiting to happen and you're gonna fucking put me on hold??? FUCK!
So he tells me they are already responding to the first call from the driver so I hang up and take some pics and see the ambulances and fire trucks coming into view. Don't know why five Highway Patrol cars weren't there like they were when they tried to arrest me three days ago.
I turned to the young man and tell him to get a lawyer, that this is bullshit, it's very unsafe. I told him to make sure he and his girl go to the hospital to get checked out.
Then I make my exit. The situation was under control.
Like most ADDers I may not be able to balance a checkbook or keep my room tidy but I am damn good in an emergency.
Omg, it's ruined, I should have burned it months ago....
The mechanic said I ruined the engine when it overheated last week. And I need a new engine.... Which of course will be THOUSANDS of dollars.
I owe $5400 on it....
I got $80 in the bank.... and a $320 fricking car pmt coming out of my paycheck this week.
What the hell am I going to do?
Sunday, July 8, 2007
It's not everyday a guy gets guns drawn on him....
Dammit! Busted by the Highway Patrol again. Clocked at 89 mph!
Jeez, I need a radar detector, t poor wannabe millionaire thought to himself, prolly-----
(in real time this is when Vegas Baby, while typing this memo on his handy-dandy smartphone, was RUDELY interrupted)
After taking Vegas Baby's driver's license and running it, the Highway Patrolman stepped out of his car. When he saw the cop unstrap his gun he knew he was in for some drama.
Unbeknownst to him, FIVE other cop cars had converged on him.... Out of one of them, another patrolman drew his gun he saw out of the corner of his eye.
As the first cop ordered him out of the car with his hands up and to walk backward he had to cup his hand to his ear cause the cop didn't speak loud enough to overcome the freeway noise. That's when the first shot went off...
The cop merely handcuffed him and placed him in the back of his car. And the other cops gathered round and then began the sifting out of the truth. This is about the fourth time Vegas Baby has been cuffed in the past 7 months.
A former employer, Joey Rubico (his real name, unlike any others in this blog), became a crack fiend-
and used Vegas Baby's name, social security number and age when he got arrested in 2000 for- of all goddamn things, credit card forgery while the hapless wannabe millionaire worked for- you guessed it- a credit card bank! He thought for sure his employer would fire him because of the implications.
Vegas Baby spent 9 frickin days in jail while the authorities sorted his identity out... His bipolar went largely untreated since the jail ass doctor only prescribed him a weak shit mood stabilizer- he could still recall the large white plastic-feeling capsule and its strange taste. His nerves were so shattered he had a hard time remembering how to sign his name for months afterwards.
That adventure also cost his mother $5000 for a lawyer to even begin to work on the case and it still took him a week to get him out.
After a couple more mistaken arrests and multiple handcuffings, the cops found out the felonious sod had a 6 inch scar on his left knee. This became Vegas Baby's way out of going to jail every time a cop ran his name.
On the side of the freeway, one Highway Patrolman examined his knee and said, "I don't see a scar, do you?" Vegas Baby almost laughed outloud at that....
So, the cops uncuffed the future casino maven and told him he should get Metro Police Department to sort this out. Vegas Baby refrained from going through the whole spiel about how he contacted the officer in charge of Record Challenges and was assured that there was a total separation between his crack addicted fomer boss and the future darling of the Las Vegas casino industry....
If you haven't read the first post to this blog below, PLEASE DO SO FIRST by clicking here:
Dark and very quiet
It was dark and quiet; very quiet in the house. His hair stood on end as he went from room to room kinda like the cops do in the movies only he was armed with his damned Motorola V276 cellphone- Oh, God, don't let him get started on Verizon Style customer service- not the Smith and Wesson his fingers cried out for.
The house was void of bad guys. Only Curtis who stayed upstairs and Frankie in the room next to his were in the house. He checked for missing items and, by God, they left his computer alone! He did find they took his wine bottles, DVDs and two cans of soup and tuna.
But what would poor Frankie think? His 67 year old paranoid roommate who barely spoke English had been telling him for weeks, while he locked the sliding glass door in broad daylight, “Johnny, this is a veeeery dangerous neighborhood with lots of baaad people! You mustn't leave the door open! It's veeery dangerous!”
Frankie was going to go over the edge in anxiety and panic. This is his worst nightmare come true....
Well, that was the first break-in. Two more were to follow. Those involved his own damned bedroom window being broken and them making a forced entry while he was at work. His Cadillac would be gone so they must have figured it was a good time to invade.
It was hard to free his mind of anxieties whilst sleeping next to the broken window that burglars had just entered hours before. He had to employ making up dumb reasons in his head as to why they wouldn't dare come back so soon after their crime....
The landlords took their time fixing the window. So much time, actually, that the frickin burglars came thru it again just four days later!
That pissed Vegas Baby off. He fumed for hours at work in the posh casino, wondering what the hell the landlords were thinking! Wasn't security important to them? He imagined himself icily interrogating Craig or Rhonda about their criminal negligence. What if Frankie got hurt, physically or emotionally? What were you thinking? This was inexcusable!!!
But, basically, he was a guest there, allowed to stay for hardly any rent money, a fortunate situation indeed. And he was oddly submissive in certain circumstances, a more self-respecting man would have said, the hell with it, and at least confronted them when the window wasn't fixed the next day after the burglary.
CSI Las Vegas, the model for the TV show, actually came out and took pictures of the dusty footprints on his sheets for his bed abutted the wall where the window was. They even got DNA samples from some blood one of the criminals left when he cut himself on the glass. He
Fortunately, the landlords put bars on the windows after several days of dithering about. So now Vegas Baby sleeps in relative safety.
Damn it all! The poor man cursed to himself.
A wannabe millionaire is stuck at midnight on the Strip trying to get home with a broken down luxury car and barely enough cash to get a bus.... With a negative bank balance thanks to the professionals at Enterprise Rentacar. And he's in debt to the love of his life and his mother and his best friend and still hasn't enough to cover his bills.
And the car- good gawd- the $5500 in-debted broken down curse on 4 wheels. Which is costing him over $700/mo. Which means he has to find some way to get rid of it and its debt and live behind his casino in the dumpy ass apartments which prolly has got hot air-conditioning and live there consigned to his online life IF Linden Labs has fixed his gorram acct!
This fucking sucks.
He can't get on Second Life nor will those sods email him so he can find out wtf is going on with the scammers who hijacked his account.
So goes the plight of Vegas Baby...
The Strip bus, the million dollar double decker behemoth, dubbed The Deuce, by the city pols, dropped him off at the Downtown Transportation Center, and he decided to just hoof it the last 3/4s mile to home. Vegas Baby lives in the dark streets of the other Las Vegas. Which is inhabited by a seamy lot yet with gems of people sprinkled throughout.
A fat, black girl saw him coming down the street and walked over to his side and when he passed said, “Take me home witchu.”
He smiled at her, kept on walking and said, “Sorry, honey. Not tonight.”
A few minutes later a tall, lanky black man came ambling up to him.
“You need a lock? I got a lock for sale.” He said.
Vegas baby wondered if the man could read his mind. He had just been assigned a locker at his new job. “Well, yeah, I do need a lock... how much?”
“Only four bucks....”
“Here...” he dug into his wallet and then stopped, “Oh, I only got a ten.” He said.
“You can get change in there,” the street locksmith said, pointing at a hollowed out casino/bar inhabited by a strange looking crowd.
Beads of sweat formed on Vegas Baby's forehead. He had driven by that joint everyday for months. Without fail, there were hungry-eyed folk staring at him every time he drove by. It's as if every single one of them were wanting something from me, he thought to himself, as their eyes bore into him. Like I got cash for a hooker or for some drugs.... “I'm not going in there....” He mumbled and then walked off.
The impoverished wannabe millionaire shrugged off all of the other man's cries to just enter that dark, foreboding hovel and get change for his sale and walked the last two blocks to his home while chatting up a friendly homeless white guy who matched his pace from across the bar but proved to be genuinely harmless.
The Compound, he often thought of it, with it's locked gates and steel fences, though the house he stayed in only had a fence four feet high. THEY had broken into the Compound three times in one week a couple months ago. Some unknown and decidedly clumsy burglars.
In his previous job as a pit clerk in a swank and huge casino, Vegas Baby didn't get home until 230 am on a good night. One dark, hot summer night, he found the weakly locked gate forced open and the front door ajar.
He paused and collected himself. Pulled out his cell phone and entered 911 and put his finger on the Send button, wishing he had a gun, a big, black, fully loaded semi-automatic piece. He slowly pushed the door open and entered his house, ears straining to hear evidence of the presence of dangerous intruders.
TO BE CONTINUED...