In high school and college, my friends from camp met up in New Orleans to celebrate New Years. We called it Jew Years, because, as I've come to find out in my 29 years on this Earth, Jews NEVER miss an opportunity to use a pun.
We usually went to this legendary bar called Tipitina's, where a band called Rebirth Brass Band serenaded us with Auld Lange Syne while we toasted with the champagne that was included with our $40 ticket.
Last month, Rebirth Brass Band came to Minneapolis. For the first time in my life, I am this mysterious Southerner who knows the difference between gumbo and jambalaya and has experienced Mardi Gras and drive-thru daiquiri stands and knows the best place to park in the French Quarter and follows college football. I felt like it was my duty to bring some Louisiana flair into my friends' lives.
So we made gumbo and biscuits for 15 or so of our friends, and Y drove to the only Popeye's in Minneapolis (can you even imagine -- 3 million people and ONE Popeye's) to pick up the southern staple of fried chicken. There was sweet tea vodka and Abita Strawberry and gooey bread pudding. Just another Thursday for us -- simply EXOTIC to our friends.
After the feast, we headed downtown to the Dakota Jazz Club and ordered sazeracs and french fries (obviously).
The concert started out tame, with a few brave souls standing up and dancing at their tables.
But during the second to last song, something happened. Suddenly, the entire restaurant got up and started dancing, in a way that I'm not sure Dakota Jazz Club is used to. Those in the know started waving their napkins in the air, and every girl in the club made their way on stage.
As we were dancing behind the trombonist, my friend K said, "I wonder if he'll let me play his trombone!"
"You should ask him!" we said, but what we really meant was, "Um, no he will not let you play his several thousand dollar instrument that also happens to be his livelihood."
K tapped the trombonist on the shoulder and made a trombone motion with her hands.
Without hesitation, the guy handed her his trombone.
Louisiana experience: complete.