Deceptive Actions Spoil Party

November 7, 2015

in Odds & Ends Stories

Back in the 80’s I worked at a hotel and casino in Reno that also was home to a male only club made up of a who’s who of business leaders and politicians. One of the members was the District Attorney. My work shift was split between serving breakfast as a room service waiter, and serving lunch in the private club. Occasionally the club had evening “stag” parties and my boss would ask for volunteers to work the parties. I always volunteered because it was easy money and the tips were always good. Plus they always had extra food and the staff got to eat for free.

It was a hot summer day and I was looking forward to working the stag party that night. We had heard about the menu being served – whole Maine lobsters split and roasted with drawn butter – and that the lobsters were being flown in live having been caught that morning. As I was getting ready to make the move from room service to club service, my boss called me and two other waiters over for a meeting in our storage room.

He looked panicked and told us that due to some snafu at the airport, the 200 lobsters for the party tonight were left out in the hot Nevada sun on a loading dock. Our “live” lobsters were now dead and smelling badly. And with no time to have 200 more caught and flown out for the party, he was asking us to run around town to every place that had a lobster tank and buy everything they had. Two hours later, there wasn’t a live lobster anywhere in town except in our cooler.

You’d think that would be the end to my story, but it’s not. Fast forward to the party. The D.A. sat in my section and informed me that he had placed a standing order with “John” our bartender. So whenever a glass was at or near empty I was to go over and get a refill. He told me that “he’d take care of me” if I did that.

The party started on a good note. The members were told of the snafu and how the wait staff had rallied to save the day. So moods were good and the booze started flowing. Everybody was having a good time. As the evening progressed the D.A. started to get louder when he talked and his speech slurred, and he began buying drinks for everyone. This was totally out of character but no one seemed to care. A couple of hours into the party no one was feeling any pain and everyone was happy.

As it neared 10pm, things were starting to slow down and the word was passed that we should start to push coffee and slow down on the alcohol service. So we started to brew the coffee when suddenly the D.A. stood up and called for the room to quiet down because he had something to say.

The first thing that struck me was that his speech was clear and strong with no sign of the previous alcohol-induced swagger. As the room quieted down and the membership turned to listen, I got the sudden feeling that something was very, very, wrong. He said, “I hope you’ve all had a good evening. We’ve all had an incredible meal, and I know that more than a few of you have enjoyed the drinks I’ve bought you.” This brought chuckles and smiles since he was known to be very tight-fisted. “So I hope you’ll forgive me for leaving early but duty calls. There is a drunk driving roadblock set up and I have to be there.”

Again, this brought out chuckles and grins since many of the members were lawyers and judges. One of the members called out asking where the roadblock was so that he could steer clear when he left. The answer given chilled everyone in that room to the bone. “It’s outside this hotel for a two block radius. So drink up, the city needs the money.” At which he simply walked out. The silence in the room was deafening, until a handful of people ran over to the windows, yanked open the curtains, and looked out.

Sure enough the flashing red and blue lights could be seen. One of the stops was right next to the exit for the valet parking area of the hotel. Cars were being stopped, drivers were asked to step out and field sobriety tests were being given. At this point panic set in as we found out from “John” that all the D.A. had been drinking that night was cola. No booze. He hadn’t had any alcohol all night and his actions were an act.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Aaron November 13, 2015 at 9:19 am

Good story. Fictional but good.


Reno Local December 28, 2015 at 3:41 am

Nope, not fictional, just another story about the Gold and Silver Inn, as seen in Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives!


Hawk July 14, 2017 at 5:32 pm

Easy answer?
Call a cab.
For that reason, I'm calling BS on the story.


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