Thursday, January 22, 2009

Nevada, The Silver State

As you may recall, a few months ago I took a trip to Nebraska. It occurred to me that it might be fun to occasionally turn White Socks, Black Shoes into a travelogue and visit all 55 states. But since the economy is very bad right now, and I’m on a budget, I’m just going to head over to my neighbor to the right, Nevada. And by “head over” I mean watch the Travel Channel for a few hours.

So on Sunday I arrived in Nevada around 2 in the afternoon. According to my tour guide, Las Vegas’ Biggest Secrets, Nevada is known for gambling. That’s right, you heard me, gambling. And speaking of gambling, did you know that 3 million pounds of potatoes are served in Las Vegas every year? To put that in perspective, if you were to put all of those potatoes in the Rose Bowl, you would fill up the Rose Bowl 7/16ths full of potatoes. That’s a lot of potatoes!

My first stop on my tour of the “Sin City” state was the magnificent Luxor Hotel modeled after the ancient Egyptian pyramids. And speaking of pyramids, the kitchen at the Luxor goes through over 1 million bottles of champagne every year. To put that in perspective, if all of that champagne were given to half the people who attended Barack Obama’s inauguration, then roughly half of those people would each receive one bottle, but if they were to share it with everyone, then at least 3/4ths of half of the people present would get a glass. That’s a lot of bubbly!

My next stop on my statewide tour, courtesy of Las Vegas: Secrets Behind the Secrets, was the Flamingo hotel in beautiful Las Vegas. I was taken on an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the hotel. And here’s a fact that people who weren’t watching Las Vegas’ Biggest Secrets won’t know: Smile! You’re on camera! That’s right, The Flamingo has an elaborate security system that utilizes thousands of cameras, or as they are known by those in the know, “The Eyes in the Sky.” So the next time you think about exposing yourself to that Filipino blackjack dealer, think again!

And speaking of exposing yourself, did you know that on average The Flamingo uses 200,000 pounds of baby carrots each year? To put that in perspective, if those baby carrots were to grow to be adults, and they were laid end to end and side to side, it would create a carrot blanket big enough to cover 8/10ths of Deming Park in Terre Haute, Indiana. That’s a lot of carrots!

It was now 4 in the afternoon and my exhaustive trip around the beautiful state of Nevada was almost over, but I had one more appointment to keep with Las Vegas: You Have to Swear You Won’t Tell Anyone. Yes, the rumors are true; prostitution is legal in Nevada. And speaking of prostitution, did you know if you took all of the hours you spent watching shows about facts about Las Vegas on the Travel Channel, you could probably read a couple of books? Now that’s a lot of books!