Sunday, January 08, 2006

AVN Awards Show & After-Party

Testosterone and Commotion
The Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas, NV

At first we weren't sure what we had tickets for. My friend came about them through a complex web of work connections, so we thought we'd be attending the after-party in some part of the Venetian Hotel. The text message instructions said simply "#104" which we assumed to mean a room. After much getting lost and talking to security guards, we finally realized oh - oh - OH this is TABLE 104 in the BALLROOM where happening right now is the Adult Video Network awards show, the Oscars of adult film.

On our way in (look! Larry Flynt!) I recognize some of the industry people from the Expo the other day. There are no fans of the great unwashed-type here. Everyone looks smashing, the cleaves are out, the men have dunked themselves in cologne, and business is being discussed. With so much to gawk at, it takes me a good ten minutes after I sit down to notice that the guy at the table next to me isn't wearing pants.

Paul Thomas receives an award for Best Director - Film, and in his acceptance speech he thanks his parents, his "best goddamned wife anyone could have," and humbly admits that "I've been shitty to so many people" in his climb to the top. Shortly thereafter a less-eloquent starlet receives her award, saying "I'm so happy I just want to squirt all over every one of you!!"

Our group of twelve consists of The Ring Leader (fabulous LA-executive), Wunderkind (corporate boy genius), and The Entourage, of which I am now a temporary member. We pull up stakes and head to the next stop: Tao nightclub. There are at least four different lines to get in, all unmoving. But Wunderkind gets on the phone and does his magic, and suddenly we are being escorted to a private lounge overlooking the club. Lord, thank you for the wealthy and connected.

This place is gigantic and packed to the ceiling with the young and beautiful. People are so jubilant and hot that you can conduct little experiments like "try to make out with someone on the way to the bathroom" AND THEY TOTALLY WORK. At one point my friend and I go back up to the lounge after dancing to find the group gone. My coat/purse panic barely starts when our waitress grabs us both by the hand and leads us downstairs to our NEW table, smack in the middle of the dance floor. The entourage has grown by a few vaguely famous-looking people.

We dance until nearly 4 and yet are the first in the group to leave. After loving this party, seeing the AVN show (and actual pimps with *actual pimp cups*), walking through the Expo, attending both Zumanity and Avenue Q (both far too wonderful and engaging to notice any fan behavior), and eating some fantastic food, I finally understand that THIS is the Las Vegas people talk about. The decadent, the debaucherous, the dazzling. Now I get it. Now I love it.


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