Held 1999

A Report by Keith

Well for those of you on the list who wonder what the hell I'm writing about well, sit back get a nice cigar and let me tell you a short(ish) story.

It was earlier in 1999, when I heard the word "Boondoggle" mentioned on ASC, and the thoughts what the hell does that mean came into my mind. Well apparently its an American word for a messy get together (help me out Rick), which as it turns out seems about right!!

Boondoggle had started out back in 1997 when about 30 or so people got together in Las Vegas for a weekends smoking of fine cigars and fine drinks, plus anything else that Vegas has for you ;-))
By last year the numbers had grown to 100 people, quite an event in itself when you consider that the event is totally Non-Commercial. However this year, was to be the biggest yet, 300+ people were expected and the event had grown to such proportions that a large ballroom was needed, for all the guests, plus the fact that one of the characters on ASC, MIG was going to get married!!

Well from the UK contingent, Mitch and myself had decided that this was a pilgrimage that we had to make, and we were not going to be disappointed. We set out from Luton Airport loaded with Cuban smokes, well just enough to keep us going till we met up with our stash of smokes that both of us had sent to the USA. The flight from Glasgow left on time for Las Vegas the next day, and 10 hours later we were in US customs with a few contraband smokes, sweating about whether we would be nabbed for importing Cuban smokes ;-)) That hurdle was crossed with no problems, and we left the terminal and entered the furnace atmosphere that is Las Vegas. Temperatures were fairly mild that day, high 30's (centigrade), plus it had been raining, in the days prior to our arrival, so it wasn't so bad.

We headed for the strip and the MGM grand Hotel that was to be the base for BD3. To say that Las Vegas is madly unreal is an understatement, you have to see it to believe it, trust me!

After settling in we, had a look around the MGM (largest hotel in the world), its a city on its own. The arcade gambling machines on their own drive you up the wall with the bells and noises they make, then there are the Blackjack, Craps and Poker tables for you to win/lose your money on, the latter in my few forays into gambling in LV.
We headed off to the Hilton to meet up with some friends of Mitch's from, namely Glen (?) , "The Master" and "golfpro", plus a few others!! This proved to be a great start, lots of good Cuban smokes were had and the first few trades were made!!

Next day we headed back to the Hilton to blag some passes to the RTDA, a Tobacco trade show which has absolutely huge numbers of cigar companies and associated paraphernalia on show. There are absolutely no Cubans there of course, apart from those we were smoking ! The amount of freebies we got were amazing, didn't even have to ask most of the time, this was great. At this point a special vote of thanks goes to Drew Newman for his donations, I'm looking forward to try these!!!!!

Lots of the cigars on show were pretty horrendous, but there were some stars for me, the Cigarfamily stand and cigars were great, love them. The Estavan Cruz line were very nice, comparable to the Bahia line, infact they are made by Don Douglas, at the same factory in Costa Rica, so there. Lots of the lesser cigars bait you by having the attraction of gorgeous young ladies, who grab your attention whilst trying to sell you dog rockets!! Myself and Mitch gave a bad impression that we maybe interested in importing some of these cigars, yeah right ;-))
After a quick hack around the place, 1 1/2 hours, I had to go to get a flight to Burbank and California to meet up with some of the SoCal crowd and our very own Rick (later)Baker.

After arriving at the Airport I was met by Rick, who escorted me to the Herftruck, and a large selection of great Cuban cigars was offered, I selected a Sancho Panza Belicoso, what a start!! We herfed and got to know each other rather better, before arriving at Gordon Solodars' place North of LA.
Believe me his pad is a castle, well by UK standards at least it is!! We immediately headed off to his smoking room, WOW I was getting impressed, that was decorated with part of Gordons pipe collection. Gordon then invited me to what I've now called the Gordon' ador. This chap has a serious collection believe me, some stunning smokes were there, he even offered me a Cuban Davidoff!!! But couldn't find them, the humidor was that full!! So I settled on a Cohiba Esplendido, and the other guys something similar!!

After having the best Esplendido ever, we went for a Barbecue on the deck, and were joined by Tony Muller and Brad (?) plus Gordons wife and children. The food was fantastic, and more cigars were proffered, is selected an H. Upmann #2, wow this was a great cigar, and what a fantastic compliment to great beer, new friends and the time that we would all have at BD3

The next Morning it was Herfing at 5am across the desert by car to Las Vegas......... Keith Rowson.

Below, is a selection of postings from ASC, just to give a flavour of what happened, and to give a visual record, on the left are pictures from the event.(click to enlarge)

A tale beyond telling BD3 Six snapshots by "Smokin"

There is quite simply no way any single poster will recapture the entire chronology or the spirit of this event. It is somewhat of a blur of images and interactions akin to having your VCR set on fast forward and hitting freeze frame. You can look at any single moment but the overall FEEL is a much different animal to capture. Here are some "snapshot" memories!

Wandering through the MGM (don't tell me what kind of day to have) maze that passes for a floor plan in search of my first boondoggle encounter. Passing by the food court and catching that unmistakable aroma (not McDonald's) and sitting down at a table with Mitch Orchant, Keith Rowson, Later Baker, the G-Man and Gordon (none ever met before). Pulling out a Padron Anni Maduro Imperial and feeling inadequate in the haze of ISOM's and what the hell is a Juan Lopez anyway?

The lap dance fest. Saka working the room like a Boston politician running for Mayor, directing girls onto waiting laps and hearing the plaintive plea from a buxom bambi blonde "me next Poobah, me next!" Mig on stage being stripped by the Barbi twins and the 2000 megawatt grin on his face. G-man in a corner looking like Dr Octopus with 2 girls and not enough appendages, and a little Jersey girl in her best Cindi Lauper squeak/giggle saying "Hiii Gee Mannnn, got room for one more". The HerfDog, now forever to be known as the LapDog, looking like Bacchus being led from the room to the private dungeon by a bevy of nymphets, not to emerge until dawn's crusty eye.

The Pac Nor'west Hospitality suite, smoke alarms blaring, searching for the never found Havana Club, sucking down an icy Red Hook ESB with a chunk of sourdough bread and the best Salmon I've ever tasted, my own glass of Barbancourt and a CAO Anni torp (the 16th cigar of the day) all juggled in my hands simultaneously. Yes I tried to smoke the bread and drink the CAO but there was a heavy enough fog that nobody caught me.

Mig & Mad's wedding, Goldstone and Judge Ross on stage and the group hug that ensued there. The overwhelming feeling of love present on the stage and not a dry eye in the house. Steve and Carlitos tearing open bundle after bundle of private stock Opus and handing them out as wedding favors. It was a privilege to be allowed to stand witness to a very special event.

Judge Ross commandeering the speaker's podium to publicly thank Steve, Chunko, and Johnny Drue for all of us and giving us the chance to express our thanks as a group, the deafening applause from the crowd and the modest words from these 3 gentleman who brought us all together.

Sunday Brunch. Mitchell Orchant with 3 different vitolas burning in his ashtray and forgetting them all as Gordon casually drops a box of Bolivar Bonitas (FPG-NISN) on the table and says "Anybody ever try one of These?!"

Re: A tale beyond telling BD3 Six snapshots "Keith Rowson"

Hey Larry,

Great to meet you, thanks for all the mooches I pulled off. Oh yeah, thats right you did pretty well also ;-)


Re: A tale beyond telling BD3 Six snapshots"Smokin"

Believe me, I loved hanging out with yourself and Mitch. Repeatedly hearing "put that bloody thing out and have a real cigar" while being handed a steady stream of Uppman Magnums, R&J Cazadores, etc, ad infinitum, really, really, made my Boondoggle. That and Mitchell trading a group lapdance for single cigar!

Re: A tale beyond telling BD3 Six snapshots"Michael Cook"

Hello all,

Much has already been said about BDIII which I feel I need not repeat, but fully agree with!!!

Best of all, I really enjoyed meeting all of the wonderful ASCers & putting faces to my mental images of them from reading their posts.

Some of the highlights that made this a memorable occasion to me (sort of chronologically):

» Ed Pallan's look-alike (well sort of)
» Sitting in a row along the wall swapping sticks with some new buddies
» The dip-dinner
» Marcia, Marcia, Marcia=)
» The Power Herf Tanith & I OWNED until the lucky *&^# caught a runner
» The bustier-a-dor
» A very unusual/memorable Lap Crawl (love hats now)
» The sounds of an unmufflered chain saw ripping through wood (oops, I mean snoring=)
» Trying to gaze through through the PCN suite to the other side of the room
» The beautiful ceremony for Mig & Mad
» Frank lives again
» The herds around the giveaway tables
» Learning the lore of vintage cigars from the masters (TYTT&GS)
» Eating breakfast, lunch, snack, & dessert consecutively at one sitting
» A new love - the PSD4=P
» The 100 year old cigar

Most of all, I truly enjoyed meeting all of you weonderful people in person. Sorry if I miss anyone, but many thanks for their hospitality & friendship to: Sandy (a real stand-up guy), Gordon, Gren, Rudy & Mona, Sean, Tanith, Marcia, Mark, Mitchell, Keith, Mig & Mad, Tony, Tom, Lee, Steve, Jonni, John, and most of all to my AZ ASCers!!! Had a ball, hope there's a repeat, Michael

BDIII diary, day 1Rick Oz

I've been home for almost 24 hours now and my head is finally clear enough to throw in my perspective of Boondoggle. I hope any intended humor is obvious and sincerely want to thank John, Steve and all for giving me the excuse to visit Vegas again after an 18 year absence.
Friday July 16

Dear diary,

Left York, PA at 7:30 AM EDT, arrived at Baltimore airport for a 10:15 flight to Vegas via Nashville. En route I enjoyed Southwest's idea of food, beef jerky and melba toast. Southwest only charges $2 per beer...I later realized I should have bought a whole case. Arrived in Vegas at 1:15 PM PDT. Shuttle to MGM Grand. Checked-in, appropriately enough, to a room on the 23rd floor of the OZ tower overlooking the strip.

Housekeeping was still cleaning my room, threw bags inside, grabbed box of cigars for donation and headed to the check-in site at 2:00 PM. Signs were posted telling us which letters of the alphabet would be served in which line. This proved to be the undoing of many Boondogglers who found the alphabetical challenge too difficult. They wandered away and were seen floating around and around the river section of the resort pool for the rest of the weekend, shaking their heads and flicking imaginary blazers.

I was able to find the "L-T" queue where I managed to meet a wide cast of characters including David Farmer, Mark Reinhold, Mig and Maddie, Tanith, Qeen Marcia, Mark Korc... oh hell Mark from Canada ;-), and scores of others who will remain nameless because my memory sucks. (By the way, the non L through T's mentioned above were not alphabetically challenged, some were in adjoining queues.)

Reached the head of the line and handed $125 (suite, lapfest, baccarat clinic and craps clinic) to Rip Kemp who in return made me sign my life away on a form that I think made me Saka's pool boy next summer. He also gave me free cigars, a name badge, an MGM club card (which promised that for every $700,000 you gamble this card entitles you to get $6.00 back, or an extra shower cap in the room, or something like that), and a cute string to hang my name tag around my neck. Looked over at the line next to me and saw THE John Chunko checking people in. I immediately wished my name began with J or something because I think he was handing out $1,000 bills as part of the welcome package.

After lighting some of our welcome cigars, David Farmer and I headed to the casino sports bar. Here we learned that after losing money in the poker machine built into the bar, the bartender will comp your drinks.

4:00 PM - headed to the BD III ballroom opening ceremony. Two tuxedoed security guards eyeballed the name badge and then allowed me to shake Steve Saka's hand. I followed a line of other sheep (don't get excited Mig) to a table where volunteers were opening box after box of cigars and laying them on the table for the taking. Filled every available orifice with free cigars and headed to the cash bar. Paid $5 plus tip for a Heiney that cost only $3.50 at the bar across the hall and $2 on the plane. Used my cigar ash to write "sucker" across my forehead. Placed cigars stash and Heiney on a table and headed for the hors d'oeuvres table. Wondered if I'd still look masculine enough eating finger sandwiches. Saw David Farmer holding a small yellow herf'dor and wearing THE HAT. Decided to stand next to him while eating the one would question my masculinity.

Managed to greet or meet (sorry for spelling errors) Craig and Jenn Vanderslice, Lee Watters (the RLS was great, TY), Herfdog, Mark Cheney, Rudy Salazar, the son of Bob Greene (I swear that's how he introduced himself), DocNJ, Carlos Gonzalez and 100 others. Watched a group of Cigar Family members build a small fort out of sofas and tables to separate themselves from the ASCers. Later learned that waving a Fuente product would give one access to the fort.

Left the BDIII suite with Lee Watters and David Farmer in search of prime rib. After covering the entire MGM casino fringe (170,000 sq ft, second largest in the world...don't ask me what the biggest is) we discovered the grand buffet with all-you-can-eat prime rib was too crowded. We ended up in Mark Miller's Coyote Grill for burgers and cuban sandwiches and man the food, especially the salsa, was great! Paid only $3.50 for a Negro Modello...good beer.

Realized how tired I was and headed to the room. On the way I ran into Marcia again...I hope someone posts a pic of her gravity defying outfit because I can't begin to describe it. Threw some money in the trashcan (same as gambling but less noisy). Crashed in the room missing the lapfest (remember this started at 11:00 PM PDT which is 2:00 AM on my body clock).

BDIII diary, day 2Rick Oz

Saturday July 17, 1999

Dear diary, 6:00 AM PDT, woke up in a strange room under a pile of poppies with the tin man staring at me. Looked out the window to get my bearings...let's see, Empire State building, Chrysler building, Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, Cony Island Roller Coaster...OK, I'm in New York but that doesn't explain the poppies, tin man and desert mountains in the background.

6:10 AM PDT - turn on TV for explanation.

6:15 AM PDT - oh yeah, I'm in Vegas for Boon-something. The poppies are my bedspread. Ouch my head is pounding...a sinus/dehydration headache that would force me back to the room throughout the day for naps and tylenol. Damn.

Shower, shave, etc. I need coffee but my head hurts too much to leave the room. Ah, room service. 20 minutes and $12 later I have two cups of coffee, a glass of OJ, and three danish in front of me. I use the jelly filling from a danish to re-inscribe "sucker" on my forehead.

Back to sleep...awake...feeling slightly human. Head downstairs for the 11:00 AM Baccarat clinic. Let's see, 30 signed up for the clinic and the MGM provides ONE baccarat table. Luckily I get a seat at the table where I immediately prove that I shouldn't gamble...odds are nearly 50/50 and I lose all but two hands. I try to tip the dealer with a cigar and the greedy bastard pit boss intercepts and stuffs it in his pocket.

After a half hour of instruction, the pit boss offers us real tables at a special minimum bid of $10 instead of the usual $25. No thanks, I'll watch. Saka and Chunko join the fray and each lay $1,000 on the table. Yikes, and I was feeling bad that I was down $10 in the slots. Out of my league.

Headed to the suite/ballroom where the security guards seemed more relaxed about badge inspections and all the boondogglers seemed to have wisely adopted a BYOB mentality. Someone grabbed my arm and immediately pointed out that Jenn was sporting a bare midriff. Sorry Craig, but things like that are important at an event with a predominantly male population, and I did miss the lapfest. Two hotel employees entered the room bearing 6 foot long sandwiches.

Headed back to the room for more tylenol and rest and soon it was time for the 1:00 PM craps clinic. Again, the wise MGM provided ONE table for 30 attendees and it was located next to a casino aisle so non-boondogglers were attending as well. Couldn't see a damn thing...another $5 wasted, so David Farmer and I left.

We hopped in a cab and headed for the Start Trek experience at the LV Hilton. All I can say is, if you ever find yourself in Vegas, SEE THIS. The museum was so-so but the ride was amazing. And we got to meet several Klingons and Ferrengi (sp? sorry not a true trekkie). After the "Star Trek ride" we settled in at Quark's bar for lunch. The menu is hilarious with drinks like Romulan Ale, James Tea Kirk, and many more. We each got a beer sampler and upon noticing the humidor, lit up a couple cigars. One of my beers was blue, another red, all good and especially brewed by places like Sierra Nevada just for this bar.

(Note to self: Beer, bad idea when already dehydrated. Cigars, do not help sinus headaches.)

After inspecting tribbles and other merchandise (including a life-size Picard/Locutus borg statue) in the Hilton's Trekkie gift shop, returned to the MGM Grand (where every employee greets you with "Have a grand day!")

Stopped in the lobby to purchase tickets to see Wayne "Hey your Donke's Showin'" Newton later that evening. All seats were $53.20 and we scored 4th row booth seats, reasonable price considering Sigfreid and Roy Boy wanted over $80 to see them play with their white kitties.

Stopped in the casino to visit a slot machine that was calling my name. Put $40 in, took $30 out. My fault, I was up and kept going. Cardinal rule of slots, "hit small jackpot, leave".

Back to room. More nap, more Tylenol, feeling like I might just kick this headache thing. Sadly, slept through Mig's wedding so others will have to report their perspective.

8:30 PM PDT, headed downstairs for a Wayne Newton encounter. Show lasted 1 hour 45 min and was worth every penny. He was hilarious, politically incorrect, played at least 4 instruments and closed with Danke Shoen (again sp?). Women were passing him gifts and flowers on stage. Someone handed him a South Park talking doll. I don't think he knew what it was and he was pretty surprised when he squeezed the hand and it yelled "You bastard!".

Show ends around 11:00 PM PDT and sadly my headache forces me back to the room for the night. I never made it back the ballroom/suite.

Stay tuned (or don't) for a day three report which focuses on lions, a kinder gentler slot machine, previously undiscovered hotel areas, Hamiltons at NY NY, and the longest most uncomfortable plane trip home ever (where I manage to violate a federal law 1 hour into the flight).

BDIII diary, day 3Rick Oz

Forgot to mention that in day 2 I had the pleasure of meeting Tom Spina and his wife (I forget her name but I do remember hearing that Tom uses her freshly baked cookies to bribe his way into herftone membership). As you might recall, I lost all but two hands at Baccarat. Tom's wife won all but two hands. The dealer actually had to borrow her chips to pay off other winners on two occasions.

Sunday July 18, 1999 My final day at Boondoggle. No formal BD activities planned for the day and my flight is at 2:15 so I'll just knock around the hotel.

Met David Farmer at the Grand Buffet for breakfast. He ate all the bacon while I polished off every pastry in the place. THEN, we headed for the smoked salmon, discretely hidden where most of the herd wouldn't spot it.

After breakfast I headed back to the scene of my most recent slot machine crime...a machine called Oz, of course, where the grand jackpot payoff required three Oz's. Had I left it in time Saturday I'd have been ahead. There it was, teasing me with sounds and lights. I sat down and fed a $20 bill into it. In 2 minutes I was down $10 and then, triple bars all the way across. Woo Hoo! Cashed out for $50, a $30 profit in 4 minutes and I was ahead by $20 for the weekend. Damn, I could have bought 3 more of those Heineys in the ballroom Friday.

I grabbed my disposable 27 picture camera, purchased for only $20 at the hotel gift shop, and headed around the hotel for some photo opportunities.

The MGM has a bunch (pride?) of real lions living in an acrylic cave in the lobby so I headed that way to get a photo. The keepers were in the cave playing ball with them. The 9 million guests lining the walls made it impossible for me to get a shot.

Wandered down the steps next to the bell captain's desk and found a whole new area of the hotel. An underground shopping mall. One store actually sold nothing but refrigerator magnets. Go figure.

Next wandered out by the 6 acre hotel pool complex. Yikes! One pool after another after another followed by a flowing river "pool" and waterfall. Each pool had a set of cabanas nearby for rental. Each featured a water misting device, chairs, table, changing room, bar, TV, etc.

Gates from the pool complex led to the MGM Grand Adventure Theme Park. The bungee swing defies I won't try.

Crossed the bridge to the NY NY casino. From the balcony looking down into the casino you are greeted by a twirling Statue of Liberty with her dress blowing up like Marilyn Monroe. To the left, the famous Hamilton's. The lounge was closed Sunday morning but the humidor was open. They were charging $20 for $8 cigars. I didn't sucker into this "deal".

Finally time to head to the airport for the trip home. David Farmer and I happened to book the same flight so we grabbed a cab to the airport. For those of you who haven't flown Southwest Air, I need to explain their seat assignment policy...there is none. One hour before the flight SW hands out a deli counter number, first come first serve. Then they board #'s 1-30, 31-60, 61-90, and 91+. As a 6'1" 240 lb guy I NEED an aisle seat. So an early boarding number is important. Also, since we were changing planes in Phoenix with only a 45 minute stop, it was important to be near the front of the plane. Farmer and I grabbed seats in the second row with an empty seat between us. The first row faced backward so we had to share foot space with these folks. Just when it looked like we'd score an empty seat between us, the last passenger, a guy that made me look small, squeezed himself between us. Talk about an uncomfortable hour in the air. Although Farmer had a Goldie Hawn look alike seated straight across from him to play footsie with.

Fast forward to Phoenix...arrived late...ran to the gate for the Baltimore flight (that's an amusing mental pic isn't it?, Farmer and I doing an OJ/Hertz impression through the airport)...was handed #120 something...damn. Got on board, actually scored an aisle seat. Woo hoo! Plane took off late but the fantastic view of the desert and Hoover Dam made it worth it.

I need to pause here to explain that due to my previously reported dehydration problem I was drinking massive quantities of water all day. For whatever reason, the pilot chose to keep the fasten seat belt light on for a long time. After 1 1/2 hours my back teeth were floating. Screw it, I got up and made my way to the shoe box in the back of the plane to dilute the pretty blue water. A flight attendant was in my way so I leaned against the wall to wait. She stood there, picked up the microphone, stared me in the eyes, and announced to the whole plane that it is against Federal regulations to unbuckle when the fasten seat belts light is on. I wonder if she would have preferred I wet my seat. I told her I had no choice and squeezed defiantly past her.

We hit headwinds all the way to Bal'mer and arrived 1/2 hour late. It felt like the flight that would never end. Found my car, drove home (about 75 minutes to York) and arrived at 1:00 AM EDT Monday morning. Spent too much money, took too long a trip for too short a stay...but all in all a nice weekend.

Rick Oz

BD3 Highlights (Mstrclyndr)

What a phenomenal event. Mike and Madeline's wedding probably topped the list. When Gary Haberman's partner Patty? sang Ave Maria I shed a tear, what a terrific and moving ceremony. A wonderful job done by Goldstone and Neil.

In the hilarity and humor dept. Gary Haberman's fashion show was not to be out done. I can't wait to see what Marcia brings next year!!!

Desserts=even better

Ambiance of the ballroom=refer to Saka House of Interiors (Great Job)

Gambling for me=why throw in something depressing like that.

Gambling for Tony Muller=we are working on a 12 stepper for him...When the Fun Stops. Embarassingly enough he did better than me.

There will be alot of posts to read about BD3 so I will end mine. It was especially great to meet Keith and Mitchell from the UK and Bob Ray, Mike Banks, Herfdog, Mike Cook, Rick Comito, Mike Banks, and all the NJ boys I had'nt met plus too many other friends to remember right now.

One thing is so true to quote the Grand Poobah himself on the BD3 stage accepting his gift "It is not about this event, it is about the people."

Thank you John, Steve, & JD

Herfdord out

Re: BD3 Highlights "Keith Rowson"

Hey Mark,

Great to meet you as well, there were soooooo many highlights I'm struggling to get my thoughts out onto ASC, but I will very soon!!!

Many new friends made, and faces put to old ones, excellent!!


Viva Las Vegas!!! (David C Farmer)

Viva Boondoggle III! I had a great damned time, enjoying the lovely buxom warmth of CigarQeen, the great talkfests with Craig and Jenn Vanderslice, hangin' with my headachin' homey Rick Oz, admiring the never-ending supply of single cigars Lee Watters produced from somewhere on his person (I actually never saw where he pulled them from, but Lee's breast pocket always seemed full...)

...full breast....uh, sorry, I was thinking about someone already mentioned (not Rick)...

Finally getting to meet Herfdog was an event without par or Jack Paar. Got to shake hands with Mitchell Orchant and Keith Rowson---someone should really tell them they talk funny. Tom and Liz Spina were great table companions. DocNJ was fun as always, and I can't believe someone with his dignified and conservative public bearing would actually yell out from a balcony what rumor has it he yelled to a singer performing below him. It was also good to see again Richard from Seattle, Marc K. from Canada and meet Gren Holden, also from the Great White North.

Chuck Wilner sported a guayabera shirt nicer than the two I wore. Rat bastard. We will meet again, Wilner!!! The Crawlmaster'dor found it's way to Mark Cheney, and it was great getting a description of the Millenium Herf'dor from Mark. Marc Schneiderman and I got the chance to yak it up several times during Boondoggle, and thanks for the smoke, Doctor!

I'm sorry I didn't get to meet Rollout of CigarFamily fame; maybe we'll have another try at hooking up.

My thanks go out to Steve Saka, Jonni Drue, John Chunko, Mig, Maddie, Carlito Fuente, Carlito Gonzalez, Drew Newman, my mother, my father, the Southwest pilots, the cute Latina staff at the Coyote Grill, Wayne Newton (Danke Schon, Wayne--great show!!!), Commander Riker and the entire crew of the Enterprise for saving our lives from the renegade Klingons (oops! I wasn't supposed to say anything about this...), Marcia's "girls", Steven Seagal and his Band for being too far away for me to talk Rick into seeing, Marc Goldstone, Adam Goldstone, Ol' Brown Eyes himself Bobby Barrett, did I mention Marcia's "girls"-?, and last but not least, my hat. Good hat.

You've been the best audience! MMMmmwwah! Good Night Everybody!!!!

The G-Man reflects on BD3 (JGell29481)

I wanted to post a long rehash of the events of the past week but, feeling it would not be as good as having actually been there to experience the fun, I am reserving all excess of words for one-on-ones.

What I came away with was a feeling of moderate pleasure from being able to place faces with names and cigars into hands. I cannot begin to provide mere words to the goings-on of the past week. For several years I have been corresponding with words on a screen; now I am able to reach out and "touch" those persons as a reality rather than phantasms on a monitor. Sure, we have had Herfs over the years and we have all had our share of meeting other ASCers accross the country but (and I do mean "but") how could anyone have guessed at the excellent selection of people that arrived in Vegas just to share a cigar experience (not to down-play Mig/Maddy wedding)!

I wager that this is going to go down as one of the finest gatherings of cigar mavens in the millenium. I will not soon forget any moment of my stay at BD3; there were high notes and low ones, also (getting kicked out of Wolfgang Pucks), I met Mitchell Orchant, my "main" man from the UK. I marvelled at the exchange of cigars and the capacity of some to down a few litres of beer (Sam C., you know who you are). How many time did you hear someone say "I never thought you looked like that!", or "You are just as I expected!" Some thought I was older, some said fatter, some said dumber, some said....well, Bobby of Fuji fame said not to use certain words.... All in all, I have but one regret - I should have brought a Polaroid camera so I could take a photo of every one, individually, and place their name on the back of the photo.

If I failed to shake a hand, say a good word, or join in for a few puffs, I apologize; to those of you whom I insulted.....Hey, I think I was on such good behavious that I forgot to insult anyone.....Now, that is the power of BD3.

Joseph Gellman

My first Boondoggle "SamC."

WOW!! Ive never seen so many cigars go back and forth in my life!! I have been to many cigar dinners here in my small home town in Michigan, but this event totally blew my mind!!
It was great to put faces on so many people whos posts I have been reading over the years.
Everyone I met was very kind and personable to me and my friends. We were all new to this sort of event.
Things that stand out for me were... Gellman running about like the mad man he is.
Finally getting to meet Mitchell Orchant in person(I felt like I knew him for years).
Keith Rowson Trading me a Dbl Corona Opus X for an SLR Churchill.
Migs Wedding(Very nice) .
Powerherf Contest($250.00 for being a coach isnt bad!)
Sandy Bringing soup all the way to Vegas!!
I could go on forever if I keep thinking, but I am still worn out from this past weekend, and the smoke hasnt cleared from my mind yet.
Special thanks to Guys from Cigar Nexus! The event was truly unbelievable!

Looking forward to BD4!!
Sam Cusumano

About my "LapNap".... (Vanderslice)

Since there has been various...uh...comments about my LapNap at the PNW suite....I would like to send out a special "Thank-you" to Mitchell Orchant for my sweet dreams that early Sunday morning! He was sitting behind me talking with that beautiful english accent of his and my last fleeting thought before drifting off to sleep was, "Just keep talking, Sweetheart, and I will be having sweet dreams tonight!"
*Jenn blows a kiss across the Big Pond to Mitchell*

Also, let me take this opportunity to say that the reason I haven't posted about my B3 experience is because I'm afraid I'll miss someone. But I will send out a big hello to the Ladies from the Doe Party and say it was a pleasure spending a quiet evening with them! haha And a special thank you to Ed Sullivan for the Diamond Crown that I'm seen smoking in the pictures that Doc posted.
(Oh geez! here I go!)
And thank you Tom Mullaney for the H. Uppman...I'm saving that for New Years 2000! Sara, you're a living doll! I actually saw a sparkle on my arm this morning...I couldn't help but smile!:-)
I so thoroughly enjoyed talking with Lee Watters....funny guy! "Hey look! We're going to have the Love Boat crew serving us!"
And Doc, Kieth and Bruce.....I love you guys! Tom and Liz, Lynne, Lapdog, Jeff Shin, Wade, Egg, etc, etc, etc..... And Jonni, you'll always be "the man behind the glass"! ;-)
Thank you John Chunko and Steve Saka for letting me be a part of such a gala event!
Oh Shit! I was going to end it here...BUT!
Mig and Madelyn! The very best to you! are precious!
*Jenn blows kisses to the happy couple*
My deepest apologies to anyone that I missed!
Love and all my best to all of you!
Jenn "Aerobics instructor extrodinaire" Vanderslice

(Craig is an anagram of Cigar)