Evolution Of A Parrothead

Jimmy saves the wasted day

Justin Jimenez

Las Vegas can be exhausting. After 48 hours of nonstop clubs, booze, gambling and smoky casinos, the lure of the most fun city in the world doesn't catch well with the dry-mouthed, beer-soaked, memory-lapsed slouch that is smeared on the bathroom floor, still wearing a dress coat but no pants.

Gentleman, there is a place left for one last hoorah. Find your keys, close the toilet lid and put back on your slacks -- and never mind those girlie fliers next to the phone in your room. Saddle up because we are going to Jimmy Buffet's place.

Sometimes a vacation is needed within a vacation, an escape away from your escape. Margaritaville is it; the lush retreat in our already glowing oasis.

This is a true tale that came from one partier on a Sunday evening, a night that could have easily been lost on the couch reading a bad hotel magazine, a night that suddenly turned into the keystone of the weekend. "I just wanted to stay home," said our born-again Parrothead while sipping on one of JB's signature tequilas. "It was one of the nastier hangovers I think I have ever had. Too much partying ended my party. I just came for a bite to eat, I had no idea what I was in for."

The island-themed joint is the haven of fun recovery, the spot where wasting away never felt so good.

Buffett used to say that Margaritaville is a state of mind just as it much as it is a place. Any state of mind that includes two outdoor patios overlooking the Strip, a Caribbean-themed restaurant, five different bars and live entertainment nightly is a grand state to be in.

"Before I knew it, I was dancing on the stage in a hula competition across from a super hot dancer who works here, on my second margarita -- OK, third -- and was like, 'Dude, this place, yeah.'" The elixir he refers to is the Perfect Margarita: an ounce of Margaritaville Gold Tequila, a 12 ounce each of Margaritaville Silver Tequila, Cointreau, Orange Curacao and lime juice. The name doesn't exaggerate.

The twinkly eyed hula girl, complete with a coconut bikini top, is now sitting at the table with our lucky fellow. "I just have a thing for men in suits," she said while adjusting her grass dress. The bronze island goddess is the one who coaxed him into the Hawaiian dance clinic on stage in the first place. "I only picked him because he was wearing that coat," her big brown eyes irresistible at this point (the fourth margarita probably enhanced the romance). The coat sits wrinkled in the corner of the booth that was designed to look like a fishing boat. He got lei'd, he has earned it. He wears the flower necklace with the pride of a man who has accomplished something: He beat the day after.

The waiter arrives in his Hawaiian shirt carrying two more tequilas. The plate of jerk salmon is empty, the ahi tuna appetizer is a thing of the past, and so is his hangover.

"I'm cured!" he shouted ... and another one is saved.

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