I fucking hate Las Vegas.
The only good thing about Las Vegas is that it’s out of Paulie’s reach. No more collections Friday, no more Tommy “The Killer,” no more bullshit. Moving out here, might be the best thing I’ve done in years. But, it better be worth it. I’m not moving across the country for nothing. After I dismantled, and brutalized Michael Byrd on Christmas Day, I know what my future holds. 2020 is going to be the year that Shawn Kutter wins himself a World Championship. The only problem that I have, is that the FWF Studios only sits 300 fucking people? What kind of shit is that? That’s definitely not the kind of crowd that is going to get me the fucking money that I need to survive out here. I’ll have to find another way to make ends meet, but that’s a story for another day.
This place is the worst kind of transient shit hole ever assembled, and it’s in the middle of the hot desert, no less. I’ve just gotten off my flight at McCarran Airport, and I’m headed down town. I arrange an Uber with my iPhone, and some hipster halfwit pulls up in a little VW. He gets out of the car and stows my luggage in the trunk, before we set off toward downtown.
“First time in Vegas?” I don’t understand why these asshole drivers don’t just do their job and drive. I’m not a fan of small-talk, and I definitely don’t want to make conversation with this twisty mustached, neck beard.
“Not a talker, eh?” I grunt as he insists on engaging me in conversation. He looks in the rear view mirror, and we lock eyes. I snarl at the pathetic excuse for what’s known as a man these days, and he quickly gets the hint. He puts his eyes back on the road, and I enjoy the pleasant silence for the rest of the trip.
The car comes to a stop in the valet area of a pink lit, overly decorated hotel. This place definitely isn’t my style, but The Flamingo had the cheapest room I could find. I get out of the car, retrieve my bags and rate that piece of shit one-star on Uber before I plow through a myriad of fake smiles and bullshit greetings. When I get to the check in counter, a small mousy woman lays the fake charm on thick with a big white smile and a soft voice. “Welcome to The Flamingo, how can I help you?”
“Checking, in. Shawn Kutter.” I toss my driver’s license onto the counter between us, and she begins typing rapidly on her computer.
“Yes, sir. We have a reservation for you. Queen bed.”
“That’s the one.”
“Sir, the room won’t be ready for another hour.”
Just my fucking luck. The pilot said we’d be making good time on the trip from Philly, but I didn’t expect to be this early.
“We can hold your bags while you wait,” she says, in an attempt to calm the rage that is definitely evident on my face.
A bell-hop, or whatever the fuck he is, comes over and retrieves my bags. I look down at my watch, and notice that it’s only 2pm. But I know that this is Vegas, and I can get a whiskey anytime I want one. I tell the little lady that I’ll be back at three to get my room key, to which she doesn’t reply but does smile.
I exit the hotel, and look down the left and then down to the right. I’ve never been one to hit the strip, so I head to the right and don’t look back. I happen upon a bar in, shit, like, 15 feet. Got to love that kind of distance between hotel and bar. I walk in the front door of this restaurant, and I see the bar in the back. I know where I’m headed, and make a b-line for the drinks. But, of course, I’m stopped by…wouldn’t ya’ know it? Another twisty mustached, neck bearded sack of shit.
“Can I help you sir?”
That’s what you call hispters, right?
“I just want to get a drink at the bar, and mind my own fuckin’ business. That alright with you?”
“Yes, sir. I’ll just need to see some identification.”
You’ve got to be fucking kidding me. I look the piss-ant up and down, and out he sticks his hand.
“You can’t be serious, junior.”
“It’s policy, sir.”
I reach into my back pocket…nothing. I check my coat pocket…nothing. Shit.
“Look, Sally. I don’t have my ID. I just want to get a whiskey, and mind my mother fuckin’ business.”
The little shit turns his mustache tilted with his arrogant little grin.
“Well, sir. I’m sorry then, we can’t serve you.”
Fuck Las Vegas. I hate this fucking place! I wish I could rip this little puke’s arms off and beat him with ‘em. But I’ve got to stay cool, and maintain my composure. I reluctantly turn away, and walk out the way I came in. I head down the street, once again. And wouldn’t ya’ fuckin’ know it, 10 feet later and I’m at another bar. This place looks like shit, smells like shit, and it’s empty as hell. This is my kind of place. I quickly walk inside cut through the smoke in the air, and grab myself a stool at the bar.
“What’ll it be, bud?” Finally, a normal fucking guy.
“Whiskey and a brew.” My order is always the same.
“Jack Daniels?” This guy has no idea who I am.
“Fuck, Jack Daniels. Maker’s Mark.”
“We don’t have that.”
“Just give me the well.”
“You got it, bud.”
The bar keep goes back, fetches my drinks and places them in front of me. I slide him a ten, and turn my back on him. I pull a cigarette from my coat pocket and place it between my teeth.
“What’s this?” The bar tender asks.
“Oh, keep the change pal.” That’s nice of me.
“Yeah, uh. Boss, this ain’t enough.”
Slowly I turn in my chair and face off with him.
“What?” I ask.
“It’s $17.50 for the drink,” he says, waving the $10 bill around in the air.
I fucking hate Vegas, have I said that?
I pull another 10 from my pocket and slam it on the table.
I pull the lighter from my pocket and fire up the cigarette.
“$2.50’s your change,” he says, placing the money in front of me on the bar.
I flick him the two quarters, and turn away from him again. I can hear the scoff as I turn, but fuck that guy. $17.50 for two drinks.
Just as I get comfortable, it happens.
“Hey, your…your that Shawn Kutter guy right?”
“Who the fuck are you?” I’m not in the mood for conversation.
“I’m Nick Diamond, from the local news station here. I heard you were coming in today, and I was just wondering if I could get a few words from you.”
“Sure,” my response shocks the shit head.
“Fuck Las Vegas.” His eyes grow wide as I let him know how I really feel about the shithole desert town.
“I’m sorry, Shawn. I was more interested in your upcoming match at FWF’s Pandemonium. The first FWF show in Las Vegas,” he’s recording with his phone, I guess that’s how they do things these days.
“What do ya’ want to know?”
I know what he wants to know about, but he’s got to ask the questions.
“Well, tell me about…”
He flips through a small notepad, searching for his next words.
“The Raging Dead,” he found it.
“What is that, like some kind of zombie flick? What the hell are you talking about, Nick?”
I know what and who he’s talking about, but I’ll have a little fun at this guy’s expense.
“He’s your opponent this week, Shawn.”
“Oh, that prick.”
He looks down at his phone, seeing if he recorded that. He did.
“I don’t really have anything to say about that crazy faced imbecile.”
“Well, Shawn. He’s an experienced guy, and I don’t know what the odds here, but in a triple threat match with two relatives, your chances have to be a little slim.”
“Slim? What are you, on crack like everyone else in this fucked up city?”
“I’m just saying Shawn, the deck is a little stacked against ya’.”
I’m going to rip this guy’s head clean off his shoulders, but again…I have to stay cool.
“Look, Nick. Let’s be real here. Raging Dead has paid his ‘supposed’ dues. But who gives a shit about dues? I never set up a wrestling ring in my life, I never had a brother to lean on to establish a career in wrestling. Raging Dead, alright...that’s fucking it.” I pause, trying to gather myself again.
“I can’t fucking do this shit anymore. Raging Dead? Are you fucking kidding me? What kind of a name is that? No longer will I refer to this guy as Raging Dead. It stifles my ability to speak when I try to call someone something as ridiculous as Raging Dead. From here on out, he’ll simple by known as Asshat.”
Nick laughs a little at the new nickname, but for the most part he keeps his chuckle low.
“Asshat might have set up wrestling rings, wrestled with his brother, and yada yada yada, but all of that meaningless bullshit is exactly that…meaningless bullshit. This guy has supposedly traveled the world as a professional wrestler, and at what? 197 pounds? Are you kidding me? This boney midget doesn’t stand a chance against me. In a one-on-one match, or in a triple threat match. It doesn’t really matter.”
“But, Shawn…he was the XTREMEHARDKOREFIGHTINGCHAMPIONOFTHEWORLD!”
Yeah, I’m patronizing the little dirt rag.
“And I’m Shawn Kutter.”
“But, Shawn…he lost his memory one time and totally forgot who he was, and somehow survived a fall from his window, and like a vampire he vanished into the night!”
I’ll patronize this little shit all day if I feel like it.
“And I’m Shawn Kutter.”
“But, Shawn…he hit his head and remembered how great he was and won MOARHARDKORECHAMPIONSHIPS!”
How about some more patronizing?
“And I’m Shawn Kutter.”
“I don’t give a shit how many wrestling promotions this guy has been in, and I don’t care how many people he’s scared off with his intimidating height, and it unbelievable stature. The guys a chump, a halfwit, and a most importantly a bitch. United States championships, World championships…all irrelevant when he steps into the ring with Shawn Kutter.”
This really pisses me off. Like the Grinch, I wouldn’t touch this guy with a 39 and a half foot pole, if the circumstances were different.
“What Asshat should be doing, is finding his way back to the fucking Ice Cream Emporium so he can rip some more people off with his bullshit training. Who the fuck trains at an Ice Cream Emporium anyway? I’ll tell you who, Asshats…that’s fucking who.”
Don’t forget, Raging Dead is still known as Asshat.
“Oh, but that’s not all, is it? No, instead of giving me a match against one competitor, FWF decided that I should demolish two individuals during my next match. The other one is…”
I can’t remember the name, so I pull a notecard from my shirt pocket. I don’t fucking believe it.
“Kentucky Tarzan? Are you being serious? This has to be some kind of joke. What the fuck is a Kentucky Tarzan? Odd thing about this whole thing isn’t just the two of these halfwits names, oh no…that would be far too easy. It’s the fact that both of these fools have ties to the Szalinski family. So, Ragin…Asshat is MadWoman Szalinksi’s Uncle, Tarzan is her nephew? You can’t make this shit up, because if you did…people would call you a fucking liar. So, if she’s Asshat’s neice, and Tarzan is her nephew...my God, who did the 23 and Me on this fuckpot of asshattery? What’s next, Lunchbox Larry is married to Szalinski and his brother’s wife’s second cousin Reggie is Szalinski’s mom?”
This family tree is freaking stupid. Someone call Maury Fucking Povich and find out who the baby-daddy is.
“All of that family shit aside, this has got to be the dumbest shit I’ll ever be a part of. In one corner we have the MOARHARDKORECHAMPIONWORLDUSTITLEWINNER! Raging Dead, and in the other we have the mixed martial arts super master, tree swinging, MadKentuckian Tarzan and they’re both from fucking Szalinksi-ville. This is absolutely ridiculous. The funny part about this whole thing, is I’m pretty sure I’m taller than Asshat standing on Tarzan’s shoulders, and I’m sure I weigh more than both of these halfwits combined. This isn’t going to be a wrestling match; this is going to an absolute bludgeoning of two sorry assholes that should have never been in the ring with me in the first place.”
The scene fades to black, as I put my cigarette out on the bar floor and head back to the hotel.