Tuesday, November 11, 2008


(or why I hate them)

Until last summer I had never been to a casino before. Can you believe it? I'm 41 years old and I had never been to Vegas, never gambled? Part of it is that I've always been poor and couldn't afford it. Plus it seemed terribly dumb to me to throw my money away like that.

So last June Mark and I stopped by the Tulalip on the way home from a road trip up North to the Grizzley warehouse...a tool store... another story in itself. He adores buffets and raved about how great they are in Vegas. So we stopped and both thought it was mediocre. I decided to try a penny slot and it was over in seconds. I thought I'd get a 100 tries silly me.

So last weekend the Snoqualmie Casino opened up a mere few miles from us. For months we'd heard about it. It was supposed to be a different kind of Casino. No sign of it from the highway.. so no neon tackiness. It must blend into the trees in brush...so beautiful architecture. Five restaurants, better ventilation, a venue for concerts and on and on. We thought it would be great and Mark was looking forward to the buffet.

So we didn't go Thursday, opening day, too crowded. We tried Friday at 4:30 but the line for the buffet snaked out the door and around the casino. A friend went Saturday and said they ran out of food...huh? So we went tonight.

Tuesday night was busy! I aways pictured casino's being glamorous but most were dressed way down. Or maybe it was polyester night? We paid our 29.95 each for the buffet to a bored inattentive cashier (I'm very intolerant when it comes to bad customer service. I did it for nearly 20 years and it's easy to be good) and walked the buffet. Boy was that disgusting. Frozen vegetables barely defrosted, wilted lettuce and mystery dressing at the salad bar. Huge slabs of over-cooked steak in this line...HUGE HUGE HUGE obscene really. Petrified enchiladas and Pizza from the middle ages over there. No chicken, pasta with no sauce. Broken ice cream machine (sad for Mark) again inattentive waitresses. I never complain when it comes to food until I'm leaving however. Have you ever known a waiter? Don't let them tell you what they do.

So we leave and weave our way through the casino. It smells like a wet ashtray. As a former smoker I still LOVE the way cigarette smoke smells but this was disgusting and after only days. So much for the ventilation. I felt like if I were an epileptic I would have had a seizure with all the noise and lights.

But the worst part to me is no one looked happy. I thought this would be a place where people had fun. They all looked sad. The cocktail waitresses were smooshed into boob baring costumes and looked cold and miserable. The dealers looked harried and stressed. The patrons sat in front of the slot machines pulling the handles, smoking and staring straight ahead. The poker room looked to me like a room full of people who were on the verge of losing everything.... their eyes haunted.

So I don't want to go back I'm depressed now. Sorry Travis we would love to host you and Curtis at our new favorite restaurant or even the Salish but I don't want to ever step foot in that place again.


Travis said...

no worries, we were only gonna go because you invited us :) we both hate casinos too... the ONLY glamorous ones I've ever been to are a few of the high end ones in Vegas. Plus I dont gamble, but I've never been to a tribal casino that was anything but depressing.

Dan-Eric Slocum said...

BUT. It is PRIME people watching.


Kristin said...

Yuck. This reminds me of the Clearwater Casino in Suquamish. So depressing. Just a bunch addicts gambeling their lives away. I did go there once for salsa dancing though and that was a lot more fun.