Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Because it's Christmas and This Shit is Funny


My gift to you ... the Christmas pictures/ memes/ quotes/ what have you that I've El'ed-oh-el at this holiday season. Enjoy!
 
 
I can't stop laughing at this and it's not even that funny! (Though totally punny!)
 
 


My all-time favorite Christmas movie quote:


My daughter's Santa pic this year. THAT STANK FACE!

And, because I never fail to crack myself up, I present to you this:

(But, first, back story) -- my friend Vanessa "accidentally" decapitated her elf on the shelf. She posted a pic on Facebook. And I'm still cracking myself up at my comment:

Monday, December 15, 2014

Babalu

Overton Square is located in mid-town Memphis and, in the past couple of years, has BLOWN UP.  I was down there for New Years Eve about four or five years ago and it was d-e-a-d dead.  No more.  It's where the Memphis locals go for barhopping (as opposed to the touristy barhopping on Beale Street) and it's just a really fun place.

Babalu opened an Overton Square location a few months ago. As soon as they were open for business, people were lining up for hours to eat there. Literally, hours. I've been wanting to try for a while but also wanted to wait for the hype to die down a little bit. I went last week and even at 8:00 on a Thursday evening, it was packed enough that there was a 20-minute wait for a table for two. On a Thursday!

Luckily, there were a couple open bar stools and we snagged those real quick. 

I didn't sample much of the food. It's mostly tapas style with shared plates and everything looked absolutely delicious. But we were there for more of a snack and a drink. We settled on the guacamole, decided to throw in the extra dollar for bacon and jalapeños. 

They make the guac right at your table. Or, in our case, right at the bar. The guy explained each of the ingredients, effortlessly hulled out the avocados, tossed and smashed everything together and - voilà! - guacamole perfection. 

 
(I didn't think to take a pic until we'd scarfed down half. Oops! And isn't it kinda funny how something that doesn't look all that great can taste so amazing?)

It was de.lish.  The bacon gave it a hint of smoky flavor and the jalapeños were a good idea as it was still super mild -- not sure how mild it would've been without them. It was also a huge - HUGE! - helping of guac. It could've easily fed four. 

I want to go back and try more of the Babalu menu but not just because I liked the guacamole. It was the ambience, mayne. I Love Lucy episodes were projected and played silently on a wall. We saw two birthdays being celebrated -- bottles of Patron were brought out with sparklers in them. The vibe was not-too-young but still hip. Yet not so hip you felt awkward if you're a suburban mom of three who drives an SUV. 

The staff was friendly. We inquired of the bartender about live music in the Square and another waiter who was close by offered suggestions as well. Much later, when we were actually leaving the Square, that particular waiter was standing outside. He recognized us, asked where we went, and how we enjoyed it. Very friendly guys. 

Babalu! I'll be back!

By the way, after we left, we headed next door to Lafayette's Music Room. We paid the $5 cover to hear the band (never did find out their name!) and snagged a table. This was my first visit to Lafayette's and, from what I understand, they're still very new so I'll just say this: the band was good. The people watching was on point. But the service was AWFUL. My friend ordered a Miller Lite, the waiter even came back to double check our order, then still brought out a Bud Light. One mistake is understandable but the waiter was also slow (again, I get it, they were slammed) and, frankly, kind of rude. It was disappointing to have such terrible service and what seemed like it could be a pretty cool place.  I might give it another shot but I just keep thinking if the service was that bad on a Thursday, what's it going to be like on a Saturday night?

Monday, December 8, 2014

Wiseacre Brewery and Taproom

I make anyone who comes to Memphis try Ghost River beer. It's brewed locally, it's a good beer, and they offer it on tap at many local restaurants (and also sell 6-packs at places like Kroger.) It really is "THE" Memphis beer.

But then there's also Wiseacre. It's also brewed locally and I tried the Pilsner a few weeks ago when I was out somewhere that had it on tap. And Wiseacre? They also have a taproom and offer brewery tours and all that. Um, YAY!

I went to the taproom for the first time last Thursday. I played it safe in the beginning and went with Tiny Bomb (the Pilsner) since I knew it and knew I liked it.

My friend ordered the Lord Skylark and I decided to take a sip. It's brewed with Earl Gray tea and tastes AMAZING. I stuck with it for the remainder of the night.

  
Wiseacre brews a variety of beers (I really should've tried more options while I was there!) and tasters are just $1.75 so definitely an affordable way to try the different beers. The staff was super friendly. They have my favorite thing ever: a nice-looking patio. Of course, it's December so it was really too chilly to be out there. We stuck to an inside table. 

Now if there's anything to complain about it's this: they don't serve food. Like, there is literally only beer. There is a food truck outside and I noticed the girl who worked in it bringing in orders to people inside. So they do have that. Buuuut ... it would be nice to know you can order - right from your table - something deep fried, cheesy, and yummy when the beer munchies hit. 

All in all, I'm a fan of Wiseacre. I'll be back. 


(No idea what exactly this is but the bartender gave it to us as a "gift." It was strong -- definitely had rum in it. And check out that smiley face!)

Friday, November 7, 2014

Things We Post on Social Media that Need to Die in a Fire

No. 
 
"Sorry, baby, I was loving you with all I have.  Even though I was also loving Tiffany and Erica and Michelle with all I have too."

I'm going to go ahead and spew some Nicholas Sparks style bullshit: even if they love you with "all they have," if it's not the love you want, crave, or desire then you need to NEXT their ass. Life is too short for mediocre and excuses. 
 
 
Hey, Captain Obvious here!  Just wanted to point out: Christmas isn't the only holiday during December. 

Cheese and rice, this one gets on my nerves. How are you going to get pissy about someone offering you a nice sentiment? If you wanna say Merry Christmas, say it! If they wanna say Happy Holidays, why do you care so much?  Let me reiterate: SOMEONE IS BEING NICE TO YOU.  Getting pissy about Merry Christmas vs. Happy Holidays makes me think of a line from The Best Movie Ever Made: You got a reindeer up your butt?

No.

Just no. 

Can the fear-mongering behind this just go away? My kids recite the pledge every morning - including the words "under God." They also listen to the national anthem and observe a moment of silence.  In their very ethnically diverse public school. 

Yeah, this one is merely fear-mongering that dem ebil liberals are going to take over our God-fearing country.  LET THIS DIE.  PLEASE.
 
This one always gives me the sads when I see it. I LOVE having girlfriends. I NEED girlfriends. What guy friend is going to understand when I'm on my period and need to wash down an order of McDonald's fries with a pint of ice cream while crying about something that happened on Will and Grace thirteen years ago?

Maybe there's less drama in friendships with males (though, really? EYE ROLL. I consider my bff's husband to be a friend and he and I bicker and argue. She and I never do) but we NEED girlfriends. 


There's absolutely nothing new or revolutionary about having a vagina and liking sports. Nada. 
 


Anything that begins with "I'm the type of girl who" or "I'm just a girl who" can die in a fire. Like, yesterday. We get it. You trip over stuff and you laugh at things that happened yesterday. Just like everyone else in the world. 
 
And since I've reached my bitchy quota for a post, I'll leave you with these memes that are free to live forever:


 


Happy weekend!

(And notice: no ebola memes. Still hurts to cough. Didn't even laugh at the Brad/ Carrie "Quarantine" duet the other night because I'm too afraid of karma!)

Monday, October 6, 2014

It's the OKTOBERFEST Time of Year

Saturday morning I received a text from a friend. He had an extra ticket to Oktoberfest at High Cotton Brewing Company and did I want to go? He also threw out phrases like "free t-shirt and beer stein" and "all you can eat and drink." Wait, what? All you can eat? I AM SO THERE, BRO. Don't even have to ask twice.


So we headed downtown where a section of Monroe was roped off. He'd purchased VIP tickets which meant various goodies for us and, of course, that whole unlimited beer and food. They had several varieties of beer on tap and I tried the seasonal, czar (totally by accident and, ugh, I need a barfing emoji because NOT GOOD), and Pilsner. The seasonal was, hands down, the best. Good stuff, my friends. 


The food was also pretty damn good. Brats and slaw. German potato salad. Mmmm. Good stuff. We also "snacked" on smoked ham and soft cheeses later in the afternoon. Y'all. That cheese! I'm going to have dreams about it. I could write love sonnets to it.  Need I go on?


They had these chicks ^^ doing stuff with fire.  A man on stilts.  A kilt or two.  SO MUCH LEIDERHAUSEN (Jacked the spelling, don't even care.). All the hipsters in Memphis.  It was THE BEST in terms of people watching.  We had too much fun.  The festival as a whole was slightly (putting it mildly!) unorganized.  It took us several minutes to get our e-tickets scanned then we weren't given our wrist bands or tokens to get our free shirts.  All in all, though, it was a really fun time.  And we did eventually get those free t-shirts and they were SO SOFT and might just be my favorite t-shirt yet . . .

All in all . . . a damn good time.

(Other weekend highlights: I got carded to see an R-rated movie, Alabama lost, A&M lost (I hate you, Kenny Hill), LSU lost, Katy Perry was on College Game Day and threw corn dogs into the crowd, I explained the corn dog relevance (wish I could find the original post; totally cannot) to at least two people. Both people with penises. I'm a chick who knows more about college football rivalries than they do. Priceless.)

Friday, September 26, 2014

Life After Death

I was not quite 13-years-old back in 1993 when three little boys were found murdered in West Memphis, Arkansas.  I lived in the central part of the state at that time, a little less than three hours from West Memphis.  The crime was all over the Little Rock news.  It was everywhere.  And when Damien Echols, Jason Baldwin, and Jessie Miskelley were arrested and charged with the crime, their pictures were all over the news as well.  The words "satanists" and "sacrifice" were thrown around and every time I looked at a picture of Damien Echols I, at 13-years-old, felt a chill.  He looked like pure evil.  In 1993 and for many - MANY - years beyond I would've told you there was no way anyone other than the West Memphis Three had committed that horrendous crime.

Time has a way of changing things, though.

I was living in Memphis - much closer to West Memphis - in 2011 when the three men entered an Alford Plea (a plea of guilty while maintaining innocence) and, once again, their three faces were splashed all over my local news.  I was 31 at the time, almost twenty years had passed, and I'm not going to lie -- my initial reaction was shock.  And maybe even a little bit of denial.

I've always been -- obsessed is too strong a word but I've definitely had a lot of interest in the case of the West Memphis Three.  I've watched the documentaries, read up on various web sites, and just a few weeks ago I finished Damian Echols' book, Life After Death.  There is now no doubt in my mind that those three boys were arrested, charged, and convicted because of fear-mongering (this was 1993 in Arkansas -- there was definitely a fear culture when it came to satanism and devil worship.)  Jessie Miskelly confessed because he had the mind of a child and he was so mentally beaten and broken by the police that he finally told him what he thought they wanted to hear.  I have no doubt that much is true.

There are a few things I really garnered from the book:

1) I feel a lot of sympathy for Damien Echols.  I really do.  What he went through was horrific and unfair and there's no reason a human should have to go through that.  He lost eighteen years of his life.  All of his young adulthood, he lost because he was falsely accused and convicted of a crime he didn't commit.  That's a heinous miscarriage of justice.  But.  I couldn't help but think that maybe - maybe - being part of the West Memphis Three saved Damien Echols.  He places a lot of blame on a lot of people other than himself in the book but one thing is for sure: this wasn't a kid who was a saint. In many ways, he was the product of his environment and upbringing and that's sad. And, as a kid, that's not really something that was his fault. Who knows if he could've turned things around and been an upstanding citizen. Maybe he could have. On the flip side, though, maybe he would have perpetuated the cycle of his upbringing.  Is it fair that he was falsely accused?  That he lost so many years of his life?  Hell no.  There's no way it's fair.  But maybe . . . maybe it saved Echols from himself?

2) The real victims here, hands down, are the three little boys who were murdered no disputing that.  And while I feel a certain amount of sympathy for both Echols and Jessie Miskelly, the person I really feel sorry for his Jason Baldwin.  Here's the thing: Echols was on death row.  And while his head was certainly on the chopping block, he was not in general population.  He seems to gloss over the time that Baldwin and Miskelly had in prison with a blase "it wasn't that bad" attitude.  Damien Echols was secluded.  Baldwin and Miskelly were not.  They were convicted of a crime against children and placed in general population.  I think we all know what sort of abuse they endured.  The thing is: once they were out of prison -- even when they were IN prison -- Echols was the star.  He has hobnobbed with starts from Johnny Depp to Eddy Vedder.  Meanwhile, Jason Baldwin received all of the abuse with none of the notoriety.  (Same with Jessie Miskelly and, even though I know it was coerced, my sympathy for him is clouded somewhat by that confession.)

3) One thing that really struck out to me is that these boys were targeted because they were different.  They had committed small petty crimes but it was nothing like murder.  Their heads were placed on the chopping block simply because they broke the mold.  And I think the reason this bothers me so much is because I went to school with boys like Echols and Baldwin: boys who were a little different, with long black hair, who wore trench coats and hard rock t-shirts.  None of these boys would have hurt a fly but . . . what if the crimes had been committed in Greenbrier rather than West Memphis?  Would they have been singled out and targeted?  Would they have been called satanists because they had an affinity for black clothing?

4) While I know how backwards it can still be in many ways, I am very protective of my home state.  Don't come talking bad about it!  Especially if you've never lived there!  So it was really hard for me to grasp just how horribly the local law enforcement in a town in my home state bungled this investigation.  They went after boys who were a little different.  They coerced a confession from a young man who had the mind of a child.  They used fear-mongering to try the boys in public before it ever came time for them to see a jury.  It's sad and it's sick and, frankly, I don't blame Echols one bit for hightailing it out of the state and never stepping foot on Arkansas soil again.  The state also dropped the ball with the Alford plea -- yes, it got those innocent men out of prison.  But there will never be justice for those three murdered boys and that's the most grievous miscarriage of justice in this entire story.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The More You Know

That girl had no clue
And she apparently wore white pants
Colleges and universities in this part of the country got back into the swing of things this week.  It makes me a little reminiscent of sixteen years ago (WHAT?!?) when I was heading off to college for the first time.  Man . . . I can't believe how different I am from that 18-year-old girl. I can't believe how many things have happened in my life, how many things have changed, how many things I've learned.

If I could go back in time, here are just a few things I would tell that 18-year-old girl:

1) Wear sunscreen on your face. Always. Don't ever skip it. And maybe even carry a sunscreen stick in your purse. Seriously.
I never EVER thought time would be marching across my forehead so viciously at the age of thirty-four.  A lot of my wrinkles are hereditary (thanks, Dad!) but I also know that if I'd bee a little more indulgent with the sunscreen back in the day then maybe there wouldn't be quite so many.  Teenagers and twenty-somethings: START TAKING CARE OF YOUR FACE NOW!
 
2) Nice guys are hot.
That hottie that's also a douchebag? Yeah, when he's middle aged he's still going to be a douchebag -- just with a beer belly and receding hairline. The guy who is nice will - hopefully - always be nice.  If he's 18 and not a douchebag, then his mama probably raised him right.

3) It's possible to grow to be physically attracted to someone.
Because, again, nice guys? They're hot. Don't ever immediately discount someone just because you don't think you're attracted to them.  An attractive personality is SO MUCH HOTTER than a nice body.

4) Your only "type" should be the guy who makes you laugh.
Having a "type" of person you date is a great way to end up constantly crying into a pint of Ben and Jerry's. 

5) The whole opposites attract thing is overrated.
 You very well may end up attracted to someone completely opposite from you.  But, believe me, things are easier when your partner shares common interests, beliefs, and even if they grew up similarly to you.

6) It really is very possible that many of your beliefs will change so much in the years between 20 and 30.
So watch how closely you defend something you think you believe in -- especially if that belief is bigoted or puts others down. 

7) EXERCISE!
OMG. Freaking work out, okay? 

8) Appreciate your body
I can remember being 19/20 and going to the pool at my apartment complex in SHORTS that covered my bathing suit bottoms.  Why?  Because thunder thighs.  Because stretch marks.  My legs looked better at that age than they ever, ever have.  I would do almost ANYTHING to have those 19-year-old legs back. 
 
9) And also your metabolism.
Look, you're coming up on the years where do much as looking at a piece of chocolate will instantly make you gain five pounds. Eat the food now! While you still can!  (But still work out!)

10) Don't spend your 20's thinking you have to be in a relationship or looking for "The One" and don't ever, ever, EVER settle.
Who CARES if everyone else is getting married? You know what's worse than being in your 30's and never being married? Being in your 30's and trudging through divorce. Spend that decade finding yourself, exploring your interests, TRAVELING, having fun, and figuring our what you really want in "The One."  It will make life at 30 and beyond so much sweeter . . .

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Elena's Taco Shop

I love fish tacos.

Love.

There's a good chance I would choose them for my last meal.  Because, yeah, love.

You know what you can't find in Memphis?  Good fish tacos.  Let's be real . . . you pretty much cannot find any good tacos . . . any good Mexican food . . . in Memphis at all.  I'm just sayin'.

I heard that Elena's Taco Shop in Bartlett had good "southern California" style tacos so I knew I had to give it a try.  I may have a whole lot of Texas in my heart but, I can't lie, I'm more fond of Cali-style when it comes to my Mexican food.  (Don't give up on me, TexMex!  I still love you too!  A fat girl can have two loves!)

A friend and I checked out Elena's on a Tuesday evening.  We were the only people dining in, though several others came in and got their orders to go.  The credit card machine was down which kinda sucked but what can you do?

I ordered the two taco plate and elected to go with fish and carne asada.  My friend chose the same, going with fish and shrimp (also -- it was his first time trying fish tacos.  Whaaaaa?)  The plates also came with rice and beans.

The food was . . . it was good.  It wasn't great. And while they may bill it as "southern California style," I'll be honest in that anything I had in California KICKED THE ASS of the tacos I had at Elena's.  THAT SAID.  The "secret sauce" on the fish taco was finger licking good and the tacos were better than anything I've ever had in Memphis.  For Memphis?  Elena's is the bomb (dot) com.  I didn't eat the rice (not a big rice fan) and the beans were standard for anything you find in a mid-south area "Mexican" restaurant.

My biggest "complaint" is that the only diet drink they had was Diet Coke.  B-yuck.  And, hello, it was a Mexican restaurant!  Where for art thou, Corona?  Dos Equis?

There is no ambiance at all.  None.  The restaurant is located next to a gas station, they take your order at the counter and bring it out to you.  No wait staff was to be seen.  You don't go to a place like this for the atmosphere. 

It wasn't the best CaliMex food I've ever had, that's for sure.  But it was good.  And I'll definitely be trying it again.  Next time I'll check out the carne asada fries!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Nashvegas: The Food

Just so we're clear, you're not going to find any great Nashville culinary discoveries in this post. That's because we ate BAR FOOD the entire time. I love me some bar food but I'm still kinda shaking my head that we didn't really branch out at all! I blame the beer.

Here's a look at what we ate:
 

We waited two hours Thursday night (yes! On a Thursday!) and were starving once we were seated. We ordered appetizers to split -- baked cheese, fried green tomatoes, a ton of fried shit (totally said that on the menu) (no it didn't) (would've been cool if it did), and duck fat tator tots. 

The cheese was amazing. The fried green tomatoes were not the best I've ever had. The ton of fried shit was ... well, it was a ton of fried shit. Obvs it was good. The duck fat tator tots were a mystery to me. Why were they called DUCK FAT? There was nothing duck fat about them!  They were aight though.

All in all - the food was good. I'd even classify it as really good. It was not, however, two hour wait on a Thursday good.

Friday we were in search of a Bloody Mary and a restaurant we didn't have in our hometowns. We ended up at Bar Louie ... and ALL of us have a Bar Louie in town! I had the best Bloody Mary I've ever had in my life so I'm thinking the midtown Memphis Bar Louie location and I may need to get more acquainted. 

As far as food -- we ordered the tempura shrimp, chicken quesadillas, and loaded fries. Once again, to split. The shrimp was good, the sauces that came along with were great. The chicken quesadilla was good but nothing to write home about. The loaded fries were much better than I thought they'd be! I was initially unimpressed when they were brought to our table but they tasted delish. 


That Place We Went Friday Night

I have no idea where exactly we ate Friday night but we sat on the top floor and had views like this:
Nashville party barge, y'all!
We ordered wings and fried shit and I would love to tell you it was delicious but, um, beer. I also spent the entire meal having a textversation in hashtags. 

Yeah. 

In addition to eating, we also did some drinking. Thursday night, we couldn't find a single bar with Blue Moon. They all served Yazoo, a Nashville brewed beer, and while it's good, it's not THAT comparable to Blue Moon. 


I tried Hoegaarden for the first time on Friday at The Pub. They brought me a huge glass of it and it was really good! 
 

I bought these at Kroger but they deserve a mention in this post. I'm a fan of Shiner anyway and the Ruby Redbird? Sooooo good. A great summer beer. Try it.
 
And, on a final Nashville note, we stayed at the Homewood Suites at the airport.  Initially, we wanted to stay downtown but those prices?  Yeah, no, wasn't happening, not if we also wanted to be able to feed our children for the remainder of the month.  The Homewood was very reasonably priced and they offered a shuttle to downtown for just $10 per person round trip (so much cheaper than a cab!)  They also had a meal WITH FREE WINE Monday through Thursday nights.  Um, hello?  In LOVE.  The staff was friendly, the hotel was clean, and it was reasonably priced.  I would definitely recommend if you're ever in Nashvegas!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Nashvegas: The Fun

This was my first trip to Nashville without kids since I was a teenager.

Total lie. I went a few years ago sans kids but the trip consisted of dinner at Applebee's and a Titans game. Totally doesn't count, amiright?

This time I rolled into Nashville Thursday afternoon, left Saturday morning, and that just was not enough time. 

At all. 

Nashville is amazing and fun and I wish I'd had at least a few more days to spend there!

I pinned a lot of stuff I wanted to do while in Nash but, other than hitting up Broadway, I did none of it. 

Pics (and some words) of what we did do:

Shots in Dixie Cups!  #becauseREDNECK
 


We went to dinner (food post coming soon, obviously) Thursday night then to wander around Broadway ... in the rain. 


We found a gift shop and Luke Bryan, spent a few minutes in the Wild Horse Saloon, then headed back to the hotel. 

Before midnight. 

What?!?

It was raining and we'd all traveled earlier in the day.

Also?  That's what your thirties will do to you, mah friends.



Friday morning we were in search of a Bloody Mary. We made our way over to Bar Louie where we started day drinking around 11 am. Hello, Best Friday Ever!
 
Like, for real, I could write a love sonnet about this Bloody Mary
After Bar Louie, we checked out The Pub (I wish we'd waited to eat there because their menu looked amazing!) We were only about a mile from Broadway and had cheap parking so we took off on foot in search of Tootsie's
 

I hear about Tootsie's all the time on the radio and was looking forward to going. The waitress was rude and the beer was warm but I'm going to chalk it up to not being there at the right time. Especially since the lead singer of the downstairs band was a total Hottie McHotterson AND he was singing George Strait. 


We spent the afternoon wandering around Broadway until we found a bar with a Happy Hour and Shiner on tap. Best bar ever!


Friday night we decided to drink all the beer in Tennessee. I mean, I THINK that's what we decided ... 
 
It's definitely what we did . . .

There's a 99% chance that I posted this pic to Facebook and, when asked by a friend later, I told him this guy was a backup singer for Brantley Gilbert.  But only a 99% chance . . .
 
 
 

We had such a great time! We wandered around, made new friends, I talked to everybody, scored some free beers.

 
Totally edited out an obscene gesture That One Guy is making.
Judging from the gesture, I'm sure he likes to cuddle.  I'm jus' sayin'

Seriously, such a fun night.

Even though I (apparently) told some older couple on the shuttle back to the hotel that another couple wanted to have a ménage a trois with them ...

And even though it made Saturday - and the drive home - really REALLY hard ...

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Beale Street Landing and Riverfront Bar & Grill


Beyond Mud Island and catching a Redbirds game, there just is not a whole lot for kids to do in downtown Memphis. My kids love going downtown, though, and so we were all excited when the new Beale Street Landing finally opened up. 

The Landing is pretty controversial here in Memphis -- it took much longer to build than anticipated and cost millions in a time when benefits for public servants are being cut. Obviously, it's kind of sore subject for many at this point. But I wasn't going to let that stand in the way of the kids and I checking it out. We've been twice now and really enjoyed it both times!



I was initially unimpressed. I was expecting a much larger playground/ spray park area. There are two areas of fountains (and one had a slide! The kids loved that) and a large catfish for kids to climb on. Like I said, I was just expecting ... More. Bigger. My main issue is that the fountains are great during the hot and humid months that Memphis is infamous for. But what about the rest of the year? A conventional playground would be perfect in the space for months when it's too cool to play in fountains. 
 

The kids, however, LOVED everything about it. They climbed on Big John the catfish and played in the fountains. Karis especially loved the slide. The kids may have enjoyed it so much because it's something new and different ... Or maybe because it's downtown and they love being downtown ... But, still, they loved it.



Here's a little downside to it:

It's in downtown Memphis. 
Yeah, downtown, woo hoo that's great and fun and all that. But anyone who lives in Memphis will tell you there are reasons we can't have nice things. 
 
The biggest reason? The entitled asswipes who make up a portion of the population of the Bluff City. 

I'm talking about the GROWN ASS ADULTS who come and lay down in Big John the Catfish so that children can't play on him. 

I'm talking about the kind of adults that won't stop their children from acting up, shoving other kids, running and acting wild all over the place. And, yes, these type of people were at Beale Street Landing. The crowd seemed to be a 33/33/33 split -- tourists, "cool" locals, and Memphis asshole locals. I realize all cities probably have assholes but ... just ... if you know Memphis then you know. 

Anyway.

There is also a restaurant -- Riverside Bar and Grill which is located inside a {very cool looking} building with the gift shop -- at the Landing. I obviously had to check it out. 
 

Initially, I was only going to order ice cream (kids) and a beer (me) but I asked the waiter for a menu. They are a newer restaurant so there isn't much on the menu at this point but the Tennessee Caviar caught my eye. I knew we had to try it. 
 

Tennessee caviar is a sort of salsa with black eyed peas and cilantro. It.was.awesome. J and I both loved it.  It was served with a small side of pimento cheese -- easily the best pimento cheese I've ever had in my life. So good! They also had Ghost River (a local beer) on tap. Good stuff.

I wasn't all that impressed with the menu -- it's very, very limited -- but the food I ate was absolutely delicious. I'll definitely be trying it again sometime. 
 

I've only been twice but, at this point, I have to give the Landing two thumbs up. It's nice, fun for the kids, and y'all, that pimento cheese!