Sin City Here I Come: A (Not -Too) Late Birthday Present

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Before I even turned the much-anticipated age of 21, I told myself (and so did my mother) that I would go to Vegas and be the best 21-year-old I could be. Translation: drink, gamble and do all of the reckless things I would not be able to do in a few years. This, however, never happened, and it was not long before I found myself in the same old routine: school, the occasional visit back home, the rare house party and the infrequent satisfaction of purchasing my own alcohol.
Then I turned 22, and decided that this little “ring around the Vegas” had gone on long enough. So, with four fabulous ladies and a Kia that sounded like a never-ending teapot, I was off to the city of sin.
Thanks to my friend’s hotel connections, we managed to score two nights at The Renaissance for a meager two-digit price. However, that did not last long, as we soon realized that Vegas cabs have this preconceived notion that groups of people do not exceed four. Thus, as a party of five we took two cabs, which was double the money. On top of that, the pool was the size of my pinkie. After a few phone calls, we found a room at The Luxor (yep, that’s the pyramid that substitutes inclinators for elevators) and off we were.
For the easily amused, I highly advise going to the Beatles Revolution Lounge at The Mirage. Heat activated tables are a simple pleasure and give you the feeling you’re on drugs, without actually snorting or smoking anything. But beware of creepers that “don’t speak English”— just plain creepy.
Don’t go to Vegas without stopping by La Salsa Cantina, if only for their yard-long margaritas (I recommend the mango and banana) and bonus! You get to keep the massive glass. The food’s not so bad either. Just beware of Cynthia, the balloon bitch, and be sure to ask for Javier, and tell him you know me. Trust me on this one.
That night we watched the gorgeous fountain show at The Bellagio (which reminded me of synchronized ballet). We then hit The Bank, a beautiful club at The Bellagio, but not for gambling money. The music was great, the scene was fantastic, but as always, the drinks cost a year’s worth of college tuition. Oh well. Get your hand stamped, go in and out as you please, and gamble. I plan on eloping with the penny slots, during which time they’ll clearly clean me out of my savings. What a happy marriage that would be, and an even better divorce…
Along with the highly entertaining inclinators (if you’re like me and were not familiar with these, they are elevators that go diagonally, hence the pyramid shape of the hotel), the two gigantic pools (a far cry from The Renaissance of yore) added even more flair to this already incredible trip. The drunks walking around with obscene body part costumes didn’t hurt either.
Before we could say, “What happens in Vegas,” it was time to head back to exciting old Irvine. Well, they also say, “All good things must come to an end.” It’s cheesy, but true.
So, a year later, my 21-year-old dream came true. And I wouldn’t have done it any differently. I blame the four lovely ladies in attendance, along with an awesome guy named Evan, who I dedicate this column to. It’s been three days and I am already ready to go back.
Thank you Las Vegas, for making the rest of the world seem so very, very lame.

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