Some Odd VMA Odds, In Bigger Than The Sound

Our columnist crunches the numbers on some unusual VMA moments he's predicting — many of which involve him.

On The Record: What Happens In Vegas ... Becomes A Rote Catchphrase Soon Thereafter

Gambling is awesome. The sands of time might shift, the seas will advance and recede, the moon will wax and wane, but the one constant will always be gambling — and its awesomeness. And there's probably no better place in the world to gamble than in Las Vegas (unless you count "The Internet" as a place in the world, because then you can gamble from the comfort of your couch, in your underpants).

As luck would have it, by the time you read this, I'll be winging my way to LV for the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, where I'll be rubbing elbows with 50 Cent and Justin, sweating profusely and gambling. A lot. So, in the spirit of all those things, (and in an attempt to convert some of you to the dark side), I decided to turn this week's column into a sort of sportsbook, offering odds on a variety of VMA and Vegas events. None of these are actually real odds, but if you're looking for a bizarre-world bettor's guide, well, this would be it.

Also, "list" columns are infinitely easier to write, which means I can get the hell out of here a lot sooner. So we all win! (Or at least I do, which is probably better than I'll do in Vegas.)

» Odds that on the night of the VMAs, Dave Grohl will stop his performance, take a long, hard look around, realize he used to be in Nirvana and immediately retire: 3/5

» Over/under on the number of times Killers frontman Brandon Flowers will mention that he's Brandon Flowers in order to get a seat at Nobu: 56

» Over/under on the number of times Panic! at the Disco frontman Brendon Urie will mention that he's Brendon Urie in order to get a seat on Miner Mike at Adventuredome: 45

» Odds that I will mistakenly refer to Brandon Flowers as "Brendon Urie" (or vice versa) at least once during the weekend: 2/1

» Odds that the cast of HBO's "Entourage" will make an appearance on the VMAs that will leave you with the creeping suspicion that an appearance two years ago would've been much, much better: 4/1

» Over/under on sheer number of "OMG," "WTF" or "LOL" moments during the VMAs: 77

» Over/under on number of times I typed, deleted, wrestled with my conscience, took a belt, then re-typed the previous sentence as a broken (yet, at press time, still gainfully employed) man: 105

» Odds that Lily Allen and Amy Winehouse — who both canceled their appearances at the VMAs — will spend their time off drinking tea, scrapbooking, or just staying in and catching up on episodes of "30 Rock" before the new season starts: 100/1

» Odds I will seriously injure myself attempting Soulja Boy's "Crank That" dance: 4/1

» Odds on the majority of viewers knowing who performer Daniel Merriweather is: 12/1

» Oh. Well, let's make it 15/1, then.

» Over/under on the number of times I will envy Justin Timberlake during the course of the VMA weekend: 568

» Odds that I will finally come face-to-face with any of the myriad of artists I've insulted during the five-plus months I've been writing BTTS (a list that includes but is not limited to 50 Cent, the Arcade Fire, Bloc Party, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, R. Kelly, the Smashing Pumpkins, the Gym Class Heroes, Panic, Cute Is What We Aim For, Thrice, Cobra Starship, Fall Out Boy and Chris Daughtry): 2/1

» Odds that said face-to-face meeting will end with me receiving some form of comeuppance: OFF

» Over/under on the number of times I will hear some jackass drop the old "Whatever happens in Vegas stays in Vegas!" tagline, probably while high-fiving one of his buddies and/or taking insurance on a hand in Blackjack: 7,895

» Over/under on the number of times I will want to strangle said jackass: 7,895

B-Sides: Other Stories I'm Following This Week (Special Vegas Edition!!!)

Odds on R. Kelly ever going to trial in Chicago: 10,000/1 (See "R. Kelly Child-Pornography Trial Postponed Yet Again.")

Over/under on the number of times a day Michael Anthony picks up his Jack Daniel's bass and sighs wistfully: 762 (See "Michael Anthony Says He's 'Not Going To Whine About' Van Halen Reunion Snub.")

Odds that director Samuel Bayer squealed onto the set of Justin Timberlake's "What Goes Around ... Comes Around" video in a totally awesome Lamborghini: 5/1. Odds that he eschewed sleeves for the duration of filming: 2/1. (See "Justin Timberlake Went 'Around' And Came Out With A Broken Finger: VMA Lens Recap.")

Questions? Concerns? At odds with my odds? Hit me up at

So are the VMAs hot or what?! But there's much more Vegas riches to share: For a wealth of updates and info on performers, presenters and voting, check out For reports, photos, video and much, much more from previous VMAs, dive into the VMA archives.