Written by Ross Gariepy
Surely I don’t have to rewrite all of the nonsense from Thursday’s blueprint. Friday is almost exactly like Thursday in terms of timing and pacing of the games. One big difference is that the amount of people in the sports book will double on Friday. And this will annoy you. If you’re unlucky enough, you’ll even get the loudest, most illogical fans standing next to you rooting for their shitty basketball team. Like this guy for instance:
On Friday, you’ll get a little more risky with how you approach the alcohol situation. You’ll buy multiple bottles of liquor, mixers, plastic cups and a bag of ice from Walgreen’s. You’ll effectively open up a mini-bar underneath your table. Don’t hesitate on this because it will be GLORIOUS.
Friday is also the only night you’ll interact with a restaurant waiter all weekend. This is the night to do a “nice” dinner with the whole group. At least that’s the intention…unfortunately a few members of the group will be bitter about all the money they lost earlier in the day and will decide to go to bed at 9:45pm. Even worse, two guys won’t realize that they should just go to bed because they’re blacked out, but instead they’ll go to dinner. They’ll proceed to light a cigar at the table (not legal), cram into a booth with strangers to take pictures of a “unique” sign on the wall while the strangers are trying to enjoy their meal (not cool), and try to light an electronic/fake candle at the table with actual matches (not safe). If you can identify who these people are ahead of time (hint: they are the ones calling your Asian blackjack dealer “Jerry Wong” even though his last name isn’t on his badge), figure out a way to ditch them before dinner.
After dinner, you’ll want to gamble. You spent the entire day making $10 bets on basketball teams you’ve never heard of. Now is the time to throw down unnecessary $150 bets on a single hand of blackjack. Go for it; you deserve it. Or…you could take a cue from the guy who disappeared after dinner and texted you, “I’m taking a giant dump because of that dinner. Might just call it a night after I’m done,” and you could go to bed, knowing you still have two full days to go. Easy excuse to use your bowel movement as a reason to call it quits, and you’ll once again get some great sleep.
This is the toughest day to wake up on time for the morning games. Over the last two-and-a-half days, you’ve drank more than ever, you’ve drastically altered your eating patterns, and you’ve expended an enormous amount of energy doing nonstop calculations in your head. If you’ve listened to anything I said, you already made your bets on the Saturday morning game the night before. Sleep in and watch the opening game from your bed. After all, this is the last you’ll be sleeping in Vegas. But force yourself to get downstairs for the second game (Oh, and did I mention that you should shower each morning so you’re not tempted to go back to the room anytime during the day? Going back to the room during or after the games is a death wish…your bed will grab you and not let go. Stay away).
While Saturday’s events play out a lot like Thursday and Friday, there are less games and overall less energy in the sports book. This is why you’ll want to know a couple of guys who can’t come to Vegas for a full weekend because they’re afraid to ask their wives. Luckily, you were smart enough to convince them three months earlier to fly down on Saturday morning, not bother to get a hotel room, and fly out first thing on Sunday. These people will inject the energy into your group that you need to finish off the weekend. Think about the boost you’ll get from seeing two guys trying to cram four days worth of outrageous Vegas activities into 20 hours. These are the guys who will have a bottle of bourbon under your table in the sports book by 10:15am. These are also the guys who will be so eager to place as many bets on the basketball games as possible that they accidentally have two bets that are in direct competition with each other.
Saturday night is your own personal time. I can’t tell you what to do here. Some guys realize they’ve been staring at sweaty men on TV for the last four days while standing in a room with pretty much all dudes, and they decide to go look at some breasts in their final hours. Other guys have that same four-day experience, and decide to go on a man date to the top of the Stratosphere in those waning moments before the 6am death plane comes to take them home.
The one thing I’m sure of on late Saturday/early Sunday is that if you’re done with your tit show or platonic soulmate date and there are still a few hours to kill before heading to the saddest airport in the world, choose the unneeded meal at Denny’s over two more hours of blackjack. Even making yourself sick by overeating bottomless pancakes is less painful than dropping $200-$300 right before you step on the plane.
And finally, here are some Do’s and Don’ts that didn’t fit anywhere else:
-DON’T book a hotel and count on the poker discount for your room rate unless you have people in the room who are happy to forego the basketball watching in order to log enough poker hours (at the Venetian, six hours per day per room is what you need to qualify for a heavy discount).
-DON’T go back to the cashier and double your bet if you accidentally put down less money on one of the games than you wanted. Take it as a sign and enjoy losing only half your intended bet when your team those fuckers from Duke inevitably lose .
-DO try to make a couple small bets that are extremely unpopular with the rest of the people at the sports book. When the team you bet on makes a run in the second half, you will be the only person out of hundreds screaming with delight. The looks you’ll get from the crowd is worth the cost of the bet itself. This doesn’t mean pick a few underdogs…the ‘dogs actually are pretty popular most of the time. Through various websites, you can find out which side of a game has most of the betting action on it and then go with the opposite.
-DON’T storm off from your group when you lose a bet on Friday afternoon. Even if it’s your 10th consecutive loss, remember that this is a marathon.
-DON’T switch over to betting on the horse races no matter how much they entice you. You don’t know horse racing, you’ll never know horse racing, you’ll continually come close to winning but will never actually win…you are here to lose your money on BASKETBALL.
-DO accept free drinks from the hot promo girls, even if it’s something that automatically makes you puke, like Jameson.
-DON’T try to be sneaky and hide your mini-bar at the sports book from the security guards. The casino probably has 140 cameras trained on you at any given time. If they really didn’t want you drinking your own alcohol, you wouldn’t be.
-DON’T write a 3,000 word blog post on an extremely successful blogging site about all the ways to get by on the cheap in Vegas unless you want thousands of other people to steal your idea and ruin the secrecy of it all.
Read part one: https://caughtinsouthie.com/feature/vegas-baby