Thursday, February 5, 2015

Way better than dinner for two (served by a waiter who hates you)

I can say that with authority, because I have been a server my entire adult life, and Valentine's Day is right up there with Mother's Day and New Year's Eve - while there may be some "normal" people who dine out on these "Special Occasions" (read: if you need a special reason to dine out, your waiter also hates you) the majority are people who are very far removed from understanding the social graces of this world (read: tipping, and treating wait staff like human beings). So, if you are looking for something to do the weekend of Valentine's Day, that doesn't involve a "romantic" table for two approximately one foot away from another couple - may I suggest Winnipeg Mardi Gras!

Running on both Friday February 13th and Saturday February 14th at the Winnipeg Convention Centre, Winnipeg Mardi Gras will be a great chance to shake off winter and maybe meet that special someone (Saturday allows for singles to "wear their heart on their sleeve" to make it easier to spot fellow singletons). If you're already in a relationship perhaps Friday evening's Zombie theme is more up your alley - I will let you infer what you will about couples and zombies.... ;)

I was lucky enough to get invited to the media preview of this event, and let me tell ya, if for some reason you're immune to wanting to get up and dance when you hear Zydeco music (Dwayne Dopsie and The Zydeco Hellraisers will be there again this year) then you should go just for the food. Oh... the food. I am inept and can't seem to get the menu to show up in this post, so click here to be taken straight to the menu. I think the Louisiana Style Shrimp with Pasta was my favourite, but whatever you do, be sure to leave room for the Basin St. Pudding - absolutely fantastic. I left the event with almost a full-term food baby!

So while I imagine going to the real thing down in New Orleans is also probably a lot of fun, Winnipeg Mardi Gras doesn't involve a plane ride (with a connection - shudder), over inflated hotel prices (as of writing this post you could stay at the Ft. Garry on Friday night for $111 or the Delta, right across the street for $139 on Saturday) or the smell of pee and vomit that permeates Bourbon St. on most weekends, never mind during Mardi Gras (yeah, the tourist brochures never mention that part...)

As for what you do to get your beads? Well, I'll leave that up to you ;)

*Yes, I got to go to the media event and they let me eat delicious food for free, but I wouldn't say nice things about it if I didn't mean it. If you don't believe me, invite me to try your horrible food for free. That said, I would probably stick to the wise words spoken by kindergarten teachers everywhere - "If you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all"