Finding A Room & The New Mexico Bowl Media Events Begin! (NM) “DAY 164” – 12/15/10

December 16, 2010 - 4:05 pm - (NM) “DAY 164” - Week 24 - State 22

I woke up this morning relieved that I had nothing to write. (I’m all caught up to date, well I’m not anymore. :()  Anyway, my room for this Motel 6 wasn’t comped anymore, so I packed up my things and headed out to find a new place to stay.

Getting MY Media Pass
Before I started my search, I headed down to the Embassy Suites to pick up my press pass (in the Agave Room).  Today was the first day you were able to pick up your credentials as well as the beginning of New Mexico Bowl week.

F.Y.I. - During the week of all college bowl games, the hosting bowl puts on different events each night for the media and the teams participating in the football game.  Ex: Tonight there is a dinner at the Albuquerque International Ballon Museum (5pm).

Anyway, I picked up my credentials from RaeAnn (Media Relations for the bowl game) and then decided to hit the remaining casinos in the area to see if I could work something out.

Hard Rock & Route 66
Besides Sandia Resort & Casino, the other two real big casino’s out here are the Hard Rock and Route 66.  Route 66 is about 20 miles west of the center of Albuquerque and the Hard Rock is about 15 miles south from the center.

So basically, I’ll be driving all over Albuquerque this afternoon since I started my day 8 miles north of the center by Sandia Casino.  It’s no biggie, I’ll get to know the landscape a little better. 🙂

I could write a lot of meaningless details about what happened in each place but I’ll spare you and get right to the outcome.  All of these Albuquerque casinos have the same story... they’re not allowed to comp rooms because of the casino commission. (It has to be based on play.)

Players Clubs
There was one good thing about going to these casinos today... because I was never  a member of their players clubs (Hard Rock, Route 66), I was able to cash in on their new member deals.  (Hard Rock gave me $20 in free play, Route 66 gave me a lunch bag.)

The $20 in free play I received from the Hard Rock turned into $46 real dollars (slot play).  Woo Hoo! 🙂  I never win in the slots and never ever win with promo dollars but today was my day as I picked up enough money to pay for another night a Motel 6!

Motel 6 Again (A Different One Though)
Being my search ended in defeat, I headed back to a Motel 6.  I didn’t go back to the same one I stayed at last night because it was 8 miles north from the Media Hotel (things are happening there) and it was also 8 miles more of driving from where I was.

After getting my room ($33 a night), I settled in and got ready to head right back out the door the New Mexico Bowl media dinner which started at 5 pm.  Ahhh!  I am so busy I don’t even have time to relax... or play poker... or see the town... or anything!

Albuquerque International Ballon Museum - Media Dinner
I arrived at the Balloon Museum around 5:30 pm (a little late) and from the outside of the museum you could tell something was going on because they had one of those spotlights shooting beams of light into the sky.  Not bad.

I followed the light to the entrance and after looking around the Museum for a few minutes, I found my way to area where BYU was eating dinner.  (BYU ate downstairs while UTEP ate upstairs, space limitations that’s why.)

BYU Head Coach Bronco Mendenhall
The BYU room was full and everybody was sitting when I arrived except for the head coach, Bronco Mendenhall.  Coach Mendenhall was was standing near the doorway talking with a lifelong BYU fan.

The older gentleman wanted his picture taken with coach, so grabbed his camera and took a picture for him.  (Also, I took a picture of them with my camera too.)

Then, as I was about to walk away, the older man said, “You don’t want a picture with coach?”,  and asked coach to take a picture with me.  I couldn’t say no, the older dude was to cool as he was so excited for me to meet coach. (He just was, I don’t know why? :))

UTEP Dinning Area
After looking around the BYU area (unsuccessfully) for a place to sit down and eat, I found my way upstairs to the UTEP dining room where there was an open table for the media to have dinner.  Nice!

When I initially sat down at the table, I was the only one there.  But, after about 5 minutes of taking in the scenery, I was joined by 3 real cool guys (Savannah, Adolf, Lonnie).  I didn’t know who they were but after a second, I found out they were the UTEP’s team bus drivers.  Nice, I’m not eating alone. 🙂

Anyway, the four of us were only sitting together for a second when a waiter walked up and placed 50 wings on the table in front of Savanna (6’3 300 lbs + bus driver).  He looked at the lady and said, “How’d you know black people like wings.” as he laughed. 🙂

I looked at Savanna and said, “Hey buddy don’t get to excited, white people from NJ like wings too.” 🙂 lol  After that exchange, the 4 of us hung out at the table as if we had been friends forever.  We talked about everything and they were real cool! 🙂

Mariachi Band (I think)
During dinner, one of those Mexican Mariachi bands starting playing in the room while we eating.  The beats they played were so contagious, I was forced to get up and dance along with them while they sang their infectious style of music!  Nice! 🙂

Other Interesting Things
While everybody ate, there was a presentation being shown on the big screen TV’s they had set up in each dining area.  F.Y.I. - The first night of each New Mexico Bowl (5th year), they have a chili cook off between the schools playing and at this dinner they announce the winner (BYU won).

Dessert Time - Hard Rock People (Penny & Bob)
As dinner was winding down, 2 more people approached the table I was at and asked if they could join us (me and the bus drivers).   Sometimes things just work out because these two people were PR representatives for the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel.  Sweet! 🙂

As I told you earlier in the post, I was at Hard Rock this afternoon trying to get a comped a room (unsuccessfully).  But... after talking with Penny and Bob during dessert, I had a comped for Thursday set-up for me while we were eating cookies.  (It took 5 minutes.) Thanks!

Dinner Ends - Checking Out The Museum
After dinner ended, the players, coaches, and media were allowed to walk around the Balloon Museum and take in the exhibit.  To me, it seemed as if both teams were having fun while messing around with the different ballon stuff, way cool!

I stayed around for about 30 minutes longer and after meeting players from both teams, I called it a night myself and headed back to my Motel room.  I had a great time but it was time to go and tomorrow... they have another event at Santa Ana Star so I have more these ahead of me. 🙂

Back to the Room
The media event ended around 8:30pm so I drove back south to the Motel 6 I was staying at.  It was easy to find because... they leave the light on. 😉

By the time I got back to the room it was almost 9 pm.  Huh?  What should do now?Poker?  Bar?  Relax?  After weighing out my options... I choose none of the above (“Brewster’s Millions”) and decided to get something done I had to do before 12/21/10.

Defensive Driving Class
Because I got a ticket in Arizona for the accident I caused (unsafe lane change), I either had to pay the ticket ($130) and take 2 points or take a defensive class ($174.95) and have the ticket dismissed.

I haven’t gotten a ticket in over 17 years (November, 1993), so to keep that streak alive I had to take the course and pay the extra $45.  Also, I don’t want to get pulled over in the deep south for no reason and then have a ticket on my record for them to ask about (a recent ticket).  I’ve seen My Cousin Vinnie. 😉

Bill (Ralph Macchio) : “I think they’re setting us up as patsies. Ma. Ya know how corrupt it is down here.”
Stan (other guy ;)) : “The Klan’s here.  They’re inbred.  They sleep with their sisters.”
(Crazy enough, these pictures of "My Cousin Vinny" I just took of my TV in Motel 6 room as I write this post, Sat. 7:30 am.) 🙂

Anyway, I registered for the on-line class and started taking my course (on-line) last night.  The class takes over 4 hours to partially complete.  I say partially because when you finish the on-line section, you then have to take a 50 question exam at a UPS store.

So basically, the whole endeavor will take about 7 hours from when I start to when it is totally complete.  Ahhh!  This sucks! 🙁

At 11 pm I finally started and by 2 am-ish... I was completely shot and had to close my laptop before I was done.  It’s OK because you can take this class in sections, so it’s all good.  Except... now when I wake up in morning, I still have work to do before I start my day. 🙁

Thanks for reading!

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  1. DAD says:

    I loved My Cousin Vinnie. Your not behind. Your readers should call you once in a while, rather than just wait for posts. They’d be more up to date and still could read the whole story with additions that
    they hadn’t heard.Sounds like your eating well.
    Talk to you again, tomorrow.

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