Hillary Clinton dodges a shoe thrown by a deranged protester at Mandalay Bay
Las Vegas is a city unlike any other.
That’s because there’s more than a few unusual people here who sometimes do some crazy things.
Take this week’s local news stories. All of the following stories were reported in the Las Vegas Review-Journal:
— A deadbeat rancher backed a heavily-armed militia makes the federal government back down following a standoff
— A deranged woman slips past security and throws a shoe at Hillary Clinton, while at a speaking engagement
— Comedian George Wallace performs at a local casino and then wins a huge lawsuit after tripping over one of the electrical wires while onstage
— A drug-addicted dancer gets into a brawl backstage at the “Thunder Down Under” male revue
— A 25-year-o9ld woman agrees to give a 66-year-man a “massage” at 3 am, but things go wrong
This week’s edition of “Talking Points with Nolan Dalla” includes a short recap of what’s in the news here in Las Vegas. This video runs about 15 minutes.
Two inexplicable events happened this past weekend here in Southern Nevada.
First, a heavily-armed mob numbering more than a thousand gathered just outside the small town of Bunkerville, which is about 80 miles from Las Vegas. The mob gathered in support of an outlaw rancher who admits he owes the national treasury more than a million dollars in fees and back payments. He’s openly defied several court orders and continues to ignore federal laws which presumably govern everyone else, but obviously don’t apply to him.
About the same time, a similiar number of Nevada Republicans held their semi-annual convention at the South Point Casino, in Las Vegas. Delegates and party loyalists met on Saturday and Sunday to hammer out a new state platform and endorse a slate of candidates for the upcoming primaries.
While these events might seem unrelated, the two groups that assembled a little more than an hour’s drive apart have essentially come to define today’s conservative movement — not just here in Nevada, but across many western states.
Matt Lessinger is one of the best wagering analysts I know. He’s what I call “solid.” I don’t even need an explanation when I’m told that Lessinger has taken a position. I can be confident the work’s already been done and he has the right side.
Of course, that doesn’t mean he always wins. It just means he’s made a solid wager based on getting the best value. Ideally, that’s all you can hope for when you engage in sports wagering.
Lessinger is not a tout. He doesn’t sell his picks. He’s not even connected in any way to the sports gambling business.
Yet, Lessinger has appeared in a variety of public and private forums, ranging from sports betting discussion groups to National Public Radio (NPR). I’ve followed his advice and bet his recommendations for many years — mostly on the non-traditional events he specializes in to a great extent. Lessinger handicaps events like boxing, MMA/UFC, team season-win totals, propositions, and (most unusual of all) Grammy Awards, Academy Awards, and things like that. In fact, he’s perhaps the best handicapper in the world on these kinds of once-a-year events , one of the reasons he’s appeared as a guest on NPR to analyze the chances of various artists winning awards. You should read his analysis of the Grammys sometime. Amazing.
Lessinger is also a well-established poker writer, having written countless columns for many years. He also authored The Book of Bluffs. Lessinger is married and lives in the Bay area. He and his wife recently had a baby, their first. Congratulations, Matt.
A few days ago, Lessinger shared his thoughts on the Pacquiao-Bradley fight, which takes place tonight in Las Vegas. I requested permission to share his analysis with the public. He was gracious enough to agree. Naturally, I must post a disclaimer that this information is for entertainment only. I’m not trying to influence people to go out and make wagers. Just in case you are interested in boxing, I expect you will find this interesting.
What follows is Matt Lessinger’s comments (which appeared in an e-mail) on the fight:
“My message to Republicans considering holding their 2016 national convention in Las Vegas is this….STAY OUT! WE DON’T WANT YOU HERE!”
In the news today, the far-right wing of the Republican Party (translation: THE REPUBLICAN PARTY) made it official.
They oppose the 2016 Republican National Convention being held in Las Vegas.
Las Vegas had been reported as one of the early frontrunners to host the next national convention. If either major political party were to hold its gathering in Las Vegas, that would indeed be big news for our fair city, which still seems determined to try and diversify its image and shed its association with gambling (and other forms of “vice”).
Meanwhile, most of us frankly don’t care what anyone else thinks of us. We’re perfectly happy to live here and let everyone think we’re a bunch of gangsters. Maybe that will keep people from moving here. Well on second thought, given that Las Vegas has been one of America’s fastest-growing cities for the past decade, maybe not.
Last night, Italian blues singer Zucchero played his first Las Vegas gig in 15 years. He performed at House of Blues, an intimate concert venue inside Mandalay Bay.
To say this was one of the musical highlights of the year (for me) would be an monumental understatement. I own everything put out by Zucchero since his career first began in the mid-1980s, including his latest album release titled Bassa, which includes live sessions performed last year in Cuba with some of the best (and least-known) musicians in the world.
Zucchero, which means “sugar” in Italian (real name: Adelmo Fornaciari), brings it, and then gives it. He loves what he does, which is obvious from his two-hour sets and plenty of unexpected and unrehearsed impromptu show-stopping moments. There’s no lip-syncing in this show. It’s entirely authentic from start to finish. He’s not the best singer, or guitar player, or pianist, of course. But combine his passion with the gift of melody and he’s the real deal. At last night’s House of Blues show, he essentially performed every song we wanted to hear, then stayed for three encores.
Virtually unknown inside the United States, Zucchero is enormously popular over in Europe, especially his native Italy and throughout Eastern Europe. He’s performed duets with everyone from Luciano Pavarotti to John Lee Hooker (before they died, obviously). ZUCCHERO’S OFFICIAL WEBSITE