Mid-Life Ramblings; Sanity Optional

Monday, January 31, 2005

Mardi Gras Beads

This weekend marked the beginning of the Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans. E and I drove down on Saturday and caught the Caesar parade in Metairie. It will be E's only parade as he'll be out of town next weekend on business.

We met up with dear friends M and D and some of their friends to watch the parade. The costumes were gorgeous but then Caesar is known for their gorgeous costumes so we were expecting no less. The weather was perfect - not a cloud in the sky and just a little chilly. I was nice and warm in my windbreaker. The crowd was good as well. I was able to sit for most of the parade (thanks to my injured knee [argh] ). E jumped around up front and caught a good amount of beads. He always swears he isn't into parades or didn't really want to be there but I can always count on him being up front begging for the good beads from the floats and loving every second of it.

My prized possession of the year are my purple star beads caught from Al Copeland. M actually caught them but she gave them to me (so sweet!). Those beads are now dangling from my rearview mirror, having replaced the pink flamingo from last year's Spanish Town parade and the medallion from last year's Bacchaus parade. I'm always very careful to rotate my rearview mirror beads from one year to the next. [g]

This made me ponder the attraction to Mardi Gras beads that so many of us have. These little plastic trinkets thrown from floats each year bring out the best and the worst in people. For example, M gave me those Al Copeland beads (I didn't ask for them) because she knew I thought they were cool. That's bringing out the best in someone. But I have seen old ladies wrestle with little kids in the street over some of these beads. That is definitely bringing out the worst in someone. What is up with that? Why are these trinkets so important to us? I now have a bag full of them in the back of my truck. What am I going to do with them??? I'll give some to Ty and El but, really, what will I do with them?

E caught a stuffed football from the LSU float the other night. He made sure to announce to me that I could not give that football to Ty because that was his prized possession from the parade. He wants it for his desk. I can't give it to the 6 year-old because the 42 year-old wants it for his desk. Geez! Of course, don't suggest to me that I give my star beads to El, the 10 year-old, because that just isn't going to happen. [vbg]

The other thing that Mardi Gras beads do is that they ruin every other parade for us. You just try attending a Mardi Gras parade where you catch a bag full of stuff then attend a Christmas parade somewhere else where they throw nothing. You will be bored out of your gourd, I can promise you. I have always wanted to attend both the Macy's Thanksgiving parade and the Rose Bowl parade but they'd better start throwing some beads or something first or I will not last the whole parade. Mardi Gras parades are the only interactive parades and it's downright addictive. I think everyone should see at least one in their lifetime. Once you catch those beads, I guarantee you'll be back for more.


  • At 2:15 PM, Blogger Leenie said…

    B... our local town has stopped people in the floats from thowing anything. What a shame! They used to throw candy to the kids... not anymore.

    Wanna hear something funny? While in Vegas for the Ya-Ya gathering I was offered some beautiful beads (but the guy wanted me to have sex with him for them which makes me wonder - what woman would actually have SEX with a complete stranger for some plastic beads?). Needless to say, he received a "No." Later on that same evening, a gal at one of the casinos was handing some out which prompted me to ask, "What do I hafta do for these?" haha

  • At 3:18 PM, Blogger Dixie said…

    Dood! Big Mardi Gras beads. Big, fat Mardi Gras beads! You know I want them!

    Why oh why didn't I have you bring me some when I was in Mississippi?

    At the Karneval parades in Germany they throw candy and flowers. Not just little wrapped sweets but sometimes big boxes of chocolates. And they don't just throw some puny ass daisies or carnations but bunches of flowers.

  • At 8:18 AM, Blogger Fetz said…

    one of the things I miss about living in LA and being up here in NC, is Mardi Gras and beads and festivities. grab some beads for me! :(


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