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So it's a new year and there's a feeling of renewal draped over the Twin Ports like that invigorating stink that cloaks Cloquet every spring. Only this is better because it's a feeling of hope. And it's not Cloquet. This sense of optimism pervades our every port because of Duluth's new mayor, Emily Larson. I wanted to talk with her about how things are going, but her demanding schedule got in the way. In fact, her assistant told me the only time she'd have available to talk with someone like me was when Hell froze over.
So as we close the book on 2016, I think we can all agree on a couple of things: 1. Too many creative people, artists who filled our lives with joy, shuffled off this mortal coil last year. 2. Too many stupid people, cretins who fill our lives with angst, are still around as we head into a new year. Why can’t it ever be the other way around?
So, it's Christmas. Time to surround yourself with loving family, not only because they're special people whom you want to be around, but also for the body heat. I mean, who needs to buy thermal underwear when Uncle Chester snugs up next to you? The man sweats like a blast furnace.
So you know how you are. You put off buying those Christmas presents again this year, didn't you? You thought you had plenty of time, which you did. Back in October. But now you're knee-deep in December and Christmas is all over you like a fresh coat of Trump-Is-President sweat. What do you do? WHAT! DO! YOU! DOOOOOOOOO?!!!!??!!!!
So Bob Dylan wins a prize and suddenly everyone wants to make a big deal out of the guy. "Oooooh, look at the singer-songwriter from Hibbing! He's all special because he won an awar-r-r-r-rd." Seriously, how prestigious is a Nobel Prize, anyway? I heard getting one of those is as easy as blowin' in the wind. You want a real accomplishment? Try walking 125 miles in Minnesota state parks, Mr. Bojangles!
So a theater company clucked onto the local arts scene eight years ago and continues to create local laughs today. Rubber Chicken Theater is its name and holiday sketch comedy is its game. Full disclosure: I'm one of the founders. (Just in case you couldn't tell from the name of this column and/or the photo that accompanies it.)
So, "routine" is a word normally crammed with more negative connotations than the phrase "Trump presidency" and it's easy to understand why. Look at the synonyms for it: typical, commonplace, ordinarzzzzzzz ... I fell asleep just typing that sentence. Not exactly words associated with the smell of excitement! Like jalapeno! Or Keewatin!
So we just ended the annual government experiment known as Daylight Saving Time and like everything else associated with the government, it was a colossal boondoggle (which, coincidentally, was the name of my high school band). Over the past year I only managed to save about 42 minutes and most of that came from turning off the Vikings game at halftime.
So, I don't know if you've heard, but next up on the official We-Don't-Have-To-Go-To-Work-Today-Hooray! calendar is supposed to be Thanksgiving. I say supposed to be because Christmas has, once again, shoved its way to the front of the line, drowning our delicious turkey beneath an ocean of holly and ivy. Everywhere you look, reindeer and elves are frolicking in the plastic snow aisle at your favorite department store and herald angels are blasting their messages of Peace on Earth while all I want is a Piece of Pie. This has to stop.