By Sunday night, people will be trickling into Houston for Super Bowl LI. By this time next week the city will be packed. Most people will descend on Thursday, and it will be noticeably crowded then.
Nobody ever wants to talk about things like this, but there will be some negatives to Super Bowl week. Knowing these things can and do happen will make you more aware, especially after you have had a few drinks. When that many people are together in one place, things are bound to happen. If you are going to be out and about town, here are a few tips to watch out for:
- Watch your wallet and cell phone. Pickpockets thrive on events like this. There is a cottage industry, in fact, that consists of people who travel from event to event just to lift wallets. Con men and hustlers will be everywhere as well. Most will hit the hotel bars, but some might show up at the big bar parties, too. Beware the “friendly poker game.” Keep your wallet in your front pocket with one hand on it whenever possible. And don’t leave your cell phone sitting on a bar. You likely will never see it again. And ladies, you are not immune. Some nice, good looking charmer from out of town sweeps you off your feet for the night. When you wake up the next morning, your purse is cleaned out, your phone is gone. Be careful because these people exist. Do a little extra homework on your phone to make sure the person really is who they say they are.
- Prostitution. We joked about this on the show the other day, but pay per views will be flying in from all over. Again, they will hover around the hotels, but watch out if you are downtown. Many of these are simply hustlers and thieves in their own right. They will rob you, try to blackmail you, hit you up for additional money, and milk you for all they can. If that’s something you participate in, just keep in mind they are trying to work you for much more than whatever your business arrangement turns out to be. (No, I do not know this from personal experience. It’s not my thing. But you can’t go to events like this as many times as I have without seeing it happen to people you know).
- Parking downtown is going to be a nightmare. You will get priced gouged big time, and car break-ins downtown are common even in slow times. You should avoid it at all costs. Park in the medical center or even at the Fannin South Station and take the train. Metro will have plenty security and there will be no shortage of trains running. Parking in places like Midtown and Washington is impossible on your standard Saturday night, so you can imagine what it will be like this week. However, you can find places to park in Eado, then take the new train line downtown. If at all possible, avoid driving downtown at all. Trains and walking are very safe (with one small exception below) and you will save yourself a lot of hassle.
- They will probably have most of the homeless off the streets, but if you find yourself doing a walk of shame to the trains early on Saturday or Sunday morning, keep an extra eye out. The sales of “kush” among the homeless causes many to be belligerent and sometimes violent. The Main Street Square Station and Wheeler Stations are the worst. It is usually cleared out by mid-morning, but if you find yourself there early, take precautions.
- Respect security. If you are around any of the main events — NFL Experience, etc. — There will be heightened security. These guys don’t have a sense of humor, and they shouldn’t. They are here to protect the events. Be respectful and don’t goof off. Every year I see a drunk bro getting stupid with his friends and challenging security. It never goes well.
That’s about it. Enjoy the experience, but it will be a lot more fun if you can avoid the traps. And they do exist. I don’t want to be an alarmist, but these things are going to happen next week. Hell, as careful as I am, I had my wallet lifted in Vegas once. Try to do your best to avoid things like this happening to you.
Coming up: Huge weekend at Sam Houston, with the $400,000 Ladies Classic headlining an outstanding rare Sunday card with five stakes races. We will provide some extra detail on Friday and Saturday. For Sunday we will have a full breakdown with a play on the all-stakes Pick Four. The Blitz will be broadcasting live from SHRP today, and I will be out there Sunday from 12-2 as we kick off Super Bowl week with an awesome card.
Tip of the cap: Don’t mention tennis often, but very cool to see the Williams sisters in the Finals of the Aussie Open. Serena is an all-time great, and while Venus’ career has not matched her sisters, she stacks up very well historically. Two great players going at it one more time. This will make me watch tennis.
Naked and out loud: If you to an LA Fitness in Southfield, Michigan, you might get an extra show. This young lady started with a topless rant, then went full on near the end. Hey, at least she works out. (SFW and NSFW versions available).
Chip-a-lyzer? Our friend Hearthrob shared this one: Apparently Tostitos has developed a bag that can tell you whether or not you are too drunk to drive and offers Uber specials if you fail the “chip a lyzer.” Well, pretty sure if I am eating Tostitos I already know I am too drunk to be driving…
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Sealed with a curse as sharp as a knife. Doomed is your soul and damned is your life!”
— John Lithgow as Lord John Whorfin in the massively underrated Buckaroo Banzai Across the Eighth Dimension. (No real context here. I was just watching the movie this morning and liked the quote).
HOTTIE OF THE DAY