A Juniper among the junipers

Posted by jdg | Wednesday, August 23, 2006 |

Turns out there isn't much to do off I-80 in Nevada other than gamble, which I tried. I've never been to Vegas, so the haze of the nickel-slot room at the Red Lion casino in Elko, Nevada was the scene of my first wrestling match with a one-armed bandit. I just don't get it. Maybe it's my cheap-ass Dutchness but I just don't find any entertainment value throwing my money away. Also, my fellow gamblers were as depressing as I'd imagined they would be. I could maybe see the glamour of roulette in Monte Carlo while sipping martinis with tuxedo-clad superspies and their supermodel fucktoys wearing glimmering Versace gowns. Maybe. But sitting next to some long-ashed cigarette smoking pot-bellied octogenarian in an unironic trucker hat drinking a Rolling Rock at ten in the morning while shoving quarters into a talking video poker machine? No wonder Grandma's birthday cards have only had three one-dollar bills in them since they built that Indian casino in the next town.

A lot of the casinos in these Nevada towns have been advertising "penny slots" and I just don't get that either. So even if you win, you get pennies? Thousands of pennies? Isn't that like winning orphans?

We're in Salt Lake City tonight. Juniper is constipated, but enamored with the young gentleman of the excessively hospitable family with whom we're staying, who happens to be only two weeks older than her and poops four times a day. Here's hoping some of that will rub off. Across the street there is a late-night ninja school, and when we drove up there were about twenty people out on the front lawn in ninja outfits practicing various ninja weapons. I nearly crapped my pants with excitement at seeing so many ninjas. Now if someone tells me there is an orphanage full of plucky newsboys down the street, I am totally scrapping all plans for Detroit and staying in Salt Lake City.