Bags of Bran

January 8, 2010, 3:08 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

January 7th marks the first day of our tenth year of marriage, by my math anyways. To celebrate, I made a list of nine activities to be accomplished within a thirty-hour window. Weather, traffic, lethargy, onions, trolls, and the wing-flaps of butterflies on the other side of the earth all played their parts in re-arranging our schedule, but here’s what we came up with:

1. Museum of Russian Art, which was a strange mixture of the rich heritage of the Russian people and the hollow shells of Communist propaganda paintings. A sad, yet profound place.

2. Walk around in the MPLS Skyways. Miles and miles of tunnels through buildings in downtown Minneapolis, conveniently located on the second floor. Strength: It’s all indoors, where the howling wind and biting snow cannot harm us. Weakness: Germs and derelicts hang out here waiting for a moment of weakness to do one harm. Here we also ate at Baja Sol, where food is right yummy and the salsa is free.

3. Observed from the observation deck of the Foshay Tower. This was the tallest building in MPLS from 1929 to 1971, but now is somewhat dwarfed by neighboring structures. It is the only observation deck in the city still open to the public, and it’s open-air! When you’re a cold-blooded, scareda-heights weenie like me, it’s a delightful experience that you can admire in the blurry pictures you took years later. You can read about it here among other places.

4. Attend a fitness class at the Y, followed by some hot tubbin’ in the hot tub. Nothing like getting repulsively sweaty and gross for an hour and change.

5. I cook breakfast. I make eggs. They yummy. Eggs and meat.

6. Visit the State Capitol building and slink around like spies, furtively avoiding the guided tour. We were let in by some pitying people who were taking a smoke break  near the legislators’ entry. I was glad because the snow and wind were punishing and if our tax dollars are going to take a smoke break, they rightly oughta let us in the same door that the governor uses!

7. Lunch at Punch. Neapolitan pizza. Chocolate, Strawberry, and Vanilla, cooked for 90 seconds at 800 degrees in a special wood-fired oven surrounded by clay masks that no doubt sprung from one of Dante’s recurring nightmares.

8. Take some pictures from Cherokee Ave. in St. Paul. The pictures all look like a snowman in a blizzard due to the blizzard. What we were TRYING to capture was a picture of the mighty Mississippi winding past downtown St. Paul, but no success.

9. Science Museum of Minnesota. We may become members because this place is worth visiting a couple times a year, if only for lessons concerning propaganda. Amanda took a “global warming” survey handed out by a teenager whose eyes betrayed an evangelical zeal for her task. As mentioned above, it was single digits and blowing snow as fine as beach sand outside, but such faith as is seldom seen was driving this enterprise. No. It may be frigidly cold outside, and we may be having the coldest winter in ten years, but scientists don’t lie unless they’re Republicans. After all, global warming is at least as religious for the zealots who believe CNN as Christianity is to most pew warmers.

There were other events throughout the days which bear mentioning, such as the trip to the lighting store which featured lamps, lighting fixtures, chandeliers, about 15 commission-eager employees, mirrors, stratospheric price tags, ugly carpet, and a clearance sale that brought prices down to a mere 5X what we wanted to pay for a lamp. We went in wanting to buy; we left saying “Right, let’s check Ikea!”


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