Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Real Mardi Gras

If you've never been to New Orleans, that really doesn't matter...In every home town in every part of this country, there is some celebration or parade or party of some stripe that could happen nowhere else in the world. This is our party...

Tonight, the crazies that are my friends and adopted family in the Big Easy will take to the streets for the Krewe du Vieux Parade, a satirical swipe at ALL the powers that be. This year's theme, not surprisingly, is C'est Levee! While the subject matter might seem too close to home for some folks, who better than the natives to take themselves to task. A good friend of mine is always reminding me (in a paraphrase of a Stephen King line) that gallows humor is funniest when it's your neck in the gallows. All this comes at a time when too many people are beginning to fray at the edges--after so many months of fighting the good fight, gutting homes, rebuilding lives and communities and generally holding their shit together--and we have never needed this most public of private celebrations more than we do now.

Maybe you won't ever be in town for our little party, either this parade or the grand madness that is Fat Tuesday, but that doesn't really matter. Somewhere in your heart of hearts, there will always be that one spark that you will always remember in that way...that always leads you back to those memories...of a home and way of life that you may have worried away...or just haven't looked hard enough for in a while.

We nearly lost all of this, some five and a half months ago...we may not be parading for anyone but ourselves, but is there really any other reason to join in the revelry. Happy Mardi Gras, y'all!

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