The Critical 'I'

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Tuesday, February 11, 2003

MARDI GRAS, MOBILE-STYLE
And that's Mobile as in Mobile, Alabama, you Yankee curs. (It's pronounced mo-BEEL, not MO-bil--say it wrong while you're there, and you're bound to get an earful about it.)

Yes, a little-known fact is that Mardi Gras celebrations in North America first took place, not in New Orleans as you'd expect, but in little ol' Mobile. And so it is that while Naw'lins has it's world-famous big-time blowout every year, a much calmer, quieter celebration takes place about 150 miles to the east.

What's that? Of course Mobile Mardi Gras has its own official website.

I've never been to Mardi Gras in New Orleans. I have been to Mobile Mardi Gras three or four times (can't remember exactly right now). This is because I had a college friend/roommate from Mobile, and he took a bunch of us up to his parents' house there every year for the celebration. It was usually a good time. Mobile's not a huge city, but it's sizable enough, and plenty of fun on a relatively hectic weekend like Mardi Gras.

That friend, Flipper, has pretty much dropped out of sight lately. (Then again, to a lot of people, so have I.) If he's out there, he should give a shout back.