Sunday, February 19, 2006

Howdy folks. Been a while. MKeller here.
I figured since our boy Josh is soaking in the tropical sun and pina coladas with dark rum floaters in an undisclosed location (how's that for a slew of prepositional phrases), I'd reappear for a post.
First off, Norman gets props and a link for a great series about those souls taken by Katrina:
I think this link is the last of the three-part series.
I think the series really pops because the editors had the good sense to start it with maps created by an evil cartographer named MKeller.

While Josh has had the dubious distinction of focusing on the dead for nearly a month now, I have gone back to my pre-storm environment, energy and business beats. Of course, every enviro or business story has some Katrina peg to it.

I have been noticing Chertoff and Brownie on the TV pointing fingers and laying blame. It's interesting that I never here conversations about how the government handled the storm, except for the occasional FEMA jab or joke.
Now the insurance companies, that's another story.

I was lucky on Saturday in that I had to drag myself out of a warm bed on a cold and rainy morning to cover Orange Grove's Mardi Gras parade. For those who don't know, Mardi Gras on the coast is much more family oriented than the debauchery over in New Orleans. Parents bring their kids to the parade route where merry revelers on gold, green and purple floats pelt them with plastic beads and trinkets, called throws.

I got to the staging point of the parade about an hour early and walked around. It was overcast and a cold mist was coming down, making note taking a bit like trying to write on wet toilet paper.
Yet the folks waiting to mount the floats were not all that heavily dressed. "Curious," I said to myself when I realized that no one seemed to be the slightest cold and yet all of their faces held beaming grins and rosy cheeks.
Then I started to notice a correlation between smiles and 32-ounce plastic cups containing some clearly spiked orange juice. "Damn the Mardi Gras revelers," I said to myself. I wished I could have been so prepared.
Everybody who I talked with said almost the same sentence- "We could really use a parade."
I think people are tired of being tired.
Anyways, it was a good couple hours for people to enjoy themselves.

Josh suggested I post some of the bars that are left and worth a damn. Maybe I'll do that tomorrow, or maybe I'll keep those Ocean Springs haunts secret. One doesn't like to be crowded in when one sets down to have a cocktail.

Anybody in the vicinity should try to make it over to Mardi Gras in NOLA. All the parades are running on one route from Uptown this year and the Krewe of Endymion rolls this Saturday at 3:30. I think the Krewe of Rex rolls at 10 am on Fat Tuesday.
It won't be as crowded this year, which will be a good thing. I haven't been to Mardi Gras since college.
Check out this site for proper masks:
I think either the bauta, the Cuori Bastone or one of the nasos would do the trick.


Blogger The Fergoosons said...

What an amazing story about E.J. and the others...It's impossible to imagine the terror so many went through. Thanks Josh

9:22 PM  
Blogger Sarabeth said...

I like the description of the parade and the spiked juice. Nice.

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations to you and Josh for being finalists for the Jesse Laventhal prize. The recongnition is well deserved.

7:06 AM  

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