I’ve written about this before: How I often struggle with defining the purpose of my blog, and on deciding where to draw the line that determines what is “appropriate” to blog about. Given my desire to go into media where, let’s face it, nothing is ever really private, I generally hesitate sending anything personal into the blogosphere, and out into the world.
It’s not like I have thousands of followers: I’d be thrilled to have a dozen regulars, actually. But still, my future self would rue my present self, if future self became known by something silly present self said.
With all of this in mind, I’ve decided to just go right on ahead and blog about my trip to Vegas. Going there for my 21st birthday was, after all, on my bucket list.
It was a point of contention when exactly the last time I visited Sin City was. Some time between 1999-2003. Needless to say, it was a very different Vegas than the one I experienced this past weekend.
In the spirit of my trip, I will leave a lot of what happened in Vegas, in Vegas. (This is mostly because leaving out a few things makes my trip sound much more mysterious and intriguing.) For the sake of being educational, I have chosen to make a list of everything I learned while away.
LIST OF THINGS I LEARNED IN VEGAS THAT I WOULD HAVE BEEN OKAY NOT LEARNING:
1. I have a tendency to pronounce typical all-American-sounding names with a Middle Eastern accent.
2. Video poker is not your friend.
3. Free shots given to you from a kind gentleman on the street that smell like paint-thinner, don’t necessarily taste like paint-thinner.
4. Denny’s will almost always trip to skimp you out of your Hobbit trading cards. Don’t let them.
5. Even if you try to run away from somebody chasing you up a crowded escalator, if they really want to, they will catch up to you. And then you’ll come off as rude. So always so ‘Hi’ to Paulo from Harlem. Even if the price tag is still on his hat and he’s in desperate need of a belt, he’s actually really nice.
5. Chickens can eat oyster shells. (But you probably don’t want to.)
6. Successfully convincing your mom to go to a hookah bar with you is one of the funniest and most awesome birthday presents you can get. Unfortunately, you can only ask for this once in a lifetime.
7. The Passion Pit is probably not somewhere you’d like to hang out.
8. When Victor leaves the Blackjack table, you should also probably leave. His replacement is too good at Blackjack for you.
9. One of the best decisions you can make is to run away from the dejected-looking balding Elvis. He’s not like Paulo from Harlem.
10. A contraption has been invented that ensures your guitar strings stay in tune. It’s quite expensive and has a difficult-to-remember name.
11. The pina coladas at Bellagio are much tastier, but the ones at Mirage are so much stronger.
12. Sometimes when you think you’re calling Langley, you’re actually calling the Caribbean.
The rest, my friends, remains in Vegas.
Anyone who knows me knows that I love popcorn.
I like kettle corn, and caramel corn is alright, but I simply adore air-popped popcorn with the traditional salt and butter as toppings.
I’ve loved it ever since I can remember, and even while working at a movie theatre for three years I still didn’t get sick of the stuff.
And despite a tragic childhood incident involving a hot kernel, it’s still possibly my favourite snack.
I don’t remember how young I was, but I remember the popcorn machine whirring on the counter, and the smell of popcorn filling the kitchen.
I had been warned several times to stay far away from the popper so as to not get burned.
So I stood, waiting in joyous anticipation, a couple of metres away from what would soon become my snack.
Now, I don’t know how exactly the next part of the story was possible: it defied physics itself!
But out of the popcorn machine flew a single burning hot kernel.
It soared through the kitchen, past the popcorn bowl and the counter, and landed right between my fingers.
It burned my skin, but mostly I was in shock: I wasn’t standing close to the machine, and the kernel didn’t just hit me, but wedged itself perfectly between my two fingers.
I learned two things that day.
First, that it is always possible to get hurt no matter how many precautions you take.
And second, that nothing can come between me and my love for popcorn.
I’d like to dedicate this story to my Grandpa, my dedicated blog reader and fellow popcorn lover.