Laughing with Cheech and Chong


Scottsdale is surrounded by casinos on Native American land. Each one has a showroom with a schedule of little-known acts or ones that were famous some time ago. When I mentioned to my neighbor Donna that Cheech and Chong were playing at Wild Horse Pass Casino she jumped on the idea of going. A guy I’ve been dating (I call him The Roadie) works there, but seemed disinclined to get me tickets. He claimed if a show sold out he had to return his tickets. I asked him if I was booking good seats after I went online and saw what tickets were available. He assured me they were fine.
I’d never been to Wild Horse Pass Casino so I put the address in MapQuest and got directions. Donna, as usual, was ten minutes late but I had built in plenty of time. When I got off the freeway she informed me we had to be going the wrong way. I should have listened to her. She’s a real estate agent who knows her way around town and she grew up in downtown Chandler. Instead I stubbornly followed the MapQuest directions. I finally stopped the car and we asked our smart phones. It turned out I should have gotten off at a different exit and gone in the opposite direction. By the time we got to the casino, we decided to valet park to make sure we made it on time for the show.
As we walked into the smoky, clanging, crowded casino, a man came up to me and said, “You have a thing hanging,” and pointed to my foot. Indeed the six inch ace bandage that bound my leg like a mummy had unraveled and was trailing my sandal. I unwrapped it a bit more so I could walk. I headed for the nearest restroom but it was closed for cleaning. I had to hold the bandage like a bride’s train and it lifted up my pant leg for all to see the mummy wrap. The next nearest facility was in the showroom. We stood on line and had our paper tickets scanned. I rushed to the bathroom and locked myself in a stall. I decided to take off the two ace bandages that bound my leg after vascular surgery five days before. I stuffed the flesh-colored abominations in my purse.
We took our places in folding chairs with cup holders. The seats were good but the showroom is not a graduated space. A tall guy sat directly in front of me. Two rows ahead was a big guy whose enormous butt crack was hard to turn away from, like a car crash on the highway. You shouldn’t look but you do. I saw The Roadie busily setting up and waved. He came over to say “hello” but had to go right back to work.
The audience was a trip. Did those ladies with the cauliflower beauty salon hairdos wearing polyester pants and matching flowered shirts stretched too tightly over ample bosoms smoke weed back in the day? Did they have medical marijuana cards now? There were plenty of men in their sixties and seventies in grungy jeans and old tee shirts with the names of bands long off the charts. Hippies, yuppies, and young Native Americans rounded out the group.
Chong’s wife did the warm-up act and looked great in a metallic mini-dress. Then the guys came on and did my favorite routines. I was surprised and pleased that the humor held up over the years and they added a few contemporary notes.
Afterwards you could purchase tickets for a “meet and greet” with the performers but we decided not to do that. I figured The Roadie would be busy wrapping up. Donna and I headed out, reminding each other of funny bits and chuckling all the way home.

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