On November 1st, 2014 I awoke with a bit of a fuzzy head. Sure I had gotten a little tipsy at Phish’s Hallowe’en show the night before, but really, isn’t every morning a little fuzzy when you wake up in Las Vegas?
(If you answered “no” to the previous question – which was meant to be rhetorical – then one of us ain’t doin’ Vegas right.)
Perhaps especially when you’re staying at The Flamingo (or as I typoed it once and have since and will forever call it: The Flaming O). Why? Because the Flaming O is kitschy, it’s classic, and it’s cheap, and as a result it attracts a fuzzier clientele than does, say, the Bellagio or The Venetian. Take, for example, yours truly from just a few nights previous. We had just checked in after a long day of airplaning and enjoyed a relaxing nightcap in our room – which was situated about thirty-seven acres from the nearest bank of elevators, which were themselves at least twenty-nine leagues from the front desk, to which I had to return twice upon arrival because the key kept not unlocking the freakin’ door – when I decided to spend an hour raking it in at the tables downstairs.
And I did quite well. So well in fact that I found I couldn’t leave the roulette table. Not when my chips stacked so high I could barely reach over them, not when the free-drinks ladies started calling me by name, not when my pile started diminishing at a steady and rapid rate, not when my dashes to the bathroom started coming with every spin, not even when in a fit of frustration I placed just one, single bet on the table, $10 on number 9, and lo, the little pea popped right into the #9 slot. No friends, I was fuzzy enough to sit at that table until I lost everything I had won and even the $100 I had started with (and maybe a wee bit more – I remain fuzzy on the actual figure). Had I left the table at exactly the right time I could have come back to the room and crawled into that king-sized coconut-scented bed with enough money sitting on the nightstand to pay for our entire trip, but of course I didn’t. Instead I arrived back at the room shocked to discover that not only was it daylight, but m’lady was awake, showered, and ready to meet some friends for brunch. I did my morning calisthenics and we got out of there.
And so, it is with admitted – nay, professed – fuzziness that I report that Phish delivered a solid middle-night show at the MGM Grand arena that evening (not the evening of my gradual roulette fiasco, but the evening that I am ostensibly writing about: November 1st). The first set was a rock and roll sandwich bunned by Fuego at the front and Wingsuit at the back, a clear nod to the previous year’s Hallowe’en show, a concert that premiered Phish’s new album Wingsuit, which was renamed Fuego when it was officially released.
The second set was even better. At one point the keyboardist played a few samples from the Chilling, Thrilling Disney album they had jammed along to during their musical costume the night before, snippets that were met with roars from the crowd. The writing was already on the wall, and Phish knows which side of the bread they are buttered on. The band would go on to play the heck out of Chilling, Thrilling tracks at their future shows, consistently to the ecstatic joy of approximately 95% of their fans (myself included) and the head-shaking chagrin of the other 10%.
And while my figures may be a little fuzzy and a lot made up, they are utterly consistent with the rest of this ticket story and, frankly, these write ups on-the-whole.