Hard At Work in Las Vegas

At some point in almost any American’s working life, there will be an opportunity to go to Las Vegas. Every industry association, franchise group, non-profit consortium, political group, and even church group will hold an annual conference in Vegas from time to time. There have been perhaps billions of meetings called with bosses by employees imploring the value of attending this year’s Association of Salami Slicers (that’s right: A.S.S.) meeting at the Monte Cristo Rio Oahu Peoria Resort and Conference Center. I have been on both sides of the desk in a few hundred of these meetings, and I can tell you desperately-seeking-Vegas employees that the best strategy is to invite your boss to go with you.

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We like Las Vegas. Sorta. There’s only one place on Earth that we’ve been able to indulge in a 2a.m. all-you-can-eat lobster buffet, and it ain’t Disney World. Despite the crowds, the heat, the superficial and gaudy glitz, the pricey hotels, and the incessant clinking, chirping, and bleeping of slot machines (“fruit machines” for our European readers), we like to go to Las Vegas. That’s doubly significant when we impart to you that we don’t gamble. We don’t have anything against it, and that’s not to say we never gamble. We have, just not as a recreational activity on a regular basis. Because I took a few statistics classes in college, I know, in the long run, I’ll be left sitting penniless, shirtless, and with only 1 shoe at the flapjack table.

So our gambling is limited to emptying our pockets of change at the machines flanking the restrooms while waiting for one another. Oddly, those machines never pay out anything, but at least we’ve lightened our load. Oh well, then we can go see a magician or two (seriously, if you get to Las Vegas, go see Penn & Teller, though when we visited they were performing in New York), a diva singer or two well-past her prime, drink quadruply priced frozen drinks with a drop or two of booze, take a dip in a nice pool filled with people dodging the conference they’re supposed to be attending, and then, in the middle of the night, make yourself sick eating tasty crustaceans.

What’s not to like?

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