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03|04|2008 02:12 pm EDT

Fear & Loathing at TRAFFIC Las Vegas : Insult, Injury and a Punch to the Junk

by G Vegas in Categories: Featured

G. is Domain Name News “Senior Domain Entertainment Correspondent”, covering all matters relating to the notoriously wild party scene, growing event calendar and domainer lifestyle including party reviews, news, editorials, experiences and more. G’s identity is kept confidential as his 5th Amendment right not to incriminate himself…and others.

Ah, Las Vegas. T.R.A.F.F.I.C. West. Sin City.
Trouble. Again.

I’ve been to Vegas more times than I care to admit and I’m also hesitant to relay much of what has transpired in those long desert days. Yet, suffice to say, some of my wildest and more bizarre experiences have and do happen in Vegas. Something about that town combined with a bizarre talent I have of not needing to sleep.

In short, I’ve been thrown out of two separate casinos on four separate occasions. I was once open-field tackled by a large prostitute who thought I “disrespected her big black ass� (it was meant as a compliment).

I once accidentally lit a cigarette joint while playing craps, the day AFTER the same casino had thrown me out – for smoking grass. The jig was up when my buddy turned to me and stated plain as day, “hey, someone’s smoking pot!.â€?

I got thrown out of a strip club once because I missed the toilet trying to yack and ‘splashed’ some on the shoes of the guy in the stall next to me. He cold cocked me when I came out of the stall and they threw us both out. I then beat the crap out of him at the taxi stand while the security guys egged me on. Apparently he was a regular they couldn’t stand, so they gave me carte blanche. Thanks for the cab fare money, d-bag.

I’ve also been mugged, taken countless homeless to breakfast and even once passed out in a casino because I couldn’t find my way out. I’ve stayed at most of the hotels, rocketed up the top of the Stratosphere and closed down pretty much every dance club in that nasty-ass, delicious city of ‘light’.

And yet, those nutty experiences and all the ones I forgot or can’t relay were not as surreal or painful, collectively and continuously, than my last 36 hours at TRAFFIC West 2008.

And it all begins with a well-intentioned but drunk ‘smack’ late Tuesday morning and ends with a trip to the emergency room on Wednesday night.

“The Smack�
It all started with an innocent ‘knee-smack’ that went horribly wrong. A friend was trying to demonstrate an aggressive male move on me but she’d had a few cocktails too many to pull it off – her aim was not true.

Instead of thigh, and with full open palm, she accidentally caught my right ‘huevo’ hanging near my thigh, creating ‘impact’ between the three objects – a ‘force sandwich’ if you will. Actually, more akin to a grilled pannini.

I dropped to the sidewalk like a hyphenated .biz. I’m still sore. I should’ve iced it. Damnit.

“The Party�
After a long and prosperous day of domain business, we meet our hero the next evening after not sleeping but refreshing at the oxygen bar and ready to roll at the TrafficZ party on top of the Rio – the hotel I’ve been tossed from three times.

Ammar, Sevan and the crew put on a fantastic party in an incredible locale with enough booze and food and girls to satisfy any fat, alcoholic pervert. Yes, Ammar, you can use that as a testimonial if you like.

But I suspect it was there that the few and lovely and appealing girls in our business got together and decided they needed to verbally rip into me – pure smackdown-style with a bag of chips and a box of Ho-Ho’s!

I say this because I was emotionally cold-cocked by four separate women – on four separate occasions, no less. And it was a truly multi-generational effort, ranging in ages from their 20s to a late baby boomer.

I certainly won’t name names or even tell you what they said but when you put it all together, it was basically, “you’re an egotistical, dry as dirt, unappealing domainer with no sense – who won’t leave us alone!â€?

Now everyone is entitled to their opinions and I can handle, even laugh and agree – but four of them in one night? There’s only like seven total girls in this biz! I felt like a polygamist with four angry wives – and I’ve never even been to Utah, I heard there’s no booze.

In response, tomorrow I’m going to Walmart to get a mirror. I will return to the show circuit once I’ve adequately reflected – see you at T.R.A.F.F.I.C. East Bangladesh 2012, girls. Still luv ya.

“The Casino�
Shortly thereafter, I got thrown out of a party at the Venetian bar and decided I’d head downtown to do some gambling – nothing like going down there, hitting the tables old school-style. Better odds, better payouts and décor that throws you back to Vegas in the seventies. The waitresses and bartenders are VERY attentive and generous as well.

It was there that, lacking top-quality tequila, I went for the whiskey. Straight up bee-yotch. Damnit.

A few hours, mucho Crowne and four hundred dollars later, I finally stumbled towards the harsh daylight but made the simple mistake of trying to write a text message while walking out – completely missing the three entry steps leading out of the casino.

I didn’t even try to break my fall – no time so I went with it, allowing my body to go limp for impact, holding my phone up high to protect it. But most of the concrete force ended up concentrated on my left elbow as I landed – hard.

I lay there for a moment in disbelief, finished and sent the message and then some Good Samaritan helped me up.

I brushed myself off and checked my elbow – it was slightly discolored but nothing too bad. I chucked it off as a potential deep bruise.

With all the money I still had, I grabbed a cab and went back to the Venetian. It was 10am, Wednesday morning.

I packed, did some business, chatted with friends, ate lunch, did some consulting, went to the exhibition hall – at this point I’d been awake since I arrived in Las Vegas on Monday.

I’m tired, I’m loaded up, I’m hungry, I’m belittled and my elbow is on fire but I’m too lit to care. And I’m catching a flight in a few hours.

“The Cabbie�
I checked out around three-ish and got in a taxi to the airport. I was barely ‘there’ for the fifteen, twenty minute ride during which the cabbie told me racist and sexist jokes – literally dozens of them.

We finally and thankfully reached McCarron and pulled up to the curb for my airline. I yanked out my wallet and then realized I didn’t have a frickin’ lick of cash on me.

He told me to go inside to an ATM. I replied that a downtown casino and the cab ride home had completely depleted my limited cash account.

He asked what we were “gonna do now� with a scowl and out of desperation and pure guile, I opened my backpack and pulled out a couple brand-new, still crisply folded and free conference t-shirts.

Using my vast experience in domain sales, I dug deep and sold that racist rat bastard on the quality of the weave and the future resale value of the shirts to an end-user.

“Limited edition, indeed, bro.�

Success. I mercifully weaseled my way out of the uber-racist’s cab only to notice that my driver’s license was also missing from my wallet. I left it at the frickin’ Venetian. Damnit! Idiot! Those girls were right about me, I have no sense!

“The Blow�
You can still board a flight without an ID but it means a strict trip through Lane 9. There you’re basically stripped of your layers and put into a small booth that “blows� you. Finally.

They then spent the next ten minutes asking me questions and going through every article one-by-one. Thankfully, I’d made it a point to check all the pockets when I packed.

Made that mistake before. Three times now.

“The Flight�
Still fully awake when I reached my seat at 5:00, I popped a Xanax to finish the journey and finally knock me out.

In the end, I never saw my bed on the trip. Not even a kitty nap. And I hate cats.

And that was it. I was out cold – woke up four hours later at the gate. But something wasn’t right. Some of my fingers were numb and my elbow was swollen and throbbing – serious pain.

I struggled off and out and got to my sweet ride – a white 1992 Toyota Camry I named ‘Yota’ that’s only five years from earning ‘antique’ license plates. So old, wise and agile are you, yes.

“The E.R.�
On my way home I decided to stop at the E.R. and get it checked out – some injuries can be opportunities in disguise.

But it turned out my drunken tumble off the steps had caused two small fractures in the bones around the elbow, near the main nerve running down to my fingers.

Doctor thought I dealt with the pain for so long largely because I had already lost partial use and feeling in that arm in a college auto accident.

My old Ford Bronco flipped going 80 but instead of rolling off the highway – it rolled into the other lanes. First thing I saw was pavement coming at my side window at a 150 mph – putting my arm up at the last second to protect my hair.

The move saved my hair and my life but cost me some use of the arm that hit and shattered on the frozen concrete that night – the night before Christmas. Or better, nightmare before Christmas.

The rolling vehicle finally came to a halt nearly fifty yards off the Interstate when the car reached the forest tree line. I never lost consciousness and actually walked away from the totaled truck.

A big crowd of people had stopped and rushed towards my flip-happy ride. They watched in astonishment as I approached and asked someone for a cigarette through a broken nose and eye socket.

I took one from the ten that were offered, lit it and fell back onto the snow. I smoked it calmly until the paramedics arrived, staring up at the stars, in shock.

Sadly, that was the first – but not the last heater of my life. I still smoke to this day.
Damnit.

Very next car I got was a spanking new 1992 white Toyota Camry I immediately named ‘The Zipper’. So young, impulsive and un-rusted was he.

“The Analysis�
Insult, injury, lost identity, bribery, strip search and a punch to the junk? I love it. Vegas, baby, Vegas.

Vegas always chews me up, spits me out – that’s part of the deal. Sometimes it’s harsh, even painful and confidence crushing.

It’s almost like they make it easy to get there but hard to get home, on purpose. They smack you around a bit, take your money and toss you away like a fat, alcoholic pervert who can’t admit to himself that the bar is closed, the food is gone and the girls would all rather get down with each other than him.

Las Vegas in a nutshell is just an organized, legal mugging – financially, spiritually and physically. How can you not love it? And what kind of nut do you think it is?

So next time you’re in Vegas and if, by happenstance, you get a cabbie wearing a TrafficZ tee, you can laugh and tell him this story – about the domainer with the odd talent and the surreal, painful end to his trip.

Do it, please – don’t give him any chance to tell you his jokes.

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16 Comments

Ron Jackson

March 5, 2008 @ 3:44 pm EDT

I have no idea who G. is but he has some serious writing skills! The subject matter may not appeal to everyone but variety is the spice of life and this sure was an unexpected and original change of pace. Thanks to Adam and Frank for having the guts to put it out there and to G. for a first person account I won’t soon forget. I’d read him even if he was writing about something as mundane as a local zoning board meeting (actually ESPECIALLY if he was writing about something like that and breathing this kind of life into it). Oh, and sorry about the punch to the junk – makes me wince even now :-)

Diana Wu

March 5, 2008 @ 4:42 pm EDT

Nice….that’s what Vegas is all about…

marcia lynn

March 6, 2008 @ 11:43 am EDT

“I dropped to the sidewalk like a hyphenated .biz.
I’m still sore. I should’ve iced it. Damnit.”

“In response, tomorrow I’m going to Walmart to get
a mirror. I will return to the show circuit once
I’ve adequately reflected – see you at T.R.A.F.F.I.C.
East Bangladesh 2012, girls. Still luv ya.”

wow! i agree with ron — what talent!

though i was at the party, thankfully, i
wasn’t one of the female domainers who did
anything mentioned above!

do hope you’re healing up fine, though.
the elbow and the other.

;)

Jothan Frakes

March 7, 2008 @ 11:32 am EDT

Great Article!

I also was not one of the females accosting you.

Scott Fasser

March 7, 2008 @ 12:47 pm EDT

dude, been there.

Vegas Buddy

March 11, 2008 @ 9:29 am EDT

So I’m standing at the craps table at the Rio, next to G Vegas. Table is neither hot or cold so we’re just cruising. All of a sudden I smell the pot. No smoke, just the smell. I lean over to G Vegas and say “someone’s smoking pot in here”. He says nothing, I think nothing of it until I look at G Vegas and he’s putting out the J in his palm. We walk away from the table laughing our asses off. I evened the score shortly thereafter in the “dumbass” column by hitting on 17 while sitting on 1st base. But that’s a story for another time.

Lesson: Don’t roll your J’s in American Spirit paper and then hide it in your Cig pack with the rest of your smokes.

Antoinette

March 15, 2008 @ 5:00 pm EDT

I know plenty of women in the domain business. They just don’t go to these sleazy conferences. They probably don’t makes as much money as those who attend and that is their loss.

But looking over the activities of these events, they seem unprofessional and unappealing to me personally. I can do everything I need to do online without attending social events with “dancers” or models. And bloggers wonder why the domain biz has such a shady reputation. It’s like a throw-back to the 1960s which is ironic considering it is an Internet business.

There would probably be more participation in these conferences if they were more business-related and there was less organized partying. You lonely male domainers should find a more adult way to meet women in your own hometowns. It just seems rather pathetic.

Desperate Domainer

March 18, 2008 @ 10:00 am EDT

Antoinette,

It sounds like you haven’t gotten any…………….dot coms lately. Don’t be so bitter and loosen up. There’s enough room for business and play. If you don’t like the latter, then go to bed at 8pm. The choice is yours. There are plenty of seminars in the morning you can attend. Although, you might be a bit lonely there. Which brings us back to the original premise of your post. You need to get…. ;)

Fungirl

March 18, 2008 @ 1:42 pm EDT

There are plenty of women who do go to the conferences too, so what are you saying about the women who enjoy having a good time?

What would make a social event “professional” and “appealing” for you Antoinette ? Should we play a game of pin the tail on the donkey or maybe charades would be more professional?

Stay home with your cats. No one wants you at a social function anyway.

Alec Kinnear

March 20, 2008 @ 2:56 pm EDT

Antoinette, what’s the best way to sell domains outside the conferences? (I’ve got [ed. promotion for commenter’s own domains removed] and there’s no action over there).

Pretty funny story. I agree with Ron about G’s writing skills. “Dropped faster than a hyphenated dot-biz.” Delightful.

Antoinette

March 21, 2008 @ 2:07 pm EDT

I’m not bitter and I don’t have cats, just a pretty lively social life and a job I love. You sound like the better one, “Fungirl” (the name is ironic, right?).

I just said that the events seemed sleazy. At least when I look over the press for the events and see notices about models and dancers entertaining the attendees, that seems unprofessional. I go to three conferences a year for my main line of work with attendance ranging from 400 to 9,000 people and there is plenty of socializing at receptions but models signing autographs and dance groups? They are totally out of place in a business environment.

I’m just comparing what I’ve read online and discussed with other domainers to other professional conferences I regularly attend where, yes, we both get business done and have a good time!

Antoinette

March 21, 2008 @ 2:08 pm EDT

I meant “bitter”, not “better” in the second sentence (obviously).

Desperate Domainer

March 22, 2008 @ 12:41 pm EDT

The difference between domain conferences and regualr business conferences is that we are all mostly self-made independent individuals that like to have a good time. Not a bunch of lackeys looking to kiss some butt to the head CEO’s attending. We are domainers for a reason, that is to make money and enjoy life. Especially at conferences where we finally get to be away from our ball and chain(aka computers)for a few days. Most of us also don’t have the opportunity for regular social interaction with our peers so this is our opportunity to meet them and have a great (and sometimes wild) time. To each his own I guess.

Antoinette

March 22, 2008 @ 4:28 pm EDT

I’m all for socializing and doing business at the same time. It’s hiring attractive women to attend who have nothing to do with domaining that seems rather pathetic and sleazy. JMHO.

But, like I said, all I know about domain conferences is what I read on blogs and the pictures that are posted. Maybe it is not representative of what goes on during the conference and after hours.

G.frisco

March 22, 2008 @ 4:52 pm EDT

One word: Sausage Fest

The reason sponsors feel they must fill their parties with some pretty girls is because this industry is such a testosteroni pizza.

So Antoinette, bring yourself and your friends and all the other gals in the biz and that will change. I guarantee you if they could, sponsors would rather pocket that pizza dough.

See you at DRT ;o)

Adam Strong

March 25, 2008 @ 10:51 pm EDT

G. That’s 2 words. I think that a ‘sausage fest’ might just be what some persons would like.

Antoinette you called the conferences sleazy. Since you aren’t at the shows I don’t think it’s fair for you to pass any judgment. These events are also generally afterhours parties and not really about business but more about socializing. Your opinion seems to be somewhat of a minority, but I would encourage you and the others you talk to that are bothered with any of this to either 1. Don’t come (which you already are doing) or 2. Tell the sponsors with your wallet or voice that you don’t like it.

I think the sponsors are just trying to give domainers what they want. Maybe you are right and this isn’t what people want, but the first event TrafficZ sponsored at TRAFFIC was at Gameworks and from many reports it was a total disaster. The next one was at Hawaiian Tropics in NYC and they received rave reviews from domainers I spoke with. Go figure!

There’s a large contingency of domainers who enjoy poker and go off and do their poker thing all night (with sponsors involved sometimes as well). I’m not a big poker player or gambler so guess where I don’t go. If there were a large enough group complaining or demanding pin the tail on the donkey, I think that the sponsors would jump all over it in a heartbeat. I don’t think that the sponsors are coming up with these event ideas out of the clear blue sky.

BTW there’s also attractive women that come to the show for business and attend after hours events that aren’t ‘hired help’. Hat tip to all my lady domainer friends out there. You know who you are. . . .quietly judging ;)

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