Whack Job, Tourist, Denizen or citizen

Take the Test Sinner

by Royal Hopper


Attractive picture taking tourist _ Photo by Royal

Try this the next time you are in the City of Sin try a little test …While you are walking down the street to purchase your next overpriced latte try to pick out who are the tourists, who are the hustlers or what I call denizens of Sin City, who are the genuine whack jobs who believe in the voices and who are the locals caught in the middle of their constant battles. _ and which one are you…

Are you the man dancing in the middle of a Sin City sidewalk shaking his bootie to invisible music just because that one time you got into studio 54 back in 74 never really left you????
Are you the wide eyed family from BFE who innocently asks hotel employees…”Does the Strip close???” or

Are you the clever hustler from Fred’s Cab service who  offers to take the tourists with four first names to a place he knows where they will be served drugged grape juice and wake up without their vacation money….
“Say there Billy Joe Bobby Ray..I know the joint and the girl for you…(I am from Texas so I am allowed to say that)
“Her name is April May you will love her,” he says as he looks at the Rolex on your right wrist…”

Are you the crazy guy who shouts  ….I knew Elvis….I used to make pizza..It is a conspiracy I tell you ….Stayin..Alllliiiiiiiii  iiiiiii iiiive yeah” while standing shirtless on a street corner near a group of guys who were planing to beat your ass for flashing them but turn away because you are a nut bag.

Are you the guy with the mortgage and ambien prescription trudging ….oh never mind

Did you ever take one  of those tests online to see if you which character/creature/ rock star// whatever you are …The following test is designed to see which one of those Sin City archetypes you really are…. Keep track of your answers and your score will be posted in the response or forwarded to you in private Does what happen in Vegas stay in Vegas….


A friendlydenizens and three tourists _ Photo by Royal

1. a really fine chick hits on you and her boyfriend is a dangerous looking dude …do you stay on course….run away …pray for guidance …..CATS With purple eyes breathing on me…..
What do you do …..

A. Stay on Course. Risk it all..Im hot and she knows it.  She will ditch her boyfriend and go out with you. Most Special Forces guys are really secretly wussies….
B. Pray for guidance.  Make a counter offer to the boyfriend and get both their phone numbers. You have been living a lie and Vegas has set you free… woohoo

C. CATS with Purple Eyes breathing on me. Take a picture of her with your telephoto lens and lie to your invisible friends about what you did with her

I answered D.  I would smile politely and shake the dudes hand and walk on because on our second date I took my wife to a pistol range and showed her how to shoot a gun…damn

2. You hit a jackpot do you
A. Party like a rock star until the money runs out and then panhandle for bus faire
B. Keep playing until you win he big one
C. Tell the pit boss at the craps table to rate you and play until you run out of money

D. I chose D tip the waitress and slot host and then take the rest home and pay some bills and pad your IRA and buy you wife some flowers…
E. Mickey Mouse took my money ….

3. A guy with a salt and pepper pony tail and a tie dyed t-short notices you handing out small baggies full of a white powdery substance and offers to buy some from you…

A. Give him a baggy as a measure of good karma
B. Sell him a baggy…What the hell money is money right
C. Tell him to get lost

D. I answered D smile and walk away because this guy is a Narc it is the end of his shift and if you answered AB or C you are probably going to spend the next hour at the jail explaining why you were passing put bags of Splenda laced with No Doze with your door passes to the Strip Joint named after a television character no one has heard of ….

A denizen a local and a tourist _ Photo by Royal

4.  You are from Canada …you

A. Complain about the heat
B. Complain politely that the hockey themed slot machine isn’t very realistic
C. Sing a medley of Celene Dion songs while laying in the ground
D. Never mind you are going to look like a tourist no matter what you do
E. The Purple Eyed Cat People live in Canada….

5. You win free tickets to Wayne Newton’s farewell concert at a Bingo game down strip. What do you do….
A. Put on a tux and get in line buddie. Wayne is cool. My first wife loved him
B. Give the tickets to your grandmother
C. Sell the free tickets to a group of tourists from Nebraska and run to make that Parley card before the odds change….
D. Who the hell is Wayne Newton  ????
E. I chose E….put the free tickets on the counter near the bathroom walk to my car and blast Ozzie from the stereo on my way home…….

All right folks keep track of your answers and post them on the site…you will; be informed of you status in the response or by email if you desire….

That is life in the City of Sin

Taker Care Sinners

Safety First shopping carts stay left –

Safety First in the City of Sin

By Royal Hopper

AK Club member crosses the street in southern Las Vegas







This week was my birthday…woohoo.. It’s not everyday a man turns 29…stop laughing ..damnit I mean it stop laughing ……Okay it is the 23rd anniversary of my 29th birthday.

On the streets of Las Vegas pedestrians always put safety first. They always look both ways before crossing the street, never cross against the light and always make sure their motorcycle helmets are secure on their heads before pushing their shopping carts across a busy Tropicana Avenue intersection.

Safety Just ask the man who wore that motorcycle helmet to push his overloaded shopping cart full of assorted clothing,  assorted Valentines favors and bright red decorative wrapping he has obtained from somewhere across the less than friendly confines of Tropicana Avenue late last week.

Speaking of last week…
The City of Sin was full to its cheesy overpriced brim for Valentines Day as people from all over creation tried to impress their significant others with decadent dinners, last minute bouquets of roses and bundles of cubic zirconium glory.
Visitors to Las Vegas will spend more on a plate of eggs and a dozens last minute roses than they spend for a dozen anniversary dinners in saner less costly places

The weather is finally warming up and that means jogger season in the City of Sin …That means the joggers, costumed picture posers and the hustlers are out in force.  Everything is an angle here a way to get you to spend your money…..or give it to somebody or turn your back long enough for them to take it…..

These days you just can’t get away from the hustlers. I took a few days off this week and retreated to the suburbs hoping to catch a break from the constant barrage of cheesy, corny con artists and drama queens hustling for rent money or beer money or Victoria’s Secret  money.

Sin City denizens prepares to cross the street late last week

For five days I didn’t have to practice my I am a local leave me alone stare or pretend to have just gotten back from serial killer night school to avoid being hit on by pan handlers. All was going well until one day my Facebook addiction finally caught up with me.

Someone friended me on Facebook and I had a very pleasant conversation with a perfect stranger right up until they informed me that the antique art frame they import and sell for rent money was being held up by customs agents (actually they said immigration but hey whats a small mistake in honesty) and if we sent her $1,500 she could get her frames out of customs…and not have to sell her body to pay the rent.. And of course her parents in another country were both killed in a traffic accident.

Sigh!!! It’s getting so you cant talk to perfect strangers from foreign lands without getting hustled ….

Such is life in the City of Sin suburbs
Rock on Sinners


A street musician hustles tips on a LBVD overpass – Photo Royal

A little Brown nosing on my part…I wrote this for my beloved

Happy Valentines Day

I trust the look in your eyes that winter day so long ago….

I trust the beauty of your smile as we kissed for the first time

I trust the tears of joy when I proposed and you said yes

And I trust all years I have spent loving you completely and

with all and my being

I don’t believe in much anymore, not birds and bees or sunsets and
hotdogs with mustard at a ballgame or popcorn at a movie or
bubblegum cards or long walks in the wilderness.

All these things are faded to gray to me to now….I don’t believe in them

But I believe in you and me. I believe in our love. And Maybe with you at my side …
I can again believe in the sunsets, the birds, bees and bubblegum cards, hotdogs with mustard and long walks in the wilderness.
Be my Valentine
My Heart
Soul Love
Or Maybe we can just chill and watch a movie…..

Bert strolls the boulevard _ Photo by Royal Hopper

Sluts are people too

By Royal Hopper

I saw a sign about sluts this that makes perfect sense in a Vegas kind of way.  On the way to work in the early morning hours on a Sin City byway, while waiting impatiently for a stoplight to turn gree I saw a sign.
In the spot on the back of a taxi normally reserved for advertising for magic acts and personal injury attorneys I saw a sign. The first word I saw the forst word on the back of the cab that caught my eye, was the word SLUT.

Relaxing at the Burger Stand _ Photo by Royal Hopper

What am I doing here _ Photo by Royal

For whatever reason that word stood out in mixture of shadows and  the reflected neon glory that is the City of Sin, and caused my brain to think through the mush caused by Monday morning blues and a fourth cup of coffee. I carefully read the rest of the sign which proudly proclaimed.
“Sluts Are People Too.”
Apparently that proposition is in doubt.
“Are sluts people?” the world really wants to know. Maybe some are androids from a secret government project.

One day that week a woman, who from her dress and action I took to be a working girl or someone damn dedicated to parting her ass off commented on an older couple who were standing nearby. “They are so cute,” she said My reply is somewhat hazy in my memory for some reason but went something like. “That’s one of the benefits of growing old together..or that’s what life is about in the end…having someone to share it with…” some kind of greeting card sentiment…”
“So then I am already screwed,” she said looking genuinely downtrodden before giggling at the irony of her own joke.
“Hey you play the hand your dealt the best you can,” I replied in true greeting card fashion.
“She shook her head,” and deep in thought turned to go…
“That reminds me where are the dollar minimum black jack tables,” she muttered, “dollar down you cant beat that.”  ?????

A man from who knows where walked up to me the other day full of righteous outrage spotted my brightly colored casino workers uniform.
“All right sir I will get right on that I have your number and we will let you know about it as soon as we can,” I said with the practiced smile of authoritativeness you develop when you work in the business long enough.
“All right then. Somebody finally listened to me,” he said straightening himself up as much as Mr. Jack Daniels and cheap shoes and bad posture would allow and stalking off with a renewed sense of self satisfaction.
The thing is I hadn’t understood a single thing the man said before that. He was slightly intoxicated and clearly been up for days and was from someplace foreign _  Pittsburg maybe.
Sad as it sounds. No mater how friendly or tolerant you are there are times when you just don’t want to hear about someone else’s issues.

Working as a casino security guard and as small town reporter I have in the past been threatened by midgets, flirted with by 80-year-old women and men on occasion. Hit on by every type of person of both genders, recruited and threatened by drug dealers and pitched to by salesman who were standing,  half naked,  in casino elevator lobbies.
“I can get you a great deal on a new laptop. Here give me a call,” one man said as we helped him into his room after he was found laying on the floor.”
I have taken it all in fairly good stride BUT…….
There are times when you just don’t want to hear what crazy people or drunks or well meaning house painters from Hoboken or the anonymous trust fund baby has to say.

Now to the question at hand Are Sluts People Too

I want to hear from you sinners it is a question that must be answered……

That’s life in the City of Sin

In the end it doesn’t matter people just want someone to listen to them.

This Week in Las Vegas Pick a side

Picking a Side

By Royal Hopper


A Las Vegas Street musician plies her trade on the Boulevard this week _ by Royal

On one street corner near where I live a town full of scraggily nomads sprung up in a matter of weeks.
One week there was an empty stretch of desert there were tents actually camouflaged with dirt sprung up in a little used patch of sand between apartment complexes and the street corner haunted by these nomads.
The colony would have been all but invisible but alas sand is poor concealment in a windswept desert community and you could see the brightly colored red and blue nylon from the tents hidden under the sand and makeshift kaki camouflage. The community was like doomed before it was built…..More later on it’s fate.


Photo by Royal

First the Super Bowl came to Las Vegas this week. People from Nebraska flew a thousand miles and more to see a team from a city they have never been too.
‘What team do you like,” I asked one couple who to be disagreeing about the Super Bowl. “You must be a Denver fan,” I said pointing to the one dressed head to toe in Orange.
“We are actually from Dallas,” the couple while admitting to not really caring who won the Super Bowl. They were in Vegas near a big screen television and cheap liquor so they picked sides and pretended to care.
Like Rome of old..Las Vegas is all about the spectacle. We are more civilized now we don’t throw people to the lions or watch them spear each other with bronze pig stickers but the same desire to see bigger than life decadence come to life still exists. Over the top is the rule of the day….
The bigger, the brighter the sillier the better.
Just ask the group of costumed characters seen conversing on Las Vegas Boulevard between hustling tips for posing for pictures. Two half naked show girls stood side by side with an Elvi and two storm troopers, a yellow creature thingy and two of Las Vegas finest. Every performer has their hecklers even street performers and when one Jack Daniels inspired heckler stepped up to fulfill his petty part in life was stopped short by the two uniformed characters. They were apparently real Las Vegas cops and not in the mood to be messed with.


Posing for Pictures on the Boulevard _ Photo by Royal


because it is cool _ Photo by Royal

Every week one or more of the denizens of the motley tent city would show up at nearby businesses, especially the convenience stores. One who I call scruff for his badly trimmed beard that never seems to grow out or get completely cut stood on the same corner with a sign proclaiming he was a Navy veteran and needed help. Another, lets call her Jill for obvious reasons, will walk up to your car and proclaim that her family is about to be kicked out of the apartments behind her and she just needs to borrow your debt card to put the number on the room.
“It wont be charged. I promise,” Jill says with a look of practiced desperation.
Another denizen, a bearded man of my generation born on the cusp between the materialist boomers and Generation X I more dangerous looking. It hard to be fair when strange looking bearded nomad clutching the leash that holds his German Shepherd like a child holds his pacifier. When bearded Gen Xer guy lets call him stares at your 18-year-old daughter as she wanders inside the Circle K to get a soda you squirm a little in your car seat and unconsciously search for a object to hit him with.
There are others, like old Hippie Guy and worn out working girl and scary looking ethnic guy who perhaps to timid or street worn to approach a goateed angry Gen X cusper suburbanite in his SUV. ( The hippies are armed these days I learned from one street veteran who wasn’t so timid.)

If you look you will see these people every where in this town in various state of decay.
One thing that is hard to miss if you really look or happen to have one of those faces everyone wants to talk to is exactly how many people live on the margins these days. Pay attention to the invisible people, like old hippie guy or bearded Gen x guy and listen to what others say about them and you will notice a lot of things even at work.
For instance….
On the average night the average residentially challenged person is sneakier than the average ninja. Like the ninja of myth and legend they spend their time and energy finding places to hide from the winters frosty cold by sleeping in stairwells no one was even sure existed….
They camp out under stairwells on street corners and they build campsites like the one I talked about.
They are everywhere….
Many of the older gambling houses in Las Vegas, those remaining from the Vegas heydays of the 50s, 60s and early 70s, are like huge badly constructed mazes. There are hallways and nooks that no longer have real purpose, doors that lead to offices that haven’t existed since 1975.
If you look you will begin to see some of the same faces time after time after time on the same street corners sometimes with the same clothes waiting for the right time to return to their tent cities or secret sleeping places.

Late this week  the “hidden” tent city disappeared. Not all but many of the usual characters that frequent that corner of the City of Sin were gone scattered to the winds. Perhaps LVPD finally caught up with the tent cities and told them to camp somewhere else, perhaps the properties owners hired security guards to run them off …perhaps they simply moved on the greener pastures …..perhaps but whatever……

Such is life in the City of Sin

Take Care Fellow Sinners



believe it or not this is in a Las Vegas suburb _ Photo by Royal