A Midwest Watergate

I grew up eating "pistachio fluff," a blend of pistachio pudding, whipped cream, pineapple, marshmallows, and crushed pistachio nuts (aka Watergate salad), at all kinds of family potlucks and picnics. For me, it's got all of that childhood nostalgia that bologna or circus cookies have. It was among my favorites as a kid because it contains copious amounts of whipped cream, which is officially my favorite food.

So I was a little shocked when I learned that gerg had never even heard of it before this weekend.

Am I alone? Did other people eat this weird, somewhat disturbing, but totally tasty concoction growing up?

My childhood passion for pistachio-based creaminess has been known to entice adulthood consumption of: Toucan Custard's Pistachio Pecan custard, Baskin Robbin's Pistachio Almond ice cream, Ben & Jerry's Pistachio Pistachio, and plain ol' pistachio pudding pie.


[where: 55406]

Snowy Birthday, Dad!

Um, dad, you're totally awesome.

To honor my dad's birthday, the March sky dumped a few inches of snow on us.
Happy snowy birthday, dad!

Everything had melted this weekend in Minneapolis, and then *SNOW DUMP!*
I guess that's my dad's way of making sure I stay inside to do my homework for grad school.

[where: 55406]

St Patrick's Day for a Longfellon

There's something about our neighborhood that loves celebrating everything Irish, which is good for us, since gerg is practically a leprechaun. Being engaged to an Irish guy is wikked fun.

Dublin, Ireland - gerg pauses on our walk to the Jameson Distillery

Dublin, Ireland - I prepare for my Whiskey Taste Testers test at the Jameson Distillery

Naturally, we celebrate St. Patrick's Day.

Merlin's Rest is a pub of the Isles, celebrating the UK, Scotland, and Ireland. We started our St. Pat's celebration on Friday night at Merlin's Rest . The Cottage Pie was a real treat, especially for parsnip lovers. While the fish was great, the chips were nothing special. I was glad they didn't offer corned beef and cabbage. For the record, I never once encountered corned beef and cabbage while we were in Ireland. Guiness Stew, Shepard's Pie, Bangers and Mash, Fish n' Chips, and toasted sandwiches were the most common fare in Ireland.

When I drove past Merlin's Rest on my way to work on St Patrick's Day morning at 8:30am, people were already outside talking and wearing goofy St Patrick's Day hats.

Merlin's Rest
3601 E Lake Street

On Saturday night, I saw a man walk out of McMahon's Irish Pub wearing a black tuxedo with a green sequin bow tie and top hat. He crossed the street. Then he spun on one heel and headed right back across the street and back to McMahon's. Formerly the Poodle Club, and just 6 blocks from Merlin's Rest, this place has gone all Irish, even boasting an Irish menu.

McMahon's Irish Pub
3001 E Lake Street

[where: 55406]

Hennepin County Composts for Great Justice

Check out this sweet compost bin!

In honor of Earth Day, April 22, Hennepin County will let you buy one of these for "dirt cheap" (if you live in Hennepin County)! I stole the following details from the Hennepin County site after gerg told me all about the deal.

Only $35 for a sweet compost bin!
Sale offered only to Hennepin County residents.
Limit 1 bin per household.
13 cubic foot capacity
Assembled size: 29" High x 32" Diameter
Sturdy, easy to open lid with two harvesting doors
Black recycled plastic
Comes disassembled (fits in smallest cars!)

Purchase Option 1: PRE-ORDER

They offer three convenient partner locations where you can purchase and pick up your bin.

BINS MUST BE PRE-ORDERED by April 1, 2008!
Pay at time of pick up.
Bins will be available for pick up during regular store hours.

Purchase Option 2: DO NOT PRE-ORDER

If you miss the pre-order deadline for purchasing a bin at one of our partner stores, a limited number of bins will be available at Hennepin County's Drop-Off Facility in Brooklyn Park.

No pre-order necessary
Sale begins April 23, 2008
Wednesday evenings from 6 PM to 8 PM
Bins will be available on a first come, first served basis - while supplies last

Sure, you could make your own compost bin...I'm not denying that. In fact, my mom would probably give me crap for buying one. But this one looks like it'll keep the dog out...definitely something to consider when your dog is a bigger scavenger than Oliver Twist.

[where: 55406]

Podcasts for People Who Like Certain Kinds of Podcasts

I'm the kind of person who loved when it was time for someone to read me a story when I was a kid. Before I could read, I would follow my mom around the house with books asking her which one she wanted to read to me. There would always be an aggrevating hard cover under my pillow, 6 paperbacks under my bed, a Peanut's digest in my bicycle basket, and too many books in my "book box"....

Tell me a story. Read me a story. More stories please!

So it makes sense that for sometime now, This American Life has been my favorite podcast. Ira Glass and his crew offer up the tastiest morsels for the story-lover's brain...all kinds of wacky stories, incidents, ironies, and debacles about cops, phone companies, childhood, and aardvarks.

This weekend I gave the RadioLab podcast a serious listen, and I've gotta tell you, it's pretty flippin awesome. I learned a ton about laughter, zoos, listening, Wagner's "The Ring", and stress.

Approaching each topic with an insane level of curiosity, and digging up experts on just about every topic, RadioLab is the ultimate feast for a curious listener.

In case you're the kind of person who loves a good story, tune in to RadioLab, dude. It's like Reading Rainbow, only better.

[where: 55406]

Reetsy Interprets: Brett Favre's Retirement

Today, as most Packer fans, I learned of Brett Favre's retirement.

From PackersNews.com:

The Brett Favre era is over. [Ed. note: sniffle]

The man who has been the Green Bay Packers’ starting quarterback for all but three games of the last 16 seasons, the only quarterback an entire generation of Packers fans has known, is retiring.

The Packers made the official announcement shortly before 10 a.m. today.

The statement from General Manager Ted Thompson read in part:

'Brett Favre has informed us of his intention to retire from the Green Bay Packers and the NFL. ... The Packers owe him a tremendous debt of gratitude.'

I can see Brett now, trying to learn how to retire...

In my imagination, a retired Brett Favre would try fishing by knocking fish out with footballs. Thus, I created this image.

[where: Green Bay, Brett Favre, 55406]

Silent Auction BOOTY

I attended this benefit at First Ave this past Saturday night for Nik E. Gunz.

DJ’s theDeviousone, Jonathan Ackerman, Aaron Bliss, Jon Hester, OdDio, and Dustin Zahn join long time Minneapolis dance promoter and DJ Nik. E. Gunz for a fundraising event to assist in Nik’s recently acquired medical bills.

As an avid promoter, DJ, and supporter of the Minneapolis dance world for more than a decade, Nik has played an important role in both the initiation and sustainability of dance music in the Minneapolis scene. He has worked with private promotions to help bring some of the greatest deejays in the world to Minneapolis and with weeklies in some of the cities most loved venues.

A lot of people rolled out for the event, and participated in the silent auction, and according to a pal of mine, the event went well. Money was raised, partying was partied, and items were auctioned.

I won two sweet auctions and scored BOOTY in the form of booze and food (two of my favorite prizes of all time):

1) A Summit Hoodie with Rock Bottom gift card

2) A bottle of Imperia Vodka with a Kincaids gift card

I've never eaten at Kincaids or Rock Bottom, but I'll give em a whirl soon!
I hope my auction money helps Nik E Gunz out. He's a rad DJ.

[where: First Ave, Twin Cities, Minnesota]