Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Red Man's revenge

The largest casino in Oklahoma is the 219,000-square-foot Riverwind, owned and operated by the Chickasaw Nation.

Rumors are flying that a bigger one is being planned in Oklahoma, that will dwarf the Foxwoods Casino in Connecticut, which is currently the largest casino in the United States.

Downwind of my small town a spell is a casino owned by the Cheyenne / Arapaho Tribe. From miles around, in the deep darkness of the Oklahoma prairie night, the mega-gigawatt glow of the search lights, parking lot lights, and the million or so bulbs covering the exterior of the casino illuminate their unnatural brilliance onto the surrounding flora and fauna.

At all times of the day, any day of the week, weekends, holidays, birthdays and bar mitzvahs, the parking lot is occupied with cars, trucks, minivans and Peterbilts.

The C/A Tribe is making a killing.

Was watching the John Ford/John Wayne technicolor classic, "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon," the other night.

I've seen it at least a dozen times in various venues as a casual couch spud viewer but also with a more academic eye as well (a film genre class called "The American Western" was a popular sign-up in grad school).

But this last time, I saw it with a slightly different twist of view.

An important scene involves John Wayne and his troop coming across what seems to be the entire Arapaho Nation, on the move. They're making their way towards the encampment in Monument Valley where the Cheyenne Dog Warriors, the Kiowa, Souix, Apache and the Comanche are all holed up, celebrating the recent defeat of Custer, and prepping to stage for an all out war with the American Calvary.

The dichotomy between this fictional celluloid image of the Arapaho nation making their slow trek across the prettiest scenery in Utah, and the flow of cash moving in and out of the "Las Vegas-ian" C/A Tribal casino a few miles south of my small town, is irony worthy of an Alanis Morisette musical ditty.


Anonymous said...

Considering your previous onion burger reference, I'm pretty sure you're talking about the one that's across the highway from the road that leads to my in-laws' former house. We sort of watched in amazement as they built it, and then as people started flocking in to go to it.

Personally, I've never seen the appeal in THROWING MY MONEY AWAY ON NOTHING, but I knew people then, like I know people now who drive over the border to Canada to go to an even bigger, MORE Vegas-like casino COMPLEX, who think drinking a lot and spending huge amounts of cash on absolutely NOTHING is a really fun way to spend a Saturday night. I remain baffled.

WarWagon said...

I too live down the road from one of these abominations and am just amazed at how many people just want to throw their money at them. It is just crazy...