Thursday, June 21, 2007

Words Cannot Express How Much I Hate This Place

Just over a year ago I visited Alice Springs, a small city dead in the centre of Australia. It's hot, it's in the middle of the desert, the landscape is barren and gravel-y. Even though it's a major tourist destination, the buildings are all pretty rundown and there's not that much to see. Everyone seems angry and unhappy, the people of colour are disenfranchised and exploited, and there are huge drug and alcohol problems. I quickly deemed it the most depressing place on Earth.

Then I got to Reno. It's hot, it's in the middle of the desert, the landscape is barren and gravel-y. Even though it's a major tourist destination, the buildings are all pretty rundown and there's not that much to see. Everyone there seems angry and unhappy, the people of colour are disenfranchised and exploited, and there are huge drug and alcohol problems.



Oh man, Reno is depressing. It's the diametric opposite of creepily perky Salt Lake City. Reno is just creepily creepy. The buildings alternate between casinos and pawn shops. The people are unattractive in that very American way involving fanny packs, tapered jeans, and scrunchies holding back perms--on all genders. The children look sticky. For $1.50 you can get a hot dog and a beer. Or for double that there are 32oz margaritas that come in tubular fluorescent green cups. The souvenir shops offer rack after rack of your name (but never my name) on trinkets you never knew you wanted personalized.





Even the National Bowling Stadium could't cheer me up.


Please never let me get married anywhere that has a neon "Open" sign in the window.


I'm pretty much at a loss for words in describing my feelings about Reno. Maybe pictures will be more explanatory. It should be noted that these pictures were not staged; I just couldn't bring myself to smile.



2 comments:

Eric said...

Reno is literally the tail end of that gambling bender that starts with all the glitter and glitz of the Vegas strip, and ends up with you needing just one more win to earn enough money for the trip home.

Jen said...

Con and I think those pictures of you are certainly expressive of your feelings!