Let’s talk about Las Vegas. Gambling central. Owner of gorgeous hotels. Placed in the middle of nowhere. For miles, there’s nothing just dry sand until this major city pops up. So what made Vegas, Vegas, and why is it a popular place to visit?
There are currently 54 buildings on the Vegas strip. And with all those buildings comes billboards plastered with advertising. Every angle you look there’s a new visual selling a new thing. Whether it’s Calvin Harris’s concert or the magnificent magician, the market is unavoidable. Eyeing just the ground level and disregarding the painted boards you still find advertising within people. Whether it’s a shirt with the brand name stitched boldly across the front or a salesperson shoving the latest sample of a product in your face. Las Vegas’s flashing lights throw you into a trance as you walk through the towering buildings. Just standing on the street you become overwhelmed by the latest must have, the biggest show of the century, and the overall appeal in taking chances with your money in the classic casinos.
It’s no surprise when big cities have “weird” people roaming around. You watch people as if they are zoo animals in an exhibition. It’s entertainment in an odd form. Watching people in a wild habitat allows you to see humans in their messiest form. Aside from the oddball, you see every now and then, the locals are the ones who really surprise you. There are many questionable jobs and you wonder what led them to this employment? Salespeople exist everywhere, but never have I seen so many in such minimal square footage. Card distributors are around every corner. A man a few steps in front of me, waved his hand off denying the card he was offered. The person handing the card said, “Hey, we all have to make a living somehow. You can throw the card out but I can’t.” The simple banter brought a smile to the man’s face and he accepted the card. So what led this person to get a job as a card advertiser? What led all the people every few feet on the path decide this would be the occupation to take? If people rarely accept the invitation of a free card why choose that path of employment? Then there are the implausible people who are making deals. Phrases like “Take these tickets for half the price” or “What show do you want to see, I can hook you up” are said by these so-called “salesmen.” Even though I question the fulfillment this job may guarantee, like the man said, “We all have to make a living somehow.”
Las Vegas is known for two things drinking and casinos. PBS reported, “Over 60% of American adults gambled last year…Over 80% say that gambling is legitimate and casinos are okay.” The popularity of casinos fascinates me. Every person thinks they will be lucky, they will be the one that wins millions, although the chance is incredibly rare. That false hope shows human character. Against all reality people still, believe they’ll be the exception. A quote from an anonymous man,“The only ones who make money in casinos are the ones who own it.” While this seems logical to me many people ignore this fact and bet their savings. The casinos are a tourist trap. People spent their entire day behind screens waiting to read one word; congrats! Casinos are wickedly designed. The doors are blacked out so people inside forgot about the sun highlighting the outside world. It’s a maze to get out of there. Each assistant says, “follow the path” and at the end of each is a dead end. You finally reach the exit which is hidden behind large, purposely-built columns. To escape a casino you have to scavenge your way through the distracting, blinking game lights. Drinks are available 24/7. A mischievous tool used: alcohol consumption. Alcohol is known to alter the thinking of the consumer, yet people enjoy their day with a drink before noon. This illusion of a good time is what allows casinos to suck up your money.
Let’s answer the question, what made Vegas, Vegas? Its history is long and interesting, beginning with the founders who used the destination for mining. Not soon after, Las Vegas became western civilization. It’s main structure created from drug money, embracing criminals and their entertainment through Casinos. This city continues to climb in success with an average of 41 million visitors year-round.