(GK: Garrison Keillor; SS: Sue Scott; TR: Tim Russell; TK: Tom Keith)

GK: -- Our show comes to you from good old St. Paul. If you've ever come to Minnesota and landed at the St. Paul International Airport, you've probably noticed what seemed like another city off to the north and you wondered, "Is this all St. Paul?" No, those are our suburbs over there. We keep our airport over there so we're not bothered with jets taking off and landing over our houses. And we keep the ballpark and museums and big hotels there so we don't get all jammed up with so many tourists. We call that area over there, Minneapolis. What's the difference between Minneapolis and St. Paul? Well, Minneapolis is just different. It's hard to explain. Here, for example, is lunch in a Minneapolis restaurant.


SS: Welcome to Le Casa del Cuisine, are we having lunch today?

GK: Well-- I am, I don't know if you are or not.

SS: Thank you. I'm Cameron, I'll be your actress today. Our fish special today is eel sliced and lightly breaded and sauteed in a clarified parsnip oil and algae marinade and served with a touch of yogurt/cardamom froth. Our soup special is cream of watercress with gluten-free croutons drizzled with a smoked tofu emulsion. And the luncheon special is our root vegetable puree garnished with thinly-sliced walleye sushi and served on a bed of Vitamin E tablets.
GK: This is dinner in St. Paul.

SS: (OLDER WAITRESS) What'll it be? You want the cheeseburger or the goulash?

GK: You have soup today?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): Minestrone.

GK: How about chicken soup?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): Got it, but you don't want it.

GK: Oh. What is goulash, exactly?

SS: (OLDER WAITRESS) It's goulash. You want the minestrone?

GK: No. You have a salad?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): Iceberg lettuce and Thousand Island Dressing.

GK: Oh. Is that a diet Thousand Island?

SS: (CHUCKLES) Diet salad dressing. Yeah, that's a good one.

GK: Do you have a vinaigrette dressing?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): We got French or ranch.

GK: No vinaigrette? Italian?

SS (OLDER): I could pour minestrone on it.

GK: No, what else you have?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): We got French or ranch.

GK: I was hoping for something a little lighter. Not so heavy.

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): French isn't that heavy. Ranch is the heavy one. I know, I been here for 35 years. People going for a heavy dressing would go for ranch. Otherwise, you got French.

GK: I'll take the French. On the side.

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): On the side of what? The side of the lettuce?

GK: Beside the lettuce. On the plate. Or in a separate little cup of its own.

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): Maybe I should just bring the whole bottle, and a paint brush.

GK: Do you have a fish special?

SS (OLDER WAITRESS): Fish is on Friday. Today is Saturday.

GK: Yes, ma'am. ----- That's St. Paul. That's where our show comes from.

© Garrison Keillor 2002