The price to party

Granted I had an amazing time Sunday night showing New Orleans what I was made of, the next day was NOLA’s revenge. When I woke up Monday Morning I as still wearing my magical Hawaiian shirt, mother of god Hawaiian is hard to spell (two i’s in a row? really?). Shane informed me that he had a late checkout scheduled for 4pm. This was great news because I wanted to keep sleeping and debate hitting the road or staying another night in the Big Easy. After some sleep, a shower and some episodes of Always Sunny in Philadelphia on my ipad I decided to stay one more night. I wasn’t jazzed about staying (writing Jazzed here is funny because New Orleans is know for Jazz and Blues, hilarious right? yea, I agree, not my best.) I only stayed because I wanted a day off from driving. I booked a room on Bourbon, headed over and tried to relax. Partway through the day my life-haulting hangover kicked in. Drink out of a boot my evil brain/ego said, all parties come with a price folks. I took a nap to try to shake the undeniable feeling of needing to vomit. I woke up an hour later and felt great for 32 seconds then the nausea returned with a vengeance. It is also worth noting that I had not eaten all day because I felt so shitty. It then came time came to insert my adorable freckled face into the ugly porcelain hotel toilet that has probably seen more action from overzealous college kids than bar that doesn’t card and serves dollar drafts. I couldn’t seem to pull the trigger and rid myself of the pre-vomit discomfort. I tried to manually pull the trigger like a model preparing for a big photo shoot. Nothing. I then remembered the taste of the tainted liquid the bartender from Coyote Ugly poured into my mouth from her cheap sweaty boot. Success. My stomach was apparently only filled with red Powerade, well not anymore. After the exorcism I watched Shark Tank for while and attempted to rally to check out Bourbon street. My familiar foe of the day had crept back and told me to revisit the lavatory and yell into the toilet. I did. I figured the taste and sight of bile would stave off any desire to party tonight, it did. Now empty I felt a little better, I ate a snickers and drank a soda then hit the streets of Bourbon. Ugh, don’t say bourbon, I’ll puke again.

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I wanted to catch some of the live music scene since it’s one of the major things the town is know for. I heard a lot of great blues and ton of shitty other stuff. I eventually landed in a small blues club called the Funky Pirate. I couldn’t decide if the name was charming or painfully idiotic, it floated somewhere in the middle. On the wall behind the bar rested a strange painting of the owner and his wife (I’m assuming) dressed as pirates, of course. The painting lacked whimsy and joy, which was strange given the subject matter. Neither the man or woman (dressed as pirates if you recall) were smiling, it looked as if they were kidnapped and forced to dress in silly outfits to then be painted by an insane artist. In my fantasy it was a meet cute story of two kidnapping victims who had never met and while being forced to be painted in embarrassing outfits they struck up a relationship based on shared misery. The eventually used the prop hook hand to attack their captures and escape. After they came to grips with the whole ordeal they decided to open a fun blues club and hang that sinister painting on the wall behind the bar. I don’t know, it was pretty dark in the bar, they might have been smiling, hard to tell. I was drawn into the Funky Pirate (upon further review that name is stupid) by the band playing. They sounded good, looked and acted like a band that would make an appearance in an Eddie Murphy movie from the 80’s. Picture Sexual Chocolate in Coming to America but older and dressed slightly less foolish. Fun fact, my softball team’s name was Sexual Chocolate. I ordered a beer, assuming a little hair of the dog that bit me would help. It did not. I took a couple sips and gave up the poison. After enjoying a few covers and original songs with titles like “I hate that bitch” I decided to ease on down the road. It was mostly the same shit over and over; strip club (all looked unsettling), goofy bar with silly name, live music (some good some very bad), restaurants which I’m sure were great but food was still too gross to consider.

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While walking by one of the many balcony drinking areas on the second floor of various bars I was cat called by a bachelorette party. Monday night in March down in the Big Easy met my expectations so well that I didn’t enjoy it that much. I’ve seen the portrayal of spring break in many tv shows and movies. I’ve even laid eyes on a Girls Gone Wild video or two. Side note, the subject matter of those videos is tantalizing but the structure and execution is so horrible it makes me wish the creator of it was eaten by an alligator for exploiting drunk college women in the most heinous way possible. Hope your dead Girls Gone Wild asshole. I like boobs as much as the next guy (probably way more) but the acquisition and access to said treasures should be earned, not conned. It’s like printing a degree from Harvard, hanging it on your wall and claiming to be smart. It’s just a cheap trick and again I hope your in the belly of an angry alligator. Back to the bachelorette party on the balcony, one young lady tossed me a set of purple beads. The cheap plastic perverted currency (great book title/band name alert) hung in the warm Louisiana air, framed by the old buildings beside it, with a backdrop of a clear night sky. In that foolish moment I thought about how strange a tradition this is. I also thought about being alone and missing my friends because if they were here this moment would have been more fun. Right before I caught the beads (of course I caught them, I’m the star center fielder for Sexual Chocolate) I questioned what my end of the agreement was. Usually the tradition dictates a male throws beads at a woman and that woman shows her breasts. Again this exchange rate is uncanny, cheap plastic for an eyeful of mammary. Doesn’t add up to me, alas I’m not economist so I’m not sure how NOLA survives on this structure of power. Now with the beads in my hand I thought “do I have to take my shirt off?” I didn’t, I learned my lesson from the night before. Also without two of my friends to impress, removing my shirt while alone would be sad. Then I thought “is she gonna take off her shirt?” I’m putting these in quotations because my inner monologue turned into me muttering to myself. I looked up at the balcony and everyone was still clothed, which is cool with me. Free beads and nobody was forced to reveal themselves, I pressed on.

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I grew board of Bourbon street, without the aid of alcohol it wasn’t much more than a cheap Las Vegas. I know Vegas is all surface but at least it has poker, which appeals to me greatly. After a couple of hours exploring I made my way back to my hotel. I grabbed some pizza (I’m aware all of the food that is native to this area is unique and delicious but I was still hungover and needed something familiar so fuck you) grabbed a Powerade at an empty smoke shop then went back to my room.

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I ate my pizza, watched more Shark Tank and the overwhelming feeling of loneliness lulled me to a depressive sleep. I knew this journey would be hard but I didn’t think it would be this hard and I still have so fucking far to go. Alas i’ll move forward, I must. Next stop Austin, which would be cool if it weren’t pouring rain (according to my weather app on my phone). Thanks for reading folks!

Keep smiling (even when you’ve puked red Powerade)

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