Someone somehow thought I would be a good person to ask this question to.
MIDWEST IS BEST Y/N
Did not go to Tulane
Need Expert Opinion
Dear Marg, What should I do for Mardi Gras during quarantine? Thanx!
......!!!!!!...... it is already Mardi Gras
My /expert opinion/:
In earnest I don't know. I am not a good person to ask about this. This question did make me realize I have done a few things *for Mardi Gras* already (mostly unintentionally) so I will list them here and then some general thoughts.
1. Donate to the Tulane Alumni Black History Month Mutual Aid Fund here:
Having expressed twice in your note that you are not a Tulane alum I am going to go ahead and assume you are a Tulane alum. The fund's goal is to contribute at least $30,000 in mutual aid funds to Black communities by the end of February. 100% of proceeds will go directly towards BYP1000-New Orleans and their ongoing mutual aid program they have been running since March 2020. You can also find an alum who has committed to raising $1,000 for this fund by the end of February and donate that way.
2. If you are in NYC, pre-order a King Cake from Abby Soule this weekend here: https://www.instagram.com/abby.soule/
The form in her bio closes Friday 2/12 (SORRY I didn't post this earlier I am BUSY) with Local NYC (Crown Heights Specifically) pickup only. 50% of all proceeds will be donated to her local block association to support projects like shopping for seniors and block beautification. Abby's Instagram handle is @abby.soule.
Some less tangible thoughts:
Things are very bad in the present. Allow yourself to reminisce on Mardi Gras and general New Orleans memories so much that it is physically painful to your human body and you spiral and have to call a friend. I spent my last Mardi Gras with a 101 degree fever dazed and glassy outside the Pontchartrain Hotel at 7 AM-- I will still be reminiscing. I will call Kaitie 6 times this weekend until she picks up. These are things you need to do and it will remind you of feeling alive and being dumb. I imagine that most people who are not doom enthusiasts like myself may only remember fond and pleasant memories from Mardi Gras. This is not me. For all of my Mardi Gras I either left voluntarily to travel somewhere else, had to leave because of an emergency, was out of the United States, or again, was running a surprise days long fever (which in reality didn't adjust any of my plans because I didn't know how to take care of my body so arguably most successful Mardi Gras though I was not fully cognizant. Triple negative). When I think back to that time it reminds me of feeling out of place and unmoored-- maybe this weekend I will *practice gratitude* and feel satisfied to not be in those situations anymore. It may remind me (as college memories often do) how much better things are now. It's hard to explain the Tulane experience to people who haven't experienced it. I will probably send some photos and videos with no text to people I haven't talked to in a couple months or years. I don't spend a lot of time in these memories but maybe this weekend I will.
Tulane was a lot of things for me but New Orleans taught me to feel something big and alive that had nothing to do with success or competition and really just to do with friends and experiences. This feels important to me now. Because of the pandemic things feel fine *at best* much of the time and true vibrant aliveness feels inaccessible. We deserve to feel something big and alive, with other people. Mardi Gras.
I guess what I'm saying is I have no real advice for you except for to fire off a bunch of texts and memories and even though things are really bad right now remember that being in college is disgusting and your life is better now. I might do my taxes this weekend.
Thanks again for writing. I don't have anything to say really. Here's to violent pining for the past and booking plane tickets for sp 2022.