It’s Mardi Gras. Everybody’s pretty darn liquored up, busy making decisions they’ll regret either tomorrow morning or for the next 18-25 years, depending. Swept away in the magic of the moment, a young swain meets the eye of a lady who catches his fancy. He, being the consummate gentleman, finds the choicest string of beads for her. She, being nothing if not appropriate, shows him that, under her blouse, is…more beads. In fact, her body is composed of beads. He screams. She adds another strand to her night’s count, makes a clattering sound with her strange mouthparts, and soars into the night sky.
So I haven’t been to New Orleans for Mardi Gras yet, but I’m pretty sure it goes something like that.
I’m pretty sure you stick pins in this thing’s leg to make Lady Gaga stumble during her next concert. But I looked it up, and as I understand it, these are given out at Carnivale to make the transition into delerium tremens a little easier. “Oh, is this what the postbrandial hallucinations are like? Okay…okay, I’m ready. I think.”
Point at the doll and show me where the Mardi Gras touched you.
Is this properly a horror? I would argue that yes, absolutely, it is. From the side, it’s just tawdry. If you made a supersaturated solution of tawdry and reduced it, this would, in fact, be the distillate. But it’s more than that. Meet its weirdly insectile gaze. Know fear.
This is the thing that drove Jesus into the desert for 40 days and 40 nights. This is the chittering, alien power that demands parades in its honor, the beast on whose altar the crowds pile doubloons and weirdly garish cakes.
This is the face of Carnivale. Behold it and despair.
Goodwill on South 1st and Slaughter, Austin