People tend not to change, at least on the inside. We are what we have always been we just dress better…sometimes.
I saw an old man this week, an old pool player to be precise, walking across a local casino with a bright orange and black case strapped across his back like an old friend, one he used to take Frank Sinatra shows. He was probably dressed the same he had dressed most of his seven or eight decades and didn’t seem to care who noticed.
Nearby was a man who didn’t’ seem to realize Woodstock was more than 40 years ago and yet another who seemed to be looking for the nearest Rat Pack hangout. Las Vegas was like a human timeline as 3,000 pool playing bar flys of the American Pool Playing Association descended on the City of Sin setting their inner children inner free in the smoky casino air of southern Nevada.
There is something in the Vegas atmosphere, something in air maybe or in the free drinks, canned music or gaudy architecture that brings that underlying inner child out into the open and lets it run free…free of social camouflage and unbidden uniforms.
The Pool Players arrive
Some of the pool playing bar flys spent their first night absolutely astounded. Apparently several City of Sin visitors were in fact sited laying on the ground with their well used shoes under their sleepy heads simply laying down where they stopped their Sin City travels to take a snooze.
They weren’t their long to be fair some of their pool playing comrades reported scooped them up and moved them along.
At practice tables set up for the pool players there were many players of all sorts, ages and kinds warming up for their coming tournament. There was one in particular that caught my attention. She was in language of the day one hot cougar. Of course that means she was likely at least ten years younger than me, but her considerable assets were drawing attention from all over the casino the tournament was being held in. As it happens she was lining up a difficult shot as I was walking by `and my steady gaze in her direction clearly upset her male companion who was standing nearby.
Here the thing, he need not have worried and this will reveal the kind of geek I am, I was actually checking out the shot she was setting up. I’ve never been much of a pool player and this Mama was running the table.
One pool playing patron must have been a Pat Benetar fan because she still rock the 70s hairdo Pat perfected so many years ago you know in the 70s and the pool playing oldster with the Andrew Sisters hat (look it up) instantly got my respect just for having the courage or lack of concern to wear a red and white polka dot pin on 1940s style hat in 2012.
We all wear costumes, social camouflage, uniforms we are told grown ups put on when they leave behind the protected confines of youth and childhood.
Don’t get me wrong the vast majority of people who come to Las Vegas are very ordinary and wear their ordinariness like a cheap suit.
They wear appropriateness like the social uniform it is. Many of them however take one breathe of the dry desert Sin City air and are suddenly whisked back in time to those halcyon daze ( and I say daze deliberately) when they weren’t respectable when they were a metal head, a hippe, a goat roper, a free spirit, a party girl or guy, to wear the uniform that makes them feel free. …yeah I know …whatever.
The old man I saw walking across the casino that first day could have just been short of wardobe to change into. I believe he was wearing the same button up white shirt sleeves rolled up the wrist, his two piece custom pool cue carried in the same time worn orange and black nylon case he had likely worn for decades and sported the same lean, lost and hungry look he had worn in every pool hall his weathered frame had been in. He was in his glory or perhaps just reliving it.
How do you tell the tourist from the locals
One sure way to tell a tourist from a Sin City regular is the way they talk. No it’s not an accent although the English gentleman who spent several minutes calling a security guard names that didn’t make anyone angry because no one knew what he was saying.
No it’s not the weird hats although it stands to reason the lady wearing the raccoon skin cap at a local casino was not a local herself.
It is in fact one singular phrase that will always give the non Sin Citiers away.
“They don’t have that where I come from,” or “ I’ve never seen that before,“ or even boy doggie people don’t sleep on the sidewalk where I grew up… they say pointing at everything.
Such is life in the City of Sin
Til next time or whenever
Take Care fellow Sinners
Jogger Report: This week the joggers were sadly normal.. There was one brightly dressed perfectly groomed runner clad head to toe in skimpy bright neon pink, and yellow. Then there was the jogger who jogged down the avenue stopping to take cheesecake pictures with his digital mini camera before jogging on down the avenue. Rock On City of Sinners Rock On.
It is said that pool players don’t really need a bed or a blanket just pool table and a good pair odor eaters.
There’s only one thing I have to say about that…
Im going to go