You’ve got a tall, themed-drink in your hand. Your wife stands on the edge of the carpet, looking for you down the two narrow aisles in front of her. You peek around your slot machine, make eye-contact between two cigar-wielding men, see that she wants in, and you quickly make the switch. Now you’re standing on the edge of the carpet, by the door. You look down and two tired little eyes look up at you from your stroller.
Even your baby thinks you’re a dirtbag. I do too. And so do a whole lot of people in the casino. And it’s because you are. I mean, you brought your baby to Sin City. You might as well let your baby nap directly in Satan’s anus.
Even TLC has an article up about this. They recommend, go figure, a vacation anywhere other than Las Vegas. But should you still want to go because you’re THAT person, they suggest Adventuredome Theme Park at Circus Circus Hotel and Casino. Evidently, there’s laser tag. But places like this are a reaction, not an intention. Circus Circus saw that people were bringing their kids to Las Vegas, and wanted that business. It’s a smart move for a casino – and I’m assuming, pays off – since when you Google “bringing kids to Vegas,” Circus Circus comes up as a recommendation on every page. When all the casinos were built, there was no intention of providing a fun family-friendly place – it only came up later when patrons kept having kids, who were probably conceived in Vegas nine months prior.
So you “can” bring your kids to Sin City. But just because you can doesn’t mean you should. And here’s the 5 reasons why you’re a dirtbag if you do bring your kids to La Vegas:
1. Kids Get Up Early, People In Vegas Don’t
You’re thinking this is actually a good thing – if you’re up early, you miss the crowds and get to go to a buffet with the kids while it’s still relatively empty. And sure, that’s true. But remember – when your baby or toddler is screaming at 6:45am or 7:30am or 8:30 or even 9:15am – that’s like the dead of night in Las Vegas. And though the walls are generally thick enough to drown out the sound of whores being screwed and stabbed, you know as a parent that your kid is louder than any whore on on the Strip. So, the people in the rooms next to you are going to hate the crap out of you.
This is where you say “I don’t care about my neighbors,” and that’s another reason why I’m making a note never to move into your neighborhood, jerk-ass.
2. Casinos Are Smoke-Houses
People smoke inside casinos, no s**t. Oh sure, casinos have billion-dollar fan-and-filtration systems that pull away as much smoke as they can, but many systems are actually set up to protect the dealers, not the patrons – since the patrons are the ones smoking, and clearly, La Vegas is not a city that tries to save you from yourself.
So, if you live in a police-state like California, where smoking is being banned in many public places, you’re not used to having to wipe soot from out of your eyelids like other people might. And whatever your personal politics on smoking are, everyone agrees that you should expose your kid to as little smoke as possible. Hey, I had myself a couple delicious “Black & Mild” smokes in Vegas, but that’s a strictly away-from-my-kid thing. But, I did make it a point to blow my smoke directly into the faces of the kids I saw in the casinos – because I’m a believer in rubbing an innocent kid’s nose in his parents’ stupidity.
I almost didn’t include this argument in the list because it’s borderline insulting for me to remind you that there’s a lot of smoke in casinos. That’s like warning you about the salt in ocean water. But seeing the amount of kids inside of casinos in Las Vegas made me wonder if people actually acknowledge this as a bad thing for little developing lungs.
3. You’re Going to Pay For It
Las Vegas is expensive for adults. And adults can sometimes resist buying dumb crap and $15 novelty-sized drinks. But if you put a kid in a casino souvenir shop, they want everything, because they spend the whole vacation watching you drink out of a giant guitar-shaped drink and playing slot machines.
And slot machines look like video games, so that’s what your kid wants to touch from moment-one. Try explaining to your kid that they can’t touch anything in Las Vegas. Don’t touch the slot machines, don’t touch the colorful titty-cards on the street, don’t touch the novelty-sized alcohol cups, don’t touch any of those expensive souvenirs. And don’t touch daddy’s winnings tickets because he’s got to trek all the way back across the strip to cash-out in the Stratosphere sometime before you leave tomorrow morning at 8am.
Yeah, good luck with that.
So in an effort to appease your kid, you’ve got to buy him a Roman gladiator outfit in Caesar’s Palace, which for your convenience, I priced-out while I was there:
- Helmet: $8
- Breastplate: $10
- Shield: $10
- Sword: $8
- Tunic: $10
That’s a $46 hit to the wallet. You’re actually better off pre-buying a costume after Halloween on clearance, estimating a couple sizes larger than your kid is now, and hiding it in your closet until you go to Vegas. Then, when your kid sees it and falls in love with it, you tell him to go sit on the Trevi Fountain and wait, then pull out the one you bought for $8 last year, stuff it in a Caesar’s Palace bag, and hand it over to him. Voila!
4. You’re Going to Have An Awkwardly-Premature Birds-and-Bees Talk
Here’s a little anticipatory T&A Q&A you can expect to have when bringing your speaking-age kid to Sin City:
Q: “Daddy, why are that girl’s privates out?”
A: “Well, I don’t know son, because when a woman is lava-hot and wants to make money, she takes her clothes off in the pursuit of the almighty dollar and us men break our solemn vows of marriage and oblige.”
Q: “Daddy, look, I found a card on the ground with a picture of a naked girl!”
A: “Number one, lemme see that. Number two, gimme a second. Number three, wash your hands. Number four, eyes up and don’t touch any more of those. Because I said so.”
Q: “Daddy, why does that truck say that hot women can be delivered to your room? What do the women do?”
A: “They. Just. Hang. Out. And. Play.”
Q: “Daddy, how come she’s dancing on a table with no pants on? When I stand on our table and take off my pants, you yell at me.”
A: “I bet she’s in big trouble too and later, she’s going to get a spanking. That’s why that man is standing below her reaching for her to come down. That’s her dad. Probably.”
So, hey, if you want to have these types of discussions with your kid, then that’s up to you. But it was hard for me to even come up with stupid unbelievable answers, so I could only imagine what kind of a trap it’d be to get into the “why why why why” game with a kid in that situation.
Also, back to the titty-cards – try explaining to your kid why these nude chicks are on “pokémon cards” and why he can’t collect them. Then, try to explain boobs. I’m 31 and can’t figure them out. Why are they so amazing? Why can I zone out looking at them? Why do women enhance and then have to cover theirs, but my moobs can be out on the town whenever I want my shirt off? I have no idea, so I know once my kid starts asking about that, I’m going to be stumped. That’s no kind of conversation to have while you’ve got a good buzz going at 8:22am in Vegas.
5. You’re Doing Better At Other Evils
I saw far fewer people per capita with their kids at the midnight release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 at my local mall. More people, it would seem, find it alright to put their kid in an overly-sexualized and addiction-laced environment than in front of an M-rated video game. As a writer that’s covered the video game industry and the parenthood industry, this is both a success and a failure for my target audiences.
Usually, parents are a lot more stuffy about the tangible evils: cancer, carcinogens, sex and alcohol exposure – and tend to pass of digital sex and violence as harmless fun. But in my highly-limited, qualitative, headcount-based survey (during some of which I was admittedly intoxicated above the legal limit) – it seems that parents are more accepting of exposing their kids to pleasures of the flesh moreso than video games. Kudos to them, they’re finally making the video game folk look less crazy than we previously thought.
6. How Selfish Are You?
I saved this rant for last because it’s the least fact-laden argument I’ve got. But I think it’s important for you to know that when you take your kids to Las Vegas, you’re being selfish. Yeah, you heard me, suck it, punk.
I mean, c’mon. Everyone knows what Las Vegas is for – drinking, gambling, sex. If you go to Las Vegas and don’t do at least two of those three things, then you’re wasting everyone’s time. Ask anyone that puts “Vegas, baby” as their Facebook status (BTW, screw those people too) – you don’t go to Vegas to people-watch. I mean, you could, but you could also take up knitting and start a lucrative Etsy store selling scarves. So, clearly you’ve got a lot of choices in life.
But don’t be stupid, stupid. Vegas is there as a celebration of gluttony, and if you’re going, it’s because you want to get ripped and stumble through a casino checking out boobs. Or, if you’re with your wife, then it’s because you want to get ripped and re-kindle your marriage, if you know what I mean. You don’t want some little ankle-riding c-blocker wasting your time and asking to go up to your room to watch “Spongebob Squarepants.” And you sure as hell don’t want to leave Vegas without testing out the bed springs. I don’t mean by letting your kid jump on it.
So you brought your kid because you couldn’t find someone to take him – but you still want to try to have an adult vacation. Screw you, you selfish piece of s**t. Why wouldn’t you just take your family to a more family-friendly place? And if you still just have to gamble, go to Laughlin instead of Las Vegas. I don’t know why it’s more family-friendly because I’ve never looked into it, but I seem to remember my childhood friends always taking family trips there.
So do you agree? Disagree? You think that parents should bring their kids to Vegas? Come at me, bro. Let me know in the comments.