The Men in Black Don’t Bring Your Sticky, Yellow Dust


Yesterday, my car was blanketed with yellow-green dust. I assume this is from those aerial spraying experiments the government is conducting on Nevadans?

We’ve gone from clandestine black helicopters to crop-dusting jumbo jets, eh? Yes, that “dust” is precisely why you have swollen, itchy eyes, a closed throat, sneezing fits and (at worst) difficulty breathing. But the truth of its provenance is not nearly as cool (or BuzzFeed-worthy) as the conspiracy. The suspect powder that settled on your car overnight was tree pollen, most likely a combination of mulberry and olive, both of which bloomed early this year thanks to our spring-like February.

Want relief? Call your pharmacist before you call Fox Mulder. While there are some who swear by natural remedies (local honey, for example), ain’t nobody got time for that. Well, I don’t. I’ll stick with my one-a-day magic pill. And note: While the fast-growing, shady mulberry was planted in huge numbers in the 1950s, neither it nor the olive could be legally planted here after 1991. So you just inadvertently narrowed down where you live. And now “they” know. I’d move before they find you.

What is with all the pharmacies going up on the Strip?

It wasn’t all that long ago (in the late 1980s) when there was but one pharmacy on Las Vegas Boulevard—in White Cross Drugs near the Stratosphere. It was also one of but a handful of 24-hour pharmacies in all of Las Vegas. But the Strip–and those who visit it–has changed over the past two decades. Vegas visitor counts have more than doubled since 1989, and clearly someone figured out that many post-recession travelers who balk at paying minibar prices will leave a resort to save a few bucks.

Plus, these stores aren’t just pharmacies; they are easily recognizable, big chain drugstores. And as it turns out, modern tourists need more than medicine; they want bottled water, sunscreen, tissues, earplugs, flip-flops, deodorant, makeup, condoms … and, yes, booze. Based on the storefront rent at a Strip location, I’d guess water and booze (cheaper than a minibar, but still with a healthy markup) must move by the case.