Blues Brothers statues at the Classic Car Collection at The Quad _ Photo by Royal Hopper

The Chicken Nugget Paradigm..I’m in an allegorical mood

By Royal Hopper

This week while I was gobbling down my third box of chicken nuggets in a City of Sin MacDonald’s I was overcome with memory and a terrible sense of guilt.

As I opened my second and third tiny box of ranch dressing to dip my chucks of fried ground chicken in I remembered an old acquaintance. This acquaintance,  a portly fellow  gamer would order two large pizzas for lunch and consume them all by himself. Perhaps out of a sense of restraint he would always order a diet soda to go with his to large pizzas.

A sidewalk painter takes in the day on Las Vegas Boulevard late last week _ Photo by Royal HopperHe always perhaps to console his otherwise logical conscience,  by ordered a diet coke to go with the two 32 ounce disks of sausage and textured vegetable protein covered bread.

Its kind of like the people at one Sin City casino who raised hell about not being able to get their fourth or fifth alcoholic drink in the giant novelty cowboy boot made with diet coke instead maple syrup like the recipe says. Using diet coke in your mixed drink apparently means everything.
..It is kind of like the man who was kicked out of a casino for panhandling enough to make bets on horse races and later bragged he had gotten a job at 76-years-of age so he could make bets on horse races.
I would not be like that, like those people I swore to myself I was going to do something different.

So with the reflected neon glory of Sin City pulsing in the distance I pushed my fried chicken chunks aside with a flourish stalked to the order window …….and boldly ordered a side salad.

A sidewalk musician wows the crowd of four listening to him play last week on a City of Sin sidewalk _ Photo by Royal

“Everything is okay now I thought as poured my lite ranch dressing over my meatless side salad and then …..wait for it ….broke my remaining chicken nuggets into pieces and scattered them across the top of my side salad. “It’s healthy ..it’s a salad,”  I thought as I gobbled the nugget encrusted lettuce down with relish.

Think about it. the sign says The #1 gaming in town next to Food For Less _ Photo by Royal Hopper

Don’t get me wrong. I love this city. In spite of all the blows it has dealt me over the years. In spite of all its numerous and desperate flaws, not the least of which is all the overage paunchy Elvi that appear on the city streets from time to time. I love this F’n city. Cartoon characters, signs holding panhandlers, hordes of photo taking tourists, drunken frat aholes, grumbling I miss the old days elder tourists and all. I love it.

I even love the street musician who mangled Jail House Rock so badly even he cringed every third chord. The look of shock on his face when a passing tourist threw a dollar at his feet.
That being said there is one great flaw in the culture of this city_ one great contradiction that is hard to ignore.
One of the great contradictions of Las Vegas’ City of Sin culture is that doing one smart and/or virtuous thing somehow justifies days or gallons or thousands of dollars of decadence or stupidity.

I have a question for all you gambling nuts, junk food junkies, lapsed health food nuts and  week end decadence rationalizers.

Las Vegas has never lied about who it is and why it exists. Just ask the Elvis twins and their side kick the giant blue midget.

Does eating a $1.00 side salad justify stuffing yourself silly with box after box of chicken nuggets ? Does any of this it really matter in the long run ? …and what is the air speed velocity of an unladen swallow? As the Electric Poet himself is reputed to have said….
Regardless  of why you ride the snake ..If you are going to ride the snake for miles without regret and then do not bother complaining about the scales scratching your butt. You can  comfort yourself by dismounting and walking the last three blocks I suppose but why bother In the End It will not make any difference?

That’s life in the City of Sin
Take care Fellow Sinners

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