“You ever seen a poor man with belly? All bloated out from hunger, but lookin’ as fat as a man living on roast suckling pig?” Colton Greene wasn’t a man to mince his words, there was too much to be done and no time to waste on silly etiquette games.
“That’s you.” He pointed out at the mixed association of haughty society types and hard-nosed businessmen. “And I don’t mean the fat one with the pig.”
A wave of grumbles and gasps swept through the audience. One society man’d face went so red, Colton thought he was having an embolism.
“Get mad at me, I don’t care. I spent most of my adult life in the Army. I’m used to people shooting at me. I can deal with it. But, it doesn’t change the facts of the matter. This city is hovering on the precipice of oblivion, and you all just sit around, expecting it to fix itself. It won’t.”
He paused, weighing what to say next.
“You need something big, something spectacular, something that might as well be magic for all anyone knows. You need a Carnival. You need Mardi Gras. And you need to do it together.”
Colton Greene was an former army officer that settled in Memphis after the Civil War, during the rough years of Yellow Fever. He realized that if something wasn’t done to bolster the city’s spirits and increase commerce, then everything was likely to fall apart, including his recently founded insurance business. His solution? Unite all of the disparate factions of the city with a cause everyone could get behind – the giant party called Carnival.