Refined Painted Ladies

Night improves Las Vegas.

Hot neon, sharp jumbo LEDs, and happy drunks loudly snaking along sidewalks and across the Strip present running tableaux of infectious merriment. This is a much preferable image to what morning reveals. Despite rosy fingers of dawn heralding the day, sunrise skies above the Strip are iron gray.

The vault above matches the streets below.

Crowds have vanished. Traffic has evaporated. Evening’s dazzling illuminations have faded into visual irritants.

Derelicts who’ve been shooed to Las Vegas’ darkest peripheries return to beg, maunder or impose their schizoid existences on daytime visitors strolling Las Vegas Boulevard. After the previous night’s glad-rag promenade and procession of gaiety, hollow-eyed, matted haired, filth encrusted, flesh and blood specters are the gaudy way’s jarring contrast.

During this transition from night into day, a less acknowledged though certainly more alluring segment of the Las Vegas mosaic begins crossing other thresholds. Continue reading Refined Painted Ladies

Within Reach, Beyond Grasp

Happy New Year!

At the airport, ran into a woman who confided in me about the obscene amounts of ready cash coursing around Las Vegas. She didn’t bother swearing me to double-dog secrecy either. Guess I must wear an honest face.

Indeed the promiscuous currency swirling here between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City causes loss of senses, self-esteem and propriety. Not that any of those attributes were firmly tethered in the first place.

Better than watching them make water run uphill is seeing how plentiful dollars in every denomination can torque human bodies and the consciences into cartoon shapes. Forget 5 o’clock. The possibility of a worthwhile tip rouses the dead quicker. Continue reading Within Reach, Beyond Grasp