Luv Doc Recommends: ASA’s Viva, Las Vegas!
Austin Music Hall, Saturday, June 19, 2004
When it comes to love, sometimes you’ve just got to roll the dice. No, seriously. If you want to meet someone outside of your break-room-coffee-pot-watching crowd, you’re going to have to take a few chances…get out there…work the room. It’s true, being a social butterfly demands a lot of tiresome wing flapping, but then caterpillars don’t get any play, do they? So what’s it gonna be? Every morning when you roll over, smack the snooze button and begin your ritual to-be-or-not-to-be soliloquy, keep in mind that outside your window a new day is dawning, full of fresh possibilities…although fraught with a few disappointments and dangers as well. You could lie there in your cocoon of covers, enjoying your momentary reprieve from the obnoxious prattle of morning DJs, luxuriating in the eight or so minutes that could save you from having to scream off to work late at breakneck speed, or you could spring out of bed and get a head start on the rest of your life. What would a gambler do? In Vegas, the gambler would still be at the craps table, looking haggard, nursing a run and coke, frantically trying to break even. OK, maybe that’s not a good analogy. Let’s start this thing over. Saturday those charmingly creative folks from AIDS Services of Austin are throwing their annual “Viva, Las Vegas!” party at the Austin Music Hall. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s the exclamation point. Maybe it’s the “Viva.” Who knows? The point is that even though it has Las Vegas in the title it’s not really Las Vegas. That’s OK, though because some things should stay in Vegas, most notably, Vegas itself. Really, Vegas isn’t all Bellagio and MGM Grand. It also has its Horeshoes and Barbary Coasts. It’s not all Technicolor Elvis and voluptuous showgirls, it’s also Nicky Cage on a deathwish drinking binge. If only you could take the best and leave the rest…well, that would be ASA’s “Viva, Las Vegas!” First, they’ve removed the soulless capitalism and the mafia oversight – buzz killers to be sure – and they’ve classed it up with a silent auction (please, nothing’s silent in Vegas), an upstairs VIP section for “high rollers,” and entertainment by Mr. Fabulous and Casino Royale. If anything like Mr. Fabulous exists in Vegas, it’s probably a revival show starring Kid Rock. They also have other Vegas classics like an Elvis impersonator officiated wedding chapel, a honeymoon suite for newlyweds with a heart shaped bed, and food from over thirty of Austin restaurants. Check it out: they don’t even have Austin restaurants in Vegas! Lastly, of course there is the gambling. OK, not really gambling but faux gambling. The difference between the two is that in faux gambling you can still get fleeced, but you losses are tax deductible and the profits all go to charity. Hmmm…maybe there is mafia oversight… Which charity, you ask? A good one with a worthy mission and a lengthy anagram: CAALP, the Capital Area AIDS Legal project, a program providing pro bono legal services to people in Central Texas living with AIDS – things like estate planning, insurance, discrimination, family law, debtor-creditor, probate, and other civil issues. So go ahead, roll the dice. You’re going to come up a winner every time.