Ritland Daily Ramble #3

Syd Barrett, Minnesota weather, beer, wrestling

Quote of the day
Lime and limpid green, the second scene
A fight between the blue you once knew
Floating down the sound surrounds around the icy waters underground
Jupiter and Saturn, Oberon, Miranda and Titania
Neptune, Titan, Stars can frighten
– Syd Barrett, “Astronomy Domine”

Remember Syd Barrett
Today would have been the 68th birthday of legendary Pink Floyd founder Syd Barrett. I wrote a short reflection on what Syd means to rock music which you can read here.

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Could stand the weather
I’m constantly surprised at how weak Minnesotans have become regarding weather. When I was a kid no snow storm or cold snap would ever get us talking about the weather constantly, much less fearing for our lives. Judging by local reaction and coverage by weathermen every small storm and subzero temperature is tragic.

That being said, the last few days in Minnesota have been seriously arctic. In the Twin Cities our “high” today was -13 and we saw as lows around -20. Factor in the wind and even a short amount of time outside is unbearable.

I don’t mind it, though. The deep freeze is what makes us strong as Minnesotans. We can either deal with it courageously or cower like, well, cowards. Let’s make a concerted effort to choose the less embarrassing option.

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One reason I was able to bear the cold so well today is because I had the day off. I slept till noon and was still able to find time to take a nap.

Mostly, though, I drank a bunch of beer. The lovely picture to the left displays everything I drank except for a late-night Grain Belt. Old Style tall boys are classic; Schell’s Snowstorm, which is different every year, is a golden Belgian ale that is one of their best Snowstorms in recent past; Accumulation, New Belgium’s 2013 winter beer, is a hoppy, satisfying white IPA; Corsendonk Christmas Ale is a high-quality malty, darker holiday beer.

The best of the bunch, though, is Southern Tier’s 2XMAS seasonal, an “Ale brewed with figs, orange peels, and spices, two varieties of hops, and 4 types of malts.” It’s borderline excessively malty but is balanced out by the hops and spices. Definitely worth the $11.99 a six-pack.

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Old School RAW
The WWE is in the middle of an unlikely, quiet resurgence. Their storylines have been better than they have in years and their talent, both on the microphone and in the ring, may be its most consistent ever.

Each year they bring back old legends for an always memorable old school show. Highlights this year included a fun opening with Ric Flair, an entertaining segment with Rowdy Roddy Piper, and something nobody saw coming: the unlikely return of Jake the Snake Roberts. It’s unlikely because Roberts has recently been destitute, lost in a haze of drugs and alcohol. With the help of his friend Diamond Dallas Page he has resurfaced, though, happier and healthier than he’s been in years. It was heartwarming to see him once again, and looking good, too. Hopefully this won’t be the last time.

Erik Ritland is a writer and musician from St. Paul, Minnesota. His blog and podcast Rambling On features commentary on music, sports, culture, and more. He is also a contributor for Minnesota culture blog Curious North. Support Erik’s music via his Patreon account, reach him via email, or find him on Facebook and Twitter.

About Erik Ritland

Erik Ritland is a journalist (http://www.ramblingon.net) and musician (http://www.erikritland.com) from Minnesota. Rambling On, his blog and podcast, has been releasing seriously fun content about sports, music, culture, and more since 2012. He has written and recorded almost 10 albums of unique rock n' roll/alternative rock/Americana since 2002.

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