Once again, I find I have snippets of things that do not add up to a columns worth, so I have to just string them together.

The most infamous Transylvanian asthmatic: Vlad the Inhaler

I don’t watch a lot of TV, but there are a few ads I have a reaction to.

The first is a series of ads selling work shoes. A guy buys his shoes at the same place as his father and grandfather did: Chet’s Shoes. Then in another ad, the same guy apparently gets Red Wing Shoes. Does this mean that Chet sells Red Wing Shoes? It never says. The only thing I do know is that the guy is single. He comes home, grabs the paper and puts his feet up on the coffee table. STILL WEARING HIS SHOES.

Another confusing ad is one for Hyundai. They are traveling on a mountain road. They come to a rest area and stop. A young girl in the back seat tries to escape, but the door is locked. Take a good look at her face. She is being abducted, and her kidnappers are driving a Hyundai.

I have never had a Jimmy John’s sandwich, but I do get a charge out of their Tony Baloney commercials. I try to get to the mute button as fast as I can when that commercial comes on with the guy who grates his teeth in his sleep. The sound of his voice grates on my ears. 

I don’t think I have mentioned Arby’s because I rarely have had anything from there. I thought their new cheddar chicken ranch sandwich looked good, so I got one. It is a groundbreaking sandwich, particularly if you like to eat your sandwich off the ground. It is impossible to pick up without it falling apart. There is no melting of the cheese that might glue the pieces together, and the ranch dressing is every bit as slippery as mayo. I reached in and pulled out a soggy but empty bun. The chicken was two pieces of their chicken nuggets, hard on one end. Highly recommended to people I hate.

I keep getting more bookmarks too. I still like the CircusCircus tickets because they’re small and don’t cover much of the content, but I’ve added what looks like a card from a dinosaur game Walt Disney dinos, someone’s monthly budget – three sources of income: $1,400, $300 and $400, bills $600 and food and gas 400. Obviously before gas went up. I hope this person has enough money for food now.

The most interesting bookmark was a boarding pass for a Jelatis, who traveled from DeGaulle airport in Paris to Amsterdam on Feb. 16 of an unknown year. Seat #14J no smoking.  

I am still mostly a fan of the Twins and Vikings. The Twins are still leading in their division, but that lead is shrinking. After their pitching coach left the team, the starting pitchers have started screwing up, just like their bullpen pitchers used to.

I am excited to see the new Vikings after Zimmer, but not so excited that I want to hurry the football season along. I’m in no hurry to get to winter again. We’ve already had two seasons of winter this year.

When I was in high school, I went to a basketball game where Bob Bromme threw the ball from half court that went through the hoop just as the halftime buzzer sounded. Cloquet got 2 POINTS for that basket, and won the game by 1 point, so they needed that 2 point shot. Nowadays, that shot would be worth a least 3 points.

I’ve been watching the Lynx, who have been winning a few games again. Sylvia Fowles, their star center is retiring after this year, so everywhere she goes to play, opposing players are coming up and giving her hugs and saying what a great person she is. Then, when the game starts, they kick her in the stomach or give her an elbow to the face. These women are not very ladylike on the court.

Fowles still isn’t sure what she will do when she retires. She might like to be a mother, but there doesn’t seem to be anyone in particular that is in line to be a father. She loves to knit and ride her bicycle, but prospects for income from those are slim. She would like to finish her degree work in Mortuary Science, which seems like an odd choice of careers to me.

I managed to watch the Timberwolves for a couple of games before their season ended. They didn’t end on a high note. Recently they traded half the team and a bunch of draft picks to get Rudy Bogert, who is described as a premier defensive center. I hope this doesn’t turn out to be a Herschel Walker-type deal.

The Wolves’ center and leading star has been Karl Anthony Townes, commonly referred to as KAT. I have seen interviews of Bogert and of the Wolves’ front office people asking how the two big men will work together, and both assure us things will work out fine. KAT will be more of a power forward and Bogert being a little taller, will take over as center.

For some reason, nobody has seen fit to ask KAT how he feels about the deal. He is the one who will experience the largest shift in his role. As with the Vikings, I am curious as to how the changes will work, but also like the Vikings, I am in no hurry to start the season.

My Northside neighbors have apparently warned their daughter about the dangers of waving at the neighbor. She rode her bike out while I was outside, and avoided looking at me the same as her parents. Lucky for her, because you never know when I might try to say “good morning” or some other perversion. These people try to help the poor by putting out food for them, but they would be horrified if one of those unfortunates tried to actually talk to them, so their concern is mainly theoretical.

Across 6th Street from them is a rental duplex which is owned by Gene Hansmeyer, a good man who is an old friend of mine. If I am outside when he’s around, he will come over to chat for a few minutes. People living in one of the units wave to me when I’m outside. 

Gene has empathy for the poor, and tries to help, but he also talks to them. His concern is both theoretical and practical.

At first, I thought my new neighbors on the South were a construction crew. There were at one time two cars parked at the back of the lot, two more cars in the driveway, an occasional truck and a rather large motorcycle. One of the backyard cars has since left, and so has the motorcycle. Some foam mattresses were thrown out of the loft and have been disposed of. The only person I have seen is a 30ish guy who sometimes takes the sun in the back. I think I saw a couple going in the back door one day.

One of the cars in the driveway is a sporty black model with VERY loud exhaust. There is now a stack of pallets in the back yard. I don’t have a clue what that means. Time will tell.