Howdy gang. Last time I checked in was August when I took my GF to Vegas for her first trip. It was my most successful in many ways, especially in the pocketbook, as I could not lose. Those trips don't happen often (have you seen the size of these casinos? LOL), and this trip would prove that theory to a T. I was staying on a 3 day comp at the Venetian. Standard room, $75 match play and some free gift. Upon arrival I asked for an upgrade and took the offer of $100 per night for a Prima Suite (since I was on expense, the company got away with $100 per night...win/win!). The room was spectacular. 35th floor, looking out toward Hard Rock. Huge living room, dining room...but no TV in the crapper! I love standing in the shower and watching ESPN. But, I suffered without... Anyway, during my flight from KC, my back tightened up and it was a most uncomfortable flight for me. I've never done this before (really) in Vegas, so I checked out Spa's for a massage. I didn't want a casino spa because this is my dime, so I checked out Yelp and found one with great reviews, so I headed that way. I truly wanted a back and neck massage. Nothing more. Honest...I get there, tell the gal (a latino gal, very cute) my issues and she charges me $50. Seems reasonable. She comes in and the massage is half-assed. I'm hoping it's getting better when she asks me if I wanted a 'facial'. I said no, just my back and neck. She then says I would really like a facial, so I said ok thinking it would be nice to have some fingers rub my temples or whatever. Nope...she pulls out both huge boobs and puts them in my face and proceeds to tell me $100 for this, $200 for that. I politely decline and she seems as surprised as I am. I mean, this place got good reviews. I'm not a prude at all (see my last report), but I just wanted a damn back massage. Oh well...it was a precursor of things to come on this day. So long story short, I paid $50, didn't get a good massage and probably got laughed at a bunch. Glad I could help.... So I finally check in and it's time to hit the tables. I found a decent $25 DDBJ table within the V and quickly lost $500. I was getting decent hands, but my 18 was losing to 19. 19's to 20's, etc. Very frustrating. So I walk over to Palazzo and lose another $500 quicker than at V. This time it wasn't even close. I had more teens given to me than Michael Jackson back in his heyday. So to clear my head, I remember that TI had a high limit room (not really high limit) with DDBJ, so I walked over there and it was $50 a hand, and I bought in for $500. Same story as Palazzo. They didn't even make it back with my drink before I was sent packing. Good times. I decided to switch it up and play some roulette and hit a few numbers and squeaked out a $300 profit there. Finally, a win. Then I decided to text my cabbie buddy @LVCabbieChronicles and had him take me to the Palms, just because. We catch up on the ride and I hit their DDBJ table. Always a good time there. Not sure what it is about that place, but I just like it. Tonight it was pretty tame, in spite of having MNF on. I placed $50 on Dallas to beat the Bears (ooops) and lost another chunk playing BJ. It just wasn't my night. I'm ashamed to admit I lost $2,500 on the first night. Mind you, I play very tight, basic strategy BJ. I don't 'count' cards, per se, but at DDBJ, you get a feel pretty quickly where you are in the shoe. It just didn't go my way, and I'm blaming the whore at the Spa for giving me bad mojo! LOL (I'm sure she's a fine gal earning a living...what's a guy gotta do to get his back rubbed?). So, rather than continue to bleed away the kids Christmas funds, I decide to use that big room of mine, curl up in the fetal position in the corner, suck my thumb and get some sleep. Tuesday is a new day... I get up and meet the guy that works for me for breakfast. We head out for a fruitful day in front of publishers and folks that need stuff printed and after a LONG day here and there, we return around 5:00 to the V. My associate is a workout freak, so that gives me time to get my workout in too- at the tables. I found a dealer that was very good to me last time (Marianna, older lady from Eastern Europe). I was a bit more patient today and I stepped up to playing two hands at a time and held my own with her. Then we got on 'that' role, finally. I was pressing to $100 to $150 per hand, doubling down and winning and next thing you know, I'm up. The only thing that hurt me the entire time (and trip) was splitting 9's of all damn things. For the trip, I split 9's 6 times. 4 times it was my 9's vs. a dealer 5. 1 time 9's vs a 6. One time 9's vs. a 9. I won one of those splits, lost 5. On those 5 hands, with splits and doubles I had a combined total of $825 on the table. I concede the 9's vs. 9 is a tough one, but 5 of those were damn good splits. If I win even half, that's another $800 in the pocket. But I digress...At the end of my session, I bought in for $300 and this appeared: So, a $2500 profit, including losing all 4 splits of my 9's this session. So essentially, I'm back to even. During the run, my associate comes to grab me for dinner around 8:30. I'm on a roll and I just can't leave. He's seeing this and leaves me alone. I finally grab him around 9:30 and we head to Tao for dinner. So thanks for understanding, Tom... We grab dinner, and I play a bit more than night and I find a really cool dealer named Lidyia (Bulgarian)- just a great gal, very friendly, very charming and a lot of fun. It got late and I was happy with where I was, all things considered. Plus, another busy day of calls awaits... So same deal on Wed- we make calls, and I drop Tom off. I'm solo for my final night. I immediately head to the Palms to get back what I lost on Monday. I find my table and I hit 3rd base, as an older gent was leaving on 1st, and he decided to stay. I'm glad he did. I played two hands, $50 min per. Bought in for $300. At the end of the 1st shoe, I was up $1,000. It was unreal. I held my own for a few more shoes and then it got really interesting. An asian gentleman sits down in the middle of us and he throws down $3,000. Not for change. He's betting it. Holy shit. I mean...HOLY SHIT! Again, I play 'correctly', but still, that's a lot of coin that I can influence by doing something stupid at 3rd, or whatever. First hand he tucks and he pushes 18 v 18. I think he won the next hand, and instantly, the table just hushed...pit bosses were hovering, dealers hands were shaky and it was like all the cameras in the house were on us. Then it gets better. He starts to play 2 hands, $3k each. Lord Baby Jesus...and he's doubling down and...it's just uncomfortable with that much money out there. I mean, it took me all day Monday to lose that much (not quite)- he could lose that much in 5 seconds. He got up after a while, and I believe he was up 1 unit ($3k). I asked if he was a regular and they said he was, but they said he also never plays at that level, so not sure if he was chasing or what. Regardless, it made my results seem inconsequential. I ended up cashing $1,200 that session and feeling weird about it. One time I got dealt 2 BJ's and I won $300. A great win. Then I looked over- would have been $9,000 next door had he received them. Wow. So I left...back on track. After packing at the V, I head back down and found a table. Played 3rd again and had a good group until a guy sat down next to me. He'd proud to say he never hits 15's or 16's in DD and it's just killing me, and him. I'm getting his low cards when I need 10's and vice versa. He wins once and gets all cocky saying 'that's why you never hit 15's', and then I moved...and found Lidyia again. I kept watching and my genius friend lost his $1,000 buy-in and switched tables and lost another bundle. I lost $400 at that table, and bought in for another $500 and she didn't let me down. I got as high as $2,500 and cashed out at $2,150 very late in the night. Throughout though we had a great conversation...I made a bunch of bets for her- it was a nice give and take. I wish more dealers could be like this. So at this point it's like 3am and I've gotta get up at 7 for a 9:30 flight. I managed to get it all done, but as of this writing I'm still catching up on sleep. After being down $2,500, I ended up well over $1,700 (not including probably $300 to $400 in tips / bets for dealers, etc). One helluva a swing. I learned a lot this trip (patience, grasshopper), and had good business dealings too. Here's a few more pics I took. If there are any questions / comments...please feel free.