Friday, June 7, 2013


I don't recognize this place without the snow. I don't feel like myself without a parka. I am back in Duluth - Summer Version. I flew in to MSP yesterday and am here for mostly 1 reason: A Vincent Gargiulo Retrospective featuring the WORLD PREMIERE of “Duluth Is Horrible” –  the 17 minute plotless art film that OUTRAGED a city. Two screenings Tuesday Jun. 11 at 7:00 & 8:30p. Tickets & info here:

I’ll be dressed to impress, along with fellow cast, crew, & friends. Should be a great night. I’m here for a week and much of that time will be spent putting together a brand new project. I’ll talk about that later.

Yesterday was a long day. It started at 3:55am when a Super Shuttle picked me up on the way to SFO. Last time this happened, I was greeted by Today’s Top 40 Hits blaring out at me. This time, the driver picked out some sort of music more appropriate for an Italian restaurant or the “nature store” at the mall. For those curious, the latest Iphone app technology tells me it was “Rosas Del Amor” by Armik.

A nonstop plane ride – the only noteworthy story was overhearing a guy talk about visiting his son’s graduation. He only knew he had a son 5 months ago! My St. Paul friend, Cassidy, worked till 4 so I ran some errands mostly in Edina, MN. Why was I in Edina? Edina know. (Do you get it?) 

That night, Cassidy, her boyfriend Nick, and I went to an old vintage bowling alley where I showed off my patented “drop & bounce” bowling technique. I did not win in two rounds. I blame the hipster jeans I was wearing, making it impossible to fully break stride. In the end, Billy Jean (my bowling name) lost to Fuzzy Lumpkin (later DumpTruck) in two rounds. I thought changing my name to “Billy Jean 2.0 (The Kid Is Not My Son) – Do doo, do doo” was going to help.  It only helped me surpass the ironically named challenger, “Can’t Lose.”

Today was spent mostly on the road. From St. Paul I was only 90 minutes away from a place near & dear to my heart. I had to go. I had to go to Darwin, MN, which has a population of 350 people and is known for one thing.
The Annoying Tourist Pose
The Biggest Ball of Twine In Minnesota, made popularized by a 7 minute “Weird Al” Yankovic song that I’ve had memorized by heart since I was 10.  The ball is mighty impressive when you’re right in front of it. It’s 90 minutes away from anything and the opposite direction of Duluth, but it was worth it.

From there, it was tiny Minnesota country towns highlighted with bathroom stops at Wal-Mart, White Castle, and designated rest areas. I'm fairly sleep-deprived and will be using my Friday night to do very little.

Goodnight Duluth. I'll see you in the morning.

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