There was also a certain bent appeal in the notion of running a savage burn on one Las Vegas Hotel and then—instead of becoming a doomed fugitive on the highway to L.A.—just wheeling across town, trading in the red Chevy convertible for a white Cadillac and checking into another Vegas hotel, with press credentials to mingle with a thousand ranking cops from all over America, while they harangued each other about the Drug Problem.
It was dangerous lunacy, but it was also the kind of thing a real connoisseur of edge-work could make an argument for. Where, for instance, was the last place the Las Vegas police would look for a drug addled fraud-fugitive who just who just ripped off a downtown hotel?
Right. In the middle of a National District Attorney’s Drug Conference at an elegant hotel on the strip…Arriving at Caesar’s Palace for the Tom Jones dinner show in a flashing white Coupe de Ville…At a cocktail party for narcotics agents and their wives at the Dunes?
Indeed, what a better place to hide? For some people. But not for me. And certainly not for my attorney—a very conspicuous person. Separately, we might pull it off. But together, no—we would blow it. Too much aggressive chemistry in that mix; the temptation to run a deliberate freakout would be too heavy. And that of course would finish us. They would show us no mercy. To infiltrate the infiltrators would be to accept the fate of all spies: “As always, if you or any member of your organization is apprehended by the enemy, the Secretary will deny any knowledge etc…”
No it was too much. The line between madness and masochism was already hazy; the time had come to pull back…to retire, hunker down, back off and “cop out,” as it were. Why not? In every gig like this, there comes a time to either cut your losses of consolidate your winnings—whichever fits.
I drove slowly, looking for a proper place to sit down with an early morning beer and get my head together…to plot this unnatural retreat.
(Image Credit: Slate.com)