Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Oh, les Bon Temps ROULEZed!

Yesterday was Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras!

It's the culmination of Carnivale, where (since medieval times) people let loose, danced and carried on - and then on Fat Tuesday, let it ALL hang out (at which point glassy-eyed gentlemen threw strings of beads at them) and there was much high-powered merry-making. Thanks to the innernet, we can now see fabulous pictures of Carnivale around the world, and - my personal favorite - New Orleans Mardi Gras. At midnight on Fat Tuesday, it all grinds to a full and complete STOP and it is the beginning of Lent, the period before Easter when people set aside something they enjoy. It's a study in discipline which I much admire. (Even though I'm sort of Jewish, I do give something up for Lent every year - this year it's Pickled Pigs' Feet. Just sayin'.) Read the history of the Krewes, the parades, the King Cake - it's a rich and wonderful tradition and I think we all can enjoy and be proud of Louisiana and its Mardi Gras.

I LOVE Mardi Gras and made dirty rice with shrimp for the occasion (eaten out of my new Souper Bowl, and BOUGHT us some beads (no, my shirt stayed where it was, but thanks for asking). In case you were wondering, the rich colors of Mardi Gras are Purple for Justice, Green for Faith, and Gold for Power.

Even Lilliane joined in the merriment - although I MAY have heard her mutter something like "Yeah right, Good Times...I'll show you some rolling..." Some cats are humorless aren't always of a frivolous frame of mind, I guess.

The newscasters seemed to take delight in calling it "Super Fat Tuesday", in reference to the fact that many states were also holding their Primaries in anticipation of the upcoming Presidential Election. One cannot but wonder if Tuesday is going to be huffy about that until July (I know I would!) Other than going all over emotional about a woman and a black man being viable candidates, I tend to be paying only nominal attention to all this. Our Primary will be the 19th, and I'll immerse myself in it all then. I don't discuss politics much (except that I AM anticipating a CHANGE with great relish; it can only improve).

Or so I was saying. Then I went to read Franklin's blog, The Panopticon . And what do I find? There's another candidate in the mix: DOLORES! She has established a whole 'nother political party, the Fibertarians, and I would swear I heard a happy little humming coming from my knitting basket. (Would you believe it? toques in French Blue hum with a French accent, I am SO not making this up!)

If you don't know Dolores (oooooh are you in for a treat), go here...seriously, I'll wait right here: Who's Dolores? . NOTE: do NOT, I repeat do NOT read it with tea, coffee, water, wine or anything else in your mouth. Or drape your keyboard in plastic wrap first. You've been warned.

Having read Dolores' platform, and having seen her wonderful poster (star-spangled thong and all) I have determined to join the flock. "Fiber-related purchases tax deductible "?? Oh, I am So There. Now, I would never attempt to sway anyone's thinking on something as serious as Presidential Elections; I get all verklempt myself with the whole procedure.

But I will say, I now consider myself a red-white-and-blue member of the Fibertarian Party. I'm sending away for buttons; I'll probably tape that picture of Dolores in the car window, and it's my wallpaper. (Bumper stickers? Nawwww....Mr Dearling's not a fan of bumper stickers on our cars. The Grateful Dead bears on the back window and the royal coat of arms of King Louis XV on the side rear window is as far as we go. Nevermind.)

And this morning I remembered our weather forecaster's words of yesterday: "Hey, Mon! Beeg storm she eez coming, Da-hay-hay-hay-o!" (I made up that last bit.) Armed as they are with all the sophisticated Doppler gizmos, scientific instrumentation, fancy advanced degree in Meteorology -- and having an office with window -- they can now tell us what's going to happen, weather-wise, in advance.

At the ten o'clock news they were talking about "worst snowstorm of the year" and "severe winter storm warnings" and so on. In fact, it did start to snow around 2:30 pm. And it kept snowing. Then it snowed heavier. Then it snowed faster. Then I went to bed.

This morning - still snowing. Our program at the senior center's been postponed until tomorrow - it's about Wisconsin Authors and guess what, I'm talking about Elizabeth Zimmerman! Why yes I am too! (Also Sterling North, Ben Logan, Jerry Apps - if you haven't read "Rascal", shame on you; if you like the circus, check out Jerry Apps' "Ringlingville USA".)

Mr Dearling went out to get our second car to the Lovely Daughter so she can get around since the demise of her 1978 Pontiac Phoenix (requiescat in pace) but for my part, I'm staying in, drinking tea, eating leftover dirty rice and starting to call my section of the telephone tree to get out the vote for Candidate Dolores!

Editor's note: that shimmery glow-y thing on the back of our Toyota in the snowy driveway? It's a reflection of my lamp inside. Very cool, very artsy - couldn't have done it, if I were trying.


Anonymous said...

I got myself a Dolores "Let Freedom Bleat" t-shirt and a bumper sticker yesterday. Not sure what I'll do with the bumper sticker, as we are not fans of them either, but I'll think of something.

dale-harriet said...

HA! Good one -- I'm ordering buttons tonight (one of each, I'm thinking) and I'm going to WEAR them! Fibertarians unite! (Dare I admit to being downright stalk-y when it comes to Franklin? And Dolores is my heroine...I'm addicted to her.) Yeah, I know, nevermind. :o)

MollyBeees said...

LOVE Liliann's Mardi Gras photo. Delores for President! Fibertarian's unite!

Anonymous said...

I want to get the t-shirt too. Finally, a candidate who really pretends to care about what we actually care about. Don't you just love snow days? Get you some good yarn (like there's bad yarn? well, there is, but that's another story), a warm blankie, and some spiked cocoa or cider and a nice book. I'm jealous, our snow day is melting.

Mary in Boston said...

I love Dolores as well, and certainly find her as desirable a candidate as any of the others.

We are getting only a trace of snow here today, and then, bitter cold. I think I shall stay inside and have a crackling fire, a glass of wine and some knitting.

Winter is good for so many things.

janet said...

Fat Tuesday and Mardi Gras are always much more fun for anyone who isn't Catholic. It's the beginning of the dark and hungry days for me. Lent is a good thing; it teaches self-control and self-discipline, lost arts in our gotta have it now society.

Julie said...

Oh boy, wait till I tell you the story of how I got suckered into going into WORK on Wednesday.

Woooo hoooo, good times.

When I got home we shoveled (my car out of the end where it got stuck), sno-blowed, and shoveled some more. Then to blow off some steam I tossed the kids into snowbanks for awhile.

Good times. ;) Not nearly as much knitting as I had hoped...

dale-harriet said...

Janet - oh dear, "dark and hungry days" don't give up FODO, do you? Although I agree earnestly that Lent is a good discipline, in truth - my friend Carol Selander used to give up candy. (We were maybe 7-8). She was good as gold; any time anyone gave her candy she put it in a little (BIG) bag. After Easter she'd share her plunder with me!