Monday update: A smelly cat problem, Downtown Night at the Westin, smoking ordinance

– The Memphis City Council has passed possibly the most unenforceable ordinance ever. If your cat is caught defecating in someone else’s yard, you can be fined $50. Now, how in the world is this going to work? If cops have to witness panhandlers beg Downtown to write them citations, then I’m assuming that a cop would have to see the cat defecate to be able to cite the owner. But, even if the cop did see it, how would he know whether the cat is doing its business in its own yard, or someone else’s?

Here’s a video of a cat who is in compliance with the new city ordinance:

Hmmm… I can just imagine little old ladies getting out their video cameras, trying to get evidence of Fluffy from next door in violation of the ordinance. Seems to me that even if a citation were issued and the matter got to court, a judge would have a good laugh and dismiss it.

Perhaps the City of Memphis should begin a PR campaign to promote awareness of the new ordinance. They could contact the producers of Friends and see if they can license Phoebe’s song “Smelly Cat” to use in commercials here.

– It’s the last Monday of the month, which means it’s once again time for “Elevate Your Senses,” a night for Downtowners to get to know one another, enjoy complimentary appetizers, and listen to Di Anne Price tickle the ivories in the Westin’s lobby bar. In addition to the good food, drink and conversation, you can register to win a dinner for two at the Daily Grill. Don’t miss it – it’s happening right after work tonight, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.

– This weekend I’ve been reading up about the new smoking law scheduled to go into enforcement October 1. There’s been a lot of discussion among my friends as to whether smoking will continue to be allowed at some of my favorite bars. After reading the information about the smoking law on the State of Tennessee’s website, it’s not looking good for my friends who smoke.

Restaurants and bars who only admit people over 21 are eligible for an exemption – but, they have to be 21 and over ALL THE TIME. They can’t switch to 21-up at some point in the evening to allow smokers to light up from then on. Most of my hangouts Downtown do allow kids during the day, up until 8 or 9 PM. They’re going to have a decision to make. This could benefit some of Downtown’s dive bars, like Earnestine & Hazel’s and the Black Diamond, which as far as I know never allow people under the legal drinking age.

Then, of course, there’s my favorite bar Downtown, which has big garage windows. There’s been a lot of speculation whether those windows would qualify them for an exemption. But, reading the ordinance, it doesn’t look like it – the ordinance mentions exemptions for garage type DOORS, when all said doors are open. People don’t enter the bar through the garage windows – there’s a separate door for that. It’s probably open to some interpretation but it doesn’t look good for people who want to smoke there.

Gonna be real interesting to see how the bar/restaurant landscape changes come October 1.