Fear and Loathing (on a stick)

I will surely get my Minnesota citizenship revoked for uttering this in public, but I must. I despise State Fair news coverage. HATE IT!

By my count, there were 13 articles in today’s two daily metro newspapers. Thirteen, people! Given that this is an event that changes about as much as the Darwin twine ball from year-to-year, might two be more than enough?

And don’t get me started about the local TV news. Not only will a huge portion of the news hole be crammed with repetitive, uninteresting Fair exposés, but, worse yet, every freakin’ segue will be punctuated with a stale joke about a) the reporters’ and anchors’ overeating and subsequent morbid obesity or b) something really, really funny on a stick. Memo to Don: Not particularly funny the first time. Spectacularly unfunny the 764th time.

And we still have a dozen more days of this! While the rest of you are having nice Labor Day barbeques, you’ll find me in the basement in a fetal position sucking my thumb.

Somehow, the Blackhawk helicopter crash, flood recovery efforts and bridge investigation did manage to squeeze into the narrow news hole remaining after we’re reminded where the bottomless glass of milk can be had this year. Unfortunately, so did Putin’s pecs and senior sex, so maybe this Fair overload isn’t truly squeezing out important news. But still, thirteen articles?

Yes, I’m a Grumpy Gus. Yes, I’m not “from here.” But the latter part of August is when the Cohen brothers could not possibly imagine just how Fargo we truly are.

– Loveland

12 thoughts on “Fear and Loathing (on a stick)

  1. Love the “…I’m not ‘from here'” line. It’s reminiscent of an old SNL skit featuring Chris Farley who confesses that he’s not “PC,” and he has “body odor,” and he tends to “offend people.” Hilarious stuff. As for the Great Minnesota Get Together, I like the amusement it brings each year. Minnesotans are gaa-gaa over their cheese curds and Sweet Martha’s cookies.

  2. Becky says:

    Could not agree more with this post. Hate. state. fair. coverage. I’ll go one further: Can’t stand the fair. Don’t understand it, to be honest. I’m sure at some point it served an important purpose. And, yes. I’m “from here.” If you count moving here at 10 months being “from here.”

  3. There’s nothing wrong with saying you hate State Fair coverage. I hate it, too.

    But if you say you hate the fair, then we must call up the mob…

  4. jl says:

    Becky, thank you so much for sharing your secret with the group. I’m sure that wasn’t easy, but perhaps your courage will help others.

    I’m afraid I’m just as deviant. I emerge at the Great Minnesota Getfreestuff-Together about as often as I emerge at Mall of America, about every 5-6 years, for the same reason, because some out-of-town relative coerces me.

  5. Kelly Groehler says:

    We’ve just returned from an afternoon at the great get-together; given the state of my wallet, a false-advertising suit over this year’s “free” campaign strikes me as perfectly logical.

    Fans were warming the WCCO bleachers at 3:30 p.m., perhaps awaiting Dr. Doolittle’s appearance in the hopes he’d break into another physics lesson – this time, how internal organs potentially collapse under the immense pressure of multiple trans-fats on a stick.

    That said, I loves me a good corn dog – or four. Could explain current state of wallet…

    Sat across from Dan Barriero on the bus ride back to the U. Pleasant fellow. Took everything in my power not to chide him for KFAN’s complete lack of female perspective, aside from occasional callers who aren’t afraid to brave the testosterone. The day women have equal voice in the world of sports can’t come soon enough in my book.

    I digress. Pass the Tums.

  6. “I loves me a good corn dog.” First line of a great comic novel, Kelly. Get it going.

    The “news” coverage of the fair reminds me of my first newspaper job, 1974 or thereabouts, at the Owatonna People’s Press. We didn’t just cover the Steele County Free Fair — we moved in. There had been a Press shack in the old days on the fairgrounds, to which the reporters and editors retired, with beer and minidonuts, to chronicle the hefty livestock, human and otherwise.

    By the time I got to Owatonna, we took a room in a motel across from the fairgrounds (the shack may have been burned down by a forgotten cigar, I can’t recall) so we could do our interviews, cross the street and file our stories, and not have to drive the mile or so to downtown Owatonna. Besides, it was important to get back as fast as possible to the K of C tent for more pie.

    Stories from the fair? Every day, youbetcha. But the stories were just an excuse for us to get out among the folks and the food. (I was given an “Official Snarf Inspector” certificate by the president of the fair for eating above and beyond what was thought possible.)

    But taking the paper to the fair served a purpose more philosophic than caloric. It got the reporters and editors out of the newsroom and among the people (and the pork). Hard to be an elitist distant journalist when the person you’re talking to is milking a cow whose tail is flipping in your face.

  7. jl says:

    I’m fine with 4-5 Fair articles sprinkled through the week. I’m arguing against dozens of repititive articles every day. For instance, do we need the Fair map run every single day? I’d love to see someone calculate an advertising equivalency of the Fair coverage. Big number.

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