I acknowledge this as a false belief, but tough times call for, uh, sometimes indulging a forgivable weakness for a little personal religiosity cooked up in your head. Mine is: Las Vegans are extraordinarily hospitable.
I’m a walker. Not one of those elbow-pumping cardio-cult gazelles, enviably chugging along residential sidewalks and park pathways in superhero tracksuits. I wish I had that level of athletic will. No, I’m a nervous, ruminative walker.
It’s only maybe kind of a little bit of a small coincidence that our annual Restaurant Awards feature falls in December, part of the season that celebrates rosy-nosed goodwill, generosity, and, if you’re doing it right, heedless excess.
For all its transience and fluidity, Las Vegas seems like a giant airport sometimes. Countless people — tourists, residents, nomads falling somewhere in between — perch for a while and then flutter off.
I’ve had an on-again, off-again affair with yoga for (wow) decades now. Occasionally I’d get obsessed with some other form of exercise — running, swimming, weightlifting, aerobic existential screaming — but I always returned to yoga.
The idea for this month’s feature, “Amazing Arizona,” came out of this random effulgence of enthusiasm — at once singular and choral — from Desert Companion writers at one of our coffee-splashed, bagel-fueled story pitch roundtables.
Las Vegas is a nexus of sensory extremes. In the middle of a broiling desert, we’ve got a string of air-conditioned Strip casinos boasting some of the world’s finest food, splashiest production shows, and, of course, row upon row of clamorous, glittering games of chance.
I do wonder whether this era of immersive digitalia is creating a generational wave of drooly and glaze-eyed slothchildren. I’m happy to see my dystopian pessimism challenged by this month’s feature, “More Than Child’s Play,” by Matt Jacob.
I often compare Vegas to a Russian nesting doll, but one with neon and video poker instead of those lidless, accusing eyes. You get past the touristy shell, the strip mall shell, the sleepy isolationist suburban shell...
My strongest memory of 1989 is from my Las Vegas High School graduation ceremony. There’s actually a photo of the very moment: A mortarboard-topped me accepting my diploma from some Important Education Personage with a standard grip ’n’ grin.
At one of our scrummy editorial meetings leading up to this issue, someone asked whether an upbeat Vegas Golden Knights season preview feature might be considered jarring, dissonant, or even tone-deaf appearing in the same month that marks the anniversary of the October 1 shooting.
I feel like this summer was extra rite-of-passagier than others on recent historical record, and I therefore deserve to hurl myself extra hard into this fall’s reprieve of cooler temperatures and, more importantly, cultural events.
Usually in this space, I do the opening-flourish shuffle to introduce the issue’s feature package with a bunch of hypertrophic, overheated prose. I was going to do that this month, too, but then I realized that I’d only be telling part of the story.