Waiting for My Real Life to Begin

The life and times of a girl named Swishy.

Monday, January 14, 2008

All we need is an Elvis sighting

We pick up our wacky weekend at the Las Vegas airport ...

* For those of you who have never been in the Las Vegas airport, there are slot machines EVERYWHERE. Bright, shiny, pretty pillars of iniquity, smack dab in the middle where the shoe shine stands and SmartCarte rows are in other airports. Naturally, I HAVE to play. I pick a machine in the middle and slide in a dollar, and go 25 cents at a time. First pull: Double sevens! I win a dollar! I’m not so lucky on the next six pulls, which I suspect is not a coincidence. I decide I’m not going to let myself fall under the spell of the great gambling gods--if I win again, I’m getting out before I end up hawking my laptop and beloved, discontinued Bobbi Brown lipstick for gambling money.

Next pull: I win another dollar! I immediately cash out, up 50 cents overall, and go to collect my $1.50 payout from the bored-looking girl in the booth. I almost just keep the little slip of paper instead of cashing out a measly $1.50, but a win is a win, and please, I’ve done about 1.3 billion more embarrassing things in my lifetime than ask a stranger to give me a paltry sum of money. Besides which, I need to take a picture of the dollar and two quarters for my blog! OBVIOUSLY! (More on that in a minute.)

* Random observation: There are a ton of hot guys in the Las Vegas airport on a Sunday night. Unfortunately, they are probably all leaving penniless and destitute, not being big winners with a lucky touch like yours truly. Also, a good half are also probably newly minted disease carriers thanks to the hookers on the strip. So the rule here is: Look, but don’t touch.

* I go to a fast-food place that shall remain nameless and try to order a kid’s meal. I almost always get kid’s meals at fast-food places because, you know, you basically get the same thing, only a smaller portion. Plus, hello, the toy!

So I go up to the counter and try to order a kid’s meal and the woman WOULDN’T LET ME GET ONE!

Her: You should just get a regular meal.
Me: But ... I LIKE the kid’s meal.
Her: I’m going to give you a regular meal.
Me: Can I just get a kid’s meal?
Her: I won’t give you a toy with it.
Me: You won’t ... what? (Pause.) That’s all right, I don’t need a toy.
Her: So a regular meal?
Me: You’re really not going to let me get a kid’s meal?
Her: A regular meal is only five dollars.
Me: It’s not really the price ...
Her: OK, good. Regular meal.

And a regular meal is what I get.

* They have the Golden Globes press conference on TV at the gate. I can hardly even talk about the Golden Globes. You KNOW how I love them. I probably don’t love them as much as my oldest future unborn child, but definitely as much the second-oldest one. DEFINITELY. And they were reduced to a press conference? HOSTED BY BILLY BUSH? Are you kidding me?

I plan on watching the whole debacle when I get home, but I cannot handle that kind of stress when I’m trying to get across the damn country in one piece, so I go hide down a side corridor while I drown my sorrows in my adult-sized Diet Coke. I turn on my computer, and the man next to me glances over and immediately gets an appalled look on his face. I look back at my computer and realize that I’ve forgotten, for about the thousandth time, to change the wallpaper on my computer. (When I was home for Christmas, my sister Stephanie hijacked my laptop and changed the wallpaper to read “Stephanie is a sexy bitch!” in huge writing.) Turns out this man is some sort of clergyman who is going through church paperwork. I feel mildly guilty, but I mean, he snooped first!

And yes, I said first. I start peeking at his papers and realize it’s actually notes on every single person in his congregation. It doesn’t matter that I have no idea who these people are or even where they live--I HAVE to know why he thinks John and Sue Mariano need to be on a “different track” and just what makes Joe Wilson so well-educated on doctrine.

* I am so engrossed in snooping and emailing and avoiding the faux Golden Globes that I don’t realize that I am being paged for my flight. Apparently they are about to close the door. Apparently the flight leaves in like seven minutes. Apparently I am an idiot. I throw my laptop in my bag, grab my purse and book it down the hall to the gate. I flash the Southwest guy my most charming, self-deprecating smile, and he just shakes his head. “Oh, Swishy,” he says with a sigh, which totally makes me laugh, because it’s almost like he really knows me.

This is horrible, though. I’m walking down the ramp to the plane, and of a sudden I think, OH, SHIT! Here’s the thing: I wanted to take a picture of my dollar and two quarters--my big, impressive gambling win--and I wanted it to be authentic, so I didn’t put the winning quarters in my wallet with all of the common quarters. Instead, I stacked them neatly on the floor next to my laptop until I could take their picture. And in my rush, that’s where I left them--on the floor. So now, instead of being up 50 cents, I merely broke even. And someone else is gonna walk by and pick them up and win a million dollars. Or, like, one dollar.

Worst part? I didn’t even get a picture!

* I am on the plane, and I can see the guy in front of me fiddling for the button to recline his seat. I am a very easygoing traveler, I truly am, but if one thing gets me going, it’s seat recliners. I HATE seat recliners. I can see him looking for the button, and in my head, I’m like, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you ... I HAAAAATE YOU! Why? Just ... WHY? It’s two inches. Two inches that make the difference between me being able to actually open my laptop all the way yet probably do not make it any easier for you to shovel nacho-flavored Bugles in your mouth and watch American Pie on your portable DVD player.

Yes, that’s what he’s doing, and yes, the nacho-flavored Bugles are completely assaulting my nostrils and infiltrating my brain. Also, the crunching is making me deaf, and also? American Pie? I would rather peek over your bandwagon Yankees hat at a movie that’s not on USA and/or TBS a thousand times a month, thank you very much, seat-reclining Bugle boy.

* Which brings us to the weekend itself! It was wonderful. Crazy and exhausting but super, super fun. The wedding was lovely and the bride was beautiful and I got to see a bunch of people that I hadn’t seen in forever. I just love my friends to absolute little pieces. It was awesome. I also got to visit my old work, and oh, they were so, SO nice to me. They were like, Swish, we talk about you all the time, we totally miss you, you’re so fun and nice and talented, and I was like, guys, I swear, I do not have ANY incriminating goods on you, you don’t have to say all of that! It was so nice to be remembered that fondly. And they remembered so many things! I’m a very sentimental type, and I always sort of assume that people mean more to me than I mean to them because I’m more sensitive and nostalgic and things like that, so it just made me feel good.

So it was a good weekend. Even though I got my lotion confiscated (Oh! I forgot to tell you that! I will later.) and even though the Bugle boy keeps trying to push his chair in my face. And even though my major 50-cent award is languishing in the Las Vegas airport right now. Even though, even though.


At 7:46 AM, Blogger Moanna said...

and win a million dollars. Or, like, one dollar.

That's my favorite line but the entire posting was hysterical. Thanks for the early morning laugh. Sorry you didn't see Elvis!

At 9:16 AM, Blogger Melissa said...

Your right, about the only thing left you didn't do was see Elvis!! Thanks for the giggle.

At 11:17 AM, Blogger Tuesday Girl said...

I can't believe you were denied a kid's meal. I love the kid's meal!

At 11:48 AM, Anonymous Ree said...

Excuse me, but WTF? They didn't want to give you the bag with the riddles on it?


At 11:50 AM, Blogger Patti said...

tip of the day: when sitting behind a seat recliner make a game out of being a pest. like "how many pretend phlemy i-might-have-ebola coughs will it take before he sits upright?"

At 12:25 PM, Blogger Trish Ryan said...

So many gems in this post. It should be required reading for all girls heading for Vegas.

Maybe you could invent an imaginary child when ordering kid's meals. Just pretend to see the toddler at your side, and look at the cashier with utter contempt that she would deny little invisible Isabella her McKiddie Meal.

At 12:28 PM, Blogger Tanya said...

Think of the quarters like this: those two quarters will make some kids day.

At 1:19 PM, Blogger Beth said...

what with that b*#$% not giving you a kid's meal?!!! YOU'RE THE ONE PAYING FOR IT!!!! she has NO say in the matter!!!! OMG!!!!! I so want to slap her!

I so want to go on a trip with you Swish...oh the fun we would have....

At 2:50 PM, Blogger TTQ said...

I figured out on the flight to Paris how to wedge my knees against the seat in front of me so the person can't lean back. You must keep the pressure steady so they think the recline button in broken, It worked!!! I felt guilty and naughty at the same time but that didn't stop me on the other flights from doing the same thing.

At 4:43 PM, Blogger Chrissy said...

I have never been denied the kids meal. When you do not want a lot, it is the perfect size.

Sorry about your money. When my cousin was at the Vegas airport she won $40.

At 5:13 PM, Anonymous dimples said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 5:32 PM, Blogger Drewpy Drew said...

Not to brag, but when I went to Lost Wages, I saw two Elvi.

Coming into the casino at the same time!

At 5:33 PM, Blogger cubmommy said...

Reading about your adventures really make my day. Thank you!

I always get a kid's meal when I go to the golden arches. I like the portion sizes. I have done it without the kids with me and they have always sold it to me.

At 5:45 PM, Blogger Manic Mom said...

MY SWISHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

EVEN THOUGH, EVEN THOUGH. THAT is the title for your book my dear! EVEN THOUGH, EVEN THOUGH. Next time you go away, and leave us, when you come back, before I even read your post, I am going to youtube me reading your post so you can actually HEAR how much I laugh when I read it. And I wish I could highlight with a sharpie right on my computer screen just how many points I LOL so I could show you or tell you because your posts are the highlight!

Like also I am sooo very sure that whoever FOUND your lucky 50 cents is now a freaking millionaire, and that person is going to go on TV and say, "So, I was walking through the airport and these two random quarters were right there on the floor, next to a chicken nugget box from McD's (Cuz I know it was Micky D's, right?) and I picked them up and went to the slot machine and guess what? I WON A MILLION DOLLARS!"

YOu made someone rich.

ANd of course your old co-workers love you. How could you NOT love the Swishster. I love the Swishster!!! I even bragged about YOU today at MY celebrity-blogger lunch date!!!! : ) Yes I did. You betcha girlfriend!

Don't forget to ask for that time off in Feb, my girlfriend!

At 6:11 PM, Anonymous dimples said...

oh my gah! lucky for you it wasn't one of our pics we took together. that woulda been embarrassing for you, or actually really impressive, and very complimentary for me! damn that 16-year old mickey d's ho that wouldn't give you a happy meal bucket!

At 8:45 PM, Blogger flea said...

too many funny things in this post to mention...awsome post (as usual) you always make me smile & laugh and think, yup, that could be me

and I agree someone probably did win MILLIONS from your quarters.

and I too am so disgusted about the Golden Globes and I too love them more than my 2nd un-born child! I want my red carpet dammit!!!

At 10:23 PM, Blogger Melek said...

you should have just told the guy at the gate "i wouldda been on time but i was bitch-slappin the 'ho at Burger King for not selling me a frickin' happy meal. Can you hold the plane while i go back and get my quarters?"

At 11:28 PM, Anonymous kristabella said...

Dude, I would have been all "the happy meals are less WW points, jack ass!"

I wouldn’t even recommend watching the globes. Bad. Just bad. (They don’t even get a capital G.)

Congrats on your win! Even if it ended up for someone else. But at least you KNOW you won!

Your airport stories are ALL TIME!

At 12:06 AM, Blogger Eileen said...

I cannot even talk about the Golden Globes without weeping. Billy Bush. My God- what has the world come to?

At 12:49 AM, Blogger Stephanie said...


You are way too nice, I would've made her give me the kids meal with the toy. This is America!

At 8:15 AM, Blogger Golightly said...

denied a kids meal? WTF! and why is it every time Im on a flight I get stuck with some odd smelling food eater too - its always something like funions! Dont they know about the non air circulation....ewww! Glad you had fun in Vegas :)

At 11:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your too funny!! I have never been to the Vegas airport, but have a feeling I would never make it to the plane!!! Too overstimulating for me.

I can't believe they wouldn't give you a kid's meal!! You should have said your kid was sitting over there or something. Crazy!!!

Glad you had fun!! Sounds like a blast.

At 11:45 AM, Blogger Sue said...

I think your fast food chick was the same chick I dealt with from Northwest who said "I am not here to help you," although she was plainly wearing a uniform and standing behind the freakin' help counter. Maybe I should have asked for a toy.

I've taken to kicking the seat repeatedly when someone reclines in front of me. Can't help it. I'd be able to cross my legs if I had those two extra inches.

At 3:22 PM, Blogger Rob said...

1) I think that fast food worker is a future politician. Clearly she knows better than you what you want/need! :)

2) Thanks for the 50 cents. I won't tell you what I won with it. You'd only be pissed!

3) I am hurt, crushed, destroyed, emasculated, and eviscerated! I gave you my top secret perfect travel tip on how to cope with seat recliners back at Thanksgiving and you already totally forgot about it?! I thought you loved me? {sigh} That's it! Suicide is my only option now.

Now I don't feel bad at all about all that money I won with your quarters!

;) :)

At 9:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Vegas. It's so trippy. Nice willpower not to keep gambling. I always allot myself a certain amount of money (usually the change I receive while I'm there) and just gamble that. So far, no big winnings. Go figure.

The kids' meal story was priceless. I much prefer kid-sized burgers. Some places only have 1/2 pound burgers, and that's way too big. Why push people into eating more than they are comfortable eating?

At 12:44 AM, Blogger Barrie said...

I'm going to Vegas in March! Now, I'm determined to get a kid's meal there. And win more than you at the airport. And bring my winnings home. Looks like I'm in for a very fun time!!

At 10:50 PM, Blogger Cecily R said...

I LOVE your airport posts. They almost make up for the fact that I never go anywhere!


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