WootBot


quality posts: 14 Private Messages WootBot

Staff

It's CES Week on the Woot Blog! We're kicking off the festivities (and killing time while we actually fly down there) with a dissertation on Las Vegas, the human condition, and how to cope.

Being assigned to cover CES is a bittersweet moment: sure, there's the glitz and glamor of an electronics industry trade show, all kinds of cool blogger parties I can pretend I was invited to, and blowing my per diem on Ring Dings. Unfortunately, there's the slight inconvenience of the location:

Vegas.

If you've never been to Las Vegas, you might have visions of Rat Pack-era casinos full of tuxedo-clad fellas with slicked-back hair playing Baccarat or asking the sexy dame on their arm to blow on the dice before they throw Craps or downing a martini and polishing off another cigarette before ducking back into the lounge to negotiate some mobster business while taking in a show. Well, take that image out of your head and behind a seedy diner and put a bullet in its head, because there's no such thing and if there ever was it's long gone. No, the Vegas that remains standing today is a heaving, smoke-stained testament to gluttony, sex, and gambling addiction. So upon finding out you're headed there, one experiences The Five Stages of Vegas...

 

DSC223861, Silver Legacy Casino Hotel, Reno, Nevada, USA
"IT'S FIVE IN THE MORNING! WHAT ARE YOU STILL DOING HERE?!"

 

Denial

Upon your arrival in Vegas, the world becomes meaningless and overwhelming. You refuse to admit to yourself the horrible magnitude of the situation you're in, and even try to convince yourself it's not that bad. "Hey," you say in earnest, "maybe this time I'll hang out in the casino. Might even win a couple of bucks!" Your enthusiasm is quickly euthanized when you spend your first night walking around the gaudy, golden interior breathing in more cigarette smoke than you have cumulatively inhaled in your life before, and noting the abundance of sordid, leathery old people seemingly glued to their seats, pulling again and again on penny slot machine arms. And that's when stage two hits you.

Anger

"What the hell are these people doing here?" "Who is insidious enough to capitalize on this kind of behavior?" "Why don't we tear down this monument to all that's wrong with humanity and let the desert consume this whole damn town?" Those are all perfectly normal thoughts you're bound to have as your unbridled anger in the face of raw, unfettered consumerism for no other reason than to spend money and blatant, sex-crazed marketing that assumes your IQ is driven entirely by your genitals hits you full on. You curse the sky and kick the dusty, sun-baked ground as Rita Rudner's bizarre smirk looks down on you, motionless but judging.

 

Overhead Screen Fremont Street
This is Fremont Street. This is what OUTSIDE looks like in Las Vegas.


Bargaining

It's a perfectly natural reaction, when dropped into a soulless, humanity-crushing city, to want to find the fastest way out of town. "Please," you mutter to whatever deity or scientific principle you hold dearest, "Please just get me out of here. I don't want to be here any more." Unfortunately, hopes and prayers have a pretty terrible track record of being answered ANYWHERE, especially Vegas. So soon enough you'll feel yourself sinking into the next stage.

Depression

This is it. You're in it, now. There's no escaping until the trade show is over, so you've got no choice but to strap on your shoes and head to the convention center, trying to avoid all the bizarre phone sex advertising handouts from various immigrants on the strip. The thought of traveling thousands of miles, probably risking deportation along the way, in the hopes of a new life and opportunity only to wind up handing strangers pictures of naked women on the street is enough to make you wish for a nuclear attack on the city with you in it.

Acceptance

As you drown your sorrows in yet another buffet, you realize you're a part of it now. Sure, you can SAY you're here for CES, and you can justify the money you spend as the company dime, but you're in the Vegas food chain. You breathe in the recycled air and you drink the watered-down cocktails and you're okay with it. Your primitive ape brain, faced with such shock and discombobulation, initiates a bizarre Stockholm Syndrome and you begin to accept that this is your life now. The whole world consists of your hotel, the walk to the trade show, and whatever terrible fast food joint you eat at in between because you were so busy taking photos of various iPhone accessories that you forgot to eat.

And just as you start to feel your descent into madness truly hit top speed, it's all over. And it's time to fly home. And you swear to yourself you're never coming back here, but deep down you know you will. Mainly because your boss tells you to.

 

 

 

Flickr photos (in order) DSC223861, Silver Legacy Casino Hotel, Reno, Nevada, USA by Jim G. and Overhead Screen Fremont Street by Caitlyn Willows used under a Creative Commons License.

klozitshoper


quality posts: 2 Private Messages klozitshoper

My, oh my.

maxrfb


quality posts: 8 Private Messages maxrfb

I find it interesting that you use a photo of a casino in Reno to illustrate your blog about Las Vegas.

wow. I actually bought a Robot Elvis.
What was I thinking?

bsmith1


quality posts: 103 Private Messages bsmith1
maxrfb wrote:I find it interesting that you use a photo of a casino in Reno to illustrate your blog about Las Vegas.




No doubt. 'cause Vegas casinos look entirely different. (wink)

bmfb1980


quality posts: 0 Private Messages bmfb1980

Um, if you don't like vegas, then I have some great advice. DON'T GO.

Not everyone in the world is a perfect as you and apparently wants a life where they can sit tableside sipping a glass of Evian or drinking a Starbucks Macchiato, while the ultra-purified, pasteurized and filtered air of the posh restaurant washes over you, all the while thinking how perfect your life is and that it is a crying shame that everyone else doesn't see things the way that you do.

No city on Earth is perfect. Deal with it or opt out of your Vegas assignment. You are a snobbish fool as well... I wonder just how many people, in this day and economy, would LOVE to be able to go to Vegas for a work trip.

Man, I can't believe how stupidly arrogant some people are anymore.

bmfb1980


quality posts: 0 Private Messages bmfb1980

I will also pass along your comments to the Vegas tourism board, so they can talk to your manager, so next there is an out-of-town trip you will get to stay home.

Why on Earth do I get the impression from reading your thoughts on Vegas (rather than all the cool things you will get to see at the trade show) that you are a spoiled 20-something who really hasn't lived life or been anywhere, yet feels that they are a seasoned veteran of the world?

Hubris, anyone?

Unless you want to be a film critic, keep your negative opinions and social commentary out of your posts.

What does your negative opinion of Vegas and anyone who travels there, have to do with anything that Woot sells or does????

I am glad it is on my list of favorite vacation destinations. Right next to Paris, Hawaii, Chicago and my grandparent's home.

WilfBrim


quality posts: 18 Private Messages WilfBrim

The above comments are somewhat, well, strong, but it does raise a point. Let me speak for many of us who don't have employers who "make" them go to places like Las Vegas.

We realize that the "oh, CES is so awful, Vegas is so terrible, woe is me" post is almost required at this point. While the previous comments are rather harsh, the overall feeling is rather common, basically, please stop whining.

Vegas isn't that bad a place. Really. I've been there several times. And compared to other places my "employer" has sent me in the last 20 years, it is a garden spot. Try Chicago in February. Or [location redacted] Iraq. Or [location also redacted] Afghanistan, any time of the year. I could go on.

And, please also, the "oh, CES is so awful" post. Yes, I realize the hours can be long and the walking and time on the feet hard. But you know what? You are at a show and doing something many people would do for free and you are getting paid for it. So, please keep those thoughts to yourself.

klozitshoper


quality posts: 2 Private Messages klozitshoper
bmfb1980 wrote:I will also pass along your comments to the Vegas tourism board, so they can talk to your manager, so next there is an out-of-town trip you will get to stay home.

Why on Earth do I get the impression from reading your thoughts on Vegas (rather than all the cool things you will get to see at the trade show) that you are a spoiled 20-something who really hasn't lived life or been anywhere, yet feels that they are a seasoned veteran of the world?

Hubris, anyone?

Unless you want to be a film critic, keep your negative opinions and social commentary out of your posts.

What does your negative opinion of Vegas and anyone who travels there, have to do with anything that Woot sells or does????

I am glad it is on my list of favorite vacation destinations. Right next to Paris, Hawaii, Chicago and my grandparent's home.



Oh, please, get over yourself. This piece is written by a brilliant writer whose expertise is using irony, humor, and pointing out the ridiculous in many things. I, too, enjoy Vegas, Paris, Hawaii (big island, Lanai, north side of Ohau as well as many other places in the world - Chicago and New York - not among them, and I don't know where your grandparent's home is. You do need an attitude adjustment and a second thought to the vitriol spilled out in your posts.

klozitshoper


quality posts: 2 Private Messages klozitshoper
WilfBrim wrote:The above comments are somewhat, well, strong, but it does raise a point. Let me speak for many of us who don't have employers who "make" them go to places like Las Vegas.

We realize that the "oh, CES is so awful, Vegas is so terrible, woe is me" post is almost required at this point. While the previous comments are rather harsh, the overall feeling is rather common, basically, please stop whining.

Vegas isn't that bad a place. Really. I've been there several times. And compared to other places my "employer" has sent me in the last 20 years, it is a garden spot. Try Chicago in February. Or [location redacted] Iraq. Or [location also redacted] Afghanistan, any time of the year. I could go on.

And, please also, the "oh, CES is so awful" post. Yes, I realize the hours can be long and the walking and time on the feet hard. But you know what? You are at a show and doing something many people would do for free and you are getting paid for it. So, please keep those thoughts to yourself.



You do make certain points very well concerning the benefit of being in a resort area or for that matter anywhere else in the world except the places (redacted) you have mentioned and been assigned to.

I dare say you WOULD NOT do this writer's long-hours, amazing but hugely time-consuming job (nor could you most likely). Smile - enjoy - and if you don't, since when is Woot and anything about it absolutely literal? Would you like the writeups on product and other subjects to just stick to the facts, boring description. Lighten up.

andshewas


quality posts: 0 Private Messages andshewas

for the love of fsm, get yourself to Lotus of Siam for amazing Thai food and then go get a drink at the Double Down Saloon. I'm not sure, but I think they just might be the only two real places in that city.

llandar


quality posts: 32 Private Messages llandar

At least klozitshoper gets me.

RDiver83


quality posts: 0 Private Messages RDiver83

LOL!!! This is Great! Well done, I laughed through the whole thing. Alas, too bad I have to suffer through sitting in this warm office, looking at the north wind bringing the lovely, cold [freezing] air through the trees, and wishing I could be doing something more enjoyable than read Woot posts. Like, say, change out the injectors on my diesel... [grin]
Woe is me... LOL...

stingray69


quality posts: 4 Private Messages stingray69
bmfb1980 wrote:Unless you want to be a film critic, keep your negative opinions and social commentary out of your posts.



♫ Irony! ♫

kdccrosby


quality posts: 7 Private Messages kdccrosby

I went to a work conference in Vegas in October. This made me laugh.

Puts a new spin on those people trying to hand out the nekkid pictures!!