He’s making a list. He’s checking it twice. He … knows you’re a lost cause. He doesn’t need to find out who’s been naughty or nice. It’s you. You’ve been naughty. You never should have done that thing with the candy cane and your best friend’s sister.
It’s a weirdly fatalistic way to approach a season that’s ostensibly about tidings of good cheer, isn’t it? Once you’re on that list, there’s no appeals process. Santa has made his decision, and he is judge, jury and toy executioner. (The Barbie beheading videos are particularly gruesome. But not surprising. The last time we were preoccupied with a bearded man so elusive that only his closest confidants ever got to see him, we sent in SEAL Team 6.)
But this week shows that there’s still a chance for redemption. A chance to buck that naughty list and get with the nice, coal-free program. After all, what’s naughtier than a strip club? (Well, a down-market strip club for starters, but that’s neither here nor there at the moment.) But the former Yellowfin space adjacent to Sapphire is going to offer up a nice, tasteful 24-hour taco joint (shut up—just shut up) called el Dorado early in 2014.
The old Las Vegas Tattoo & Souvenirs space on Fremont Street isn’t the kind of place where you can make easily regrettable decisions anymore. All the naughty swagger of a tattoo parlor will give way to a nice bookstore—temporarily. Later in the year, the Downtown Project-related spot will go into a new home up the street near the former Alicia Motel, where it will do double duty as a book shop up front, writer’s enclave in the back.
Jeff Beacher always made his money here by being too naughty for Las Vegas. But times change. One day you’re banned from the MGM Grand, the next you’re opening a new club there. David Saxe has his naughty side, too (Stripper 101, Zombie Burlesque), but the nicer producer of Vegas! The Show and Comedy Pet Theater will actually be helping to produce entertainment at the new Beacher’s Madhouse. First up? Miley Cyrus on December 27. Does obviously-for-show naughty still count as naughty, when you used to fall squarely on the nice list every year?
Galapagos penguins, Jay Z and a drive for toys
Bill’s Gamblin’ Hall & Saloon gave way to the Gansevoort, which now gives way to the Cromwell. The new name is less about the 17th-century British revolutionary and more about the Cromwell current, the oxygen- and nutrient-rich equatorial undercurrent that helps bring food supplies to the Galapagos penguin. Which is awfully specific. Remember when hotel themes were just “Hey, this is like a big castle”? … Jay Z went right from his Mandalay Bay Events Center gig Friday night to Hakkasan, and he brought along a crew of 85, including producer Timbaland. And also wore a sparkly blue coat, in case a Four Tops tribute band walked in and needed an emergency member. … The staff of XS and Tryst made their annual Walmart run for the KLUC 98.5-FM Morning Zoo Toy Drive on December 11, bringing in $190,698 worth of holiday cheer for the annual event. That brings the clubs’ eight-year total to more than $700,000 in toys. Because they can’t cut out the middleman and just give the kids jeroboams of Ace of Spades.