Recently, I had the mixed pleasure of attending a state fair in the wintry hellscape that is Minnesota. It’s a weird state because although their politics are liberal, their people look like they’re at a casting call for a new A&E show called Forest Folks. I’m talking guys with bushy beards. I’m talking “women” with confederate flag shirts, camouflage caps, and proud cell phone pics of a 12-point buck they just slaughtered (let me stop talking about all this before I get a hard-on). And kids that are fat as albino pumpkins. The state fair was also a couple shades whiter than a klan rally, and I damn near got snow blindness after hanging out in this sea of blonde all day.
I was all ready to indulge my love of the fattiest fried foods a redneck would ever want, but I quickly noticed that—-no surprise—-they do shit “different up North,” as I have always heard from my carpet bagging boss. For one thing, they’ve managed to pull off the astounding trick of making something both jaw-droppingly unhealthy (fried Snickers, a pound of fried cheese, fried Oreos, a bucket of french fries with fried cheese, a foot long bacon on a stick, a fucking fried Snickers bar in case you didn’t catch it the first time, and a pound of fried cheese with a two-liter milkshake) but also have it taste like greasy paint. [Don’t laugh that I know what Greasy Paint tastes like, since it’s the only color we could afford to paint our trailer with, and one thing led to another…]
My First Five Minutes at the Fair…
…were spent trying to find a place to eat my fried potato slices covered in ranch dressing, bacon bits, and melted cheddar cheese—-no, I did not know that was what an “Australian Baked Potato” was or I wouldn’t have ordered it, I figured it was a baked potato that really didn’t care much for Muslims. I thought I was in luck when I stumbled upon a building that looked like it had air conditioning on the inside.
“Oh man, I’m lucky,” I said unknowingly as I made my way inside a Goddamn birthing center. Within five seconds, I was seeing the horror of a wannabe-cowboy (a Minnesota cowboy is a lot like a French soldier) pull a calf out of a cow’s ass, the calf covered in what looked like the same bloody/milky liquid my Australian Baked Potato was.
“What the fuck is this little barn of horrors?” I said, before feasting my eyes on a sight I can’t unsee: a hilariously obese woman on a rascal scooter (the kind of person who’s just given up on life…and walking) watching a hormone-filled, seemingly-1000 pound pig give birth to a rogue’s gallery of piglets while eating her bacon covered fried potato slices, the ranch dressing and cheese falling from her mouth. [If eating bacon while watching a pig give birth didn’t have her getting arrested by the irony police, nothing would stop her from eating that thing.] The kicker: the blank stare she had while wolfing down her food was more or less the same as the drugged-up, force-fed pig.
My Next Ten Minutes at the Fair…
…were spent trying to find a nice, shaded area to throw up in. As a full-blown alcoholic and five-time competitive deer-jerky eating champion, it’s been a long time since I’ve thrown up due to something I’ve ingested, but I just couldn’t hold the fried husks falsely labeled as potatoes (it’s mostly like eating battered air) down for some reason. The State Fair bathrooms are the kind of place where throwing up on the floor would be an improvement and I got a quick vision of some poor teenaged bastard being asked to clean them at the end of the night. [The best way to clean them: light a match, burn them to the ground, and rebuild them.]
Throughout the day, I scarfed down roughly the weight of a baby hippopotamus in fried foods, and I wanted to have a heart attack, but I questioned how sanitary the ground was. Watching horses, cows, miniature horses, and—-oh, what the hell—-a llama take dumps on the street all day will have you wondering that. Then it dawned on me that maybe eating a pork chop on a stick prepared only a few feet from where a goat is giving birth may, against all odds, somehow not be healthy for me.
I couldn’t believe I actually cared since I regularly drive drunk, start fights with fans of rival college football teams, keep a bag full of guns in my truck and a much larger bag under my trailer, and really don’t even know what someone means when they ask if the fried onion rings and chicken wings I subsist off of are “organic.” [Is this code for gay?] I was shocked that I actually thought better of something I was doing in that moment, and what it might be doing to my body. Oh God…what’s happening to me? From here, it’s only a slippery slope to actually getting health insurance, seeing a doctor outside of an emergency room, and not buying up a ton of discounted beer after it’s been recalled.