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25 Things You Should Know About New Orleans

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You’ve heard of Bourbon Street and are well aware of the Big Easy’s reputation for booze and beads—but here are some tidbits you may not have known.

1. Yes, you can drink in the streets. The city allows for the possession and consumption of alcohol in public areas such as the French Quarter.

2. Hence, most NOLA bars offer to-go cups, and drive-through daiquiri shops exist (though if you’re the driver, you can’t put your straw in the cup).

3. The now-famous Hurricane cocktail—a mix of rum, fruit juice, and syrup or grenadine—was first served at the city’s Pat O’Brien's bar in the 1940s.

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4.
Not surprisingly, the city's official motto is "Laissez les bons temps rouler!"("Let the good times roll!")

5. Even the funerals are a celebration of the life of the recently deceased. Jazz funerals, a distinctly New Orleans tradition, became popular in the African American community in the late 19th century. Historically, the first "line" of a funeral parade consists of loved ones, while a "second line" of more distant well-wishers follows behind. Accompanying brass bands play somber tunes on the way to the grave site, but launch into upbeat melodies once the dead has been properly laid to rest.

6. Most of the tombs in New Orleans are located above ground—not due to the city's high water table, as some claim, but instead as a continuation of an Old World tradition popular in Roman Catholic communities in Spain and France.

7. One of the most visited tombs belongs to Voodoo priestess Marie Laveau. The self-proclaimed oracle, born in 1794, was known for performing voodoo rituals and exorcisms.


8.
Perhaps this is why New Orleans is consistently ranked as one of the spookiest (and "most haunted") cities in America.

9. Speaking of spooky, according to a PhD student at Louisiana State University, the city is home to 50 "real" vampires. While they don't have any supernatural powers, these individuals—of which there are 5000 total in the U.S.—believe they need to "drink blood (human or animal) in order to sustain themselves," The Washington Post reports.

10. Once the capital of the French colony of Louisiana, NOLA remained the capital of the U.S. state until it was moved to Baton Rouge in 1849. The city was once again named the capital for a brief period during Reconstruction.

11. The Battle of New Orleans, which took place between December 24, 1814 and January 8, 1815, was the last major battle of the War of 1812. It took place after the treaty was officially signed, but word hadn’t reached the soldiers.

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12.
Until roughly 1890, NOLA’s City Park was the spot for dueling. Fighters would face off with their opponents—pistol or saber in hand—at the “Duelling Oaks.”

13. Several of the city’s more historic homes have a unique feature: floor-level mirrors, which women once used to ensure their ankles weren’t showing.

14. The city is the birthplace of jazz—and famed trumpet virtuoso Louis Armstrong.

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15.
Reese Witherspoon and Ellen DeGeneres were also born there, while Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Sandra Bullock, Lil Wayne, and Solange Knowles all call The Big Easy home. (Well, at least the site of one of their homes.)

16. The first U.S. opera was staged in New Orleans in 1796—a production of Ernest Grétry’s Silvain.

17. Among the (many) local delicacies: beignets (named the Louisiana state doughnut in 1986), alligator, and turtle soup.

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18.
It’s got a lot of history. According to the National Register, The Crescent City has 20 historic districts—more than any other city in the United States.

19. And a lot of water. Until the mid-20th century, New Orleans had more miles of canals (both above and below ground) than Venice, Italy.

20. There’s a big bridge, too. At 23.83 miles, Lake Ponchartrain Causeway is the longest continuous bridge over water in the world.

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21.
Sorry Vegas: the modern version of poker was invented in New Orleans. It's where craps first took off, too.

22. In 1815, New Orleans dentist Levi Spear invented dental floss.

23. There’s more lingo to master than "Who Dat?", the chant of the New Orleans Saints football team. When residents ask “Where y’at?” they’re asking about your state of mind, not your physical location.

24. The Superdome—where those Saints play—is the largest fixed domed structure in the world. Each seat inside is a different color than the one next to it, creating the illusion that the dome is fuller than it is.

25. The city can’t actually take credit for the birth of Mardi Gras. The annual celebration originated in Mobile, Alabama in 1703.

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New Pop Chart Lab Poster Is a Boozy Blueprint For Making Classic Cocktails
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Pop Chart Lab's posters combine design with data, and their latest offering—a full breakdown of the ingredients in 60 classic cocktails—is no exception. From the exact ratio of gin and tonic that should go into a G & T (2 ounces and 4 ounces, respectively) to the garnishes you'll need to make a proper Tom Collins (a maraschino cherry and a lemon twist), the 3-foot-by-2-foot "Constitutions of Classic Cocktails" artwork teaches mixology basics you'd typically learn in bartending school, sans tuition fee.

In addition to mainstays like the Negroni and the Whiskey Sour, the poster also includes relatively obscure drinks (ever heard of the Golden Dawn, or the Journalist?), which you can attempt after drinking your way through your favorite concoctions. Before you know it, you'll be explaining to your friends the intricacies of why you should stir martinis instead of shaking them (sorry, James Bond), or the difference between a highball and a Collins glass. Bottoms up!

"Constitutions of Classic Cocktails" costs $37, and is currently available for pre-order. Shipping begins on Friday, October 20, 2017. (To see the poster's details up close, visit Pop Chart Lab's website and click on the diagram.)

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Attention Beer Lovers: A London Brewery Is Hiring a Professional Taste-Tester
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Beer lovers aren’t given many chances to discuss their passion for imbibing at job interviews. But a new open position at London's Meantime Brewing Company lists that expertise as one of the top qualifications. As Fortune reports, the brewery is seeking a professional beer taster to help improve its products.

The brewery’s part-time employee will “join the panel brewers as they taste, discuss, and pass opinion on a range of different beers,” according to the job listing on LinkedIn. On top of steady access to free booze three hours a week, the taster will receive a competitive salary “with beer benefits.” As the description reads: “Yes, this could just be the best job in the world.”

Meantime isn’t just considering any casual beer drinker for the role. Their ideal candidate will have a precise palate that can distinguish “chocolate malt from dark malt” and “Fuggles from Cascade hops.” They will also have an understanding of global consumer markets, a functioning knowledge of English, and an extensive beer vocabulary. The brewery is located in the London borough of Greenwich, so applicants who aren’t local should be willing to relocate.

Founded in 1999, the Meantime Brewing Company made its name on the beer scene with signature beverages like their London Lager, London Pale Ale, and Yakima Red. If you’re interested in joining the team, post 30 words on your LinkedIn profile explaining why you deserve the gig, along with any photos or videos that may help your case, with the hashtag #pickmemeantime. The company will narrow down the pool to three candidates for an in-person beer tasting before deciding their top pick. Meanwhile, you can prepare for the job by brushing up on your beer facts.

[h/t Fortune]

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