NolaVie's Brett Will Taylor delivers his biweekly commentary on the various meanings of 'being nice' in New Orleans.
“When did you become so nice?”
That’s what a Boston friend asked me last week while in New Orleans for a visit. We were driving down North Robertson when the car in front of us came to a stop smack dab in the middle of the street. The man driving the car had stopped in order to have a conversation with a woman who was sitting on her stoop. It was quite clear this conversation was going to occur without the woman leaving her stoop. Or the man leaving his car. Which was now not stopped, but parked, in front of mine.
In many places, the phrase "rhetorical comment" refers to a statement that is not intended to elicit a response. But, of course, New Orleans is not like most places, and New Orleanians are not like most people.
On today's Love NOLA, Brett Will Taylor notes how the rhetorical comments thrown around this city are often seen as invitations to share opinions, stories and, maybe, salvation.
Looking around New Orleans after Mardi Gras has officially been swept from the streets, it's hard to miss the early signs of spring. But the calendar still says February, and these signs may feel a bit premature to some New Orleanians. An acknowledgement that winter (brief as it always is down here) just might be gone completely, means that summer can't be far off.
From the Westbank to New Orleans to Slidell, Carnival officially kicked into high gear these past few days as 19 krewes rolled, celebrating everything from lions and dogs, to Wookies and Greek gods… even Mona Lisa & Moon Pies.
But, now it stops. For nine days. Because the Super Bowl is coming to town. I’d rather have Santa Claus.
New Orleanians often have to justify why they live in their city, perhaps more frequently than other Americans. Whether it's with friends, family or themselves, it's a conversation most residents will have. But perhaps the answer is more universal than we think.