I'll go with thee to the lane's end... I am a kind of burr, I shall stick. Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

I write not to teach but to learn. Rebecca West

drew's writing:

  • "Always Forever Now," Ideomancer volume 13, issue 2
  • "Black Sun," Black Static # 32
  • "Bread or Cake" and "Pride/Shame,"2nd Annual Philadelphia One-Minute Play Festival
  • "Copper Heart," Polluto Magazine issue 5, A Steampunk Orange
  • "The Accomplished Birder's Guide to Overcoming Rejection," Last Drink Bird Head, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
  • "Another Night With the Henriksens," Player's Theater Halloween One-Act Festival NYC 2008
  • "Hating the Lovers," and "Pipe Down!" Geez Magazine: Thirty Sermons You Would Never Hear in Church
  • "Beth/slash/Nathan," Paper Fruit Blogiversary Contest

Thursday, March 17, 2011

mardi gras 2011: some costumes; a Daft Punk milestone; my anima, Christina Rossetti

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Where was I last week? and why didn't I update my blog? I went to New Orleans to meet up with my dad, to see my brother and sister-in-law, her son, and my niece--and to savor Ash Wednesday.

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Evidently there's some kind of perfunctory pre-repentance revelry that occurs in the weeks leading up to Ash Wednesday, called Mardi Gras. The locals pronounce it mmmmoddi grah, lingering on the m, omitting that first r altogether, and barely uttering the last syllable, giving the word a doppler effect, so that it buzzes by your head like a bee. I like it.

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On Monday I saw the Orpheus parade and the grotesque commerce of beads and body parts on Bourbon Street; on Tuesday I saw the Zulu parade in the morning and walked around looking at costumes all evening. These photos are from Tuesday, "Mardi Gras Day."

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My brother has lived in New Orleans a decade and has seen it all, so he was a good sport to walk me around. We walked miles around the city: I have never seen a party this huge. Unlike Philadelphia's Mummer's parade, in which one parade has many crews, in New Orleans each crew has its own parade, making it a massive, multi-day event no one person can witness in its entirety.

I've read books and seen movies about New Orleans but came away from this trip (my second) disappointed in all of them. None do the city justice.

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These ladies were the Supremes; my brother knew one of them. As I followed my brother through the city, an older man in a sheer leotard, partied-out and stiff, hobbled two blocks ahead of us. I assumed he was heading home. We never outdistanced him and never saw his front, and so can't even verify that he had a front. We saw much more of his back than we would have wished to see, as he became, our unwitting Virgil.

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My brother and I parted after we saw the Daft Punk guy above. He went home and I went to meet a friend. Before we parted I asked him if he liked Daft Punk and he said yes. This was one of three significant milestones of this trip for me. My brother has always been more politically aware, more committed to animal rights, and cooler than I am. I discover a band as he's discarding it. I suspect he thinks I'm a bit of a square, which I am. If you could see my anima, she looks like Max Beerbohm's caricature of Christina Rossetti:

my anima

That my brother and I might like the same band at the same time made me feel very cool.

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