My "Vegas Nerve"

IMAGE CAPTION: Me totally faking the"I'm so happy to be here" smile 5 minutes after getting our room (and before collapsing into bed).

I learned some interesting stuff about myself this weekend: 1) I am not so much a Las Vegas person... whatever that means to you, it's likely 99% accurate for me. 2) My values are best when in use, not when used as a measuring stick with which to slap people across their character with.

Disclaimer to my "Vegas people": surely to God nothing under the sun can actually offend you, but on the off chance you are an easily-offended Vegas person, I hope you will read this all the way through to avoid misconstruing any of what might initially seem like close minded generalizations about your beloved happy place.

While our travel muscles are more than a little puny, after a veeery early morning, time change and cramming more than week's worth of to-dos into 72 hours, husband and I were spent. On the ass-end of a long morning plane hoping, and intermittent bickering bouts, we approached the hotel check-in about 9:30 AM weary AF and slowly realizing that the golden promise of a long awaited nap in our cold cozy room was not likely for a few more hours since we were arriving so early in the day. This fear was confirmed by the dapper check-in dude at the desk. He was actually one of about 4 dapper check-in dudes and 2 beauty-queen check-in chicks... all of them so beautiful and fashion forward I wondered if HR used a modeling agency to source their hires.... but I digress. 

What happens next with dapper check-in dude is the precise moment I realized I might have a "Vegas nerve" that someone or perhaps an entire city could get on and rattle with the force of six likely well-toned check-in people and a gazillion dollar hotel. It is in fact the theme I want to draw attention to in this post and in reality it probably has little to do with Vegas specifically, as much as it's essentially just an easy brand for me to poke at. 

So I absolutely will.

Dapper dude's very calculated and likely well worn next words were something akin to this:  Ummm it looks like quite a few people are in line waiting for one of our king elite (blah blah) suites that we have you down for this weekend... While it isn't ready at the moment, we do have a few other options available for just {insert upgrade price differences}... What instantly struck me was that were over-booked and didn't have a room for us. Which, where I come from is the hotel's problem to make right, not mine to pay extra for. 

Then I realized really what he was doing was trying to exploit the fact that our room wasn't ready and offer us a room that was not only 1) ready but 2) more expensive. Ahhh... an upgrade/ up sell opp, except the urgency and opportunistic nature of this offer felt so sleazy. As did this little notable difference. He gave zero eff's about who we were, where we came from and what our morning had entailed. That probably would have backed up the line to get into. However, he could have easily looked up and seen I was about ready to fall over my luggage in exhaustion and offered some empathy, interest, and gone into a problem solving/ solution seeking offer from authenticity, but instead he just stroked his keyboard and went through his script and barely made any eye contact. This caught me and I instantly recognized what he was doing. Bfut shrugged it off. We left our bags with the bell men to hold and ventured off to find Bloody Mary's for breakfast... (for sure falling right into their evil plans... and not really mad about it!). 

Barely 15 minutes passed and alas, our golden nap promise was coming to fruition... the room was ready! So we split up - husband: get room keys; me: get luggage. Easy peasy, nice and breezy nap time here I coooome! 

Now I want to be clear, I wasn't so much irritable with dapper check-in dude or the city of Vegas as a whole at this point. I had just noted the sales tactics felt slimy and likely spent more time then the average bear pondering over my vodka-based 3rd breakfast how he'd essentially scripted that whole interaction with the room up sell.

How it felt gross. How it was not ever who I wanted to be.

How I instead want to anticipate and accommodate "additional" needs of my audience in a way that touches the pain of their discomfort rather than cold, mechanical, slimy and lacking the heart I really actually want to shine.

Meet relator + thinker + vodka... divided by Vegas! 🥂

So. I premise this because it wasn't until the bell man told me it would be ten minutes to retrieve our three humble bags that were practically waving at me behind foggy glass that my irritable, sleep deprived, asshole started to emerge. "Because we already been sent them up on the convert belt to your room!"  Lies. We didn't even have a room number yet. This was the point when the beautiful check-in people and Vegas as a whole with all their flashy lights, opportunistic window placement, dings dongs and sneaky up sells that it started to take shape as a bit of a slimy but also kind of a sad and disconnected place.   

Yeah. So you know when you act like a jerk the experience is jolting even to you. This was and I couldn't help but overthink it. 

What I realized is that this perspective of Vegas isn't as much about my limited slimy sales experience, as much as it's about this: my values are better when used by me, not when used as a measuring stick with which to slap people across their character with. Vegas needed more of my "your worth isn't in the size of your bank account or scantily clad chest, sweetie" perspective of people (and, you know I'm southern so it's all a little slower and a tiny bit sweeter sounding - or more annoying deepening on your own preconceived notions).  What I do know is that I can easily see and connect with the light of people. Any people. But I have to want to. And as long as I'm carrying around a chip on my shoulder about the ill-constructed up sell offers, weaselly bell men, or feeling some shade of insecure about myself, I'm not able to shine it and use it to do what I do so well: connect with the humans. 

This is a good time to throw out a Byron Katie (probably butchered) quote: Whatever you feel is lacking in a relationship is exactly what you need to take responsibility for and bring to it.

Vegas was a valuable experience for me in understanding how I don't want to show up in selling things. But moreover it was a bit of a reality check in the regard that my thoughts show up in my results or my experience of anything. Eleven different known biases summarized: you get more of what you are looking for. 

Look for negative, you will find it. I had a boss who demonstrated this immaculately during my stint in his company, and it taught me a lot about who I don't want to be.

I'm the boss of how I show up, and even feeling a little vulnerable, irritable, and out of my element, I can still be true to my values. My gifts. And when things are going awry, those are precisely the tools I need to pull out of my belt and shine my ass off as fancy and twinkly as a marquee on the strip. Warming to all the unsuspecting humans around me. That's never not fun.

I'm still not interested that interested in going back to Vegas, but I'm richer (and also a little poorer :) for the experience.  I'm still a little more grateful to call home a place that prides itself on hospitality and authentic bless-your-heart-sweetie offers to sit and stay a spell. Ot maybe that's just what I want to see when I look around my home. Either way, I win.

MAIN IMAGE CAPTION: Me, rested and In-real-life-happy to be in Vegas with my sweet husband.


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