Offered up in response to an invitation from the editors, who wanted something to “bookend” the series, given that I had written a short primer when the drama premiered. It’s never fair to declaim on what a story is or isn’t when folks are still absorbing it on their own terms and forming their own opinions, so I kept it to a couple elemental disclaimers and a thank-you to the cultural communities in New Orleans. I should also mention that the offer of a first round on me is for New Orleanians only, as they have been gracious about the necessary trespass. If you come up to me with concerns and critiques of the drama in Boston or Barcelona or Baltimore, the first one is definitely on you.
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Four and a half years and 36 hours of television later, I still don’t know what “tu es pocky way” actually means. Or more accurately, I don’t know which to credit among the seven or eight definitions offered us by five or six different Mardi Gras Indians. Our prime consultant on these matters, Big Chief Donald Harrison Jr., assures me that he knows the correct answer and can only provide it to me if I’ve been sewing for a year or so, or conversely, if I’m willing to accept a hatchet in my head for trafficking in sacred Indian secrets without proper authority.