Happy Change of Venue Friday.

Last week, I promised to provide more photos from my trip to New Orleans (for an annual meeting of Bar folk).

Here, then, in no particular order, are my snaps from the trip (the one with the woman in costume holding a bowling pin, I must admit, is not mine but came my way courtesy of the New Orleans Bar Association, where they know how to host lawyer events!).

Have a wonderful weekend.

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Yesterday, I promised that Change of Venue Friday here on the blog would include photos from New Orleans. Well, that promise is a work in progress.

I was in the Crescent City to attend the midyear meeting of the National Association of Bar Executives. The seminars and the people were great. Unfortunately, it ended with a sudden flight change to avoid Denver and its first major snowstorm of the year. The storm reached “blizzard conditions,” so I’m glad I re-routed through LAX; unfortunately, that meant leaving early from one of the most entertaining cities in the country.

Given the jet-lag, combined with the dexterity and time required to extract many photos off a cell phone (and save and res them down for web), I’m taking a more casual approach to my Friday. The bulk of the pics will be posted next week.

But a promise is a promise. So here are a few photos from The Big Easy. I miss it already.

Have a great weekend.

Former Fifth Circuit Judge John Minor Wisdom

Organizers of the midyear meeting of the National Association of Bar Executives devised a nefarious plan to keep butts in the seats inside a slew of ordinary Marriott conference rooms—not an easy thing to achieve in a distraction-filled city like New Orleans.

What was their devious scheme? Create a broad swath of great sessions that actually gives music and Blues and oysters and Bourbon Street and beignets a run for their money. Oh well, there’s always the evening.

I’ll be following up with some content about what I gleaned from the presenters. (And on Change of Venue Friday, I plan to provide a selection of photos from the trip. Don’t worry— they’re not from the conference rooms!).

Today, though, I point you one more time to the Times-Picayune and its commitment to tell New Orleans stories on the Crescent City’s 175th birthday.

I mentioned some of those stories on Tuesday. Today, though, I point you to some of the more legal-ish of their offerings. But don’t be dissuaded from reading—these are very interesting!

Here, then, is a brief description of some stories I found intriguing, with a link to read the whole story. (This is just a small sample of what the newspaper covered—search around for more!):

Judge John Minor Wisdom was part of a crucial four-vote bloc that handed down a number of landmark civil rights decisions in the 1960s.

Ruby Bridges and three other 6-year-old girls integrated New Orleans public schools in November 1960.

Lee Harvey Oswald was shot dead, right under the nose of the Dallas police, 2 days after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Carlos Marcello was the Mafia boss of New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.

Louisiana Purchase: The Americas once were the battleground for three European powers: France, Spain and Great Britain.

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This week, I will be attending a conference in New Orleans. There, the National Association of Bar Executives gathers to share best practices and find new ways to do recurring things. You can read more about the conference and its diverse sessions here.

And yes, I assume I’ll fit in the time to have a few oysters and listen to some Blues (after each day’s sessions, of course!).

I wrote before about The Big Easy, a city that provides unique experiences at every turn. And later in the week, I’ll write a few words about the legal and other topics covered at the NABE conference.

Today, though, you read this as I sail through the skies via Southwest, first to Houston and then to New Orleans. So to prepare both of us Blues Travelers, let me point you to a few NOLA stories that caught my eye. Each comes from the delightfully titled Times-Picayune, and is part of a series the newspaper did on the 175th birthday of the Crescent City.

The paper did a remarkable job of telling multiple tales. On Thursday, I’ll pass on some about judges and laws. But today? How about dunces?

That’s right. The paper wisely covered the topic of the phenomenal New Orleans novel A Confederacy of Dunces, written by John Kennedy Toole. Haven’t yet read the book that won the Pulitzer Prize in 1981? Then start here with some well-written background.

Cafe du Monde

And let’s end with a sweet, sweet part of New Orleans: the beignet. This fried treat is perhaps most famously served at the city’s Café du Monde. As the Times-Picayune reporter noted humorously:

“[Café du Monde] now has a number of other locations in the New Orleans area, and in addition to Cafe du Monde and Morning Call, a few other places feature beignets on the menu. One is at Louis Armstrong International Airport. Twice during the mail-borne anthrax scare of 2001, the airport’s hazmat team was called out to inspect a powdery residue reported by travelers. Both times that white residue proved to be leftover powdered sugar from someone’s beignet.”

Read the whole story here. And I’ll see you tomorrow.

On Friday, I will be winging my way across the country. And no, I’m pleased to report, my trip has nothing to do with work.

My two daughters and I will be on a Southwest flight (minus sunroof, we hope) to New Orleans. There, we will meet my wife, who flew out the day before.

Kathy is participating in her profession’s annual conference.

But the rest of us chickens? We will be enjoying the sights, sounds and tastes of the Big Easy. I commit to overindulge on your behalf.

There is plenty to do in the city. But for this Change of Venue Friday, here is a link to the town’s madcap list of seemingly endless music festivals. While we are there this weekend, bopping alongside the Mississippi, the “French Quarter Festival” will be raging.

Coffee and beignets, anyone?

Have a magnifique weekend.