Monday, October 5, 2015

Las Vegas in the Rain

Report from I-15, heading to Los Angeles:

Las Vegas in the Rain
by Jeni Hankins

This is the kind of weather 
gamblers love.
Stormy weather doesn't laugh
at them the way the hot desert sun does –
with all of the smiling tourists making pretend 
that this is a kind of Disneyland.

This is getting down to business weather
where gamblers shape-shift into a spoke of
the wheel of fortune – so married to the roulette
table that they become an arm, leg, or head.

Dealers and gamblers hunker down for a
long battle of wills. There's the air of Thanksgiving
Day about the Mirage Hotel – a day where other
people have a heavy dinner on thin china, pray,
watch football, and yell at their kids to stop running 
in the house. But gamblers and dealers give
tacit thanks on Thanksgiving that there are no
distractions, no kids, no strollers, no bachelorette
parties, but only each other, the table, and the cards.

Today is like that. A free day where the tourists are 
watching Jimmy Cagney or Storage Wars on satellite TV
or trying to get last minute tickets to Cirque de Soleil
or Celine Dion or Wayne Newton, to some comedian who
will probably use foul language in front of the kids.
Anything to get out of the hotel room that seemed so
big and where the towels seemed so fluffy, with a lofty pile
that seemed mythical and impossible to replicate at home.
But the towels have turned sour in the endless dripping rain.
And the kids are bored.
For this, they could have stayed in New Jersey.

But the gambler, he has his shoulder against the wheel
and the dealer – a cross between Fortuna and Marilyn 
Monroe in bleach blonde hair and fuchsia lipstick
with a terribly knowing set to her jaw –
she pulls down her visor like a blindfold and spins. 

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It's so nice of you to take an interest in my blog! Thank you for considering making a comment. I will try to get your comment on my blog ASAP. Thanks for your patience as I moderate it and make sure that it's not spam. Wishing you a wonderful day. Jeni