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  1. I imagine that the activity along the Strip is amped up dramatically. Most people, unless they have some specific event they want to go to, will meander the Strip. Thus, the casinos and the attractions do their bloody damnedest to attact people in. So you have crazy things like the entire facade of New York New York, the MGM Grand with its lions, the iconic Dunes and the Cowboy, and (of course) the more-than-occasional racy or risque greeters attempting to lure someone in. I don’t think it’s purposely sensory overload; but it certainly acts to confuse and make someone’s head spin.

    And it’s got an element of fantasy to it. Vegas is a completely different world, a different tempo and a different way of experiencing the moment. You’re already there on vacation; the wildness and wooliness of Vegas just adds to the disconnect from the everyday. Normal rules of day-to-day living don’t apply there; you don’t normally walk out of a hotel and see even one percent of what happens on the Strip. “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” is a saying that embodies that view: I think that saying came about because the disconnect from (for want of a better word) ‘reality’ that can take place there leads to more than a few mistakes made.

    In a real way I’m glad I only spent a night in Vegas, and was on a schedule to get to Carson. I could be distracted easily by any number of things in Vegas.

    And in the right circumstances, this sort of ‘fantasy irreality’ wouldn’t be a bad thing. The ability to step away from the mundane, to step out of our minds now and then, can be enjoyable and fun. Vegas, a manufactured synthetic city from the ground up, may not be the best way to do that.

  2. That’s a very perceptive ‘feel’ you got there, I think, Jonathan. Quiet desperation hidden under all the clanging and flashing and ringing and winking and smoking and sparkling and bellowing and dear heavens make it stop!! I never enjoyed quiet so much as I did after Vegas. ;-j

  3. I admit, my experience in Vegas was much more limited — we only stayed one or two nights, and only went to see the Star Trek Experience; the only woman entertainer we saw that was in anything racier than a TNG-era Starfleet uniform (and not even the skirted version!) was a woman costumed as a Klingon. Our brief walk along the Strip showed us little more than a fascinating look at the various hotels, casinos, and resorts; it was in the middle of the week, though, so perhaps the more risque displays were not done on that day.

    But Vegas is a strange place. The entire history of the city is fascinating — it was intended from the start to be a resort/casino town, and there were immense hurdles to it being built. And yet it was built, and grew to be a major entertainment hub. Atlantic City on the East Coast only wishes it could be like Vegas.

    An interesting side-point: While prostitution is legal in Nevada, it is up to each county to determine if it will make it legal. Most counties, and consolidated or incorporated municipalities, do not allow it within their lines. Carson City CM, Washoe County (Reno) and Clark County (Las Vegas) do not allow prostitution. I found this surprising for Las Vegas, but perhaps I am a touch cynical. Despite my brief visit to Vegas, and how fascinating the glitz and glamour and ostentatious decor and everything about it was, there was an undercurrent of desperation underneath it all, as if, should the city pause to catch its breath and reconsider what it’s doing, it would all of a sudden collapse and sink into the desert sands.

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