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A Journalist Goes To Vegas And...

By Chuckmonster on Tuesday, 5th April 2011 5:03pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 9

   

Journalist goes to Las Vegas for X days, drinks debauches and ends up going to church or sitting in on gambling addiction support group or sleeping with the storm drain people or hanging with hookers in Pahrump or looking for God in Death Valley while documenting everything through disdain colored glasses.

A-gain.

The Huffington Post/AOL/TechCrunch contributor Paul Carr is going to spend the next 33 days staying one night each in all of the strip's casinos and documenting the entire affair. I suspect after five days of it, he's going to start spending four days at Wynn one day at Excalibur, three days at Cosmo, one day at Riviera, five days at Aria/CityCenter, one day at Circus Circus. Little does he know that moving from hotel to hotel every day eats up about 4 hours of the day.

But haven't we seen this before? And by truly great writers? Hunter S. Thompson went to Vegas not to write Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, but to cover the Mint 400 and the cops convention as a journalist, what he found was that the story wasn't about the race or convention, it was that the ideals of the 1960's counterculture - his American Dream - had fizzled out and died.

And what about A. Alvarez' biograph of the halcyon days of the World Series of Poker, in perhaps the greatest book about poker ever written The Biggest Game in Town.

Or maybe James McManus' truly electric Positively Fifth Street which documents how his trip to Las Vegas to cover the Ted Binion murder trial and women in poker turned into his final table appearance at the World Series of Poker.

And then there is the book which Carr's entire premise appears to be pilfered from: 24/7: Living It Up and Doubling Down. 24/7 is Andres Martinez' 1998 account of heading to Las Vegas for... 30 days with.... $50k in publishers advance money where he... stayed in 10 different casinos and... gambled at least $1k per day. He hung out with sex workers, cops, in church, with gambling addicts and swore to spend time away from the bright lights of the strip too.

Sound familiar?

Perhaps Mr. Carr should stay home and keep Fappleing about the latest shiny gagetry from Cupertino.



Tagged: worms   





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Comments & Discussion:

Not an original premise, but definitely something I would have liked to do in my youth. I agree the check-in process will get to him by the end of the second week. It will be interesting to see what gets to him first: the cost, the drinking, the lack of sleep, the constant commotion, or moving between hotels. I'm betting he quickly leaves his car at one property and walks to his next. He's already got one strike against him by starting at the Sahara (and probably means Circus and Riviera for this weekend). He is going to check-in and discover half the Sahara is shut down (Oops, nowhere to pickup a bottle of water or that deoderant you forgot).

I can't figure why he says Americans don't like Vegas anymore. He must be hanging with the curious class.

I wanted to live in a CityCenter condo for a month and write about it but I couldn't find anyone willing to rent me anything for less than six months.

If Las Vegas has almost 40 million visitors, I dont understand the following.
I have read that about 10% of all Las Vegas visitors are non-USA, so what are the remaining 36 million? Americans who dont like Vegas, but are forced to go?

In the book the Mint 400 and the National District Attorneys Convention bookend each other, as if the Mint 400 ended one day, and the DA convention was starting the next day. In reality, there was a little bit more than a month between the two events.

In the book, Raoul Duke was on his way back to L.A. and only headed back to Vegas after calling Dr. Gonxo from Baker (Where he had spotted the hitchhiker they had scared off a few days earlier and called Dr. Gonzo in a fit of panic.), having never read the telegram the guy at the Mint had given him. So in regards to dramatic license, Duke's changing hotels is of an extreme nature that just seems logical in the context of that story.

I've read day one and day two, there is an angle that's interesting recovering alcoholic, I guess we'll see how it goes. I do agree with Chuck, that every day in a new place is a bit absurd and almost completely removes the ability to 'live' in the city for a month.

I did find it sort of funny in day two's recant where he bemoaned conventions and the pool, I guess he must have been fully intoxicated 24/7 on his trip last time, the interesting thing I've always found in Las Vegas, is there is this mix of the bizarre (toga party) with everyday (convention, middle america, european tourists) that occasionally turns into this absurdity wonderful chaotic spectacle. It doesn't always turn out that way, but it's one of the reasons I spend 20 days out there a year.

Hunter, there are vdara owners who rent nightly.

@kage - Sure, I've seem some of 'em. They seem determined to rent their units like a hotel - expensive weekends and higher rates for conventions. I'm sure it makes sense for them but for the purposes of my experiment, I'd need both someone who isn't going to charge me four grand to live at Vdara for a month and someone that can offer thirty days continuous.

I'd pick Veer if I had the choice.

silly of them not to negotiate.

maybe try an operator like Jet Luxury Resorts?

could also try talking to MGM from publicity standpoint if you havent already. although i guess they might want editorial control.

I think I've figured out the whole point of the 'diary'. Watching Paul continue to tweet that he feels more comfortable at Vdara, and given his history of recovering alcoholism, maybe it's not the average tourist that's fallen out of love with Las Vegas, maybe it's Paul?



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