Friday, September 17, 2010


Sorry, folks. As we hinted last week, Miles and I are having a weekend away on this rare weekend when Miles doesn't have to work. So no show. We'll be back next Saturday, Sept. 25, and there will probably be a special edition early in the week, so you're encouraged to subscribe in iTunes or Zune, of course.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

LVW Col: The Monorail's Signage Woes

So the Paris Hilton thing turned out to be a good story for me after all. Sorta. Read on. -sf

Signs of trouble
Finding the Monorail isn’t easy

I just couldn’t stop staring at the blurry image on showing Paris Hilton being arrested for allegedly possessing narcotic-flavored Trident or something like that. No, I don’t care what becomes of vacuous stoners; what caught my eye was a sign behind her, indicating a Las Vegas Monorail station somewhere to the south.
Hilton was collared, you see, in front of the Wynn. You don’t have to be packing cocaine to think, seeing that sign, that you’re close to getting out of the 115-degree heat and onto public transit.
Except you’re not. The nearest stop from that sign sits behind Harrah’s, nearly a two-mile hike once you’ve wended through the casino. Not undoable, certainly, but far enough away that pedestrians ought to know so they can decide if they should cab it or just walk to their destination.

Read the rest at LasVegasWeekly.Com

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Sun Pulls A Reid-Angle Funny

I've been under the gun and suffering bruising writer's block trying to finish a long-overdue feature that is really screwing up my schedule for the week, so I didn't even step out to pick up today's paper until now.

Too bad. I could've used this giggle from the Las Vegas Sun's corner of the R-J's front page sooner. I've actually never seen a headline quite like that in a newspaper. It's completely inappropriate, but an unexpected chuckle nonetheless.

Oh, and you'd only see it if you got the print copy of newspaper. The real story by Anjeanette Damon and Delen Goldberg, with its actual, non-April-Foolsy headline, is here.

Now back to my regularly scheduled misery.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Lady Gaga on Ellen: Call Harry Reid Re: Gays

Prepare for a tsunami of calls, Reidites, on Don't Ask Don't Tell. Gaga's on a warpath and every major gay blog is picking this up (see here and here and here) -- with the contact info for Reid's various offices. Fun times.

Reid Ad Reconfigures Strip? Evidently Not

[UPDATE: Sig Rogich of Rogich Communications just called, following up on a Harry Reid campaign email, to explain these images were taken from a perch around Russell and Polaris where, indeed, the Strip does appear as seen using a special lens that sort of flattens out the vista. I stand corrected, although I'm terribly entertained that this matters so much to them. The original post remains intact for archival purposes. Also, the Cosmo's blue lights? Still ridiculous. -sf]

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has a new ad up slamming GOP challenger Sharron Angle for wanting to use Yucca Mountain for nuclear waste storage. I'll leave the fact-checking to Jon Ralston, except for the part that I'm good at.

The ad features trucks of nuke waste rolling by the Las Vegas Strip. But take a look at what the Strip looks like the first time we see it:

In what location could the Mandarin Oriental (tall with the glowing white fan image) stand closer to the New York-New York than the Monte Carlo? Where's Aria, given we can see the Cosmopolitan's ridiculous blue running lights, too? How do they even come up with such an image? And why?

Here's the other view we get:

It's hard to see, I know, but that's, in order, the PH Westgate tower besides the Excalibur besides the Palms. Uh, no.

Just a little goofiness. Maybe Sharron Angle also has a stimulus plan to move these buildings around by the time she gets Yucca up and running.

Can you tell I'm procrastinating on deadline? But weird, right?

R-J's Angle Suit Tops Top Journalism Blog

OK, so the headline above is a little off, as the R-J hasn't endorsed the Republican candidate ... yet. But Jim Romenesko of the Poynter Institute, the world's original media-watching blogger, prominently highlighted this morning my PoliticsDaily.Com piece posted over the weekend that raises three critical questions for the Review-Journal and Nevada politicians going forward now that the R-J front company Righthaven LLC has taken the unprecedented step of suing (for anything) a major-party candidate in the heart of an election season:

* Must Nevada's largest paper now include a passage in every news story it does on Angle's race against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid acknowledging that its owners have sued her?

* Can the R-J, whose publisher and editor have been outspoken supporters of the Tea Party darling, actually endorse her for Senate after having publicly accused her of stealing from them?

* Will they sue candidates who reproduce their endorsements in other races, long a de rigueur campaign practice?

My favorite part of the piece is UNLV J-School prof Mary Hausch on how exactly Shermy Sherm & The Funky Bunch will address the lawsuit in their forthcoming endorsement of Angle: "I guess they could say, 'We think she's a thief, but we like her a lot.' "

Let's see how long Editor Tom Mitchell and Sherm Frederick can duck the journalistic questions herein, if they can sober up long enough to remember that that's what their enterprise is actually supposed to be about. What I'd love is for Brooke Gladstone or Bob Garfield to cross-examine them on NPR's "On The Media." More than likely, the Bonanza Road bosses are much too craven to subject themselves to that or will squawk about "pending litigation" or, best option yet, turn it over to their journalistically clueless PR disaster, Righthaven CEO Steve Gibson. (Gibson didn't appear on Dave Berns' Nevada Today talk show on KUNV on Thursday, claiming he was tired of talking about this in the media.)

By the way, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas has removed its R-J stories from its site since I made mention of it here on Sept. 3. And Steve Green of the Sun reports today two more entities settled confidentially, including the prominent blog Sweetness & Light. S&L owner Steven Gilbert -- goodness there are too many Steve/ns involved in this story, although not the thin-skinned one who prizes himself as a (cough) crack TV investigative journo and editor of a (cough) muckraking (cough) alt-weekly -- offered up this:

When a reader asked Gilbert, "What’s to keep them from tapping you again and again?," Gilbert wrote: "I have blocked all of their current holdings from my various browsers and they are blacklisted on S&L. I would advise anyone with an Internet site to do the same."

Can someone explain to me technically how that would work? Does this mean that R-J reporters at work can't access that website? And does this really and truly mean that the R-J has sued itself altogether out of view of one of the Web's largest conservative audiences?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Show is UP: Cloris Leachman

Here's a supersized episode which should tide y'all over because we may be taking a weekend away next week. It's chockful o' great stuff, so enjoy. Click on the date below to listen or right-click to download and listen at your leisure or subscribe to get the episodes instantly when they're available via iTunes or Zune.

Sept. 12: True Cloris, Shining Through

Betty White may be getting all the headlines these days as America’s elder stateswoman of comedy, but has she ever played Vegas? Another randy grandma, Cloris Leachman, hasn’t either, but at 84 she makes her debut on Sept. 18 and 19 at the Suncoast. The Academy Award winner, who has also won more Emmys than any actor ever, spoke to Steve at length in advance of that one-woman show and brace yourself because some of this is almost as sexually explicit as that Tony Curtis chat we gave you a while back. There are many highlights, including Cloris sharing her experiences with Marlon Brando, Jackie Kennedy, Judy Garland, the Reagans and Kathryn Hepburn, although an instant classic is Cloris’ hilarious re-enactment of a call from Joan Collins, who was having an affair with Cloris’ husband George Englund in the 1970s. Leachman also discusses her new Fox sitcom, "Raising Hope."

In Banter: Liberace’s closure raises tough questions, Oscar Goodman faces wacky questions, the NY-NY’s 9/11 Memorial is in questionable shape and more. Also, a special live Top Secret Tourist Tip of the Week furnished by Mike Dobranski!

Links to stuff discussed:

Get tickets to see Cloris Leachman on Sept 18-19 at the Suncoast
Cloris Leachman’s website and book
Cloris’ new TV show on Fox, “Raising Hope”
Get the DVD of “Young Frankenstein”
Sheryl Crow’s cancellation at the Joint
Steve’s column about Ted V. Mikels
The AOLNews.Com piece on the Liberace Museum closure
VegasHappensHere.Com exposes the New York-New York 9/11 Memorial decay
MGM Resorts still spins animal attacks, but this time there’s YouTube of it
Oscar’s brilliant interview on the BBC's HARDTalk
The Las Vegas Sun on the possible Wayne Newton home becoming an attraction
The website for Jabbawockeez and the R-J on how they got the Monte Carlo deal
VegasHappensHere.Com on the July gaming and visitation data
The YouTube clips of Cloris Leachman’s Oscar speech and a classic Young Frankenstein scene
The site for the Kimchi Museum in Seoul