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Sunday, January 16, 2011

*BEST PLACES IN THE WORLD (PART 31: #5 Las Vegas)

First, it was gorgeous at Waialae today for the SONY Open, the final threesome of Stuart Appleby, Shigeki Maruyama and Roland Thatcher below:

Appleby and Maruyama on the 9th hole of the first 18. 

However, the leader at this point is Mark Wilson:
This tournament is being televised in 3D on the Golf Channel without commercials, and the effect is absolutely awesome.

The following continues the serialization of the final chapter from SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity:



The city of Las Vegas was established in 1905. By 1920, there were still only 2300 residents. Today, the metropolitan district has 1.7 million and is the fastest growing area in the nation. It has among the highest suicide, marriage and divorce rates in the country. The former is embodied in Leaving Las Vegas with Nicholas Cage and the latter two because industries are built around them.

Water could someday become a serious problem, and there are those nuclear facilities in the region. A serious blackout one hot summer could prove fatal and the city is on the terrorist list of priorities.

However, on the plus side, Las Vegas has become a global city with the very best restaurants and hotels. From Zagat’s recent survey for an expensive meal: Tokyo ($70), Paris ($75), London ($80) and Las Vegas ($113.78). At one time food was gratis. Now, what is a $500 meal when you are losing $5k at craps anyway, and not enjoying it very much doing that? 

People from Hawaii stay at the California Hotel chain because food and lodging are still almost free there, so that they can lose their few thousands gambling the night and morning away, as they almost surely tend to do. In 2010 will come Boyd Gaming Corporation’s Echelon Place Resorts to enhance those contributions. (But was postponed.) Shows now cost upwards from $100. They were also once almost free. And people keep coming and spending.  Listen to Hotel California by the Eagles, which, actually, is in Baja, Mexico.

Las Vegas reminds me of religion. There is an illogical faith influencing the mind of the human. Many go there because they think they can win at gambling. All those luxurious casinos should provide a clear warning that someone is paying for them. But, like in religion, some have faith. For most, okay, so you lose a few hundred dollars. The excitement, enjoyment and cheaper food/rooms should be worth it.

Why then is this city rated #5? Las Vegas represents the city of the present and future. You can get anything there, for a price. It is the virtual sports capitol of the globe and a growing must stop for other entertainers and jet setters.

Yes, visit Sin City every so often and enjoy yourself. If you’re sensible, the buffets show good value, exhilaration palpable and pre-New Year’s celebration grand. Plus, you must believe.

My brother and most of his family love it there, but I don’t think he has bothered to place a quarter in a slot machine. That is an important key to comfortable survival. Many have moved there, especially from Hawaii. But the best place in the world? Nah.



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