Don’t say hi to me

* make us famous

A popular complaint amongst my fellow native New Orleanians is the unfriendly attitude displayed by the most recent influx of carpetbaggers and Californicators who have adopted our fair city as their new home.  (for the sake of clarity I will refer to them from this point on as the”nouveau locals” or simply “noovies” ) 

It seems that a passing “hello’”or gesture of acknowledgement in any form is either ignored or frowned upon by these nouveau locals who apparently take offense at the Southern hospitality that is our humble heritage. 

I, for one, could not give less of a fuck. They certainly won’t be getting a friendly hello from me. Truth be told, the only acknowledgement I require from the nouvies is that they give me wide berth as I pass them on the street. It is not a feeling of acceptance that I wish to project, but rather one of not being welcome.

When I see nouvies walking down St. Claude at 2 a.m. staring at their iphones, I take it as a sign that they are feeling way too safe in their new environment. This lack of fear gives them the confidence to behave like the entitled twats they are. They revert to type and start acting like they own the place. Soon they WILL own the place. It is then that the funky vibe, the “anything goes” attitude of New Orleans will be replaced by the uptight rat race mentality that the nouvies bring with them.

It crushes my spirit when I see friends I grew up with get misty eyed as they bemoan the passing of an era, an idyllic time when life was like a Norman Rockwell painting and everyone basked in the glow of mutual love and friendly hellos, a mythical New Orleans from bygone days that existed before the nouvies came. 

It is not commiseration that inspires my feelings of hopelessness. Rather it is disillusionment with my fellow natives, as I am smacked upside the head by the realization that the crazy fearless badasses I grew up with have become a bunch of whiny bitches. An army of angry armchair antagonizers who express their hatred by writing histrionic diatribes on Facebook.

I do not remember this New Orleans that they pine for. I remember a New Orleans that was mocked by the rest of the country for its backwards, savage ways. I remember a belligerent New Orleans. A New Orleans that was proud of its mythopoeic retardedness. I remember a New Orleans that was the murder capital of the USA. A New Orleans where nobody wanted to raise their kids because it was such a dangerous place. A New Orleans where gallows humor kept us sane. Where the awareness that one could die at any second made us live as hard as we could.

This is the New Orleans I am nostalgic for. It is the feral grin that I recognize as a sign of solidarity, not the casual pleasantries of sheltered shitheads, whose display of ease in this environment I take as an insult and encroachment upon my natural habitat. So take note nouvies- there are many of us born and raised here who don’t want you to say hello as you pass us on the street.

All we want is to see you get the fuck out of our town.