The author travels to Las Vegas on business, his addictive personality is put to the test and some good friends carry him through it mostly unscathed.
As locations go, Las Vegas is the absolute worst for a guy like me. I have a binge-eating disorder and the place is one massive buffet, which is like laying piles of coke and heroin on the table and inviting me to dig in nose-first. I went sober a couple years ago but there’s free booze everywhere. I quit smoking almost a year ago except for my e-cigs, but you can smoke indoors in Vegas, which makes the temptation to light up overwhelming.
Being on business helps, because during the day I’m too busy interviewing people and writing to worry about the temptations around me. But when the last blog post of the day is written, I start to twitch.
All things considered, I fucking hate Las Vegas. It’s the devil personified, the little bastard who squats on my shoulder all day and encourages me to throw away everything I’ve worked for. I like the endless sunshine and dry air, but the desert temperatures rule out walking around outside. So you’re trapped indoors, with all the booze, food and smoke, like a cockroach stuffed into one of those Roach Motel traps.
I was sloppy for sure. Since I don’t weigh out my food on these trips like I do at home, I’m fairly sure my portions were either under or over where they should be. Since I came back feeling like a bloated slug, I figure it was more of the latter.
But even a shitty place like Las Vegas can’t destroy me when good friends are around. And on this trip, I had no shortage of friends.
There was the guy at Security B-Sides who made sure there was food in the venue that I could eat. There were the folks who didn’t pressure me to light up at the cigar shop because they knew I quit, save for the e-cig, which I leaned on like a motherfucker. There was the friend who invited me to a private gathering and made sure there was plenty of sugar-free Red Bull on hand since I couldn’t drink the alcohol. There was the old friend who went to breakfast with me one morning and chose a place without a buffet, to my everlasting relief. And there were those who kept the interesting conversation going, which kept me from getting bored and, by extension, tempted.
I got through this trip mostly unscathed, thanks to them. And despite my distaste for Vegas, I have to say I enjoyed the hell out of being there. The work was fun. The friends were even more fun.
I was blessed out there. Thanks, guys and gals.