This recap is coming in a little late, but in my defense, my once (alright, still but not as much as it used to be) impressive body doesn’t handle forty-eight hours of standing mouth-open under the veritable waterfall of alcohol that is New Orleans as well as it used to. Plus, you throw in travel and that really exacerbates everything. Flying extends the hangover by at least a full twenty-four hours, and the mental exhaustion by days. I feel legitimately bad for every poor bastard who has ever had to sit next to my decomposing body on one of my return flights.
So I was in New Orleans for Mardi Gras last week, at the very kind invitation of my friends over at Bud Light. They put me and a bunch of other people up — including a gaggle of Vine stars who definitely, and hilariously, actually acted like they were stars — at the Royal Sonesta on Bourbon Street and invited us to join in the celebration of their newest drink’s release. The drink, Mixxtail, is a fruity Bud Light concoction that comes in three flavors: Long Island Iced Tea, Firewalker, and Hurricane. Obviously, with the hurricane flavor, Mixxtail fit right into the celebration.
Quick obligatory review of Mixxtail: I liked it. I swear I’m not just saying that. The hurricane flavor tastes like a hurricane. I like hurricanes. Flawless logic. Call me a liar now! The Mixxtails are also 8 percent ABV and, believe me, they actually punch above their weight. I had three out of the gate on Tuesday and suffice it to say, I was squarely, and quickly in party mode (i.e. shamelessly pointing and shouting at anyone and everyone and clutching handfuls of beads). The Mixxtails are being marketed as a good pregame drink, and I think that’s pretty spot on. They are sweet, so they lend themselves to warm weather, and if the point of a pregame is to start your engine, well, like I said, they do the job.
But without further adieu, here are some random highlights from my New Orleans Mardi Gras trip.
Barely Concealed Nudity
There were naked people aplenty wandering Bourbon Street, but after a while, all the nipples and butts sort of blended together and I started to appreciate the women and men who, instead of going for full nudity, decided to get as creative as possible in barely covering themselves.
The Frying Pan Man pictured above (alternatively named Peter Frying Pan) was the funniest I saw, but almost as impressive were the dozens of women who had their stomachs and chests totally, and expertly, painted. There might be a small cottage industry of stenciling giant breasts in New Orleans. Also, and probably not coincidentally, every stenciled woman I saw had breasts that were the size of obese toddlers, children who would require at least four-year-old’s car seat for all automotive transportation. Just total monsters.
Franzia Guy And Horny Grandma
Throwing Beads At People
I highly recommend having a balcony should you make the trek to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. Not only because of all the flashing and the totally undeserved sense of superiority it gives you, but because the days are long and arduous and it helps to have different activities to pass the time. One of those activities is the sport of throwing beads at various people and things.
We made a game of trying to land beads in people’s drinks, trying to lasso the beads straight on people’s heads, trying to land them on statues. You name it, we tried to hit it with beads. Though, as you’ll read, irresponsible bead throwing can land you in some trouble.
Getting Flashed By A Chick In A Wheelchair
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The title literally says it all. We got flashed by a chick in a wheelchair. And no, PC police, she was not handicapped and I am not treating being flashed by a handicapped person as some sort of weird, sick novelty. The girl was clearly laid up with some sort of ankle or leg injury, and it was damn impressive that she still made it out to Bourbon Street to take her top off for twelve cents a pop (that’s the approximate value I made up for each individual strand of beads). She was a real trooper. So was the guy she was making push her around all day on freakin’ cobblestone. This is a city that is dedicated to Mardi Gras.
Throwing Money Off The Balcony And Into The Crowd
I defy anyone to find a cheaper way to feel like a king than standing on a balcony in New Orleans, throwing a wad of singles out into the crowd, and watching them fight over it. It’s terrible, it’s douchey, it’s despicable, even. It’s also really funny.
Like I said, the day is long and just throwing beads can get a little boring after six or so hours. You have to find new and hilarious ways to amuse yourself. Throwing handfuls of money might be the best way to do it. In all honesty, this idea wasn’t mine. Someone on the balcony next to us did it, and as I saw the bills float down to the crowd below, each person with one arm outstretched and the other one mercilessly elbowing for position, I thought to myself, “That’s the smartest thing I’ve ever seen.”
I immediately opened my wallet and started throwing. After the third time, the police contacted our room and ordered us to stop because we had “no idea what we could possibly cause.”
Having the police order me to stop throwing money at people might be the most baller thing that ever happens to me. It’s all minivans and coupons from here on out by comparison.
Some Really Pissed Off Dude Tried To Throw A Hand Grenade Full Of His Pee At Me
Remember how I said irresponsible bead throwing could get you in trouble? It turns out some people don’t like having beads land near or on them. Fair enough, though you traverse Bourbon Street on Mardi Gras at your own risk, in my opinion. Regardless, near the end of the night, we still had a whole lot of beads left in our suite. This was much more thanks to Bud Light going balls out on the accouterments (as they always do) than for our lack of trying to dispense them.
By the end of the night, we were throwing handfuls at a time into the crowd. Most of the people below us were ready and waiting, but there’s no doubt we hit a few innocent passersby. Again, you traverse Bourbon Street at your own risk, but it’s also annoying to unexpectedly get hit with beads, I suppose.
Turns out a couple guys were either hit by beads when they didn’t want to be or, more likely, were just total assholes, and started firing beads back up at our balcony. The general consensus in the suite was, “Dammit, they realized they can throw them back. Thank God it took them this long.”
For whatever reason, the return bead throwers were specifically aiming for a couple of the girls on our balcony. Cool, guys. Bourbon was littered with creeps that day/night. Even for Bourbon, it was bad. There were no requests for toplessness or anything, though. These guys just really wanted to hit these girls with beads. Hard. Seeing this, I decided to retaliate and whipped a string of beads at one of the offenders. They hit him square in the face. It was pretty fantastic.
The guy tried to run straight into the hotel and up to our room, presumably to air his grievances like a gentleman, but hotel security wasn’t having it and they kindly tossed him back out on his ass. From there, he and his friends focused all their aim on me. I was wearing this Patagonia, so I sort of stood out as a target.
Thankfully, they couldn’t aim worth a shit, so I paid them no mind and kept tossing beads to the crowd.
That’s when one of the girls and I noticed the guy I had hit in the face with beads standing across the street behind some trashcans, spread-legged and eyeballing us with both pleasure and determination. We quickly realized he was peeing, and thought it was weird that he was staring at us while he did.
Then, bead face guy walked out from around the trashcans and we both noticed that he had one of Bourbon Street’s famous hand grenades in his hand. The only problem was that he wasn’t drinking a hand grenade before, and he hadn’t left to go to a Tropical Isle, either. That’s when we realized that he had pissed in the hand grenade and almost certainly meant to throw his piss bomb at us.
Naturally, I ran inside and stayed there. Call that a bitch move, but it was done for a bigger reason than self-preservation. Like I said, these guys had shitty aim. The guy was going to throw his pee, and maybe it was going to hit me. More likely, he throws his pee, misses, hits someone else on our balcony — or another balcony, or below us — and some innocent people get covered in this garbage person’s piss. I didn’t want that guy’s piss on my hands literally or figuratively, so I elected instead to retire inside and drink Mixxtails and Bud Lights happily, and far away from strange, vengeful urine.
Go buy Mixxtails for your pregames and, if you can, I highly recommend going to New Orleans for your next Mardi Gras. It’s absurd and fantastic and a drinker’s paradise..