The Grit beneath the Glitter: Tales from the Real Las Vegas

By Hal K. Rothman; Mike Davis | Go to book overview

Inside the Glitter
Lives of Casino Workers
KIT MILLER

MAXINE ERNST SHOWROOM USHER

I come from a large Mormon family. We came over with the pushcarts. My people came across from England, and were converted back east in the days of Joseph Smith. My kids were raised within the church and they're raising their children that way.

I came to Vegas from Utah when I decided that marriage was no longer right. I was twenty-six and I had three kids to support. My mom said, “Well, the waitresses here seem to do pretty good with tips, so why don't you come on down?” My dad was here on a construction site. I found a little place of my own and with the help of a baby-sitter, I've been here ever since.

I have been a showroom server since the year I came to Las Vegas forty years ago. I worked at the Sahara, the Thunderbird, the Sands in its heyday, Caesars Palace, the Hilton. I've seen so many stars. Judy Garland, Mae West, Elvis, of course, Sammy Davis, Jr., Wayne Newton. Ann-Margret was a favorite, and Liberace. I loved the dancers––Donald O'Connor and Debbie Reynolds always put on a good show. I've never

This chapter forms part of Inside the Glitter: Lives of Casino Workers, by Kit Miller (Great Basin Publishing, 2000). It has also been published as “Inside the Glitter, ” in Change in the American West: Exploring the Human Dimension, edited by Stephen Tchudi (Reno: University of Nevada Press, 1996). It appears here in slightly modified form.

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