Call me un-American if you like, but I have never visited Las Vegas, Nevada — as opposed to Las Vegas, New Mexico, many times. This is true even though I worked in the "gaming" industry at one time as a slot-machine repairman—in Oregon. (Yes, legally, mostly.)
The conventions that I usually attend do not meet there, and my short time in the industry cured me of any delusions of glamor about gambling.
But my old friend Galen Geer, a long-time outdoor writer and editor, has persuaded me to go to Las Vegas for the 2012 SHOT Show next month.
The Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trades Show is enormous. People say it takes days to see all the exhibitors' booths. It is so big that there are applications to help you plan your time and routes in the exhibit halls.
Its sponsoring organization, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, recognized bloggers as news media several years ago, leading to much more mention in the blogosphere of new products and developments in those industries.
And while I am not a shooting-sports blogger like Michael Bane or a hunting blogger like Holly Heyser, NSSF extended me the same credentials. Maybe it helped that I agreed to lend my illustrious name to The Pines Review's masthead as associate editor as well.
So free admission to a "trade-only" event + relatively cheap hotel rooms + the chance to gawk at the entertainment machine that is Las Vegas means that this year I'm going to do it.
There ought to be something to blog about.