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Mardi Gras Moments: Swallowing the baby

In the winter of 1972, when I was filing stories on life in London with The Times-Picayune, I decided to report on Carnival celebrations in the English capital.

I had my parents air-freight a king cake and beads across the pond and invited friends over Shrove Tuesday night, after witnessing the traditional pancake race at Westminster School, in the shadow of the Abbey, in the morning, and a stiff-upper-lip tea in the afternoon.

One of the party guests, President Eisenhower's granddaughter Susan, took a bite of the cake, and crunched down on the baby. Three weeks later she called with news that she was pregnant, and asked me to be a godfather to her child.

Years later, when daughter Caroline would ask where she came from, her mother would reply, "I swallowed you at a Mardi Gras party."

-- How's Bayou? columnist Keith Marshall

 

Each year, on the Friday before Mardi Gras, the Royal Sonesta Hotel in the French Quarter enlists the help of celebrity greasers to grease the hotel’s support poles as a means  “to deter overzealous revelers from shimmying up to the coveted balcony space above.” A panel of judges then votes for the best greaser.

-- Ms. Match columnist Katherine Peck

Check out the tradition below.

Courtesy of the Royal Sonesta Hotel.

Courtesy of the Royal Sonesta Hotel

 

Courtesy of the Royal Sonesta Hotel.

Courtesy of the Royal Sonesta Hotel