July 26, 2005

I'm back. Not that i went anywhere. Except even more insane.

So, yes, i know, i've been absent from this lovely thing for over a year. I won't go into what i've been doing or why i haven't been posting except to say that i'm lazy and i suck. There. Done.

Anyway, from now on i'll try to do this a bit more often but, i suppose, rather less elaborately. Just postings from this desert hellhole that is Las Vegas, which i am beginning to suspect i am never getting out of. They say it's less than a year now. Whatever.

Anyway, since my new mission is to share the brief moments that sometimes make living here something vaguely approaching worthwhile, ladies and gentlemen, i give you the intersection of Flamingo Avenue and Maryland Parkway. An ordinary enough crossroads, seemingly. Not far from home, ringed by an Albertsons and a Target (Also, more importantly to me, a Sally's Beauty Supply and a Sav-On that sells Vitamin Water), ordinary enough, but somehow it is a magnet for all kinds of odd shit.

We all know our car culture is prohibitive to person-to-person on-the-street contact, but they try to make up for it here. Yes, stop your car at the light and not only will you see the solitary homeless man with his sign hoping you'll roll down your window, but also union protestors, kids trying to push their homestudio rap or salsa CD through your window for five bucks, or groups of well-dressed African-American men collecting change in large plastic buckets for Jesus.

Taking the Jesus just a bit further was last Sunday's entry into the Maryland n' Flamingo logbook. I was driving about that afternoon, who knows where, my memory is blurred by the 114 degree heat i felt oh-so acutely in my air conditioning-less vehicle. As i sat at the red light, absorbed in the Thermals and just how sticky leather upholstery gets once the mercury passes 100--especially when you're wearing a miniskirt--i became aware of people shrieking on the sidewalk. I looked up and saw a cluster of teenagers, clustered around some kind of scarecrow or effigy, shaking picket signs and wailing about some wrongdoing. As i rounded the corner, i realized it was no scarecrow at all, but a young man in a ratty brown wig and red paint-splattered bedsheet, hoisted up onto a crude wooden cross, which was supported by his howling, scarlet-faced brethren.

Yup, some kid done let himself be crucified on a streetcorner in Vegas, the better for his buddies to get the attention of the passing cars they're screaming at. I wonderd if he volunteered to be crucifed. Or did they all want to play Jesus? ("No, no, Ashley, only boys get to hang on the cross.") And then is there one guy who wants to be Jesus way too much ("...and he always wants us to use nails and he, like, moans or something when we put the cross up...") Do they take turns? ("Five more minutes and then it's your turn on the cross, man.") Or does one guy have to do it the whole time...?

Then, of course, the light changed and i went home. To where i have air conditioning. And popsicles.

Posted by lissa at July 26, 2005 04:18 PM