Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Fat and Happy on Fat Tuesday
It's fat Tuesday! Now for some of you that aren't from or familiar with the south area let me explain what "Fat Tuesday" is. Enlightenment on the heritage of a great melting pot of people in Louisiana Mardi Gras, which is French for "Fat Tuesday," is a big festival that takes place the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent -- a symbolic period of fasting and penance for many Christians.
The two weeks before "Fat Tuesday" are the most festive. Local carnival organizations called "krewes," the first of which dates to 1857, hold almost nonstop balls and parades. Individuals, given the honor of riding on elaborately decorated floats in the parade, wear theme costumes and throw bead necklaces and other trinkets to spectators. A French phrase that is often used during these festivities is Laissez les bon temps rouler! or "Let the good times roll!"
The melding of many heritages, such as Spanish, French, English, and African American, has created a unique culture in New Orleans -- a place famous for its rich musical tradition, its distinction of being the birthplace of jazz, its food and its colorful Mardi Gras celebrations.
If you ever get the chance, and despite the hurricane damage you must see it and experience it one time. You won't regret it.
posted by El Capitan at 8:47 AM
Germans celebrate a four day festival, Fastnacht, around this time. It starts with Fetter Donnerstag, or Fat Thursday, which would've been last Thursday. Then you have the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Fastnacht ("Fasching") celebration and Rosenmontag (Rose Monday) on Monday before Lent starts.6:47 PM