My Fair Falafel

Minnesota’s State Fair . . .

Where questionable culinary combos. . .

. . . meet gutsy gastronomers.

Where no food items are safe. . .

from being dunked and slathered,
whipped and battered,
roasted and toasted,
frazzled in a fryer,
wrapped with bacon
crammed with salt,
shaken with sugar,
slapped with ketchup,
smothered with mustard,
choked with cheese,
twisted in a knot,
buried in a bun,
and/or skewered with a stick,

all in the name of delirious intent
I mean delicious

Or do I?

Where H and S gave two enthusiastic thumbs up,
three snaps and a hidey-ho to the
“gourmet” wild rice corn dog and burger

Where a top-heavy Elvis roams the Fairgrounds . . .

Where children are properly tethered

Where culture-hungry hordes case the Creative Activities

Where Flo Jo’s Soviet Space Race theme
blew the competition out of orbit

And where, on a whim, she knocked out
two more blue-ribbon winners . . .

. . . just cause she could . . .

Much to Helen’s teeth-gnashing envy. . .

Where H took a fancy to this piece . . .
Dainty jewelry doesn’t stand a chance

And where modest, lamely-mounted jewelry
still gets a spot in the exhibit

Where text-filled entries get more respect. . . .

. . . than sparkly-decorated ones. . .

Which still won Fourth Premium


(Postcards tastefully collected by H)

Where spellbound people watch
cooking demonstrations (BBQ sauce in this case)

After two minutes, H walked away, sniffing,

“That’s not right, you never mix the sugar in the smoke…”

Complex quilts hypnotize

Where pottery curls

Glass moonscapes glow and campfires burn

Where our Moonlight theme
we busted our butts on
remained ribbon-less,
causing H to declare,

“I am so not doing this again next year!”

Rare collection of postal Lincoln.

*       *       *

With minds still fresh, we headed to the Fine Arts

. . . where trying to follow the numbered walls is almost impossible.

Stained glass meets color splash

Where Kerri’s cryptic portrait of Katlyn snags third prize

Where the Encaustic Artist returned with “The Road Less Traveled”

(sans last year’s haunting train)

Wild horses cavort

Lean for support

Canoodling in the wind and sun

*     *    *

Pet-approved submissions

Where brave little turtle inspires

And sculpture moralizes

Where MacDonalds never looked so
warm and inviting, appealing and delicious,
Hold on a minute, let’s not go crazy

The fair in a nutshell or,
more specifically, a battered shell

The intriguing

Where Sari scribbled a vote for
the John Beargrease Sled Dog Race

Wherein Lieutenant Barbie is on to the Captain . . .

“Fair or Fowl”

Where this First Place winner drove H
to crow, ” Fair-themed art has an
unfair leg up ! “

Or words to that effect

Which explains crowd-pleasing Elmer, the mosaic pig. . .

And where all of that art-crawling makes a person

. . . kinda hungry

While Irene springs for the always trusty
falafel pita smothered with a zesty yogurt sauce
and the occasional accidental tomato slice . . .

. . . H and I swear by a recent Fair acquisition. . .

The panko-crusted tilapia with
shredded cabbage, and mango chutney
folded in a spinach wrap

Tasty enough to leave your ears wiggling (tm Dad)

*    *    *

In the Miracle of Birth Barn

Sari videos the incredibly pushy piglets
who repeatedly head-butt Mama
right in the overworked nipples

Rated PiG-13 for some Violence


Someone’s been at the all-you-can-drink booth.  . .

Few acknowledge it, but eating at the Fair
can create a painful dichotomy in one’s head

Liquid nitrogen treat

Yum.  No qualms here.


Post-Nitro grins

*       *       *

Patrolling the Pet Center . . .

So happy and friendly, felonious thoughts
of dognapping regularly crosses the mind. . .

Gawd please tell me that corn dawg is for me !

Carb-inducing comas are always a threat . . .

Those cheese curds sucked!

Nosey mum and pup

Proud Dad with confused son

At the Pet Center,
H, S and Ireney await some action

In the crowd, a lady unexpectedly pivots
in front of me, kicking half my big toe nail off!

For about a minute, the pain is incapacitating.
When I look down all I see is a bubble of
blood where my left toenail used to be

This was a good time to check out
another Fair diversion  – the First Aid Station.

Irene accompanied while I hobbled over.
Upon arrival, a cluster of aid workers
swarmed around the injured site,
desperate to see some action.

Not content with tearing off my toe nail,
my assailant’s twirl-and-kick move
drove the torn edge into the toe tip.

An earnest EMT carefully extracted the piece,
dabbed delicately at the wound,
snipped what torn nail he dared,
and informed me any more nail removal
would most likely be “pretty painful.”

Thanks, I’m sure!

He then gingerly sprayed the site with antiseptic,
and bandaged it up for the rest of the Fair.

Most people stop in cause they’re tired,
or sunburned or get bee stung.

Hours later, the bandage unfurled,

feeling was coming back
the feeling of pain that is

In the mean time, there was a
walleye cake with our names on it

Found at a quiet corner of the Fair
and a campfire named Giggles

where wild rice walleye cakes are deliciously crafted

*       *       *

If it’s 7:00 p.m. it must be  St. Paul’s Finest —
The Canny K-9 Unit !

Where St. Paul’s officers of the law
put on a production starring their
4-legged, furry-backed partners. . .

Not to disregard their 2-legged
furry-backed partners.

Grim determination as they march out in formation

This year, the show seemed heavy on the butt chomping . . .

Chomping that some fans secretly. . .

. . . were enjoying, perhaps a bit too much

Summary:  Dogs rule.  Discuss amongst yourselves .

Sari wondering if her Tobie Won-Kenobi
might be crime-fighting action dog material. . .

Tobie, seen here with trusty sidekick Jasper

They’ll get right on it . . .
right after their naps . . .

*     *     *

In the Ag Building . . .

Delightful order

Pride of the U of M and
tastiest apple ever cross-pollinated –

.    .    .

Seedy Art continues to flourish.

This often scoffed-at art. . .

is seriously underrated

. . .rarely given its due.

For Gods sake, look at that detail !

*    *    *

When it comes to thrill rides, Sari is a daredevil.

Unfortunately, she’s surrounded
by kinesophobes (scaredy-cats)

Twelve hours into the Fair,
H and S rode down the Big Slide . . .

It didn’t feel like it was 12 hours,
although my toe begged to differ.

Please enjoy the following series entitled,
“Symphony in Toe Pain – Opus OMG”

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