If I leave by 8:30 am I should be in Las Vegas by 12:30 or 1 pm, and picking up my Cinemacon pass by 1:45 pm or 2 pm at the latest. I haven’t done this drive since the late ’80s. I’m mindful, of course, of the notorious CHP speed-trap area approaching Barstow and then beyond to the Nevada state line. What I generally do is find a couple of “stalking horses” who are moving as fast as I want to go and then stay eight to ten car lengths behind them. If the bulls are going to pull anyone over they’ll go for the horses rather than myself — that’s the theory, at least.

The trick with Las Vegas is to stay there no longer than 24 hours. By the 36-hour mark the plasticity and toxins begin to seep into your system. 48 hours and you’re staggering around like Edmond O’Brien in D.O.A..