Since my boys are both equipped with phones and are old enough to experience this day of sensory overload by themselves, they were turned loose (with friends) for a couple hours, which left just Zoe (in her wagon) and I to go wherever we wanted to. And we would have went wherever we wanted to if it weren't for the fact that approximately three million people were in our way. Seriously. Three million. I fucking counted each and every one of them, and I am not exaggerating when I say that I was tempted to count some of them twice. So as I weaved and bobbed my way through crowded intersections, "accidentally" running over a set of toes here and "oopsie, did I just bash you in the shin with my wagon" there, all I could think about was holy shit, dude, I am sooo glad that Doug is not here because he would be Miz. Rah. Bull.
Because of this arrangement, I was the only one available to be Designated Wagon Puller. And since I needed to drink beer (obviously), that left me with zero hands to take pictures. That is, until I figured out that I could prop the front tire of the wagon next to my foot and hold the beer (which always seemed to be half-empty) with my teeth. This allowed me to take pictures with one hand and reach into the wagon for a spring roll with the other. Multitasking at it's finest, really.
Even with this arrangement, though, I missed some incredible photo ops. Fair do's, immense human beings, fanny packs, tube tops -- by the time I had stopped the wagon and clenched the beer glass in my teeth -- all of these amazing sights had whipped by and out of frame. So, I'm sorry for what I failed to capture, but hope you enjoy the shots that I did manage to get.
Just in case you thought that I was exaggerating and/or making excuses as to why I missed some pictures, this is approximately 1/2000th of the crowd. Now, see that lady in the pink shirt? I think I knicked her toes with my wagon.
But even as crowded as it was, I can't believe that I still managed to find Brett Favre.
There is an area of the Fair called the International Bazaar where you'll find all kinds of non-Minnesotan foods and useless crap for sale. When we got there, there was a mariachi band playing (which immediately made me crave a margarita) and a bunch of people eating tamales. So why, exactly, did I see a dude wearing a beret? More importantly, why would a dude ever wear a beret?
This is obviously a couple in love. And I wonder if the tattoo on her back was complimentary when she paid to have the jeans tattooed on her thighs.
It's a good thing this kid's mom is so smart, demonstrated by the fact that she tied the balloon to his wrist. There's nothing worse than paying good money for a balloon only to have it fly away within minutes of ownership. Now, if only she could find him a black and white shirt to match his wig/hat/moron badge...
Hey, maybe she can ask these guys where they got their's.
Normally I don't post/email/share any pictures until after I get home, but this one I immediately texted to my husband with a subject line of "You can't make this shit up."
For all you single fellas, one of the most popular places to pick up hot chicks at the Grandstand is at the personal massager/ massage chair booth. If you're lucky, you'll find someone wearing a sexy pair of flesh colored capris. And yes, she's willing to take pictures.
Show me a two-headed man, I won't stare. Show me a kid with full facial hair, I won't stare. Show me a kid on a leash, I will always stare.
Like I said... I will ALWAYS stare. And the best thing about this master was that right after I took this pic, she unhooked the leash and said "You're going potty now" to which the little doggy said "No ruff ruff I don't have to go potty." So of course she said "Yes you do, so let's go potty" to which the puppy said "Noooooo! I don't want to goooooo!" So at least we know that the leash isn't because the nice owner has a control issue or anything.
I'll bet that when this guy found out that he won something from the MN State Lottery, he had no idea that it would be this piece of shit ladybug backpack thing. And then when he found out that it was the backpack, he had no idea that he would be the one to end up carrying the stupid thing around for the rest of the day.
I swear I saw his wife smirking.
This guy is taking his visit to the Alpaca booth just a bit too seriously. And I would bet money that he ate the overpriced alligator on a stick. Hell, I bet he wrestled the alligator before he ate it.
Right before we left, one of my kid's friends yelled "Gross Jody! That guy just hurled on the street!" and sure enough I was stupid enough to turn my head and see a giant puddle of fresh barf. And then, like the sickos that we are, we waited around to see if anyone was clueless enough to walk through the barf bog so that we could laugh and I stood there hoping like hell that this chick would show up.
In addition to seeing Brett Favre, I also saw Pat Benatar.
I was trying to get a picture of that guy's mullet, and then as if on cue, these two women wandered into the frame. I literally threw my arms into the air and yelled "Holy shit! You have GOT to be kidding me!"
Quote from my husband: "This guy was skinny when he got to the Fair."
This woman doesn't look that bad, right? I mean, black is a slimming color and the top is sort of a flattering cut. So why would I bother taking this picture?
Because of the back view.
In all the years that I've seen cargo shorts in existence, I've never actually seen anyone put them to actual cargo use. My kid is the one who spotted this guy, and at first he thought they were boxes of cigarettes. I think his actual words were "Check it out, mom. That guy sure is prepared for a full day of smokin' at the fair!" This assumption makes sense, too, since everyone in his group - along with 82% of the other Fair attendees - was smoking. I was just secondhand smoking.
She's so lucky that this was the day before Labor Day, otherwise that white skirt/leggings combo would have been a major fashion faux pas.
At the International Bazaar, there was a booth that was a combination of rug seller and fancy braider. My first thought was "who the fuck buys a big ass rug at the State Fair?" which was immediately followed by "Who the fuck gets their hair braided all fancy at the State Fair?" Well, right after I saw some dude walking around carrying a big ass rug, I saw these braids.
Seriously, people, can you imagine touching some stranger's greasy State Fair hair for an extended amount of time? Just to put in some stupid braid!? Gross...
In 1986, there were some god awful ugly "leather" purses for sale in the International Bazaar. In 2011, there are still some god awful ugly "leather" purses for sale in the International Bazaar. In fact, they're probably the same purses.
In case you're wondering, this guy likes Sturgis. And insanely blue Levis. And motorcycles. But he hates sleeves. And even though he probably loves the Minnesota State Fair, I'll bet he didn't take any pictures.