“Dude, we can totally do it. Fly in, gamble all night and fly out first thing in the morning.”
“I don’t know. Vegas for 14 hours? Our travel time there and back will be another 14! That is, in Vegas verbiage, not very good odds.”
“Since we’ll be staying up all night, we can spend our hotel money at the poker tables!”
It was 7 years ago and my friend Eduardo (Yes, this Eduardo) was trying to talk me into flying to Las Vegas for the weekend. I wanted to go, but didn’t want to fly there and then only get to stay a few hours before we had to head back. Thus, his solution of just flying in and staying up all night seemed like a perfect solution.
From a gambling perspective it was our first excursion to Sin City. Immaturity was our game - whenever I would place money on red (or black) win on roulette on the table, my friend would immediately place money to win on black (or red) to win. After running through all my allotted chips for the trip in about 20 minutes, we had to decide what to do for the rest of the night. I don’t exactly recall but right about then I was probably thinking, Maybe flying in and out within a few hours was probably not a bad idea. Now, with all my budget gone I had to wander around for the next 13 hours before my flight out.
While I don’t remember much of the rest of the actual weekend, one single orgasmic trail of culinary delight has stayed with both of us to this day: Fatburger.
Knowing we had an all-nighter planned meant we had to stop for some sugar boosts here and there. RockStar or Red Bull and Vodka had yet to come to North America, so we had to draw on our years of experience of pulling all-nighters the old-fashioned way – with Coca Cola. More specifically, Coca Cola direct from The World of Coca Cola around 1am. Yes, such a place of glory did exist on the Vegas strip back then. But irregardless of the amount of caffeine we tried to ingest, it wasn’t enough to keep us going. Around 3:30am we found ourselves wandering around the strip when we stumbled across a McDonalds. Although open for 24 hours they closed between 3 and 4am for cleaning. Already on our freefall from our previous sugar intake we were beginning to get desperate for something to keep us going until our 8am flight out, and the well known sugar rush of a Big Mac was calling… but it wasn’t available for at least another 30 minutes.
After standing there for a few more minutes our sleepy gaze took us to another restaurant that was on the strip.
“What about that?”
”That. Fatburger. It looks like it’s so bad for us, it will be so good for us. It looks like McDonalds on an anti-health kick.”
“Whatever. With a name like that, I’m so in.”
I don’t remember what we ordered, nor even how the food tasted. For all I know it could have been horrible. It was more a symbolic locale which helped us cross the Rubicon of a night out on the town with no sleep. But for some reason, since then there has always been a holding of Fatburger in awe. We hype it to our friends, reliving the glory days of our all-nighter in Vegas. We hype it to our acquaintances, telling them they must visit during their trip. One of my friends even ordered me a Fatburger shirt one birthday.
Fastforwad to today: This week a new Fatburger opened up in Vancouver. Emails went flying to both Eduardo and I, with statements such as “but I 'll be sure to check it out to ensure it meets your high standards before you arrive.” It was then I realized we were our own worst enemy.
It’s like we have talked it up so much in the past 7 years, people are bound to be disappointed when they first try it. And you know what – they are going to blame me and Eduardo if they don’t like it.
So, from now on I have a rule: What happens in Fatburger, stays in Fatburger
With Eduardo scheduled to be coming to town next month, it's going to be a hard rule to follow. Hopefully someone else will break it and post their reviews for me so we know if we should go, or leave the memories as they are: Sublime at worst, Foodgasmic at best.