Thursday, January 24, 2008

Button Up Your Overquote

Who Said That?

Las Vegas is a city like no other. One of my favorite quotes about Las Vegas came from Johnny Carson who described the homey atmosphere as: "Beneath all that phony glitter and tinsel you'll find real honest-to-God glitter and tinsel." Las Vegas was little more than a way station for the railroad between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles until gaming was legalized. Legend has it that when the proposal went before the legislature to legalize gaming crafters of the bill decided it would be more palatable if gaming revenues went to a good cause so they included a provision that a good portion of the gaming revenue go to education. As the story goes, a couple of little old elected officials from the cow counties said, "We don't need your dirty money educating our kids." And that portion of the bill was struck. Truth or fiction? No matter. One can only imagine the research centers that would exist today in Nevada had it been so.

Stephen Alan Wynn was born a Connecticut Yankee in the midst of World War II. A good enough student to get into Penn, he earned a degree with a major in English Literature. He took over the family bingo parlor business and parlayed that into an interest in the Frontier hotel then the Golden Nugget downtown, which he transformed into a 4-diamond resort. From there it was the Mirage, Treasure Island, and Bellagio and finally the Wynn. He waxed eloquent as the English major he was when he said, "Las Vegas is sort of how God would do it if he had money."

Chuck Palahnuik was born on the opposite side of the country - Pascoe, Washington. He wrote, among other horror and fiction stories, "Fight Club." Chuck agrees with Mr. Wynn's assessment of Las Vegas with his own slant, "Las Vegas looks the way you must imagine heaven looks at night."

Each quote above has included an allusion to Deity or heaven. Although the Valley of the Dollars is said to have more churches per capita than casinos, the religious comments are not restricted to holy places. Comments such as "Oh God!" and "Oh my God," can be heard in casinos after a jackpot, after losing big on the tables, and even in the bridal suites.

Others marvel at what was built in soil that could not grow a decent crop. Comic Jason Love once remarked, "Las Vegas has all the amenities of a modern society in a habitat unfit to grow a tomato."

We could not conclude without a quote from "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" author Hunter S. Thompson, "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me."

Finally, in keeping with the religious theme, journalist David Lamb has a more portly perspective, "Las Vegas is the world capital of obesity. You can buy candy by the yard or the bucket at the Candy Jar in town, and there are more fat people here at any one time than there are Muslims in Mecca."

A little blogging music Maestro... ah the strains of Elvis singing "Viva Las Vegas."

Dr. Forgot

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