New Orleans: it's America's top city for fat, well-endowed, smelly-but-sanguine zombiefolks, according to lists in a number of online and print publications, as well as the renowned research institution Condomania. And now, New Orleans is number one in a Travel + Leisure readers poll of America's Dirtiest Cities. I guess those travelers/men and ladies of leisure noticed the puddles of mysterious liquid, discarded Lucky Dogs, used condoms, tire-flattened Hand Grenade cups, out-of-season Carnival beads and the other detritus littering the French Quarter.
The write-up treats our placement in the poll delicately, saying "both tourists and Mother Nature have sometimes been hard on the Crescent City" and pointing out that readers nonetheless "embraced the city’s fun-loving spirit, ranking New Orleans first for its nightlife and eclectic people-watching." Gawker, however, was — as expected — a bit more snarky:
Poor New Orleans, there is not enough Febreeze in the world to kill the scent of drunk sorority girls pissing and vomiting out their last 4 Hurricanes on the sidewalk. Even if that is only one week a year. There's also the matter of how much HBO's Nola-centric show Treme stinks, which probably isn't helping. (I kid, Treme is my favorite show in which nothing happens.)
The other cities in the top five include Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Memphis and New York — but they have comprehensive citywide recycling programs, don't allow go-cups, and don't have Carnival or Bourbon Street mixed drinks that require their own signature plastic vessels or come with toys. So what's their excuse?