all posts tagged 'university of minnesota'

WeblogPoMo 2024 - Song 6: Pokemon Blue/Red - Bicycle Theme

đź”— a linked post to » — originally shared here on

The University of Minnesota’s Twin Cities campus is massive.

When I went there, I was told it was the third largest university in the country based off square footage.

The Minneapolis campus alone has an east bank and a west bank, connected by a bridge with a top that is for pedestrian use only.

I used to live in the Como neighborhood. It was a 30 minute walk from my house to the classes I had on the west bank. I could also take the 3, which made it more like a 5 minute bus ride.

My preferred method of transportation, which I would use up until the snow made it infeasible, was my bike.

When I moved down to campus for the first time, my dad wouldn’t let me bring my Specialized bike that he got for me in seventh grade.

Instead, he insisted on buying me a $99 Schwinn bike from Target. It weighed a ton and the brakes weren’t great, but it certainly got me from A to B.

I recently got rid of that bike, and it felt like getting rid of a car. In both cases, I usually get overcome with emotions such as grief from nostalgia, guilt from abandoning something I knew so intimately, and gratitude for being able to get so much life out of it.

One of the first times I put that bike to use was to attend a class on the west bank.

When I arrived at the beginning of the Washington Avenue Bridge, I was greeted by a spectacular view of the Minneapolis skyline.

The combination of that skyline, the breeze, and the views of the river below forced this song in my head.

I started singing it out loud, unable to place where I knew it from.

After having the same moment play out over the course of a semester, it finally dawned on me that I knew that song from hours of riding my bike in Pokémon.

Pure joy. That’s what this song reminds me of.

Even this evening, when I rode bikes with my family up to try the new ice cream shop in town, I got this song stuck in my head.

It truly is the perfect song for a bike trip.

The Dinkytown McDonald’s has closed: Remembering the U of M’s Golden Arches

đź”— a linked post to » — originally shared here on

No one's nostalgic for the Dinkytown McD's. But some of us are nostalgic for who they were when they went there.

I think the author of this article laid it on pretty thick.

But to be fair, they were of an older generation of U of M alums, born to complain about the corporate raising of our beloved Dinkytown.

I have many fond memories of that McDonald’s. Back when I ate there, it certainly was a chance to, as they say in the article, “soak up the suds.”

My fondest memory there was right after Blarney’s closed the night I met my wife. I remember enjoying a burger and continuing our discussion on which animals would win in a fight.

The pull quote I chose for this piece, though, is right. I don’t care about McDonald’s. I just miss simpler times.

And maybe they’re simpler because they were manufactured in a way. My life isn’t manufactured much at all these days, leaving me in a constant state of anxiety and fear of what’s to come.

Maybe the closing of that McDonald’s aught to symbolize the start of something better. For myself, and for the next generation of alumni who pine for things to just stay the same for just a little longer.

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