Blind Tigers, Zombie Robots, karaoke, acoustic guitar, trees in the dark

Smash Up at Rogue Robot

Tracing backward …

Last night, I met with friends to play “Smash Up” at Rogue Robot. (The week before, we played “Ticket to Ride.” The week before, we played “Spartacus.”) Board gaming is open to the public at Rogue, and the people I play with are among the kindest and most open in Duluth. (The proprietor of the Nifty Nerd started playing with us last week, so shout out there, too.)

We always eat at Oriental House beforehand. Still the best value in Asian food in Duluth, although we miss Allie, our server there for more than a year.

Sundays I am adrift. My Pub Quiz friends at Carmody no longer get together (two of them are away for the semester), but Karaoke at Sir Ben’s feels like a young person’s game, to me. At least, the last time I went, my company was young and energetic while belting out songs into the dark. Fun to watch, but exhausting.

Friday, I enjoyed the Renegade Theatre fundraiser, Blind Tiger. It was a speakeasy style event, and my friends were out in their finest. From the Renegade Theater social media page, here are some of the coolest done up, flapper style.

l&a kcak jwf2 jwf

There were “games of chance,” played with Blind Tiger bucks. There were undrinkable mixed drinks (in two flavors, according to my friend, “freshman dorm” and “jet fuel”). (Thankfully, the Zeitgeist bartenders were there with the Boulevardier, and the Blackwater was there, afterwards, for a quiet place to talk with my friends, with yummy drinks and music.) And there was music, sneak peaks at upcoming shows. This week’s show looks awesome, and I would like to see you there.

Murder Ballad is a full-throated rock opera about the complications of love, the compromises we make and the betrayals that undo us. With a blistering score, sultry staging and a twist you’ll never see coming, it’s a wicked and wild night that you’ll only find at Renegade Theater.

Listen and I’ll tell a tale. A tale where good will not prevail. A King, a Queen, a Club, a Knave. One is destined for the grave …

r1 r2

Some late-night driving after the show introduced me to a Duluth phenomenon — baby trees in the woods with ornaments. This re-enchants the woods for a city slicker like me. Blurry picture by me, below, nicer picture by AFBat here. (Ava is one of the best emerging photographers in Duluth; even better, she does not know this, yet.)


If you know more about whoever is this awesome, I hope you’ll comment.

I still spend every Wednesday from 5-7 listening to Darrin Bergsven at Dubh Linn. He’s working, he says, on playing the intro theme to “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” for me.

And, I am spending more and more nights in the dark along the shore. I hate to say it, but I love the fact that it gets dark so early in winter — I love the fact that so early, so easily, I can ride down to the water and stare into the dark. Helps me think, helps me decompress, helps me find balance.

I grew up in Milwaukee. The nights I loved the most were the foggy nights. (I think there were so many more foggy nights on Lake Michigan than there are at the head of Lake Superior. A question for a meteorologist or an expert on nostalgia, maybe.) Foggy nights staring into Lake Superior were nights when the water and the sky became one, when there was no horizon. Without a horizon, somehow, I felt more and less grounded, more and less sure-footed, than any other time.



about 9 years ago

Christmas ornaments (mostly papercraft) has been a tradition in Chester Park for at least the last few years.  I've been meaning to ask around for a while.


about 9 years ago

We saw a red ornamented tree right off of  Seven Bridges Road over Christmas, with a beautiful 'Joy' perched on the top.  Thank you, whoever did this.  You brought joy to my holiday.

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