January 20, 2001
The first thing I saw when we walked into Tong's Palace's
was Soul Brother #3 singing. I about fell over in hysterics. I
bet he was just as surprised to see all of us again. He
seems to specialize in soul -- Lou Rawls, Barry White and especially
Earth, Wind and Fire. He ought to have his own lounge act
in Vegas -- he already has the hair, the mannerisms, the pinky
ring and everything. I'm not even being facetious -- he sounded
were several other patrons there from the night before and
most of them did the same songs again as well. I guess that's
their weekend. I can't imagine... one song the night before
and my voice was shot.
is Anna Beth and Hannah. I cannot even remember all the songs
they sang. My favorite was "Killing Me Softly,"
at the beginning of which Anna Beth announced with a finger snap,
"We're not doing the Fugees version...we're doing Roberta
Flack, baby!" I think she was the highlight of
the evening for me, she was hilarious.
dedicated one song to Fred and when he turned away for a minute,
she said, "FRED! We're singing to you, so pay
don't even know what song they're doing here, but the fact that
I got so many pictures of them just goes to show how into it they
were. I should actually know what song this is, because
Allison even squeezed behind a third mike in the DJ's area and
joined in. She kept saying things like, "Pay no attention
to the woman behind the counter," all Wizard of Oz
and shit. She cracked me up.
of the low lights of both evenings at Tong's Palace was the bathrooms.
On Friday, I went to the men's room by mistake on my first bathroom
trip and the bowl in the first stall was stained brown.
Yummy! It's a wonder I used
it at all, but I was desperate and didn't feel like going across
the street to one of the big casinos. It was that gross,
that going across the street in the cold to wander about in search
of a bathroom was almost an option.
I mention they were outside? Fred said it was just like
camp (man, I've got to find someone else to quote). Now
there's one classy joint. We were just drinking and singing
there, but imagine having dinner at Fong's and finding out the
restaurant's bathroom looked like it belonged in a public park
or crack house. I guess that wasn't too big of a problem,
as I only saw 2 couples having dinner on the 2 nights, combined.
is the women's restroom, the mens' room would make you cry, just
the stench alone. Poor Fred
may never be clean again.
groovy is it that we could see over the stalls? Nice touch,
so we could accidentally see each other pee. Tres chic!
this point, I am running out of commentary, because hey, I was
drunk and operating on just a few hours of sleep.
sang another solo
wowed the room with "Eat It"
Alopekis, Carrie, & Christine
Beth and Alopekis
and Mike. Unfortunately, I have no pictures of Carol's many
solos, including "Secret Agent Man" and "California
Anna, Pamie, me, Allison
all hugged and said good night. Fred said
it best -- it was more like a reunion than an initial meeting.
Although I'd only met Pamie (once) and Jennifer (since
high school) before, it was like I'd hung out with all these people
for ages. Of course, with the exception of a select group
is the one place I feel at home online. We talk about nearly
everything and it rarely results in flames or insults. This
whole weekend was a great reminder that those are people out there,
not just names on a screen, but that's generally how the Squishy
community treats one another.
the warm goodbyes and "nice to meet yous" the main group
walked across the street to the Stratosphere to catch cabs.
Jennifer and I got into her car and headed off to our not so glamorous
hotel room, to get a few hours sleep before the drive back.