Much like the character types found in fiction and film, one can find similar archetypes in everyday life… especially in the nightlife scene. A nightclub is a very unique setting – one where the lines between fantasy and reality are often blurred.
People are rarely themselves and assume a type of “character” or persona because, after all, Vegas does provide the rare opportunity to assume any identity you wish during your stay. Every night is Halloween in a nightclub per se; they’re just wearing a different type of costume. Or, depending how you look at it… a nightclub is where people reveal their true selves and shed the mask they wear throughout the day, at work and at home.
These caricatures have, in all likelihood, been around since mankind has invented alcohol and partying. Familiarizing yourself with these personality types will help you to better handle them when they unapologetically come your way, as they often do, to make or break your night out in Sin City.
1) The One-Upper
The One-Upper can be male or female and you’ll most likely find at least one per group of friends. This is an individual who firmly believes that drinking alcohol belongs in the Olympic games. Always chasing a buzz and always at constant battle with their archenemy: sobriety. If you aren’t drunk you just seem to rub them the wrong way. It won’t be long before they’re challenging you to shots of Patron and beer chugging competitions every chance they get. Their one-upping core belief system doesn’t just apply to drinking… they’re always trying to get one over everyone in the venue. They also enjoy being in the spotlight. Maybe they’re a good dancer… in which case they’ll insist everyone make ample room on the dance floor to show off what they’ve been practicing all week on their off hours, doing their best to summon challengers for a proper dance-off competition.
2) The Train Wreck
No, not a hot mess… a train wreck (a.k.a. shit show). Hot messes don’t need to be babysat… train wrecks do. Not to stereotype… (even though that is the point of the article) but nine times out of 10 a train wreck is a 20-something Vegas newb who is still mastering the effects of alcohol. Be on the look out for plastered 21-year-olds celebrating their “birth-weeks,” bachelorettes/bachelors, and frat bros. If it’s a girl you can bet your sweet ass that a flock of “gentleman” will be rushing gallantly to their aid with a red bull or water. Believe it or not, security is not always quick to get these party animals out of the club and direct them to the nearest elevators up to their room where they belong. Remember, unless you’re okay with potentially getting yakked on by a train wreck, a 90 degree change in direction is optimal when coming face to face with these walking disasters.
3) The Hot-Cold Couple
The Hot-Cold couple is probably one of the most prevalent types of people you’ll meet in Vegas nightlife. It’s hard to tell whether these couples are just “that way” or Vegas simply induces this uncomfortable (and very awkward) dynamic. Then again, you’ll often find this pair of lovebirds in most social settings in general. You know the type… Early in the night you’re graced with their excessive public display of affections (PDA). Then comes the urge to explore and stray. The girlfriend will start harmlessly flirting with a couple of guys in your group, and before you know it the boyfriend decides to engage in full-on rage-war with you and your friends instead of taking it up with the girlfriend in question. Hopefully, you’re lucky enough to avoid a physical fight and they’ll just go argue next to the bathrooms and not bring down the vibes with their lameness.
4) The Sleezeball
Some people might put the sleezeball in the same camp as “The Creeper” but the sleezeball is on another level completely. Creepers are socially naïve and generally harmless. You could say the sleezeball is the male version of the bottle rat. He’s more the type to bum your whole pack of cigarettes and brazenly hit on all the ladies in your group. The sleezeball slithers his way into your social circle undetected and before you know it he’s become a part of your group and he’s gained the trust of some of the more gullible members, so getting rid of him is no easy tasks. Most of the time the female members of your group are too kind and egalitarian to reject his advances. No one has the heart to tell this guy to scram because he does manage to provide some entertainment value (mostly just laughing at his own jokes and talking about his Gucci slippers).
5) The Ratchet Bottle Rat Leader
What is a bottle rat? Usually a girl(s) that frequents nightclubs and forages for “thirsty” men at VIP tables that don’t mind offering up free liquor. However, once the bottles are finished… they disappear like vapor. A bottle rat gets off by having an awesome night at a top club and not spending a single dime. They are skilled and tactful; the elite bottle rats can sniff out a millionaire like a bloodhound. They usually invest all their money in their plastic appearances. Vegas is their mecca, with more and more migrating permanently to Vegas to bottle rat full time. If you aren’t good at reading people then you have to consciously look for all the tell tale signs: Layer upon layer of make-up, short skirts, expensive (but probably fake) luxury brand purse, hoop earrings, breast implants and/or Victoria secret push-up bra. They often travel in packs, and if you can overthrow the Queen you can save yourself a lot of wasted time and money. Once a bottle rat leader is exposed, the rest will scatter like cockroaches.
Vegas is quite expensive… everyone knows that. However, the $50,000-dollar millionaire pays this no mind. He encompasses all that is “YOLO” when it comes to the Benjamins. It’s definitely not unheard of to hear about someone blowing his or her life savings in one weekend or hitting jackpot and blowing all of it over the course of a couple days. The $50,000 dollar millionaire is no stranger to unwise spending, but one way or another he finds his way back to Sin City to do it all over again year after year. We salute you, and the Vegas economy salutes you.
7) The Van Wilder
The Peter Pan of nightlife, the one who refuses to grow up. He dresses to kill. Guys hate to love him. Girls flock to him. He’s not necessarily rich. For all you know, he could have $100 dollars to his name. But he knows the crowd, knows the staff and lives to party. This is the guy that the rich and famous don’t mind partying with because he blends in so well, and he’s know to infiltrate celebrity entourages for a few quick snaps with international superstars and athletes. He revels in building his own social brand and following through Instagram and Twitter. Next time you spot a suited-up gent with a big entourage it could be a Van Wilder or a celebrity, you’ll have to join the party to find out.
8) The Caregiver
The Caregiver might as well be superman/woman. They’re the ones that want everyone to have a good time… even if a good time means puking in the public restroom to some. Cliché as it may be, the Caregiver is the friend that doesn’t mind holding your hair up when you need to get rid of some of that extra booze you drank that seemed like a great idea at the time. This is how eternal bonds are made, and these moments are remembered with fondness and make for great storytelling for years to come. Reliable and ready to meet any nightlife faux pas head-on, a caregiver is a great friend to have especially when in Vegas, as the scene tends to inevitably overwhelm the best of us when you find yourself partying from dusk till' dawn.