Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Future Of Las Vegas

Ahhh, progress!! This is all going to seem like so uncool to younger readers. But I'm an incurable romantic. I have a case of nostalgia that no doctor can cure. I'm old school, old fashioned and well, just "O.L.D." (acronym for "Often Lying Down").

Question of the day: is e-mail really an improvement over the old fashioned written letter? Why write a letter when you can e-mail! Maybe because letters are, uhh, personal? Think of the impact today if you got a personal, handwritten letter in the mail?

Just like that letter to e-mail transition, Vegas is growing so fast that if I were to fall asleep for ten years and wake up (highly unlikely with my current medical condition, but let's just pretend) I probably would hardly recognize the place. And I believe Vegas is becoming a little less personal and friendly.

Following the present growth trend:

  • Soon only the very rich will be able to afford a night in a hotel. All others will be working here for minimum wage plus tips.

  • The casino workers will not be able to afford to live here, so they will sign up as "indentured servants" living in casino provided rooms (they already do this in Primm).

  • The Vegas skyline will make NYC seem "smallish" and "quaint".

  • It will take seven and a half hours to cruise the strip.

  • A condo about the size of Paris' jail cell will sell for over a million dollars.

  • Every gaming machine will be networked and connected to every other machine, allowing instant messaging amongst your "friends" and the sharing of recipes amongst players.

  • You will need to somehow hitch a ride to traverse the vast expanses of the casino floor. Walking, unless you pack a lunch, will just take too long.

  • Players will be paid off not in dollars but in "Vegas credits", which will be credited to your Universal Vegas Player Card. This new coin of the realm will be like a Vegas "Buyer's Club" card. Use your credits to buy a car at Fletcher Jones, etc.

  • There will be a monorail station near my house in Henderson (actually, I am not really very confident of this prediction!

Vegas reminds me of the early Internet about fifteen years ago before it experienced an exponential, quantum leap of growth. Before they built those hot properties like Yahoo and Hotmail and Google and YouTube and Ebay and Myspace and ... Well, I can go on and on.

Back then, I lived in a kind of "Mosaic" world (the popular browser in the early nineties) where the greatest attractions on the strip for me were the dollar hot dog with the 99 cent shrimp cocktail.


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