The most exciting aspect of walking in New Orleans’s Krewe du Vieux parade every year is not dressing up, throwing goodies to miles and miles of crowd, the loudness, color and flash of everything or even ending the night jamming to the best bands in the city who gather together to play just for us. No, it’s that initial second line. For fifteen or so minutes, before any of the night’s festivities begin, the Paulin Brothers brass band leads the Krewe de C.R.A.P.S. from our subkrewe’s muster point to the start of the larger parade.
Imagine: It’s twilight in the Marigny. A sharp and beautiful arpeggio from Rickey Paulin’s clarinet announces it is time. And the band begins. Suddenly, what seemed like a chaotic fancy-dress party with horns sticking out of it morphs into a traditional marching New Orleans brass band followed by sixty or so outrageously-attired adults shimmying and swaying in (our version of) lock-step, a true second line. I have no use for prayer. But, at the moment when I fall into that number, all the differences between the world and me melt away. I am free, alive and one with all.
You can have all the holidays and the rest of Carnival, but this I must do each year. And when my marching foot finally kicks the bucket, make sure to send me off with a big old Carnival second line and dump my ashes on the parade route from the back of the C.R.A.P.S. float.
Not-So-Reddy Kilowatt by Pics by Wendy
Queen Bethany Bultman. All hail!
On Decatur Street
Ent-Orgy by boxchain
Michael Homan and me by Therese Homan
- Picture of the title float by skooksie
- More pictures on my photostream and Flickr favorites. (If you were in the parade and I know you, I may have favorited a picture of you, so look for yourself in the favorites area.)
- NOLA Defender’s Krewe du Vieux photo highlights.
- 2013 KdV pictures at MardiGrasParadeSchedule.com
- A thousand apologies for linking to the online version of the Some-Times Picayune, but Doug MacCash said the C.R.A.P.S. float was the best! Squeeee! Thanks to our wonderful float builders.
This is a lovely tribute to your favorite Mardi Gras tradition but I think you speak for all of us whose hearts leap at the sound and whose toes can’t help but tap. I am so grateful to New Orleans and Carnival for validating outrageousness for timid lil ole me. Thanks, Matri.
Somehow, I get a lot of comfort from any post/pictures of you reunited with New Orleans. Hope it continues for all the years to come!
Your subkrewe had Mr. Kil-O-Watt? I jumped up and down when I saw him!
And why do I have fond memories for an energy company cartoon mascot?
Coincidence: Watched an episode of Storage Wars last night in which Barry found an ancient Reddy Kilowatt lamp in one of the units and sold it for $2000. If our krewe had that kind of money lying around, I’d have asked to buy it.
I would totally want that lamp…but not for 2 grand.
Great seeing you. Also got a haul from D today.