I had big plans for Mardi Gras this year. For the first time in a long time, I wasn’t encumbered by a heavy work schedule or inclement weather. Man, was I really gonna do it up: long bike rides, meetups with old friends, maybe even a costume! Then the throat tickle started up Saturday afternoon, the coughing Sunday, and by Monday, I felt like death. I managed to rally enough on Tuesday to catch Zulu and Rex, but short of a Lundi Gras Mucinex and a Tuesday morning Bloody Mary, it was the soberest, shortest-lived, most exhausting Carnival I can remember. What’s that old saying? We make plans and God says, “hold my beer.”
No matter. Though it was certainly a buzzkill to be back home, checking emails, and returning to the work of finishing this issue before the sun set Tuesday evening, I was not alone in my self-imposed exile. Much gratitude goes to select members of the ANTIGRAVITY team, who worked right through the holiday, writing, editing, photographing, and even responding to my frequent, sometimes panicked e-nagging. Every year around this time, I try to plan around the chaos, assuming everyone’s productivity will crater starting right around Muses Thursday and lasting well into Ash Wednesday. Imagine my horror, then, as I plotted out this year’s schedule only to find Mardi Gras’ late date barreling down on our usual end-of-month production week like the asteroid from Armageddon. But to my perpetual astonishment and delight, the AG krewe just kept right on chuggin’. If you’re reading this now, we made it and it’s kind of a miracle. (But then again, it always is!)
As with my abandoned party plans, I also got a touch of the FOMO this last week of production, missing out not only on Mardi Gras but TWO great shows by our pals in Hand Grenade Job, as well as Valerie June’s set at the Republic. I’ve been fortunate enough to catch Ms. June everywhere from the Circle Bar to Bumbershoot in Seattle, but no such luck this go around. What’s that other saying? Always the editor, never the bride?
So again, many thanks to all of our contributors who do get out there. It’s through your words and images that I get to live vicariously. I hope these pages have the same effect for you, beloved readers. Hope to see you on the streets… eventually. I’ll be sprung from this ink-stained cage yet! —Dan Fox