Why Whitney Houston's Death Especially Affected Me AND How I Blew My Chance at Becoming an African Prince (And Yes, These Topics Are Related)

A year-and-a-half ago, I met a Whitney Houston impersonator in Las Vegas who I super hit it off with. I also ended up hitting it off with a Beyonce impersonator, and at the encouragement of my friends, dropped Whitney for a chance with the hot one. It was probably a mistake, though, because while I could have bagged Whitney, it only went as far as flirting with Beyonce. Since that night, I have blamed my friends for helping me to deride a sure thing with Whitney, but I understand that Vegas is all about gambling, so how could I not take a chance at a superstar like Beyonce?

This past weekend, I went back to Vegas to finally right what I had wronged. I hoped to find Whitney at her job, charm her all over again, and have a hookup that I could laugh about forever. Alas, fate intervened in a major way.

Just a mile from the casino, traffic on the strip was at a standstill, so I texted Jessica who was already at the hotel to complain. She replied, "Maybe it's cuz of Whitney." I, of course, assumed that she meant the Whitney impersonator and joked to my carmates, "Wouldn't it be funny if Whitney was just sprawled out on the road blocking traffic?" A few minutes later after inching forward only a few feet, I received a text from my friend Luie informing me that Whitney Houston had just died.

I WAS DEVASTATED. I'm not normally one to make a celebrity's death all about myself, but this one clearly personally affected me. I had come to Vegas specifically with the intentions of messing around with a Whitney Houston impersonator, and now she was dead (or, you know, the real one was, but same difference.) I was so upset at the bad timing. Surely, the casino would take her off of work that night. If ever a "too soon" moment, this was it, and I was not going to be able to find my darling, darling Whitney.

What I overlooked was that Las Vegas is hella tacky. I was panicking for nothing when I assumed the casino would employ some sensitivity; they still had a Whitney Houston impersonator working Saturday night as if nothing had happened. The problem was that she was a different Whitney impersonator. Unwilling to give up on my prospects so fast, I asked her coworkers, fellow blackjack dealers dressed as famous musicians, for information about her whereabouts.

Tony Orlando, who I don't care about as a famous figure, but I love as a happy-go-lucky dealer, told me that the original Whitney had quit a while ago because she became an African princess. I figured he was joking with me initially because there's no way in hell that was a true story, but he swore on his wife and life that it was legit. Still, I figured maybe Tony had been fooled. Whitney was a drunk jokester when I last met her, so wouldn't it be funny if instead of quitting her job in a normal manner, she gave notice with, "I became a princess, see you never!"?

Subsequent sleuthing, however, led me to learn that "Aretha Franklin" and "Tina Turner" were actual friends of Whitney's who still kept in touch with her, and they both confirmed that indeed, my would-be girlfriend was a princess. Apparently, "Whitney"'s dad became a king in a region of Ethiopia, and so now she was leaving Vegas behind to go be a proper princess, as many people would in that circumstance.

Needless to say, I was no longer upset that I blew my chance with a Whitney Houston impersonator. Now I was even more upset that I had blown my chance with a motherfucking princess! I never knew I wanted to be a prince before, until I realized how close I came to getting to actually be one. I could have gotten in there before even she became a princess, so she wouldn't have to second-guess my intentions and think I was just in it for the royalty. (For the record, I was in it for the pseudo-celebrity laughs.)

I would be the best African prince there's ever been. And it's ruined now! My friends encouraged me to walk away from a princess for some low-rent Beyonce impersonator. (Just kidding Boo-yonce, I'm still about it if you want to holler.)

So in summary, over the course of just a few hours, I went to hook up with Whitney Houston, then she died, then I learned that I missed an opportunity to become a prince. With a day like that, I would have had to get super drunk even if I weren't in Vegas.

Oh, and if anyone wants to travel to Ethiopia to help me find "The Greatest Love of All", let me know. With a crown on my head, I'd be able to repay you and then some.

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