Thursday, April 24, 2008


As Roch and I were driving out of Las Vegas a little while back, on MLK I saw a curious license plate. RIPMYLV. Strange plate. We talked about about what it might mean. She came up with Rest In Peace My Love, which, given the part of town we were driving in, wasn't a longshot. I had a slightly different take, if not a bit more unlikely. RIP My Las Vegas.

There's no way, right? But as we drove south to San Diego and we passed a Scandia, I was reminded of that sentiment. So many people come to Vegas, even pepole who have lived here for years don't remember what it once was like, because, well, they don't know. A lot of you don't remember that we once had our own Scandia. I don't know how many cheap dates I took there, but before the property no doubt became too valuable for its own good, it was a great place to shoot some mini golf with families and gangbangers alike. Alas, Scandia, like so much of old Vegas, is dead.

How long have I lived in Vegas? You know that eyesore, the Huntridge theatre, down on Charleston and Maryland? I actually saw movies there before its second golden age as a music venue. You wouldn't know it from its hauntingly abandoned exterior, but bands, really good bands, used to play there. Nine Inch Nails, t the pinnacle of their popularity, played two surprise shows to open their world tour at the Huntridge for the downward spiral. For sheer brutal sonic intensity, that concert has never been matched in my books. My buddy and i met Ween backstage, and another friend and me narrowly avoided getting fake peed on by the lead singer of Rammstein. Good times. Crazy place. You wouldn't understand why a few people get crazy excited when rumors of this cruddy little movie theatre/music venue reopening ebb in and out every once in a while. That's okay, you probably weren't here.

You didn't know that Ford Service Center down on Lake Mead and Decatur was once a Chucky Cheese, complete with real, animatronic singing rodents. I know there is still Chuck E. Cheese, but its not the same. Wet n' Wild had to be one of the best waterparks in the U.S. before high rises crushed the life from it. Bonzai Bogan, anyone? Der Stuka (which I understand means you're stupid). The pee filled Lazy River. Liquid greatness. And let me tell you, if you have never visited the half dilapidated shopping center on jones and 95, then you have never eaten the best chinese food in las vegas at the Full Ho. Thats the one place that's still around, but let this be a cautionary tale, get there while you can .

As you've seen from these memories, nothing in Vegas lasts forever.

Chime in, Native Vegans, what do you remember? Post your own memories here.

1 comment:

Tara said...

Love the blog Steve!
As soon as I read "RIPMYLV" I thought "Las Vegas" It's so true. I remember all the things you speak of and I'm still mourning the loss of Wet and Wild! My kids would love that place! I want to add that on the corner of Vegas Dr. and Decatur there used to be a place called BJ's pizza and they had the best chicken fingers. They were there for soooo long then one day, up and gone. Just like that whole shopping center! I am glad that the Dairy Queen across from Western still stands. Mark and I still go there for burgers every once in awhile. All of that said, I agree with RIPMYLV.