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The Great American Road Trip II - 4 - "Did Everyone Here Remember Their Jumper Cables?"

Posted by Sumiki , in Life, The Great American Road Trip May 18 2013 · 49 views

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At 10:00 we left Wausau bound for Minnesota. By 10:40 we made it to Abbotsford, the first city in Wisconsin. The sky was overcast and very cloudy. We passed farms and saw various farm animals as well as various farms and silos. While different, the sameness of the road was tiresome after a while.

We were surprised to see signs warning of Amish buggies, and saw a farm animal pulling a plow, but did not see any horse-and-buggy combinations then. Each small town we passed through on the route featured beautiful and customized signs with the town name and motto. Wisconsin towns are clean and have a lot of pride in themselves.

Trees became a more common sight as the hills began to roll as we headed towards Chippewa Falls. The sky began to darken just a little bit more the farther we went towards Minnesota.

We neared Eau Claire as my mom read to us from her back-seat nest of a massive rivalry. Apparently, Eau Claire and Chippewa Falls had a massive rivalry as they competed for dominance in the state's once-large logging industry. However, when the forests were depleted, the towns both turned to other fields. No word on whether they're still bitter with each other.

Trees in Wisconsin are just starting to bloom, as the long winter has finally passed. A little before noon it began to drizzle as we merged onto Interstate 94 bound for the Twin Cities.

The road became very wet very quickly as trucks churned up mist. We had to pull off the highway and stopped for gas about 30 miles east of the Minnesota border. It was pouring rain at this point. Pulling out of the gas station, we saw an Amish buggy before getting back on I-94.

By 12:30 we were heading out of the storm and the rain had decreased to a steady drizzle and saw a coyote near the road. The rain stopped as we crossed the Mississippi into Minnesota (state #7). We stopped at the welcome center and saw a number of interesting characters, including a man with his shirt half-off crouched over on a picnic table, around 15 Amish men and women, and an anorexic hippy who, my mom testified, busied herself in the bathroom by washing her hair in the sink.

At 1:00 we were in the Twin Cities, crossed the Mississippi again, and tried to find a place we'd seen on TV called Pizzeria Lola. The route there did not seem hard - just go on the expressway until you exit off and go on Xerxes Avenue.

 
What we did not realize is that not only did the exit we were supposed to take nonexistent, but that there seems to be more than one Xerxes Avenue. In our attempts to get to our hotel we ran into this road a number of times, but we did not take it at any point for fear of getting even more desperately lost. At that point, all we wanted to do was get to our hotel.

We had seen what we thought was our hotel from the Interstate into Minneapolis, but that one turned out to be different. Thinking that was the only one, we were confused when our GPS told us to pass it. We pulled off into a Culver's parking lot and called the hotel. After a series of unfortunate misunderstandings, everything went better than expected; our hotel was right where it was supposed to be. Our confusion was due to the fact that it can't be seen from the highway. We then ate at Culver's and sipped on some milkshakes as we went to our hotel.

Heading off at around 6:45 for the stadium of the independent league St. Paul Saints, we took a detour and drove around Macalester College. The outfield fence at their field was incredibly short but also incredibly high, at they built the field into very limited space. It would have been fun to see a game there - my dad called it "arena baseball."

At 7:15 we parked near the stadium in the Lions Club parking lot, where the attendants could not believe that we had driven over 1500 miles from North Carolina. One guy even ran behind the car to check our license plate out. Clearly we need to play up on our accents and throw in more "y'all"s. 

The game was insane, and by insane I of course mean our brand of insane. One of the highest-drawing independent teams in the country, the Saints are co-owned by the grandson of famous baseball owner Bill Veeck, the mind behind such infamous fiascos as pinch-hitting midget Eddie Gaedel, 10-cent beer night, and the infamous Disco Demolition. His grandson carries on a muted version of this bizarre tradition, with such between-inning games as the tire roll race and various contestants trying to put on a frozen t-shirt first.

The Saints also have various characters who are paid to just walk around in-character to entertain (and occasionally harass) fans. One fellow alternated between French chef and train conductor, another was dressed in drag and hobbled around on a walker, and yet another was basically Elvis meets Mr. Sulu. (Oh my.)

One of the most inventive traditions the Saints have is the annual pig mascot, named before Opening Day and announced with smoke signals like they're selecting a new Pope. Previous pig names included Kim Lardashian, Kris Hamphries, and Kevin Bacon.

Their PA announcer wandered around the stadium and I'm still not sure if he was drunk or not. He asked fans dumb questions and made fun of the other team. During the "charge" cheer, he did the "charge" yell in a very small, sleepy voice the first time, then burped the next time and didn't say anything the third. He also told all the fans that he "hoped they all had their jumper cables." (If my dad were a PA announcer, he'd be that guy.)

The food at the stadium was also excellent, as it is one of the only independent teams in the country to have a VP to run the stadium food. We sampled gyros and cheese curds - both of which were fresh and excellent. We left a bit early to get ahead of the large, drunken crowd, but when we left the Saints were beating the New Jersey Jackals 7-2. (The Jackals starter got hammered in the first two innings - he had no control and kept leaving pitches over the plate.)

Tomorrow, I'll be at the Mall of America meeting Paleo at the LEGO store. We'll also go and meet Takuma Nuva later on in the day.


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He's the lord of all strangeness. - Ignika: Nerd of Life

How awesome is Sumiki on a scale of 1 to 10? - Waffles
42. - Black Six

[He's] the king of wierd, the prince of practicality, the duke of durr! - Daiker

Sumiki is magic. - Cholie

Sumiki says, "Do I creeeeeeep you out?" Yes, he does. - Waffles

Sumiki is a nub. He's cool, but he's still a nub. - Ran Yakumo


"What is a Sumiki?" You may ask. But the answer to that is still unknown, even to the Sumiki itself. - Daiker


LISTEN TO SUMIKI - Cholie


Sumiki is best snickerdoodle. - Takuma Nuva


BZPower = Sumiki + McSmeag + B6. And Hahli Husky. - Vorex


What's a Sumi? Does it taste good? - Janus


I would have thought Sumiki wanted to reincarnate as a farm animal. - Kraggh


EAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH - Kakaru


Sumiki: the horse_ebooks of bzp - VampireBohrok


Everything relates to Sumiki. No really, everything. - Daiker


He's in worse mental condition than I thought. - Obsessionist


I'm just wondering why I'm looking at some cat dancing ... I suppose the answer would simply be "Sumiki." - Brickeens


I was like a beast, screaming through the mind of Sumiki at the speed of sound. I.. I wasn't strong enough to stop myself. What I saw was the end of infinity, through which one can see the beginning of time, and I will never be the same. - Portalfig


I imagine the 13th Doctor will be rather like Sumiki, at the rate we're going. - rahkshi guurahk


I was quite sure Sumiki had another set of arms stashed somewhere. - Bfahome


Note to future self: don’t try to predict Sumiki, he’s unpredictable. - Voltex


Let's be honest, I would totally have picked my main man Sumiki to lead my goose-stepping night killers anyway. We tight like that, yo. - Xaeraz


10/10, would Sumiki again. - Bfahome

     

Sumiki
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Every week, I post a new "Tuesday Tablescrap", a small MOC not worthy of a topic, but something to post and inspire me to build more.

10/25/11 - Duplo Flower
11/1/11 - Slender Man and Masky
11/8/11 - Bizarre Black Spaceship
11/15/11 - 2001 Monolith

11/22/11 - My Little Slizer 50
11/29/11 - Punching Bag
12/6/11 - Thunder and Escorts
12/13/11 - Three Concepts
12/20/11 - Kaxium Alternate
12/27/11 - None (Christmas Break)

    

1/3/12 - Daiker
1/10/12 - None
1/17/12 - Volant
1/24/12 - Nidman's Chute Shoop Shop
1/31/12 - None (Brickshelf down)
2/7/12 - None
2/14/12 - Atomic Lime
2/21/12 - Spearhead
2/28/12 - Glatorian Kahi
3/6/12 - Seeker
3/13/12 - Skyscraper
3/20/12 - Microphone
3/27/12 - Toa Vultraz
4/3/12 - Flammenwerferjüngeres
4/10/12 - Umbrella
4/17/12 - Lime Beetle
4/24/12 - Special - Flame Sculpture
5/1/12 - None (BZPower down)
5/8/12 - Purple Ninja
5/15/12 - The Original Sumiki
5/22/12 - 7/24/12 - None
7/31/12 - Tahu
8/7/12 - None (BrickFair)
8/14/12 - Special - Chess Set
8/21/12 - Heavily Armored Wasp
8/28/12 - Spaceship Drill
9/4/12 - Scuba Vehicle
9/11/12 - Orange Guy
9/18/12 - Strange Flying Thing
9/25/12 - Goblet
10/2/12 - None
10/9/12 - Aim .............................. Down
10/16/12 - Gold Bot
10/23/12 - Teal Mech
10/30/12 - Special - Teal Mech (#2)
11/6/12 - Bits and Pieces
11/13/12 - Two Spaceships
11/20/12 - TARDIS Interior
11/27/12 - Christmas Creep
12/4/12 - Toaraga
12/11/12 - Fireplace
12/18/12 - Abstract Duckling
12/25/12 - None (Christmas)
1/1/13 - Black Bot
1/8/13 - 1/22/13 - None
1/29/13 - Handheld Rhotuka Launcher
2/5/13 - 8/6/13 - None
8/13/13 - The Hinklebot
8/20/13 - Special - Post-Apocalyptic Piyufi
8/27/13 - 8/5/14 - None
8/12/14 - Another Chro Original
8/19/14 - Kanohi Zatth

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Formerly known as the Bring Back Teal Club, the Unused Colors Society is a club that serves to promote colors that are little-used or discontinued, such as teal, old purple, or metallic blue.

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Sumiki
Waffles

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If you learn one thing in life, learn this:

You should never, ever question why demons would possess a soda.

just a heads up - Cthulhu would probably eradicate mankind before bringing back Bionicle

so yeah, all I'm saying is, please think twice about this okay

nothing gets democracy flowing like erratic capitalizatION

[the NSA] couldn't say no when I offered them an ostrich farm in exchange

Sumiki -- nice try but we all know Toa Mata Nui stuffs its bra




You have a great understanding of history, but don't forget, war, murder and other poor decisions are also huge characteristics.

Also a long line of really great hats.

Shhh, I'm trying to focus on the negative to justify my dislike of history.

have we mentioned hats

To be fair, I am the one responsible for the invention of Mafia in the 1320s by seventeen bored italians locked in a mine shaft.

It's a long story.

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