How do I get to Bourbon St?
The French Quarter is a treasured part of Louisiana history, but come on, there are so many other things to do in the city than hang out on Bourbon St. For instance, you can check out the historic homes in the Garden District, take a tour of Saint Louis Cemetery, or visit the incredible National WWII Museum. The city has way more to offer than $5 hand grenades (but for real, have at least a few of those, too... they are pretty great). Most locals avoid the throngs of blotto tourists flashing their bare chests for beads in The Quarter altogether, and rarely get any closer than Frenchmen St, which in and of itself is getting a little too on the touristy side.
I love Cajun culture!
Cajun culture is very cool... but Acadiana is an entirely different region of the state. New Orleans is a melting pot of many different cultures, though Cajun is not traditionally one of them. Acadians are the descendants of French Canadians who migrated to Louisiana in the 18th century and settled west of New Orleans along the bottom part of the state. Creoles, on the other hand, are descendants of colonial settlers, usually French and Spanish, although the term applies to people with African and Native American heritage, too.
Where should I eat?
It’s not that we hate that question, exactly. It’s just that the possibilities are endless. If you’re into the classics, Commander’s Palace is always reliably excellent. However, there are a lot of dining options that don’t get a lot of love from tourists looking for "authentic" Louisiana food. There’s more to the city than raw oysters and red beans & rice (though we have those in spades, and they're incredible), and many out-of-towners dismiss recommendations for truly amazing Vietnamese, Italian, or even German food. Their loss!
You don't sound Southern!
There’s no one way to have a Southern accent, and many New Orleans accents are closer to those found in Hoboken than anything from Gone with the Wind.
Voulez vous coucher avec moi?
If every female bartender in the Quarter or the Business District had a dollar for every time some overserved businessman from Duluth slurred Labelle at her, she’d have more cash than all of those dirtbags combined. The men who wrote that song weren’t even from New Orleans, and it’s kind of an offensive riff on the supposed promiscuity of New Orleans women of color, who historically have suffered horrendous discrimination. So yeah, you won't exactly be endearing yourself by chanting "Mocha chocalata ya ya" at a woman of African, Haitian, or Native American heritage.