Friday, May 30, 2014

I'm Getting the Hell Out of Here

I was born in Minnesota, grew up in Minnesota, lived in Minnesota, and two weeks from now I'm leaving. I'm leaving the midwest entirely to move to New Mexico. But before I do, I wanted to make a couple lists of stuff I will miss and stuff I will not miss about being here.

I won't go into too much detail why I'm leaving. It's nothing interesting anyway -- seriously, I'm the most boring person on Earth, all I really need is my dog and a beer and I'm happy. But it boils down to one of those existential-type deals where you ask yourself, "Why not?" I'm 32, a good opportunity presented itself, might as well go. 

I'll start with stuff I won't miss about Minnesota, so I can end this post with sappy Jim-Nantzian warm smarmy shmaltzyness:


- The Minnesota Department of Transportation. Particularly the guy who thinks its a genius idea to schedule all major highway construction projects to begin at the exact same time. And the committee of people who close a random bridge and elect not to put up any sign/notification within 2 miles of said closure. (Of course, this isn't to imply that the New Mexico DOT won't cause their share of problems, but I can almost guarantee there will be a hell of a lot LESS problems.)

- Phantom traffic light changes. Related to the previous point, but these get special attention. I've spent extended time in Pennsylvania, Texas, Iowa, Wisconsin and New Mexico, but Minnesota is the only place where a traffic light will change even if no other car is waiting there. It'll just change for the sake of changing. Evidently, the purpose of a traffic light here isn't to regulate traffic, it's to stop every car. And if it's the Sheridan Road light on 66th in Richfield, even if it's 3AM, you will wait there for the full 90 god damn seconds GOD HELP YOU.

- The horrendous ragweed pollen that permeates the air from mid-August until the end of September. 

- Paul Allen's voice.


- All the silly weather nonsense that everyone is sick to death of hearing about. But special shout out to black ice. Goodbye, black ice.


- Big V's. The shittiest, diviest shitty dive bar, but it was MY shitty dive bar, dammit.

- Pizza Athena at Pizza Luce. Food meant for kings among men, and I'm honored they let a mere mortal like me have one once in a while.

- Surly Beer. See above, replace "food" with "drink."

- Name-dropping random obscure athletes that have played in Minnesota at one point or another. I love conversations like, "Remember Richard Park?" and seeing people's faces light up with recognition. I've always loved the fact that the mere mention of names like Steve Lombardozzi, Hunter Goodwin, Stanley Roberts, Maxim Sushinsky, Jermaine Wiggins or Scott Stahoviak makes people happy. (Or angry, if you mention Nick Punto.)

- Target Field. And whatever the new Vikings stadium ends up being named. I'm bummed I'll miss out on that.

- the Triple Rock.

- the 3-4 week stretch in May and again in October when it's just friggin PERFECT outside.

- Just how friggin nice everyone is here. Minnesota Nice is a cheesy cliche but it's not a myth. 

I'm sure I forgot a ton of stuff in the MISS category but that's just off the top of my head. I have another two weeks to think of more junk.