- Member for
- 3 years 9 months
So last week I told you about a daily challenge my wife and I created now that we're empty-nesters. As you may recall, this task doesn't have anything to do with canola oil or electric foot massagers (we're saving those for our anniversary), but is a self-imposed assignment where we take at least 10,000 steps somewhere out in the world every day. We wanted to become more physically active and walking seemed easier than grunting and lifting heavy things at the gym. What did became an obstacle for us, however, was the part where we actually walked "out in the world."
So our daughter graduated from Hermantown and is currently finishing up her first year of college. After delivering her and her mountains of stuff to Mankato last August, my wife and I soon found ourselves with an abundance of extra hours in our day. We didn’t realize just how much of our parental existence had been focused on the kid. For example, we drove up and down the hill to Hermantown more times than Bill Gronseth drives up and down I-35 for job interviews.
So the internet went out at our house last week, but we didn't panic. In fact, talk of eating the cats never even came up until 45 minutes in, and that was only because it was too far to walk to Arby's. Unfortunately, this outage wasn't new. We've had a few issues with our signal over the years. Our connection has always resembled the offensive line of the Minnesota Vikings: slow, intermittent, and unreliable.
So our recent spate of warm weather has had many pleasant side effects around my house. The snow melted in the backyard, allowing me to find some previously lost summer items, including my Official Darren Danielson Fan Club thongs (they’re sandals, gutter-mind), as well as my Official Pure Pleasure in Hermantown Fan Club thongs (ummmmm, never mind). The early morning bird songs have started up again, to accompany the 4 a.m. cat yarglings of hunger. And the squirrels have even started to show some extra zip in their collecting of the nuts.
So as you know, good news has been hard to come by since November. It seems like every time I start to feel good about the way my life is going, I remember who is currently residing in the highest office in the land, causing my heart to descend to the lowest orifice in my body. If this describes you and your low orifice, let me offer up a solution that's helped get me through these first couple of week ... HOLY HECK!! IT'S ONLY BEEN A MONTH? AHHHHHHH!!!!
So just in case you forgot, the most romantic, extra-special, wonderful holiday of the year is in February. Unfortunately Super Bowl Sunday was last week, but Valentine's Day is definitely a close second.
So I glance up at the scoreboard, my view obscured by the waterfall of sweat pouring down my face. Thirty seconds left. My legs are on fire, struggling to hold me in my squatting position, back against the wall. My moans join in with the chorus of complaints echoing through the AlBrook high school gym and I slowly start to sink. The metallic clicking of that ancient clock mocks us as it slo-o-o-o-o-owly counts down to the end of this torture.
So if you hadn’t heard, America has a new president. It may not be the candidate that got the most votes, but that doesn’t matter. Something called the Electoral College (ironically, the one college that could use some elimination of funds) prevailed and the runner-up became the winner. But that’s democracy for you. Messy, unpredictable, slightly gag-inducing. You don’t like it, talk to the founding fathers. Or Putin.
So I was recently looking through my Duluth News Tribune (Official motto: "Look, as long as you get it within 24 hours, that's STILL same-day delivery!") when I saw a story about the passenger train service from Duluth to the Twin Cities. This report about the Northern Lights Express, or NLX for short, contained quotes from the project's spokesman, Ken Buehler (Official motto: "Shoveling a lot more than coal in the Twin Ports for over 30 years!"). After reading the article, a few thoughts entered my brain: • This train thing is still around?
So winter has finally wrapped itself around us like an Emily Larson neck scarf and it won't release its icy grip until at least mid-June. I know we were momentarily fooled into thinking Old Man Winter might have forgotten where we lived (and being an old man, he wasn't about to stop and ask for directions) and like the moldy potato salad I unearthed from the camper cooler last Tuesday, our gorgeous Northland summer lingered on well past its expiration date ... But now it's over.