The Badger, The North Star, and The Lone Star


I'm touring both ends of I-35 in November. It's good to be home for a couple of weeks. Mary made some pear-ginger pancakes for breakfast and headed off to work. Rowan and I had a good morning at home. He helped me wash clothes and built about 3 miles of wooden train track. He's sleeping now.

Friday, November 2, 7:30pm Pump House Regional Arts Center 119 King Street, La Crosse, WI 54601 608-785-1434, toni@thepumphouse.org www.thepumphouse.org

We hung a clothesline up in our living room. Until a few weeks ago, we had a folding wooden clothes dryer that belonged to Mary's grandmother. After a couple of years of gluing, taping, and drilling little screws into it, Mary finally took it out back and shot it.

Today, I washed a load of silk thermals and wool socks. I wrestled with my masculine side about whether to put them in the dryer. In the end, I decided that if I was wimpy enough to be wearing thermal underwear this early in the season, that I wasn't man enough to put silk in the dryer.

I went to the garage and got a hank of paracord, brought it in, and anchored each end around the head rail of the blinds on opposite sides of the room. Rowan said, "What are you doing?"

"I'm making a clothesline."

"Can I help?"

Saturday, November 3, 7pm Creek House St. Paul, MN 651-633-5353, glenn@elvig.com www.creekhouseconcerts.com

Sunday, November 4, 4:30pm The CamelBack Studio Rochester, MN 904-614-1680, camelbackconcerts@gmail.com www.timhildebrandt.biz/studio.htm

Tuesday, November 6, 7:30pm House Concert Fergus Falls, MN 218-205-1589, lindamellon@mac.com

Wednesday, November 7, 7pm Locust Street Hotel 720 South Minnesota Avenue St. Peter, MN 56082 612-990-0090, sabine@hickorytech.net www.locuststreethotel.com

Thursday, November 8, 7pm Riehle House Concert Callaway, MN 218-234-6700, riehleconcerts@hotmail.com

Friday, November 9, 7:30pm Live Well Nightclub and Coffee Bar 5459 County Road 18 Nisswa, MN 55468 218-829-4092, 218-838-4266, grassrootsconcerts@charter.net www.grassrootsconcerts.org

Saturday, November 10, 7:30pm Carson Meeting House 49521 County Rd 3 Delft, MN 56101 507-830-0395, bboldt@mindspring.com www.mnriv.com/windfolk.html

I stood on a chair. Rowan helped me pull the brightly-colored line through for the end knots. Once we had it tied, I got clothespins out of a drawer in the kitchen. "Do you know how to squeeze these?"

"Yeah." I held him up so he could put the clothespins on the clothesline. He said, "Clothespins." Slowly and deliberately. "Clothespins."

I went back to get the wet clothes. Rowan sat down on the floor to play with his trains again. I hung up clothes. He kept asking, "What are you doing?"

"You know how water turns to steam?"

"You put it on the stove and it boils."

"That's right. These clothes are wet. The water is going to evaporate. It will become steam." Kind of. He's two and a half. I'm not ready to explain the difference between steam and vapor. I had another idea, though.

Wednesday, November 14, 7pm Artworks 1840 Nacogdoches Road San Antonio, TX 78209 210-862-2787, lisamares@yahoo.com www.artworksartstudio.com

Thursday, November 15, 9pm JAX Neighborhood Cafe 2828 Rio Grande St Austin, TX 78705 512-382-1570, barber333@gmail.com www.jaxjoint.com

Friday, November 16, 7:30pm Barnes Concerts Houston, TX bildeann@swbell.net

"Did you know that ice is water, too?" I went to the freezer and got a couple of ice cubes. I put them in a little cooking pot and came back into the living room. I showed them to Rowan. "See? It's just hard water." I knocked on them. A small pool of water was forming fast. "Look. They are becoming water because they're getting warmer."

He looked at me and smiled. "We can put them on the stove and make steam!"

"Yes!" I picked him up. We went to the range and put the ice cubes on a low flame. I swirled them around and they became water.

"Now." I said. "We took ice and made water. Now we're going to take water and make..." I waited for his answer.

"Pancakes."

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