Grabbing for Beads at the NFL Kickoff Parade at Poydras & Tchoupitoulas

What a weird day! I rode my bike to campus for a little of this and a little of that and lunch with a friend. By the time we were done eating, the sky had opened up and was dumping 2.5 inches of rain on Uptown. It was crazy! I hitched a ride back to school and waited it out before fetching my bike and heading downtown. I don’t know if you heard, but there was a football game tonight. I was going to avoid the pregame parade, still haunted by the visceral memory of the outrageous crowds at the last Saints parade, but come on, it’s a parade! Can’t miss a parade.I rode downtown, stopped at the casino to quickly lose $10 and get in the celebratory mood, and then caught the end of the parade at Poydras and Tchoupitoulas. I snapped this picture of one of the first floats, hands already in the air. We know how to catch beads down here. The crowd quickly sussed out the bead situation. This parade was corporately sponsored, so we got beads advertising video games, beer, credit cards, and soda. Then there were the official NFL beads. We all seemed to immediately collectively decide that those were the only good ones, and when those came flying, we got to pushing. There weren’t nearly enough beads–rookie paraders for sure. But there were bands and there were the hands up and the shouting and I just wished it was Mardi Gras again. When in doubt, ride your bike to the parade. I watched the game with friends in the Treme and rode home through the drunken crowds stumbling home in their Saints gear. And that’s when I almost got hit by a car–some guy on a cell phone just plain ran a stop sign. I was able to pedal out of the way quickly, screaming “YOU HAVE A MOTHER-F—ING STOP SIGN” at the driver who barely glanced my way. My legs felt wobbly after that, but I kept riding, stopping by a friend’s for water and some deep breaths. It’s fun out there, but man, it was a good thing I was riding defensively. On nights like this, you’ve just got to assume everyone’s driving drunk. Be safe. Oh, and GO SAINTS!

4 thoughts on “Grabbing for Beads at the NFL Kickoff Parade at Poydras & Tchoupitoulas

  1. Scary! Glad you’re safe!

    And also love that we humans are so great at collective decision making. Totally right about those NFL beads. They sound awesome. Also, this stance we all have on advertising–we’re too smart for it, but it also must work or they wouldn’t do it, right?

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