Mardi Gras season is upon us. For most of the United States, that doesn’t mean a whole lot. But if you’re one of the millions of visitors who flock to New Orleans each year to take in the sights, sounds and drunken debauchery of Mardi Gras, it means you’re about to party like an asteroid is headed for Earth and the only way to stop it is by getting blackout drunk on a Tuesday.
If you’re planning to be in New Orleans this year, do yourself a favor and make sure you go prepared. New Orleans is the kind of city that can wreck your shit even when the streets aren’t lined with a sea of revelers. Be ready for it, or be a statistic.
Here are five essential purchases for surviving Mardi Gras season…
Victorinox Deluxe Concealed Neck Pouch
It’s a given that you’ll be looking to leave Mardi Gras without having all of your identification and credit cards stolen. The safety tips at the official Mardi Gras site recommend wearing a fanny pack. We say, there is no level of security on Earth that would justify rocking a fanny pack, even if you hide it under a shirt.
Instead opt for a concealable neck pouch. It will safely store all of your important stuff without making you look like your 75-year-old uncle in the process. It will be a little harder to access than a fanny pack would be, but that’s a good thing. After drinking for nine hours straight, who knows what you’ll be reaching into that fanny pack and pulling out a credit card for. The more obstacles between you and that horrible decision, the better. And seeing as how the temperature can fluctuate from anywhere to 30 degrees to 90 degrees during Mardi Gras season, you should be rocking plenty of layers to hide stuff in.
Buy It: www.amazon.com
Here we go again, another item that, under normal circumstances, we wouldn’t recommend. Unless it’s still 2006. Is it? Seriously, we’re asking. They haven’t let us out of the dusty basement we run this site from in at least that long.
Even if it’s not, when you head to Mardi Gras, dress like it is. The only people who love Mardi Gras more than alcoholics and drag queens are petty thieves. Rocking a bulky wallet in your womanly skinny jeans is a great way to get robbed without even knowing it.
Avoid that by having as many available pockets at your disposal as possible. Don’t bring a ton of cash, and make sure you split the cash you do bring out among a few different pockets. Maybe even pin that shit to the inside of the pocket. Seriously, there will be tons of people there hoping to take your cash, at least make it a little more difficult for them.
Buy It: www.oldnavy.com
Reebok Zig Energy Running Shoes
If there’s one thing you should expect to do a lot of during Mardi Gras besides drinking and paying unclean women to sleep with you, it’s walking. You’ll be doing a lot of it. Make sure you wear shoes that are fit for the job. Also, make sure you wear a pair that you won’t mind seeing completely annihilated after a few days. There’s going to be a lot of unpleasantness on the ground, and it will get on your shoes.
With that in mind, we recommend a pair of Reebok Zip Energy. As the ad says, they’re like an energy drink for your feet! And if you’re wearing a pair of kicks this ridiculous looking, you damn sure better be doing a ton of walking or preparing for the NFL Combine. Yes, they’ll be destroyed by the time you board the flight home, but come on, look at those fucking things. Who cares what happens to them?
Buy It: www.reebok.com
Nikon Coolpix L22 12.0MP Digital Camera
If it’s your first time going to Mardi Gras, you’re certainly going to want to take some pictures. If you’re a massively pretentious dickface, you’ll probably want to haul along that $900 journalist quality camera with the attachable zoom lens to do the job. That’s a horrible idea for a couple of reasons. For one, it’s going to be a bitch hauling that thing around all day. Second, the resale value on those things is off the charts. You might get some great shots with it, but it will all be for naught when someone bashes you in the head and snatches it so they can pawn it for drug money.
Instead, bring something compact that you can slip into a pocket. All the better if it’s inexpensive enough that, in the event that it gets stolen, you won’t feel like the stock market just crashed.
The Nikon Coolpix should do the trick. It’s compact, takes 12 megapixel pictures and, at right around $70, it won’t fuck up your retirement plans if you lose it.
Buy It: www.amazon.com
Mardi Gras Party & Parade Guide App
You might head to Mardi Gras with a group of friends, but with huge crowds comes chaos, and that chaos could very easily leave you or one of your friends separated from the rest of the group. Having some kind of contingency plan in place in the event that happens is a must. Reinforcing that plan with the use of readily available technology is a no-brainer.
The Mardi Gras Party & Parade App can help make your Mardi Gras rescue operations a hell of a lot smoother. Not only does it come jam packed with information about parade routes and popular New Orleans destinations, it also allows you to alert other Party App friends instantly as to your whereabouts. It could literally be a lifesaver, provided your drunken friend Jim remembers to check in when his inability to hold his liquor finds him slumped over in some French Quarter dive bar two miles away. And best of all, it’s free!
Itunes App Store – http://bit.ly/MardiGrasprItunesApp
Android App Store – http://bit.ly/MardiGrasprAndroid
Blackberry App Store – http://bit.ly/MardiGrasprBberryApp