So I come back from vacay, and looky at all the stuff to do. It’s a super busy weekend.
Tonight, Richard Cheese and Lounge Against The Machine perform for the end of A.J.’s Steakhouse at the Hard Rock. The restaurant is closing. Cheese is closing the place out with an 11:30 show ($35-$60).
If you haven’t seen the video of all this weekend’s to-do’s, it’s here:
And to recap my in-print column today:
• Neil Diamond, the "Jewish Prince," makes women swoon at the MGM ($59.50-$190.75). Hopefully, he’s still kissing women in the front rows. Music writer Jason Bracelin has more on Neil in today’s Neon.
• Stone Temple Pilots rock The Pearl at the Palms ($70-$125).
• Pauly Shore and Jamie Kennedy do stand-up at the House of Blues ($37-$40).
• Country fans have another new venue off-Strip. Stoney’s North Forty opened New Year’s Eve at Sante Fe Station.
• Kid Rock returns to The Pearl at the Palms ($100-$200; 474-4000).
• B.B. King plays the Star of the Desert Arena in Primm ($49.45-$71.45).
• Kathleen Madigan performs stand-up at the House of Blues ($25-$35). In today’s Neon section, she tells me about her side legacy for dating Lewis Black and Ron White: "I will say they can write on my tombstone, ‘She never went out with a hack.’ "
• George Clinton & P-Funk hit the House of Blues. The Wailers open ($36.50-$47).
The World Series of Beer Pong started Thursday at the Flamingo. It’s too late to register to compete, but you can pay $20 a day, or $50 for three days, to see tonight’s and Saturday’s prelims, and Sunday’s finals.
If you don’t know beer pong: Dudes toss pingpong balls across an 8-foot table to try to get them into cups. If a ball goes in a guy’s cup, he drinks Pabst Blue Ribbon. Players can opt to drink water, which dilutes the purpose, if you ask me.
"You don’t have to drink any beer at all if you don’t want to," says last year’s co-winner, Jeremy Hughes. "You might catch some criticism. But you might also win $50,000."
Yep, the winning team, among 400 or so, pockets $50,000 for tossing a pingpong ball into a cup.
Balls are rinsed in water to keep clean, says Billy Gaines, co-founder of the Series and BPONG.com.
"Some people are concerned about germs. I’ve never really thought about it or cared about it too much," he says but adds, "The casino is extremely clean. It’s not a dirty bar floor. There are carpeted floors this year."
My question: Why hasn’t the series branched into Wine Pong or Jäger Pong? Gaines says the series focuses not on booze but on the competition of "the sport." The "sport" of beer pong? Well, ESPN did cover it last year.
Hughes and co-winner Michael Orr (their team site is ChauffeuringTheFatKid.com) say Jäger Pong would destroy them.
"You’d probably throw up after a game or two," Orr says.
You’re correct if you think this is a guy’s contest.
"Surprisingly around the pong scene," Hughes snarks, "there’s not too many women."