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  1. #1
    RoadTrippers A & R Guest

    Default Guys trip to 'Vegas: Any SEMA Stories out there?

    My friend Mark came by and asked if I'd like to go with him to the SEMA show in Las Vegas.
    I said "sure". Mark said the plane leaves in 2 hours.

    SEMA is a major car industry trade show in Las Vegas every year.

    Marks wife was the meanest, loudest-in-your-face shrew of a wife I've ever seen in all my days. Scary mean.
    First trip ever she couldn't make and keep Mark on a short leash.

    Mark was the Ayatolla of car painters. Known and respected in the trade.
    He was so good one of the major auto paint companies hired him away to run a US sales team pushing their new, very difficult to use, enviro friendly products.

    Mark brought along a few of his sales staff.
    These guys belong to a religion that absolutely is down on Nevada, let alone forbidden to work any vice kinda 'Vegas job in the gaming industry.

    None of the guys have ever even been to Las Vegas.
    Their absolute stunningly beautiful, knock-out looks wives drop them off at the airport and just us guys board the plane.
    Guys trip.

    The plane takes off and Mark orders cocktails for us all.
    The salesguys are really weary, "we never drank liquor before",, but they get down their Gin and Tonics by the time we touch down at Mc Laren.
    And are they ever tipsy.

    Mark had reserved one of the last of the big old Caddies.
    The rent a car company girl said their is still a big interest in them, so they keep a few on hand at a premium rate.

    We got a shopworn, coppetone, Caddy Driftwood Brontosaurus with over 100K miles on it.
    "I've always wanted to do this" and Mark just steps on the gas,, pedal to the floor.

    We blow down Blue Diamond Highway and after an hour, off in the distance I see the red letter G lite up in neon in the dark desert sky.
    Then the letter I,
    then R,
    then L,
    then S lites up,
    the sign goes dark, then flashes GIRLS.

    I've had never been to an adult club, and have never been since. We arrive. I felt like Mark was Lampwick and we were all the kid donkys in the Movie Pinochio headed to Pleasure island.

    Mark does a spectacular 4 wheel drift into the gravel parking lot, and in the glow of the headlites and dust we see two of the caddys wire wheel hubcaps go bouncing off across the lot.
    We retrieve them and put them back on the car.

    The salesguys say " take us to our room", Mark says we'll just be here a short while.
    "Ok then, but don't tell our wives" the saleguys concurr.

    They took full advantage of all services offered at the club, then we headed to Little Ceasars Storefront Casino on the Strip.
    Not to be confused with Ceasars Pallace or the pizza chain, Little Ceasars was owned by a ill tempered former boxer who would punch anyone or any employee who he even slightly disagreed with.

    It's claim to fame was Bob Stupac of the Stratosphere placed and won a 1 million dollar Superbowl bet at the Little Ceasars sports book.

    So we roll into Little Ceasars for the $1 blackjack, and 25 cent dice games.
    The salestaff all amp'd and ready.
    Little Ceasars had a unique self-serve bar too. Ya pour'd your own, comp'd of course.

    So we pour drinks, and head to the craps table just as the ill tempered owner took the "rake" (stick) from the dealer and hit him with it, then fired 2 dealers on the spot.
    He was shouting, veins poping up on his neck, red faced,, just furious.

    Then a limo driver pulls up in front, and the owner goes out and shouts at the driver to move. The driver says "just a second."
    Not fast enough.
    They both go at it right there in the parking lot and the limo driver almost knocks the Little Ceasars owner out. Just pummels him deluxe, and it shut him up. We all went back to leading each other astray at the self serve bar and 25 cent craps now run by the remaining employees.

    Then to the SEMA show.

    The SEMA show is fantastic if you love cars.
    Now it's really popular with the huge interest in auto restoring and customs.

    Any business that is anything in the auto world is there, and they most all have 24 hour hospitality rooms.
    Ya wanna get to visit the hospitality rooms.
    Full bars, excellent high dollar, yet free buffetts, entertainment, and gifts.
    I mean really good gifts like Jackets, electronics ect.

    Mark having juice in the industry based on his reputation got us into as many hospitality rooms as we had time for. Dupont auto finishes is the best room to visit. I would recon their are 100's of them all over town.

    The salesguys all got hooked on gambling and skipped the hospitality rooms
    I'm pretty good at quickly teaching craps, and had them all hooked for a fun time.
    They all lost about $300 each though.

    If ya get a chance to visit the Las Vegas SEMA show and you love cars, by all means do it. An try and get passes to the hospitality rooms.

    Ya see really cool auto related tools, machinery, parts, gadgets, on and on.

    Any other SEMA stories out there?
    Last edited by RoadTrippers A & R; 07-26-2007 at 08:38 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default I used to cover it for the "trade"

    My SEMA experiences are all about work. Endless media sessions, more interviews and never-ending company parties. I don't go that much anymore, road tripping is all I have time for. Here is an olden day article from 2000


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