For our nineteenth episode, we decided to get very serious and explore a topic many of our listeners have been demanding to know more about. Click here to check it out.
On today’s episode, we ask a v important question that no other goofy 90 second podcast that claims to be about North Star State history asks: How many of the United States are actually, in fact, named Minnesota?
Take that, Minnesota Historical Society…
“Around the corner,
around the country,
for work or play, you’re on your way!
The convenience stores of……________?”
Ad jingles are a staple of American business. Subway’s “Five Dollar Footlong Song”, McDonald’s “McPick 2 Anthem”, and others reverberate throughout the minds of the populace, driving otherwise sanguine, peaceful people to want to end their own lives in a particularly violent fashion with their saccharine melodies and inane lyrics.
Of particular note is the hotly contested debate between the last lines of the “SuperAmerica/Speedway” jingle. Americans from the East Coast (particularly those long-suffering fans of a certain 8-13 New York professional baseball team) insist the last line ends with a plug for the latter company, while folks from Minnesota swear it’s the former (link not found, but talk to any local and they’ll sing it for you).
To investigate, MINute applied for and received a coveted Duck Duck Grey Duck Grant from the Minnesota Department of Cultural Affairs, which provided the resources for this arguably frivolous pursuit. First, we spoke with Dr. George Sonderand, Annoying Music History Scholar at the University of Western Mankato State College, who recalled for us the long-simmering rivalry between the two camps.
“It still really isn’t clear which company released their jingle first”, Dr. Sonderand told us. At least, that’s what we think he said; we couldn’t tell because he was eating a popover at the time, and it was a heckin’ big one at that.
He continued, wiping the crumbs from his crusty old lips. He is a gross old man. “Some say Speedway was first in 1989, others will say SA got there before Speedway did during the Carter administration. Most people agree, though, that the Trump family had something to do with it, and purposely released two versions at the same time to get people to fight with each other while they were busy cutting a deal to bury a pipeline through Native American territories”.
That’ll do for us. We blew the rest of the DDGD grant on Grain Belt and Heggies, which is perfectly acceptable considering that the money can be spent on Minnesota-related items.
Georgina Fart and David St. Moron contributed to this story. To hear more from Georgina and David, be sure to subscribe to the Minute Podcast on Twitter.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 was recently re-booted on Netflix with a brand new cast and crew. Most folks know the original show has its roots in Minneapolis, but we uncovered a clip from a WCCO radio show that predates Mike, Joel, the Mads, and the Bots. Click here to give it a listen!
The other day, Walt Disney Motion Pictures and Lucasfilm Ltd. released the teaser trailer for The Last Jedi, the eighth episode in their ongoing Star Wars saga.
MINute thought we’d take a moment to explore Minnesota’s connection to the films; namely, the fact that a locally-produced movie provided inspiration to George Lucas’ vision.
White Harvest, a 1969 film directed by George Andersen while a student at Macalester, was an “outer space” epic shot in North Dakota that captured much of the scenery and feel Lucas would utilize later on in grander fashion. Many concur that a battle scene set at the military base near Minot inspired the “Ice Planet Hoth” scene from The Empire Strikes Back. Others have speculated that Chewbacca, the giant furry “Wookiee” who played Harrison Ford’s on-screen dog, was inspired by Ron Carlson, a 7’1″ gas station proprietor from Williston with a tragic case of hypertrichosis.
While we here at MINute are excited for the upcoming film, we would be remiss if we did not encourage our readers to remember White Harvest‘s signature tagline—that the “Air Force is with you…always”.