November 7, 2009


Tiny but mighty and I went to Minneapolis the following week for a long weekend to see middleguysis and mrmiddleguysis. I learned two things:

Smelt fries aren't as good as they sound
Go with an open mind when someone says you're going to have the experience of a lifetime. Sometimes it's true.

Smelt were just a blip in the radar on our visit, though they came up twice: once in an installation in a group exhibition that middleguysis was part of. Lots of tiny shiny dried smelts all glommed together and seemingly squirting out of a squished aerosol can. When they appeared on the menu at the Red Stag half an hour after we saw sis' show, how could I help myself?

We've had the smelt fries and now you don't have to.

The open mind part happened when a meat-centric friend of sis and bro said he'd come to our vegetarian dinner party but we had to indulge him by going afterward to a small concert by Prince at Paisley Park. It would be the experience of a lifetime.


I'm not really a Prince fan, but it's never been a question that he's an AMAZING talent. Turns out that Tiny is a long time Prince fan. Long time. She was very interested, as were almost all of the people who were coming over for dinner. Now that I think of it, the vegetarians didn't come with.

Anyway, it all seemed preposterous. It was announced in the newspaper that morning. You had to show up at 7pm and buy tickets at Paisley Park. The show would start at 11.

Against the odds, that's pretty much what happened. Our carnivorous music fan friend stuffed his pockets with cash, hoping to get us all tickets. One per customer, unfortunately, so after dinner we piled in the car, and made our way to a transit station in Chanhassan, half an hour away. There was no promise that we'd get in, but in the end it was smooth sailing. We walked in and Prince was playing. He never plays on time, so this was a bonus, too.

He played for almost three hours. There were maybe a thousand people in his club. Larry Graham from Sly and the Family Stone was there and they played many Sly Stone songs. Morris Day was there, and they played Time songs, and Chic and Play That Funky Music White Boy, and almost all of Prince's hits. He engaged with the audience and played like crazy and sang beautifully. None of his songs had been pitched down for a guy who is now older than he was when he wrote them.

I was so impressed. I danced as much as I could while surrounded by large Scandinavian statues. Garrison Kiellor should have prepared me for this, but Minnesotans are not an outwardly enthusiastic lot. The show wrapped up around 3am.

We fell asleep around 4am and didn't get up very early.

Everybody who knows me knows this story by now. I've just written it here because there is little important that hasn't been recorded here in the last three years. It would be remiss to omit something like seeing Prince.

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