Being on a life-changing diet will always be a little bumpy. Holidays and celebrations can be an uphill battle. This weekend I plunged into a>"/>
Being on a life-changing diet will always be a little bumpy. Holidays and celebrations can be an uphill battle. This weekend I plunged into a deep valley in Vegas full of gelato, fried food goodness, and theme restaurants. The buffets were packed with wait staff who reminded you of the location of the dessert bar even though you were sitting right next to it, as if you were in some crazy food stupor with blinders on, which I was.
My goal this year is to lose 20 lbs. or more for various reasons, from health to general lifestyle changes, but this week was a fluke.
They say what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. I hope that means calories.
VIPs with Louie Anderson, Ed Driscoll, Alex Meyer and Jen Seaman before the show
My boyfriend and I flew into Vegas on Saturday night for a very special 4th of July engagement. I had the amazing opportunity of opening for legendary comedian Louie Anderson at the Excalibur. Louie is one of the sweetest, most genuine and kindhearted people I've ever met. During last week's Stand-Up Boot Camp presented by Kyle Cease & Louie Anderson at Bellevue's Parlor Live, Louie asked me if I would open for him this month.
I was fairly nervous the few days leading up to Vegas. I performed my set at Laughs Comedy Spot in Kirkland for their competition, "The Funniest Person to Ever Drive through Totem Lake," which was held last weekend. I advanced during the first round but was out of town for the remainder of the competition. The very funny Jeremy Horn won on Saturday against some of Seattle's top comedians and headliners.
No need to enroll in major league eating to enjoy this dog.
Flying into Vegas, I thought I would be able to stay true to my diet, but I failed. Strolling through the 100-plus degree weather to the New York, New York Resort, I happened upon my first of many Nathan's Famous hot dog stands. Nathan's hot dogs in Vegas are like Starbucks in Seattle--everywhere! As a big fan of silent film actress Clara Bow, who worked at the original Coney Island location, I squealed with delight. I've always wanted to try one of these delicious dogs. Prior to my first bite of my Vegas snack, a group of topless men started screaming about Vegas while drinking yards of slushed beverages. At that same moment, parents with strollers walked by, barely taking notice of the young men, which led me to believe this was going to be a very interesting weekend.
Walking through New York, New York, I happened upon one of the most interesting examples of modern ingenuity and architectural wonder, a Statue of Liberty made entirely out of Jelly Belly jelly beans. This patriotic tribute stands gracefully at It's Sugar in the New York, New York resort. It's Sugar is filled with candy bins begging to be tasted. As a child I would have gone crazy for the gummy assortment. I loved chewy candy and with their licorices balls and Swedish fish I would have been in heaven. My mother would have been excited until the moment she spotted the candy bras and panties for sale
I pledge allegiance to Jelly Belly
In the spirit of New York City, another destination that I look forward to performing at in the coming year, we decided to take a pit stop at Sirrico's Pizza at the New York, New York Resort, which focused on traditional New York pizza and Sicilian style. I gleefully indulged in a large New York-style slice of pepperoni pizza with its light and flimsy crust. I was about to tear it apart easily as I clicked my feet together, enjoying every saucy bite. I would have felt dieter's remorse, but after already eating my own tub of french fries, a hot dog and a cheese plate on the plane, it felt silly to apply guilt to one slice of pizza.
After I passed out from excitement at 3 a.m., the morning was a late start with The Excalibur's lunch buffet. From breakfast options to taquitos, my plate was covered in tiny morsels from all over the world. Knowing when to say, "Uncle," I turned in after the first plate, but indulged in a delicious treat of bread pudding ala mode with strawberries and granola on top, one of the most pseudo healthy items I'd eat during the entire trip. Each buffet around the resorts had massive lines as buffets are a staple on the strip. We lucked out, as two people are easier to seat than the groups of 4 to 7 that were waiting around us.
Dulce De Leche, I want you inside me!
My boyfriend, Alex Meyer had admired all of the novelty beverages the night before and had his heart set on drinking an entire Eiffel Tower, two liters of cold, slushed tropical delight. While we waited in line at one of the bars in the Paris Las Vegas Hotel he noticed that the resort sold two different souvenir glasses. They offered the Eiffel Tower AND a ceramic hot air balloon, a replica of the hotel's giant sign, which was one liter. I personally was not interested in drinking the entire hot air balloon alone and handed it over to the boyfriend after drinking roughly a quarter of the beverage. This left Meyer with the daunting task of drinking close to three liters, which, upon completion, left him in a sugary stupor.
Eiffel Tower Bomb?
My sugary stupor would be found at the Belaggio resort at Cafe Gelato, the sweet, creamy station of Italian frozen treats. Gelato reminded me of Seattle's Gelatiamo, only with more flavors and larger cases. In Vegas you have to go big or go home. I indulged ever more so with a white chocolate covered cone with Dulce De Leche gelato. The only solace I received was the knowledge that gelato is less fat-rich than ice cream.
Later in the evening, we had the honor of spending time with Louie Anderson and the extreme pleasure of receiving his advice and kind words. The room was large with a line of fans waiting to meet him. Despite the holiday and firework displays all over the strip, a great audience filled the room. I was fairly nervous prior to approaching the stage. Louie took me aside and said, "I don't think you know how talented and funny you are yet." His words hit me hard and I took the stage still a little nervous. My set went over well for my first time in Vegas. My start was slow due to nerves but I ended strong and the audience warmed up to me, which felt wonderful. Walking backstage to a hand clap from Louie made the trip worthwhile and felt surreal. After the show he said Alex and I could come back whenever we liked to open for him in Vegas. As a kid, I never could have imagined I'd have an experience like this.
This week marks a great number of changes in my comedy career. Last Monday I filmed a sketch for Comedy Central's Atom TV with hometown hero Kyle Cease, which will launch today online and later on television. This is my first TV credit. I'm excited and shocked all at the same time as I planned for this three years from now. Attached below is the video.