That catchy Las Vegas marketing mantra of recent invention, “What happens here, stays here,” was never true, of course. Readers of this blog are well aware of my view from all the examples I have cited since becoming New To Las Vegas of folks in trouble elsewhere for something that happened locally. (My running list, It Didn’t Stay Here, can be found nearby.)
But this applies institutionally as well as individually. Thanks to some recent happenings, Summer 2023, which ends tonight at 11:50 p.m. PT, likely can’t go away fast enough for Vegas image-makers. Their success over time at stirring worldwide interest in this remote desert spot full of scorpions leaves them, tracking Shakespeare’s immortal words from Hamlet referencing the results of incompetent bomb-makers: hoist by their own petards.
I just did some Google searches. The two recent instances of Las Vegas-area flooding–the first in mid-August from Hurricane Hilary and the second over Labor Day weekend from the annual monsoon–generated 5.74 million hits. This is an astounding number given that by major world flood disaster standards, the loss of life and damage here, while real in places, rounded to zero, largely thanks to decades of serious flood-control work. The rains materially damaged maybe 0.04% of the metropolitan area, most notably the tiny town of Mount Charleston, 40 miles west of and 5,000 feet above Las Vegas. The recent flooding in Libya killed thousands and wiped out whole villages–most of them little known outside the country, since they don’t have the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority working for them. A Google search produced 13.5 million hits–barely double the Vegas return despite a level of tragedy maybe a million-fold greater.
The computer hacks that hit the Caesars Entertainment and the MGM Resorts International chains, resulting at the latter in long check-in lines and winnings paid out by hand, returned 6.32 million Google hits. This, too, is an amazing number. It seems all those photos and accounts of frustrated pleasure-seekers unable to quickly gamble, drink or indulge in other vices proved irresistible for the editorial gatekeepers of the Internet determined to prove the continuing relevance of the Ten Commandments. Continue readingShare on Facebook