1. PUT ON ALL YOUR OLD COSTUMES
If you are anything like me, you keep all your old costumes (well, at least the ones that survived the wrath of Mardi Gras) knowing that they may come in handy one day. So open your closet, dust off your old gems and get your dog involved (I promise they'll love it). It'll bring back memories of the good time spent dancing in the street and drinking champagne with perfectly costumed strangers. Bonus points if you put on more than one costume at a time.
2. SPEAKING OF CHAMPAGNE
Part of the Mardi Gras tradition is waking up at an ungodly hour to start putting on your costume and sipping on champagne (or your alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverage of choice). While I'm not condoning early morning drinking, Mardi Gras makes for an exception. So this year grab your favorite bottle of your favorite beverage, head out to your porch in a sparkly outfit (or your PJ's- this year that is perfectly acceptable) and dream about calling an Uber and gathering at Mimi's (or heading Uptown for Zulu) on the best Tuesday of the year.
3. JUST ADD GLITTER
It's been almost a year since I've pulled out my literal storage tub full of all my fun glitters. It's time to dust off the sparkles and get shiny. I have a theory that glitter cures everything, even the no-parade Mardi Gras blues. Grab hold of your favorite Elektra Cosmetics glitter and don't be shy. This year... less is DEFINITELY not more.
4. STUFF YOUR FACE WITH KING CAKE
I feel like this needs absolutely no explanation (or persuasion). In most years we eat a lot of king cake. This year? EAT EVEN MORE. There's nothing wrong with eating your feelings this year. In fact, stuff those feelings down with layers and layers of king cake and icing and sprinkles and babies (please don't choke). Try ones you normally don't eat. Go for the weird ones. The savory ones. The chocolate ones. Order 3 of your favorites. Just keep eating until the tears vanish and all that's left is a sugar high and a stomach ache. Dong Phuong here I come!
5. GREASE YOUR OWN POLE, HONEY
What I miss most are the traditions of Mardi Gras. The rituals that drive us crazy each year (like leaving 3 hours early to find a parking spot for a parade) but we secretly love. Greasing of the poles is one of those super fun rituals where adults dress up in strange outfits and lube up a pole in the quarter while other adults dressed in strange outfits yell obscenities. While greasing may be different this year (it's a private live-streamed event that *AHEM* yours truly may be participating in this year) that won't stop us adults from being naughty with a vat of grease (that sounds WAY more disturbing than it actually is). So grab your tub of vaseline, find the nearest pole and GO FOR IT. Then immediately hire someone to come de-grease said pole.
6. CATCH SOME BEADS
It's not a Mardi Gras season until someone gets hit in the face with a bag of beads. Dentists may not be getting as many emergency calls this year but that shouldn't stop you from catching some beads. Grab your ladder, get yourself set up in the living room (or maybe safer... your porch) and THROW THOSE BEADS. Maybe have someone throw them at you. Maybe throw them at your dog. Either way, throw the throws and catch the beads. Then put them away in the "I'm keeping these for a reason" bag until next year.
7. WHEN IT DOUBT, THROW CONFETTI
I've started carrying Emergency Confetti around just in case of the occasional (or frequent) meltdown. When life gets you down, throw confetti up. There's nothing more indicative of a good Mardi Gras than waking up with glitter in your hair and confetti in your bed. We can't rely on other people showering us with confetti this year so you gotta do the next best thing... shower yourself. Carry around a few pocket confettis to throw at passersby coming to visit your house float or reminisce about past Mardi Gras years by throwing confetti all over your house and finding it in corners for the next 3 months.
New Orleans is an incredibly creative city that won't let a parade cancellation cancel Mardi Gras. Go check out some house floats, share king cake with your pod, cheers champagne at 7am and dress in head-to-toe sparkles. No matter what you do this Mardi Gras season, be sure to celebrate safely.