Random Blackouts

One Sunday evening in June, three regular guys are settled into a corner of the bar at Figlio in Uptown, within spitting distance of one of the room’s three flat-screen televisions. On the tube: men’s beach volleyball on Fox Sports. My friend and I plant ourselves across from them, armed with a stealthy little device […]

The Elusive Lingerie Dude

Last year, Bob Dylan turned up in a Victoria’s Secret ad, and I’ve been troubled about it ever since. On a possibly related note, a couple of friends recently mentioned their discomfort with “the dudes who seem to be permanently wandering” the larger lingerie departments, who don’t seem to be shopping or accompanying anyone in […]

Bipolar Nation

If you didn’t see ABC’s Wife Swap! on March 2, here’s what you missed: Powderhorn Park peacenik Mina Leierwood gingerly examines the contents of “Fort Patrick,” the Louisville, Kentucky, home she’s to live in for two weeks with a family of strangers. Cheri Patrick, the usual lady of the house, is a retired Air Force […]

“It vibrates. But is it, y’know, a vibrator?”

I’d just been dumped by a guy when I first heard about the Bakken Museum’s vibrator collection. Minneapolis’s Bakken, for the record, bills itself as “The Museum of Electricity in Life,” and since my bulb had just gone out, I thought looking into the long history of self-satisfaction might be a pleasant diversion. I learned […]

Say Cheese!

The other day about eighty thousand Christians gathered at the State Capitol for Luis Palau’s Twin Cities Festival. Just a mile away, at St. Paul’s RiverCentre, a smaller but no less devoted crowd convened at the Midwest Scrapbook Association Convention, the better to observe the objects of its own faith—designer paper and vellum and bottle […]

Par-Tee On

On a sunny June afternoon, Mark Vogt and Azure Marlowe have been given the enviable job of replacing bowling pins on hole number three of the mini-golf course-cum-art exhibit installed for the summer at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Hole three, titled Bolfing for Gowlers, is designed to look like a tiny bowling lane, and after […]

“I Love My Cub!”

Somewhere in the middle of the nation’s heated debate about gay marriage, a new billboard popped up on one of my usual routes. The ad, for Cub Foods, features two women positioned in friendly proximity to each other and to a bag of groceries. The tag line says, “Real People. Real Values.” Wow, I thought. […]