“How were your first bites, y’all?”

It’s been one week and five pounds since my last post.  I’m more ashamed about the first part.

The second part was due to a trip to New Orleans.  It was a lot of fun but I still feel sick from all the excess.  I’ve been there a couple of times before and I used to associate The Big Easy with music, voodoo and above ground burial plots but this trip was pretty much only about food.  Well,  food and football, but I since I have a bye week, I’m not writing about football now.

The woman in the row in front of us on the plane trip down astutely observed that  “New Orleans is smaller than New York,”  but she clearly was not referring to portion sizes.  For five days, every single huge meal was fried something-or-other.  Usually fried something-or-other with cream sauce.

<—  Here’s a typical lunch.

That fried soft shell crab sandwich is actually being served on deep fried bread with a side of french fries and toast.  A side of toast with a sandwich!   Even hummus came with a vat of fried pita chips.

And, forget about vegetables.  I learned it wouldn’t be a vegetable dish in New Orleans if it didn’t have meat.  I was so desperate for something green that I actually ordered the trimmings from a Po’ Boy sandwich as a meal.  What I got was a cup of mayonnaise and a bit of shredded  lettuce.

Our brief intervals between meals were largely spent trespassing, although I prefer to think of it as going off the beaten path.  We broke into an abandoned home which was devastated by Katrina,  a television station’s seemingly abandoned satellite dish yard and a huge gravel quarry which surrounds the Domino’s Sugar Refinery in one of the outlying towns.

That quarry and its mountains of gravel was my favorite place in all of New Orleans – and not just because my absolute favorite picture of me ever was taken atop one.

I'm King of the World!

The awesome photographer behind the most awesome photograph of me ever taken was also responsible for one of the most awesome conversations ever had.  He was photographing in a supermarket parking lot at night and a security guard came out to tell him to stop.   This is the actual verbatim exchange:

Guard:     You can’t shoot here.
Awesome Photographer:   I’m entirely within my rights.
Guard:     No you can’t shoot here.
Awesome Photographer:   Why?
Guard:      Because of 9/11.
Awesome Photographer:    What happened on 9/11?
Guard:      Terrorists attacked.
Awesome Photographer:     Your supermarket?
Guard:       No.  (pause) Okay, then.  You can continue.  Next time, ask first.

Frankly, I was hoping that Awesome Photographer would have responded with a simple “get off my sac.”   That would have made my 2010 perfect so far.

I guess I’m just not meant to be happy.

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