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October 22, 2017

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What people in Las Vegas plan to do if the world ends tonight


Israel Leal / AP

A Mayan dancer performs at the Xcaret Eco Theme Park on the outskirts of Playa del Carmen, Mexico, Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012. Amid a worldwide frenzy of advertisers and new-agers preparing for a Maya apocalypse, one group is approaching Dec. 21 with calm and equanimity, the people whose ancestors supposedly made the prediction in the first place.

In a city where people come to live every day like it's their last, no one took much notice of the Mayan calendar, which marked Friday as the end of the world. We caught up with people on Fremont Street, walking between casinos and bars Thursday. Believe it or not, most were acting as if it was just another day. Because, after all, if the world is going to end, where else on earth would you rather be than Las Vegas? Still, we asked them, if the world really ends at midnight, how are you spending the last day?

    • Ana Escobar, Las Vegas

      "I will be spending the last day of the world working here at the Oxygen Bar. I have to work until 1 a.m. By then, it's over. My friend, who was here before me, you should have talked to her. She left and said if it's going to be the last day, she was going to spend it having sex the rest of the day. But I'll be working. Of course, I'm selling oxygen, so I guess if the world ends, that's something you may need."

    • Steve and Ashley Staley, Riverside, Calif.

      Steve: "I thought about going down to the casino and gambling away my last $1,000, but not really. I'm spending it with my daughter for her 21st birthday. Because I guess, if she's not going to turn 22, why not?"

      Ashley: "If it is the last day, I'm spending it here with my family. I can't think of anything better."

    • Jerry Otto, North Las Vegas

      "I tried going to the casino cage and asking them to give me money, but they wouldn't do it. After I get off work here (at the D casino), I'm going to go by the local tavern and gamble. I mean, if it's really the last day, why not?"

    • Gille Pambrun, Winnipeg, Canada

      We're downtown, then we're going to the Strip. I mean, Vegas is a super place to be on the last day. You can't top it."

    • Tony Trim, Las Vegas

      "I'm just going about my day, trying to send out positive energy wherever I go. I just moved here from the Bay Area, so I'm going to keep looking for an apartment, because I still think I'll need it."

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