FUN! That’s what. Okay, maybe that needs a little more explanation. Fun and New Orleans and burgers. Clear yet? No? Okay, here’s the scoop.
Last week, I was at Heather Graham’s Writers For New Orleans Conference. It was fabulous, as was the company I was keeping – Cassie Ryan, Isabella Clayton, and Cheyenne McCray. Wow…could you ask for a more fun group? I think not.
Well, after several days of sampling the local food, primarily seafood, we all agreed that we were dying for a good, old hamburger. So we talked to Marvin – my favorite bartender of the trip – and he recommended a little bar and burger joint in the Quarter called Yo Mamma’s. Marvin never steered me wrong the entire trip, so we took his advice and headed out in search of a fabulous burger.
Yo Mamma’s turned out to be your basic bar…just a good old neighborhood type bar that served the locals and some wonderful burgers. But where the real fun came in was when the waitress took our orders. She took Isabella’s first, asking what name she wanted it under. Isabella responded, “Princess”. The waitress raised one eyebrow and gave a half grin, but it didn’t really throw her much as she moved on down the line. Cassie gave the name “Goddess” and Chey gave the name, “Empress”. Pretty standard fare in our worlds, but the waitress was starting to shake her head by about the third fiction handle. I decided it was up to me to throw in a bit of reality. So when it came my turn to give a name, I said, “Bitch Number 1”…a nickname once given to me by my sister who was careful to make it clear that I got the position as Number 1 only because I was older and not because I was better.
The waitress left our table laughing and shaking her head. She turned the order in to the kitchen and then proceeded to tell the rest of the patrons sitting at the bar about our pet names. This started a whole round of name calling…mostly “Bitch”…to which I promptly answered, which drew a round of laughter. We had quite a bit of fun with it, but it turned really funny when the cook stepped out of the kitchen and quietly whispered to the bartender. She turned toward our table and called out, “Who’s the Bitch?” I raised my hand and answered, “I am.” Which sent the cook scurrying back toward the kitchen with a red face.
Finally deciding we were harmless, he then confessed that he had been trying to figure out how to ask “who’s the Bitch that ordered the burger with the mushrooms on it?” The entire bar had a good time with that one.
So our little field trip yielded a fun bar, a cook and a waitress with a sense of humor, a shared laugh with some locals, a bit of pretend (for everyone but me), and a really good burger. What’s not to love? Marvin certainly hit a home run with his recommendation on Yo Mamma’s. If you’re ever in New Orleans, look it up when you get tired of crawfish and jumbalaya…and then stop by the Hotel Monteleone and say “Hi” to Marvin…he’ll be the handsome man serving libations in the Carousel Bar. Oh, and be sure to ask the girls the next time you see them about Angel – the woman with the fangs we met in this strange bar that they agreed to meet in this strange city for a tour through a scary and haunted graveyard…what the hell were they thinking?
Well, that’s my story and I’m gonna stick with it. Hang on tight now, ‘cuz we’re gonna go real, real fast!