sioux falls

I went to Sioux Falls this weekend for the University of Sioux Falls College's 125th Anniversary Celebration and All-Class Reunion. I didn't see a lot of people my age, but I was glad to see the ones I did. There were a lot of my parents' friends there, though. I guess when you've got nothing better to do... hee!

Friday night, I visited my brother and his family. My nephew has a bucket of dried-out frogs.
My niece likes to mug for the camera, too.
Later, I met MinusCar Mike at Monks House of Ale Repute (no website?!?) for a few chilled Belgian beverages. Great place! We stayed out late.

Yesterday, I went to Bob Young Field at the Sanford Health Sports Complex to watch the homecoming football game. USFC spanked Briar Cliff 42-0. I don't think they need any of my money, do you?
Look at this hot dog they served me. If you look really closely, you can see the pink color that rubbed off the dog onto the bun. It tasted about as good as it looks.
Last night I attended the variety show. I enjoyed it, despite the plethora of acts consisting of someone singing a very slow song.

Afterward, I headed back to Monks House of Ale Repute with Steve, my old radio show partner. We had a good visit and stayed quite late.

Today, I went to my brother's house for lunch and Vikings (ugly win...).
Now I'm home.




Kassie and I went to Duluth.
Kassie had to work. I did not. We went out last night.
We saw Allison at Fitger's.

Today I wandered around a little bit. I gave the Indians some of my money. I bought some chocolate, some CDs, and then I went to the Great Lakes Aquarium.
I saw a bunch of fish at the aquarium. Yes, those are piranhas below. They aren't in the Great Lakes (yet), but there was quite a bit about the Amazon, too.

My favorite part of the whole place was the model of the Great Lakes. There are a bunch of toy boats and you can float them to the Atlantic Ocean by piloting them across the lakes and maneuvering through locks. It was cool. After I took my ship to the Atlantic (first photo), I took some time for an historical reenactment (last two photos).
Here, my ship is about to go over Niagara Falls.
Hey Captain! The locks are to your right!



the last

Today I finished the last of the weekends I have to work for the Instruction Center this year. I was route training this weekend.

One of my students braked hard and put another student on the floor of the bus today. She was hurt, but I think she'll be OK. We had to fill out paperwork. I probably haven't heard the last of that.

I'm glad to be done. I missed a few things in the last three weekends that I would have liked to do.

Last week we went camping at Cascade River State Park. I had to wait to go up on Sunday evening because I had to work. Kassie was already there. But I stayed a bit later than she did because I had Monday through Friday off.

The firewood came in onion bags. Say no to drugs! (?)The falls closest to the campground. Jeff and I ventured out in the rain one night
to make sure no one turned them off at night. They were still falling.
Adventure Dog!The view from very near the top of Lookout Mountain.The view from Lookout Mountain.

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did you miss me?

Probably not, I guess, but here's where I was.



the baron

Kassie and I went to History Theatre Friday night to see The Baron. The play was excellent! It was a great way to top off my vacation. Jim Raschke played his modern self and the Baron von Raschke. Four other actors played the younger Raschke, his family, and a host of other wrestlers and miscellaneous characters.

I think I really got into wrestling when I was in 7th grade. The Baron von Raschke was nearing the end of his career. He had always been one of the bad guys, but I remember cheering for him, so I think things may have changed by then. He was my favorite.

The Grunt

Just about that time, Vince McMahon, Jr. purchased the WWF from his father and, against his father's wishes, began to change the way the wrestling business was run. He completely disregarded the territory system, gobbling up smaller wrestling companies and creating the huge entertainment behemoth now known as the WWE.

The Twin Cities were an AWA town. I remember when the WWF first reared its ugly head around here. My friends with cable loved it. We didn't have cable, but I bought a lot of wrestling magazines so I knew what was going on. And I watched it at my friends' houses on occasion. It really bothered me when Hulk Hogan won the WWF Championship. How, I wondered, could the Hulkster win the WWF when he could never beat Nick Bockwinkel in the AWA? What I didn't know was that when McMahon lured Hogan to the WWF from the AWA, it was probably the biggest event in the WWF's history. From that point, the fortunes of the AWA and the WWF went in completely opposite directions.

At the same time, I was getting into (post-)punk music and I was becoming very suspicious of flashy, glitzy, showy entertainment. As the AWA deteriorated and the WWF became the only option, I lost interest in wrestling.

In the play, Raschke gets a chance to give his perspective on the rise of the WWF, its destruction of the business and the steroid freaks that we call wrestlers. It clearly makes him sad and it made me kind of sad, too. As a kid, I didn't have any idea how the wrestling business was run. I just knew that I wasn't too excited about the WWF and I'm sort of surprised that there was much more to the story than I could have ever known, but twenty-five years later, my feelings regarding the subject are much the same.

The Baron runs through May 20. If you watched AWA wrestling in the '70s and '80s, you'll really enjoy it. However, Kassie recognized only a couple names along the way, but she loved it, too.

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oh, and

Kassie and I are on vacation this week. Where are we going on vacation this year? We're going to... enjoy our new windows, I guess.