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Las Vegas memoirs

October 25, 2001
The Iranian

Like previous years, our elaborate vacation plans had finally degenerated into a 3-day Las Vegas trip. Three days of fun at the 110-degree sun, at none less than the Mandalay Bay Resort. Conveniently located on the southern fringes of the Las Vegas strip, and connected, via tram, to two other powerhouse establishments; Luxor and Excaliber. Way to go!

A wall of hot desert air hits my face as I get out of the car at the hotel entrance and apprehensively relinquish power over my motor vehicle to the valet attendant. I know that I won't see the car again until the day of departure. I don't drive in Las Vegas.

We settle in the comfortable room and immediately start working on the logistics. Helpers are already lined up for the night ahead and we now head to the Wave Pool. A giant, mechanical wave appears every minute or so and simulates the real action. People look delighted. Undaunted, others are baking in the sun.

Two teenage girls appear poolside and in almost harmonious movement shed their clothing to reveal their thongs. Even the sun worshipers are rolling in their beach chairs to catch a glimpse. Thongs gradually submerge out of view as the girls go in deeper.

On the way back to the room, I notice a few buxom blonds in somewhat revealing attire. Think nothing of it. This is Las Vegas after-all. Everybody is trying to look their best. At the elevator lobby I see another blond with extremely large breasts, accompanied by an older, New York guy. "What is this?" I wonder.

In the restroom of the casino the same night, I eavesdrop on a conversation:

-- "What's with the [expletive] girls here?"

-- "Uh, it's a porn convention."

A porn convention? Holy cow. Now that explains all the large breasts and the New York guys and everything else. I see.

In the elevator back to the room, I am actually in the company of two couples from the convention. It feels strange. Kind of like the feeling you get when you are in the company of, say, people from the porn convention. But seriously, it actually didn't feel that strange. They seemed like decent folks from the porn industry. You know, the regular kind.

Next day at the casino. The conventioneers are everywhere. Almost each blackjack table has a silicone beauty sitting there. They are playing the dice too, and other games. The girls generally look detached. Most of them have sad eyes. The guys seem normal, though. Just your typical studs, that's all.

Later in the night, I get a royal straight flush at the video poker machine. I get paid a lot of money. I think I'm now even. I tip the people who brought me the money, twenty dollars each. They are happy.

Nine o'clock the next day and I'm ready to go. I got three hundred miles to drive and do one more show. Oh no. But wait a minute. Those are the words from a Lynyrd Skynyrd song. They don't belong in this piece.

What's happening to me? How do I finish this thing here? No conclusions? No finale? What's the morale of this story? He isn't going to publish it. I'll send it in anyway.

Comment for The Iranian letters section
Comment for the writer Shahriar Zahedi

By Shahriar Zahedi

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