It ain’t easy wearin’ green
No matter what the weather is like, Harvey Billsborough, 54, will be outside of the Fitzgerald’s Casino/Hotel wearing his green suit, handing out coupons in front of the entrance to the casino’s skyway. The Connecticut native has been working for the company that owns Fitzgerald’s for nearly 10 years. The “merchandising specialist"—that’s what Billsborough’s name tag says, although his boss admits that the title makes no sense—came to the area more than 15 years ago. Ladies, take note: Billsborough says that he is single.
Does the color green ever get on your nerves?
That’s a good thing. How many coupons do you hand out during an eight-hour shift?
Oh, I’d say 1,000 to 1,500 per day.
Wow! What’s the most?
Probably around 3,500.
Do the people who refuse the coupons ever tick you off?
Sometimes, when they speak in four-letter words, or something like that. When I’m tired, it bothers me more. But when I’m refreshed, it doesn’t bother me at all.
Have you ever given a coupon to someone famous?
I haven’t given a coupon to anyone famous, but former Gov. Bob Miller walked by me and said hello a few months ago.
Did he use any four-letter words?
No, he didn’t.
Fitzgerald’s has a piece of the Blarney Stone over there. Have you ever kissed it?
No. I’ve rubbed it once in a while for luck, though.
Don’t you think it’s kind of gross when someone does kiss it?
I think it’s OK to rub it, but it is a little strange for people to kiss it.
You have to stand out here even when the weather is really bad?
Yeah, but I stand more under the weather curtain when it’s raining or snowing.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever seen happen out here?
Well, sometimes, people will ask me if they’re in downtown Reno.
People don’t know that they’re in downtown Reno?!?
Yeah. People end up asking me that sometimes. They ask, “Is this the heart of Reno?”
That can’t be a good sign. So, do you like this job?
I like it very much.
What do you like about it?
I like being outdoors and being by the railroad tracks with all the trains going by. You look down the tracks, and you can see the mountains. I also like the variety of weather outside. And meeting some of the people.
Well, you’re single. One last question: Has the job ever helped you get a date?
No, it hasn’t.