What Are You Doing On Mardi Gras?

In late January we asked a variety of community members what they were going to be doing for Fat Tuesday. Below are some of the interesting answers we received.

“On Mardi Gras day, my friends and I have an early breakfast at my house and then we walk downtown. We’ve done this for the last two decades. We go rain or shine!” ––Michael Cunningham, PhD, Tulane Professor in Psychology, African & African Diaspora Studies, and Associate Provost for Graduate Studies and Research, Office of Academic Affairs.

“… I won’t be doing anything for Mardi Gras day itself. I ride in the Krewe of Iris, which is the oldest women’s Krewe in New Orleans. Iris parades the Saturday before Mardi Gras. So, once Iris is over, I take it easy the rest of the time, probably reading my cozy mysteries at home! I also go to parades all day this coming Sunday [Jan. 31]. One of the parades this Sunday is the Krewe of Carrollton, of which I was the Queen in 1973. So, I always like to go to the Carrollton parade. My family had kind of a dynasty in Carrollton. My sister was queen before me and I have a number of cousins who have been queens after me. My father was also the King of Carrollton the year before I was Queen. So between going to Carrollton and Iris, that’s enough Mardi Gras for me. […} … my plans for Mardi Gras day are not very interesting! ––Kim E. VanGeffen, PhD, Past President of Louisiana Psychological Association, 2015 Distinguished Psychologist, New Orleans.

“Nothing for me, except maybe participate in the ‘Mardi Gras Bead Recycling Drive.’ [See following note] I have tons of beads left over from previous Mardi Gras parades that I need to get rid of.” ––Addison Sandell, PhD, Psychologist, Natchitoches.

[NATCHITOCHES – Keep Natchitoches Beautiful is getting into the spirit and asking residents to ‘Throw us something mister!’ On Tuesday, February 9th, Keep Natchitoches Beautiful will hold a Mardi Gras Bead Recycling Drive from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Natchitoches Main Street Office located at 781 Front Street.”]

“I’d be happy to give you my Mardi Gras plans as soon as I figure them out!” ––Gerald LaHoste, PhD, Professor, Department of Psychology, University of New Orleans.

“I’m in Israel visiting my mother now and won’t be back ’till later.” ––Denise Sharon, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor at Tulane University School of Medicine, and Clinical Director at Advanced Sleep Center, past President of the Southern Sleep Society.

“I’m seeing clients on Fat Tuesday. Several people have that day off and therefore it makes it easy for them to schedule a session in their otherwise busy routine.” ––Cindy Nardini, MS, LPC, Life Solutions of Alexandria, President’s Award, Louisiana Counseling Association.

“… I may bore your readers to death! My Fat Tuesday likely will consist of catching up on some TV/Netflix, reading a good book, and walking on the treadmill.” ––Donna Thomas, PhD, Department Chair, George and Jean Baldwin Endowed Associate Professor, Department of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston.

“Being born and raised in New Orleans and even now living in Baton Rouge, I’ve been attending Mardi Gras yearly since birth. I have not missed one. My children and I stay at a bed-and-breakfast in uptown New Orleans for the Mardi Gras weekend through Fat Tuesday. Family and friends, many from out of town, meet together for days of food, drink, fun and shenanigans. Each year our crowd seems to get larger. Yes, I am one of those people that are out there by 6 AM. It’s one of the most enjoyable times of the year for me. I am usually dressed in a costume …” [See photo] ––Bryan Gros, PhD, Licensed Psychologist, Past President LPA, Baton Rouge.

“I am afraid that I have no plans for Mardi Gras. It will just be a long weekend at home, probably.” –Rick Stevens, Ph.D., Professor in Psychology, University of Louisiana, Monroe.

“… we are going out of town for Mardi Gras. My wife Catherine just turned 50 this last weekend and we are taking our children to Hawaii for the Mardi Gras break. She is calling this our Hawaii 50 🙂 we usually begin the Mardi Gras break with our children’s Mardi Gras parade at South Downs. Many of the schools are out that week which makes work and childcare a real pain.” –– James Van Hook, III, PhD, ABPP, Licensed Psychologist, Baton Rouge.

“Mark and I are doing what we always do… work. 🙂 So that is rather boring for your readers. We may get a king cake to celebrate with the girls and my mom.” ––Mkay Bonner, PhD, Licensed Industrial-Organizational Psychologist, Bonner Solutions & Services, Monroe.

“I’ll be working. Veterans with PTSD don’t typically participate in Mardi Gras due to large crowds, excessive noise etc. Their hypervigilance is on overload. We will have a Mardi Gras pot luck luncheon for those working in Mental Health that day.” ––Leslie Drew, Clinical Psychologist and PTSD Program Coordinator at Alexandria Veterans Affairs Health Care System, Alexandria.

“My husband (Dr. Michael Apter) and I will be enjoying the festivities from our home in the Fauborg Marigny. On Mardi Gras day, we walk in the Society of Saint Anne parade. Our tribe’s theme is a carefully guarded secret, but here’s a hint: pink leopard print gloves, fake mink, and re-purposed beanie babies. Sounds crazy, but somehow it works!” ––Mitzi Desselles, PhD, Associate Professor, Chester Ellis Endowed Professor, Department of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Louisiana Tech University, Ruston.

“I used to march in Krewe of Cosmic Debris every year, but now I costume up early, catch Zulu and Rex, then head into the Frenchman Street frenzy with the artistic locals for the rest of the crazy evening!”
–– Gail Gillespie, Ph.D., Child and Adolescent Psychologist, Director LPA, CE Chair LPA, New Orleans.

“I’m spending the day with sisters, Lynn and Barbara, who live in Slidell. We are celebrating Lynn’s birthday (Feb 3), and being together as Feb 6th would have been my Dad’s birthday. He passed away last year. We’re going to ‘visit’ Dad at the beautiful Veterans Cemetery in Hammond, then we’re going out to lunch and generally having a ‘sister’ day.” –– Katherine Robison, Ph.D., Child Psychologist, Pelts-Kirkhart & Associates, New Orleans.

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