Since today was one of the most glorious days of the summer, my family and I decided to visit "The Great Minnesota F-Word"...otherwise known as The Minnesota State Fair. As the second-largest state fair in the United States (Texas takes the crown), life around Minnesota slows down the last week of August as most of its populace heads through the gates for the familiar Fair experience.
This year was no exception as 25 quadrillion visitors (that's an official count, by the way) nudged and baby-stepped their way around the sprawling fairgrounds in search of farm animals and ultra-fattening foods.
Of all the farm animals, the sheep seemed to stand out as the most super-heroic of the lot, as you can see from The Woolen Avenger, mysterious defender of the sheep pen (it's actually a special covering to keep competing sheep clean and shiny).
Other animal attractions include the Mutant Cow of Mankato, as Minnesotans gather 'round to bask in its glory while offering live sacrifices to gain its favor.
As popular as the animal exhibits are, ultra-fattening foods are undeniably the biggest draw of the fair. As a testament to the enduring popularity of the Pronto Pup (aka "corn dog"), virtually every food sold at the fair now includes the "on a stick" designation. For example, "Pizza on a Stick", "Pork Chop on a Stick" and (I kid you not) "Fried-Twinkie on a Stick".
Obviously, these obnoxious treats can wreck havoc on the waistline, as a bloated Batman demonstrates.
Even the normally-svelte Spider-Man (seen here cavorting with a harem of Tweety Birds) packed on the pounds during today's visit.
After one to many deep-fried candy bars (another actual State Fair delicacy), Superman swelled to the point of resembling an Ed McGuinness drawing!
All the junk food seems to have made the Hulk surlier than usual, as the gentle Flipper becomes the target of his irrational rage!
Also part of my State Fair superhero experience was the entrancing illustration I came across of Madam Twisto, a member of the original Doom Patrol if I'm not mistaken.
Sadly, she didn't last long with the Doom Patrol, since her head-twisting powers seldom came in handy against General Immortus and the Brotherhood of Evil.
Well, that wraps it up for this year's Minnesota State Fair visit. If you're ever in Minnesota the final week of August, be sure to include the State Fair on your itinerary. After all, where else can you witness the ritual torture of M & M candies?
Update: The official attendance figure for Saturday is in. It looks like my original 25 quadrillion figure was a little on the high side. Actual attendance: 167,634.