When Ronnie and I were living in his double-wide, working on our show for Phoenix, we spent many nights exploring the Vegas hotels.
We frequented Don The Beachcomber, at the top of the Sahara. The hostess there was a beautiful girl…Alana Hernandez, who was on Ronnie’s ‘list.’
He was not often turned down. I believe she may have been younger than she appeared, and her father, hovering near as Maitre D’, was very protective.
I returned now and then to see if there was any glimmer of interest in me. Alas,no ! She was wonderfully gracious and sociable, but never any flirtations – unusual for girls in this city.
One of these nocturnal adventures took us to the Aladdin Hotel and Rusty Warren’s backstage fantasy world.
Rusty was an off-color comedienne, in the style of Belle Barth. Others like her were Pearl Bailey, Totie Fields, Nancy Austin, etc.
(Belle Barth would get an immediate laugh by saying “The next story is a little risque!”)
These special women were readily accepted in this incarnation of Las Vegas. At some future point, the ‘powers that be’ would try to offer the adjusted perception…Las Vegas was a family destination.
There were definitely fans for these women, although they had not yet found the template to describe what they were doing and how they were doin’ it – not like the men, who seemed to be cut from the same bolt of cloth. They were almost all jewish, and they were called ‘comics’ !
These first girls were definitely trailblazers.
Rusty’s entourage included a chef, Robert – a large, Nubian specimen who, it seems, did not own a shirt.
His colorful purple pants ballooned at the ankles and were cinched at the waist with a gold sash – and, he was not the flamboyant one !
One of the other members of the ‘troupe’ actually had, in addition to a colorful orange and red quiana outfit, yellow step-in, ‘Arabian Nights’ slippers, with curled toes.
It was a Sultan’s tent of white-noise. The swishing was so intense, I was afraid of ear damage.
However, This was an experience for which one should be grateful. Las Vegas at this time was not just the name of a Nevada City – it was a varied Lifestyle Community. Nothing was shocking.
At one period in Las Vegas-time, I had my hair Rolfed ! At another sequence, I had hair to my shoulders.
When Jenny Jackson walked in late to a Don Rickles show, Don immediately quiped, “Get my rifle!” Nothing was shocking.