"God Damn! You all must be whiz kidz 'n' shit!"
- Tropicana Hotel Employee

In the beginning....

Who would have ever thought I'd be on a plane next to Vamprella, heading to Las Vegas, watching her drink vodka at 7:30 AM? I sure didn't. Something in my head signalled that this was probably a precursor to how the whole con was gonna be, but I chose to ignore it..

Those "AirFone" phones in the seats are so inviting. On my previous Southwest flights I had pondered using them, but all required a Credit card to be inserted to remove the phone. On this flight, no such demands were made - a quick flip of a latch and a clipped wire and I could have an elite AirFone to carry around at Defcon and throw at Feds. W00t. My morals and my greed struggled throughout the hourlong flight, but in the end, morality won out. (I learned something my parents taught me, I guess) Vamprella didn't appear to be particularly intoxicated, so we got off the plane into 115 degree weather and away we went! Off to DefCon!

After watching her haggle with 2 cab drivers, I threw Vamprella into the next cab I saw and told the cabbie to get us to the Tropicana. The typical cab ride small talk began, but before I could start my bullshitting, Vamprella went for the throat:

Vamp: What's the best strip joint in Las Vegas?
Cabbie: (coughs) Topless or fully nude?
Vamp: Fully nude, of course! I'd really prefer a raunchy place where you can pay to watch girls getting it on with each other!
Cabbie: (cough) (cough) (choke) (cough) I like the Palamino club. Best looking girls and they treat their women well. I used to go there a lot. I really like full nudity.. I like gambling too...

(After this he launched into a strange and unnatural dissertation on how he was some big gambler who gambled with other people's money. I ignored him and tried to forget that I was putting my life in the hands of this idiot voyeur, Earl the Cab Driver. After $8.00 worth of cab ride, we arrived at the Tropicana slightly shaken but alive.

The Hotel

Tropicana Desk Clerks must be obtained from the scum at the bottom of the gene pool. The lady we dealt with had the I.Q. of a rock and lacked any sort of good looks that might have compensated for her idiocy. In a fit of brilliance, I had reserved the room a night early, allowing us to drop off our baggage and go unburdened directly to the convention.

My first encounter with RatFace took place here. I never did get a name from the kid, but he had the WORST attitude I had seen in quite a while. Vamprella and I walked into the general convention halls area on the Tropicana's ground floor only to encounter some guy with green hair (never did learn who he was, but he seemed nice) and this little rat-faced punk. The conversation went something like this:

Lynch: Jeah. Yew at DefCon?
RatFace: YES.
Lynch: Werd. Anything goin on yet?
RatFace: (makes "pshaw" noize) NO.

At this point I walked past him, not wishing to deal with his lame attitude. The elevators took us to our room...if you could call it that. Mirrors on the wall behind the bed, above the bed, to the left of the bed (while lying on it), and mirrors across from the bed... this was no ordinary room! This was the new home for my harem! Werd!

Relieved of the baggage, I grabbed my laptop and travelled at maximum speed to DrKool & Thayer's room, where I knew beer awaited. DrKool was rather displeased at my quick call to him ("YO I KNOW YOU HAVE BEER HERE I COME HAHAHAHAH") but he let me in anyway. As I pounded 2 Coronas, DrKool introduced me to Thayer, his tre cool roommate and then as Thayer and I chatted, DrK began molesting my laptop's pen interface. A pen laptop with solitaire is NOT something you want to show people - it keeps them entertained, but they often completely filter any external stimuli and they will likely scratch your screen trying to cheat. (Cheat at solitare? People try!)

Eventually Vamprella noticed my absence and joined us in DrK's room. Thayer and DrK got ready while Vamprella and I chatted...then we all just kicked back and shot the shit until about 11:00AM, when we descended the elevators to DefCon III.

Registration

Not much to say here.. we got our elite purple trippy badges (see the top of the page for a pic of mine) and wandered around for a bit; we saw no familiar faces and we retreated to DrK's room.

Intro to Fear, Vol. 1

Since I had consumed the remaining 2 beers in the fridge, we all faced a terrible problem: where to get excessive quantities of alcohol?! The MGM Grand has a liquor store, but they only sell beer in cans, they are expensive, and they only sell small quantities - we needed crates of beer and jugs of vodka! The few stores near the hotels that sold alcohol were prohibitively expensive; it appeared that we were SOL.

It was at this juncture that Razz0 entered the picture. Razz0 is a friend of DrK's who hangs on #talk2me in IRC and has the (mis)fortune of living rather close to the Tropicana. We returned to our room to find a message from Razz0 that he was on his way to DrK's room and that he'd be there about 10 minutes before we had gotten the message. DrK called his house.. no answer.. we sat perplexed wondering where our so-called savior had gone. A lady from housekeeping (she was black, but that's only importan t for the story's sake - she was way cool and that's all any of us cared about) came to change the sheets and we learned that BoyzIImen, TLC, and some singer named Montel Jordan were playing at the MGM tonight, as well as obtaining some intersting info on the Tropicana. Evidently, the Trop had once been a 5 star (***** for the numerically impaired) hotel that had turned into an unrated (NO STARS, for you impaired people) joint considered the cheapie "big" hotel. The housecleaning lady finished the beds and disappeared into the bathroom, setting the stage for Razz0's grand entrance.

As our bathroom became cleaner, Razz0 walked through the open room door. I was the first person he saw and since he knew Thayer and DrK, he was able to deduce who I was. Upon realization of my presence Razz0 exclaimed, "YO LYNCH! WHADDAP NIGGA!@#$@#$!" Time stopped. DrK, Thayer, and myself all paled and looked nervously at e ach other. Razz0 looked confused. No noise was heard from the bathroom. I grabbed Razz0. I whispered "D00d there's a 'negro' in the bathroom." Then I saw her. She looked at us. She fled. Her cart moved down the hall. Razz0 was a mix of astonishment and elation. He was now a part of our group, for better or for worse. Vamprella lay on the newly made beds, asleep.

We all needed beer, I needed a modem, and Razz0 needed someone to figure out what he had done to violate his computer, so we made our way through the maze of the Tropicana and out into his little car. Razz0 put his stolen Handicapped Person placard away and we skidded off into the heart of Vegas..

Vegas, Terminator Style

With all five people in the car and A/C running full blast, we cruised onto Tropicana Blvd. (I think that's what street is was). Razz0 made all those crazy drivers in movies who do insane jumps and hop curbs look rather tame in no time flat. After he yelled racial epithets at two cars, we turned left onto some street and proceeded at 30 mph over the speed limit. I was unable to get a real clear view of things since I was crushed in a corner of the back seat, but I was able to fear for my life.. and I did. Our next turn, although intended to be a right turn at a stop light, was through a busy gas station - between people pumping gas and attendants fleeing Razz0's path. A quick cruise through a slum brought us to our next right turn, along with a carload of black youths who pulled up next to us. Exercising his distinct lack of tact, Razz0 made some sort of gesture that caused loud yelling from the heretofore pleasant youths. (youts?) As I prepared to be assaulted, Razz0 ran the light and skidded through a maze of streets before ending up behind a slow moving car. In typical Razz0 style we flew past the car while dodging oncoming traffic and pulled a two-wheel right turn in front of it. Our final death defying feat was to speed towards a tree and a car with about 1.01 car widths of space between them and actually make it. Razz0 has a legion of guardian angels, of this I am sure. We parked and soon I was plopped in front of Razz0's computer.

Packard Bell computers aren't my idea of leet equipment, but poor Razz0 got the most un-elite system they ever made. After he owned it for 6 whole months, the monitor stopped working. He squeezed it with all his might and it worked.. what prompted this action, I do NOT want to know. After hours of difficulty typing with one hand and squeezing the front of the monitor with the other, Razz0 took some electrical cable and tied the monitor up. (If I had a pic of it, I'd post it on alt.binaries.pictures.erotica.bondage) Once past his explanation of the jury rig of d00m, I started his PPP and played around. Razz0 has a Beelzebub himself. Satan's sack was opened, and out came this dung colored mass of vintage 1972 Guatemalan war weed. (excrement passed off as pot) Razz0 found himself a soda can and lit up. I moved away from the stench as Razz0 coughed and hacked and then grinned.

I became one with Razz0's couch as DrK and Thayer toiled on the PC. A fear began to creep over me that we would never see DefCon, that we might never leave Razz0's house thanks to some errant Packard Bell salesperson. Vamprella was lying on the grass outside of Razz0's and I almost felt like joining her. Somehow sunburn was becoming more appealing the longer I was trapped in Razz0's.

The quest begins

After well over an hour of toil, Thayer and I could take it no longer. We NEEDED BEER. Razz0 understood and helped us in our quest by loaning us his car. (Razz0 was very generous, and all around, a really cool guy, I think I just saw more of his live-on-the-edge style than I was accustomed to.) Thayer grabbed Razz0's keys and we sped towards 7-11.

Upon departure of Razz0's complex, we saw a 7-11 down the street a few blocks. Thayer drove us there as quickly as possible, pausing only at a stop sign to grind the starter a few times (the car sounded like it had stalled, really!) and attract the attention of all the residents. Razz0 told us later that we had entered the ghetto, but we failed to encounter any problems besides a slow attendant at 7-11. Beer procured, we headed back to Razz0's. The rest of the time at Razz0's flew by as Thayer and I drank our beer and left DrK to struggle with Microsoft and Packard Bell.

PCMCIA Ethernet Cards are a lie, really..

Razz0 understood our plight: we had a computer without a working modem, and he was sympathetic to our cause. Off we went in search of connectivity!

My Thinkpad was just waiting to be used but had little purpose without a modem to connect it to the rest of the world. Someone once said that laptops could be used for other tasks besides IRC'ing on the road, but I'm not sure that person was playing with full deck.

While on the subject of idiocy, the trip the Best Buy must be mentioned. My area in California doesn't have Best Buy stores - this is a good thing. Razz0 directed us to the computer section, and I eventually found the PCMCIA modem section which was conveniently located next to a salesman trying to sell an unsuspecting couple a 486sx desktop to run the upcoming Windows 95 OS. I attempted to attract attention to myself using a plethora of tactics including yelling "I WANT TO SPEND HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS HERE! HELP ME!" Eventually DrKool started to shake and ran down an aisle screaming in an attempt to get an employee to help me.

After about 20 minutes of being ignored and shunned by idiot salespeople who failed to comprehend that a $300 modem was better to sell than a $10 surge suppressor we FINALLY got an idiot to help us. I got an XJack 28.8k and was informed by the king of PC knowledge sales ass that PCMCIA ethernet cards "do not exist." And if they did, "Best Buy would not sell them because there is no market for them." I laughed at him and told him that he was an idiot, and he seemed upset. Oh well. I paid and we left. Next stop? The liquor store!

Payless served us well, allowing us to spend a decent amount of money and obtain a lot of alcohol. Razz0 became somewhat incoherent in the car and I really began to fear for my wellbeing. Nonetheless, we were back in DrKool's room filling the fridge soon enough.

Back at the Tropicana

Thayer, DrKool, and I had a mission: make the modem work. We spent an hour or so on this task while Vamprella learned more about Razz0 than she ever wanted to know. Razz0 evidently played a doctor on "Crime Stories" before he moved to Las Vegas. After hearing this, DrKool felt obliged to abandon us and go swimming. Vamprella had managed to tire Razz0 out and he left, leaving us free dinner tickets for a nearby hotel. Vamprella, Thayer, and I noticed that the room had grown quiet and peaceful so we all grabbed our drinks of choice and began massive alcohol consumption. Thayer offered Vamprella a glass of ice and some cranberry juice for her vodka, but much to my amazement she scoffed at him and drank the warm vodka straight out of the bottle. Just seeing this made me feel intoxicated..or maybe I was intoxicated..no matter.

DrKool returned from the pool to discover the three of us totally shitfaced laughing violently for no reason at all. It seemed like it might be bad for us to go down to the convention floor in our current condition...so we did.


This will continue to be updated..but don't expect a complete story right away..

Send your comments, suggestions and all that stuph to lynch@multiple.org