Saturday, September 8, 2007

Beale Street

My buddy Tracy Wynkoop decided that our small circle of friends should get together every year for a road trip. He calls our group “The Manly Men”. Our first trip a couple of years ago just happened to coincide with his 50th birthday and my being thrown out of the house by my ex.

I was just getting off meds for depression and had a new girlfriend named Valerie.

Now I was on a snow capped mountain in the Rockies sitting in 100 degrees of spring fed champagne bubbles going up my butt, looking out at vast panoramic vistas. I was surrounded by my best friends. Life was good again!

One afternoon I decided to check my phone for messages. I found a spot on the mountain that actually had reception. There was a nice message from Valerie and another that I could barely make out.

It was from an acquaintance of mine from my I.T. days at Harrah's Casino named Jaime. She was calling from Memphis and the background noise made it almost impossible to hear her.

She was on Beale in the middle of a street party. She said she had to call because she knew I must have been there before. I think she believes I’ve been to every street party in the country. ---- Maybe I have. I never got around to calling her back, but I did have a story for her.

In the early to mid 90s I often went to a small airport about an hour from Memphis. We would camp out for the weekend and skydive. At night we would go into town to party.

As I’ve already stated I can’t really smoke dope but I was talked into it. Anyone who knows me knows when I’m intoxicated I’m not exactly shy or even polite for that matter.

We were on Beale Street and it was crowded. There was a band outside at the W.C. Handy statue. I bumped into someone who said, “Damn, it’s my bartender from St. Louis”.

Someone suggested we visit the police museum. We were amazed at all the drug paraphernalia that had been confiscated. I was loud and obnoxious. There was a window inside that looked through to what I thought was a police station exhibit. I couldn’t help but laugh out loud at the actor portraying a cop. To my stoned horror I was told we were actually in a functioning police station. My friends pulled me out of there before I got us all busted.

I had a lot adventures down there and I’m sure I’ll get around to some of them eventually.

As an afterthought------ It's hard to find time to make an entry let alone check for flow and continuity. As my friend Sharon keeps telling me, I should mention the music I was listening to at the time. It is important for context.

In the early 90s I was listening to Nina Simone, Kate Bush, Daniel Lanois, XTC, The Cure, Riders in the Sky, John Lee Hooker and others.

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