Tales of the Cocktail – My 500th Post

I’ve been wondering for awhile now what my 500th post would end up being about. Turns out it’s an event I’ve never attended before – Tales of the Cocktail. What began as a cozy group of cocktail lovers in 2002 has ballooned into the spirit industry’s standard providing 5 days of over 200 events including tastings, networking events, parties,  seminars and my event – a parade! I was already overheating just putting on my wig, corset and boots when my fellow Pussyfooter, Christine Miller, called to see if I’d caught the bus that just pulled away from a block down the road from me. I started running when she said she’d try to stop the bus at the next stop. She ran to catch it from 1/2 block away and I did my best with my 2 block sprint – in head-to-toe pink burlesque uniform. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, moving, parade

Birthday and Anniversary – NOLA Style

I’d been vacationing with family at Bethany Beach, Delaware for 4 days already when Mom called us up to her room. We walked in and found everyone out on the balcony with a surprise 1st anniversary party for us – NOLA style. They’d decorated with Mardi Gras beads, streamers and coffee-filter flowers. We were handed a bouquet, a black top hat and a tiara with a veil to wear with our beach clothes. Rebirth Brass Band‘s Do Watcha Wanna played and a cake was decorated with that same phrase.  We danced around waving Kleenex and my brother did his best imitation of DancingMan504 jumping at our wedding in the French Quarter. It was so wonderful bringing our beloved city to that balcony in Delaware. New Orleans’ soul travels well. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, decorations and costumes, entertainment industry, Local Cuisine

Summer Reading and Writing

Whenever I go too long between writing posts for this blog, you can rest assured I’m still writing. My last few breaks in blogging resulted in Know Small Parts: An Actor’s Guide to Turning Minutes into Moments and Moments ints a Career with foreword by Richard Dreyfuss and endorsements from Kevin Costner and a dozen other industry luminaries. Next was Lemonade Farm, my first novel. Award winning and New York Times bestselling author Tom Franklin says, “I’ve read Laura’s novel Lemonade Farm and can attest to its power. It evokes the 1970s in a painfully accurate way, and is beautifully written. She manages a wide cast of characters and somehow paints adults, teenagers and children with equal skill without ever condescending to any of them. Her skill at characterization and turns of phrase, coupled with a great sense of place, makes this a heck of a novel.”

Years ago, Quentin Tarantino said I should write a series of detective novels and I’m finally taking his advice. A few weeks back, I began working on a series of mysteries set in New Orleans. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, Super Bowl 2010, the Saints

Creole Tomato Fest, Naked Bike Ride and Festigals Parade (R-rated)

What a busy weekend in the French Quarter! The 29th French Market Creole Tomato Fest fed us music and delicious dishes all weekend while the women of Festigals partied and paraded and the World Naked Bike Ride rolled past bewildered tourists.

We started Saturday at the Creole Tomato Fest with my annual favorite, Sliced Creole tomato with lump crab and Remoulade dressing  ($7) from George’s Produce. Good thing because they sold out early. Paul Sanchez and his all female band played while we tried the  gator sausage and tomatoes ($7) from A Bite OutsideWho Dat Coffee Cafe‘s delicious Remoulade tossed with boiled shrimp with Creole tomato slices and a salad garnish ($7) and yummy Crawfish beignets with roasted corn and Creole tomato sauce ($6) from J’s Seafood Dock. Continue reading

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Filed under Concerts, Culture, decorations and costumes, festival, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, parade

Oyster Fest & Hollywood South Lunch

We had planned to go tubing with John Schneider near his super-cool studio outside Baton Rouge Saturday, but the river was way too high and a downpour flooded the streets of New Orleans trapping many of us in our neighborhoods. After the rain passed, we instead headed to the 6th annual New Orleans Oyster Festival in Woldenberg Park. I’ve been every year and the fest keeps getting bigger and better – even adding an additional stage for food demonstrations and live music. We stopped for a few songs from local favorites, TBC Brass Band. Continue reading

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Filed under Charity, Concerts, Culture, festival, free events and lagniappe, Local Cuisine, Mardi Gras 2014, oil spill catastrophe

Irma Thomas at the Zoo

For 32 years, Irma Thomas and The Professionals has played Mother’s Day at the Audubon Zoo. Admission is free for mothers so the park was full of smiling women and the families trying to please them. Aurora Nealand & The Royal Roses were onstage when we arrived. We listened to a couple of their fun Dixieland tunes then took a stroll around the zoo.  I love the giraffes, birds, big cats and primates, but I’m fascinated by elephants so I was bummed that the elephant area is still under construction. The new water park was up and running and looked like a lot of fun for a family looking to cool off.

Miss Irma Thomas, has been performing for so long that many of the grandparents in the crowd fell in love to her songs at school dances when they were kids. It’s fun to watch the grey-haired fans turn into energized teenagers when she takes the stage.  Continue reading

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Filed under Concerts, free events and lagniappe

Jazz Fest Sunday

With more reasonable crowds and lots of favorite local musicians playing, Jazz Fest’s final Sunday was a balmy-weathered blast. Big Chief Kevin Goodman & the Flaming Arrows were on the Jazz Fest Heritage Stage and I spotted Alphonse “DooWee” Robair, my favorite Mardi Gras Indian artist, dancing among them. We started the day with a delicious Cochon de Lait ($9) from Love at First Bite  and a Nectar Creme from Plum Street Snoballs ($4). When I worried I wasn’t going to get a “local” pour of the sticky, sweet syrup, the woman next to me in line laughed, “If you ordered Nectar Creme, they already know you’re a local.” True Dat. Continue reading

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Filed under Concerts, Culture, festival, Local Cuisine