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Memphis, 2006

January 2, 2006. From here on out to be known as THE YEAR I TURN 40.

67 degrees F. In January. Go figure. But very windy. In fact, I probably shouldn't be wearing this short, pleated skirt (with cowboy boots and a jean jacket) as the wind is going to send it flying straight up to my ears at a most inopportune moment.

Not that there's really an opportune moment to have your skirt around your ears. In public.

We drove downtown and ate lunch at Blues City Cafe on Beale Street. Which has some mighty fine Memphis bar-b-que ribs which I highly recommend if you ever find yourself on World Famous Beale Street.

And I might add, Beale Street was pretty spanking clean given that 75,000 people had rung in the new year there just 36 hours earlier.

After lunch, we walked across the street and did a little shopping at A. Schwab. In the family since 1876, Schwab's is the only remaining original business on Beale Street.

It's a general store. Or a merchantile, if you will. It fills three floors with voodoo powders, clerical collars, saucepans and the largest collection of hats in town.

Also, you can buy a book of protection spells and charms...

Right next to the Holy Bible. (I swear I did not move either one of these to pose the photo.)

Then we walked over to the FedEx Forum to watch the #4 Tigers take on #15 Texas.

The scalpers were selling club level seats for $150 a pop.

And lo and behold, the hometeam did get stomped on by the beef cattle. Boo. Sad day in Tigerland.

Perhaps next year, if they're to be expected to play basketball on national television on January 2, Coach Cal should have the whole team over to his house on new year's eve to prevent the overconsumption of alcoholic beverages by student athletes, thus averting complete team implosion in front of a national audience and 18,000 home fans.