Tuesday, December 8, 2015
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
A German TV crew is interested in exposing Vegas “scams” that target tourists: shell games (which I have posted about previously), timeshare promotions, VIP club passes, long-hauling by cabbies, etc. If you know of any other Vegas scams that should be explored or you have any contacts for the aforementioned scams, please let me know. Thanks!
Saturday, October 24, 2015
Friday, June 12, 2015
We know about the obscene amount of money DJs make and the lavish lifestyles of the club owners and operators. What about workers in the Vegas nightlife industry who are struggling and just getting by: aspiring DJs, low-level promoters, bar backs, dancers, etc.? We want to share their stories. If you know anyone who may fit this description, please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org). Thanks!
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
As some of you may recall, about four years ago I applied to MFA creative-writing programs. I ended up enrolling at UNLV. Recently, I graduated and the overall experience—teaching, traveling, workshopping my novel, etc.—proved extremely worthwhile. Thanks to everyone who helped me achieve this longtime goal!
The obvious question, and one I have been asked often, is: “What now?” Well, I’d like to land a fulltime job writing/editing or teaching. Of course, quality gigs in those fields are scarce, so I’m planning to teach at CSN and UNLV in the fall and to write. (I’m already scheduled to teach a creative-writing class at CSN; more on this later.)
If there are any updates or changes to this plan, you all will be the first to know. Thanks again for your support!
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
If you read my story “My Week at the Blue Angel,” you may recall Steve and his dog Dot. Steve, who was staying in room 133, was a Vietnam vet with a litany of health problems and a predilection for crack. He was also one of the nicest and funniest people I’ve met.
I got a call Sunday morning from a Colorado number. It was Steve’s brother Ken, whom I’ve never met, informing me that Steve died a few weeks ago in a Las Vegas hospital. Though this was not a surprise—Steve had been in and out of as many hospitals as weekly motels—it was saddening. He and I had managed to stay in touch over the years and I’ll always remember him as a kind and welcoming presence in a place (the Blue Angel) that could be cold and intimidating.
Here’s an excerpt from a conversation Steve and I had at the motel:
“What does she (the Blue Angel sculpture) mean to you?”
“She’s sort of like a helping hand. I look up and know that God’s put her there for a reason: to watch over the people here, who are wayward, who are like ships in a storm. They dock in the harbor to get out of the weather and then they’re off again. This place is like a port in a storm. Sometimes you stay overnight. Sometimes you stay a long, long time.”
“How long are you going to stay?”
“Long enough to get healthy and then I’m moving on. I want to get out of this town. I don’t really like it here.”
“When you leave, what will you remember about the Blue Angel?”
“It was a stepping stone in the direction I wanted to go in, but I won’t miss it. The only thing I’ll miss is the angel.
“But God will have one watching over me wherever I go.”
Thursday, April 2, 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Laura Ling and Paige Hansen of Discovery Digital Networks were kind enough to let me host a program on the underground flood channels of Vegas. Their crew followed me into the tunnels and met a few of my friends. It was fun and they did a great job of producing the piece, but I should probably keep my day job.