December 31, 2014

Power Rankings: Top 30 Twin Cities Tweeters Of 2014

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I guess this is an annual thing now. Last year, in response to Maggie LaMaack ranking the "Top 20 Twin Cities Twitterers" for a City Pages article, I did my own ranking. Sure, it was controversial and ruined many friendships, but it also got people to step up their Twitter game. And that's all we should care about in this world, really. Anyway, below you'll find my updated rankings for 2014 in which I continue to say "Tweeters" instead of "Twitterers" and have expanded the list to 30.

(Note: @BJFait has been ruled ineligible for this list because her cat lives with me, but she is very funny on Twitter and also has very pretty eyes in real life. Everyone should follow her.)

Floyd Twitter1. @floyding (Zach Floyd)

Most underrated tweeter in Minnesota. Husband, father, friend of Ted Nugent. Lots of Louis C.K.-style parenting observations, but with visuals of the monsters.

Nora Purmort Twitter2. @noraborealis (Nora Purmort)

Wrote bravely, beautifully, and humorously about husband Aaron Purmort's battle with cancer and death. Mother of the world's cutest Instagram star, Ralphie.

Wessel Twitter3. @DanaWessel (Dana Wessel)

KTWIN-96.3 producer. Soccer weirdo. Bruce Springsteen aficionado. Runner of bits into the ground. No one looks better in a bandana.

Hageman Twitter4. @ParkerHageman (Parker Hageman)

Twins Daily blogger. Co-host of No Juice podcast. Go-to for scouting- and GIF-based Twins analysis. Live-tweeter of wife's driving. In possession of my elliptical machine.

Neuman Twitter5. @RandBallsStu (Steve Neuman)

Twitter-shaking switch from pseudonym to real name didn't cost any comedy. Runner of the Infinite Guest podcast network. Twinkie Town blogger. Packers fan troller.

Cameron Twitter6. @iamaromancer (Maria Cameron)

Deserves a much bigger Twitter following. Extremely funny, but also regularly writes poignant longer-form stuff. Questionable taste in boyfriends.

Swamptown Twitter7. @CSwamptown (Clarence Swamptown)

Co-host of The Sportive podcast. Rarely comes out of hiding, never reveals his real identity. Hater of tacos. Lover of firing everyone. Payroll whiner.

Rand Twitter8. @RandBall (Michael Rand)

The sun around which Minnesota's weird sports Twitter world revolves. Star Tribune digital sports editor and blogger. Elite baby/dog combo. Never played the game.

Zanatta Twitter9. @Mike_Zanatta (Mike Zanatta)

Best hair in the business. Big fan of the Timberwolves and doing pull-ups in front of windows. Pound for pound the Twin Cities' funniest sports tweeter.

LaMaack Twitter10. @MaggieLaMaack (Maggie LaMaack)

Publicist, writer, LOLOMG blog editor. Having more fun than her face suggests. Tinder savant. Upper Midwest mini corn dog-eating champion. Taylor Swift of Uptown.

Perkins Twitter11. @glenperkins (Glen Perkins)

Twins closer. Saved the All-Star game for the AL. Loves to interact with fans and fanboy bloggers. Very handsome, according to what my girlfriend says constantly.

Berry Twitter12. @_omgigi_ (Gigi Berry)

Minnesota's answer to Beyoncé, but with less Jay Z and more pizza. Always looking for bearded baes, never follicle flops. Elite emoji-ing.

Krawczynski Twitter13. @APkrawczynski (Jon Krawczynski)

Associated Press basketball, baseball, and football reporter. Not the guy from "The Office." Deserves less criticism than anyone, takes criticism better than everyone.

Ampersandria Twitter14. @ampersandria (Ampersandria Ya Dummy)

Transported here from a bygone era by the comedy gods. When not in the sky, can be found at a thrift store with wings on her eyes and hot Cheetos in her mouth.

Rupar Twitter15. @atrupar (Aaron Rupar)

FOX-9 reporter, ex-City Pages blogger. Liquor Lyle's regular. Timberwolves fan. Scarf-wearer. Repressed beardo. Our best mix of actual journalism and online silliness.

Welle Twitter16. @LizWelle (Liz Welle)

Burrito lover. Puts her hair up to prepare for eating chicken wings. Legend's legend.

Lambert Twitter17. @MeatSauce1 (Paul Lambert)

KFAN-100.3 morning show co-host, nicest person in radio. Anti-trolling troll. He wails.

Heidi Twitter18. @heidi_ugh (Heidi Ugh)

Comedy skills matched only by family's Coors Light-drinking skills. Nice to old people.

Brauer Twitter19. @dbrauer (David Brauer)

Veteran guru of local media landscape. Deservedly skeptical Twins season ticket holder.

Weisenberger Twitter20. @foyobli (Megan Weisenberger)

High school volleyball superstar. Lives life one brand at a time. Tweeter of good links.

Wolfson Twitter21. @DarrenWolfson (Darren Wolfson)

KSTP-5 and 1500-ESPN regular. Frequent scoop-getter. My mom's favorite on this list.

Rayno Twitter22. @AmeliaRayno (Amelia Rayno)

Star Tribune college basketball reporter. Bourbon drinker. Non-stop Bigfoot hunter.

Guentzel Twitter23. @LindsayGuentzel (Lindsay Guentzel)

Radio and TV host. Stella's regular. Cat/wine lady. Turns old furniture into antiques.

MFloyd Twitter24. @mfloyd21 (Melissa Floyd)

World's nicest mean person. Great taste in husbands. Biff Tannen to my Marty McFly.

Nelson Twitter25. @nnelson9 (Nick Nelson)

Twins Daily blogger. White rapper. Bad at Snapchat. Bullies people enjoying cat photos.

Marthaler Twitter26. @jmarthaler (Jon Marthaler)

The Sportive podcast ringleader. Star Tribune soccer blogger. Local sports masochist.

Jones Twitter27. @bianca101 (Bianca Jones)

World's smallest person with biggest-sounding name. WWE weirdo. Drinker of bad beer.

Berardino Twitter28. @MikeBerardino (Mike Berardino)

Pioneer Press reporter. Called "a prick" by Torii Hunter. Produces most Twins content.

29. @bbroxey (Brandon Broxey)Broxey Twitter

Moved from Texas just for this list. The Sportive podcast co-host. Tight pants wearer.

Bonnes Twitter30. @TwinsGeek (John Bonnes)

Took me out for milkshakes when I was 19 years old and now won't leave me alone.

If you read this whole thing and still won't follow @AaronGleeman on Twitter you're a monster.

December 5, 2014


• At the press conference announcing his $10.5 million contract Torii Hunter used the "those nerds never played the game" cliche when asked about his terrible defensive numbers and then called Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press "a prick" four different times in response to questions about Hunter's very public and repeated stance against gay rights. As if there weren't already enough reasons to question to wisdom of signing him for purely on-field reasons.

Parker Hageman of Twins Daily went inside the numbers to show why Hunter's defense rates so poorly, including video of specific plays. Hageman played the game in high school, so not sure if that counts or what.

Aaron Purmort died at age 35, leaving behind a great wife, a great son, and a community who loved him online and in person. He also went out with the best obituary I've ever seen.

• Wanna buy Jonathan Papelbon's condo? It costs $7 million and includes zero colors.

• This is probably one of the top 10 signs someone has posted in the elevator of my building during the 10 months I've lived here.

Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post raised a lot of good points in arguing against the need for online comment sections attached to articles.

Jerry Kill was named Big Ten coach of the year just 15 months after Minneapolis Star Tribune columnist Jim Souhan wrote that he shouldn't be allowed to coach the Gophers.

• This review of the new "America" restaurant at Donald Trump's hotel in Toronto is pure gold.

• Out of shape amateur MMA fighter tries the "Showtime" kick made famous by Anthony Pettis:

Some might say he failed, but failure is subjective anyway.

Josh Willingham announced his retirement, two months after his wife got mad at Berardino for reporting he planned to retire.

Dave Brown made his Fan Graphs debut writing about Willingham being the losing-est player.

• As someone who prefers staying home over just about anything movie theaters trying to be more like your living room is intriguing. But it'll never compete with not leaving the house.

Chris Rock gave a lot of interesting answers in a long, wide-ranging interview with Frank Rich.

Fran Tarkenton is never going to make the baseball Hall of Fame after admitting this stuff.

• It turns out the Twins' new coaching staff looks awfully familiar.

• If given the chance, how many MLB teams would wipe the slate clean and rid themselves of all contracts on the books? I think the Twins would likely be one of the them, despite Phil Hughes.

• Two of my favorites, Todd Barry and Tom Scharpling, sat down for a good chat.

• Scharpling is bringing "The Best Show On WFMU" back, minus WFMU, as a podcast.

• For the second time in three months the Minneapolis Star Tribune published an anti-transgender ad that never would have been accepted if it depicted any other minority group.

Gerald Green had one of the best in-game dunks you'll ever see:

And he's playing well for the Suns after looking like a bust early in his career.

• As expected, I crushed Michael Rand in the Minneapolis Star Tribune fantasy football challenge.

• Coup d'etat has good fries, gnocchi, fish and chips, and whiskey. Joy Summers wrote a good article about their one-year anniversary in Uptown, including guys like me asking for more TVs.

• My pick for Minneapolis' most underrated restaurant, Louie's Wine Dive, got a nice write-up centered around their chef, Patrick Matthews.

• "Gilmore Girls" watching update: Jon Hamm was on an episode in Season 3.

• Heyday is a fantastic restaurant and I'm sure that will remain true, but seeing Lorin Zinter's smiling face was a big part of the experience.

• Nye's Polonaise is closing after 65 years as a Northeast Minneapolis staple.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Aaron Gleeman in a bear suit"
- "Naked parties"
- "Paul Molitor's wife"
- "Snoop Dogg and Eddie Guardado"
- "Fred Durst baseball"
- "Angelina Jolie in Minnesota"
- "Where is Scott Ullger now?"
- "Lizzie Caplan smokes Marlboro lights"

• Finally, this week's music video is "Best That I Can" by Vance Joy:

This week's blog content is sponsored by Uber, which is offering a free ride to first-time users who sign up with the promo code "UberGleeman."

October 17, 2014


• Approximately one million people sent me the New York Times' "brunch is for jerks" article, but here's the thing: Combining breakfast food and booze is undeniably great. End of story.

• UFC announcer Mike Goldberg did play-by-play for the Vikings-Lions game and it was a mess, with botched names and confused calls throughout. Afterward he cursed out people on Twitter who were criticizing his performance, at which point FOX removed him from their NFL schedule.

• If this is true about Kate Mara ... well, then I quit.

• How much payroll space do the Twins have and, more importantly, will they actually spend it?

Martha Stewart vs. Gwyneth Paltrow is this generation's Notorious B.I.G. vs. Tupac.

• Congrats to friend of Dana Wessel for winning "Mrs. Arkansas International, 2014."

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we drank beer at 612 Brew and revisited our preseason predictions to see just how terrible they were.

• We also had Twins beat reporter Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press as our guest on "Gleeman and The Geek" two episodes ago and lots of listeners enjoyed it more than usual.

• Imagine if someone from England looked just like Aaron Rodgers and hung around Green Bay:

Tom Wrigglesworth is a quality name, too.

• I "took issue" with something a local newspaper columnist wrote about Joe Mauer and brain injuries, leading to City Pages' amusing recap and this brilliant "Douse Mauer in Gasoline and Chase Him with Matches" parody by Steve "Randball's Stu" Neuman.

• Speaking of which, one year ago Neuman wrote my favorite parody ever, including this opening line: "As night-life emissaries go, one could do better than Aaron Gleeman."

Maggie "Boss Lady Yung Mags" LaMaack is one of the most underrated writers in Minnesota, this time on the subject of using Tinder to date.

• The local chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America gave Ron Gardenhire their "media good guy" award on his way out.

Andrew Friedman left the $50 million payrolls in Tampa Bay for the $250 million payrolls in Los Angeles and sent a goodbye letter to a Rays blog.

• I went to a high school journalism conference when the Final Four was here in 2001 and Bob Ryan's storytelling mesmerized me, so I enjoyed Grantland's profile of the Boston sportswriter.

• Believe it or not the Twins had many valuable players this season and I ranked them on my hypothetical team MVP ballot.

• Two all-time greats, Bill Murray and Howard Stern, had a nice long chat and it was very fun.

• You may not think so, but you'll definitely want to watch a little kid recreate Patrick Swayze's dance moves from the final scene of "Dirty Dancing":

I can do the same thing, except with Elaine Benes' dance moves in "Seinfeld."

Dax Shepard is one of the most underrated actors/funny people around and he was predictably funny/charming chatting with Marc Maron.

• I spent a week reading "Gone Girl" and wherever I put it down--on the bed, on the floor, on random places around the house--she immediately slept on it.

• On a related note, my power rankings of David Fincher movies:

1. "Seven"
2. "Fight Club"
3. "The Social Network"
4. "The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button"
5. "The Game"
6. "Gone Girl"
7. "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo"
8. "Panic Room"
9. "Zodiac"
10. "Alien 3"

I apologize in advance for not liking "Zodiac" more. I realize that will bother many people.

J.J. Hardy, whom the Twins basically gave away to the Orioles in 2011, signed a three-year, $40 million contract extension to remain in Baltimore.

• Thrilled that Tom Scharpling is bringing back "The Best Show" after reconsidering retirement.

• I agree with Rick Nelson's review in the Minneapolis Star Tribune: Libertine has quickly become one of my favorite restaurants for dinner and brunch.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Man who couldn't stop laughing at his own twin"
- "Sweet Martha's Cookies revenue"
- "Sylvester Stallone young beard"
- "What will happen to Rick Anderson?"
- "Jerome Felton's girlfriend"
- "What was Aaron Burr's sidekick's name?"
- "Jon Taffer pumpkin carving stencil"
- "Naked twins"

• Finally, this week's music video is "Take Me To Church" by Hozier:

October 7, 2014

Gleeman and The Geek #165: Mike Berardino and Manager Searches

On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we're joined by special guest Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press for beers at New Bohemia and topics included the Twins' manager search and potential wild card candidates, expectations for the offseason, and eating a giant pretzel.

Gleeman and The Geek: Episode 165

In addition to the direct download link above you can also subscribe to the podcast via iTunes.

Here's what we looked like recording the podcast:

New Bohemia podcast

This week's blog content is sponsored by Uber, which is offering a free ride to first-time users who sign up with the promo code "UberGleeman."

October 11, 2013


• This week the New York Times' "fashion and style" section featured an article by Matt Haber about Minnesotans trying to date in Uptown. It was met mostly with derision, as locals felt it was cheesy and cliche-filled. And it definitely was, as the intro makes very clear:

As night-life emissaries go, one could do worse than Robert John Wayne, a 31-year-old artist here who happily told a recent visitor about everything from an indigenous delicacy called the Juicy Lucy (a burger with cheese baked into the patty) to what women want, something Mr. Wayne should know, seeing as how he's dating four of them.

"Nobody's exclusive," he said "That's what dating is." Mr. Wayne, who described his work as "graffiti realism," was at Mortimer's, a wood-paneled bar on Lyndale Avenue in the swath of Minneapolis known as Uptown.

However, as someone who started hanging out in Uptown recently I mostly found it amusing and made a joke about what a quote of mine would've looked like in the article. And then a few days later friend of Randball's Stu wrote a brilliant parody of the Times article starring local sports bloggers for the Minneapolis Star Tribune's site. I'd suggest reading the Times version first and then reading Stu's version, because it's a masterful spoof, but here's how it begins:

As night-life emissaries go, one could do better than Aaron Gleeman, a 30-year-old Minnetonka sports blogger who wearily told a recent visitor about everything from a baseball statistic called FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) to what women want, something Mr. Gleeman shouldn't know, seeing as how he recently asked one if he could live-tweet their date.

"It's an endless series of half-starts and missed opportunities," he said. "That's what dating is." Mr. Gleeman, who described his work as "sitting at my computer and writing about baseball as I wait for death's sweet embrace," was at Stella's, a multi-level bar in the swath of Minneapolis known as Uptown.

And then it just keeps building from there. As one of the main characters I'm biased, but it's one of the funniest things I've ever read and so perfectly matches the tone and structure of the New York Times version. My sincere hope is that for the rest of my life whenever anyone Googles me that article is the first result they see. Also, you should follow Stu on Twitter for more genius.

• Here's a non-parody response to the New York Times dating-in-Minnesota article that's also interesting. I'm definitely very guilty of No. 2 on her list and thought for a second she might be talking about me with the quote: "We had a really awesome date and then he bailed on the second date citing 'baseball' as the reason."

• So the Twins are hiring a "full-time data engineer" and OH MY GOD LOOK AT THE COMMENTS.

• Going back to read the stuff about Christian Ponder from right after the Vikings drafted him is quite an experience.

• On this week's "Gleeman and The Geek" episode we talked a ton about Ron Gardenhire, sung the praises of 612 Brew, and unknowingly had our picture taken from across the bar.

• I'm probably Hawk Harrelson's biggest/only fan in Minnesota, but Awful Announcing's lengthy compilation of the season's best "Sad Hawk" moments is undeniably magical:

Harrelson is the Vin Scully of freaking out on the air when things go against the White Sox.

• Speaking of which, Scully will record your outgoing voicemail message for $299 and the money goes to Autism charity. "Hello, this is Vin Scully. You’ve reached Aaron, but there’s zero chance he wants to talk to you, or anyone, on the phone. Seriously, just text him. But leave a message if you want to, I guess."

• Scully's radio call of Juan Uribe's series-winning homer was predictably lovable.

• No one ever listens to me about John Mayer, but maybe you'll listen to Molly Lambert and Tess Lynch.

• Seriously, are any of you even real?

• Twins Daily's annual "Offseason Handbook" is available for presale, so order now and you can get tons of great content featuring analysis of free agent and trade targets, payroll breakdowns, and organizational depth charts for just $4.95. Not only is it a worthwhile product for a very fair price, buying the "Offseason Handbook" also supports all the free content John Bonnes, Parker Hageman, Nick Nelson, and Seth Stohs churn out at Twins Daily all season.

• Hageman's year-end collection of Twins numbers has lots of interesting tidbits.

• I'm not on Tinder, in part because I have a Blackberry and in part because it sounds awful, but if I were on it I'd follow this guy's lead and exclusively talk to women in rap lyrics.

David Ortiz celebrating with Koji Uehara is not safe for work.

• America's highest-paid sportswriter.

• It might be time to re-think America's drug laws now that they're hurting our chubby comedians.

Aubrey Plaza behaved around Chris Bosh the same way I'd behave around Aubrey Plaza.

• In addition to being one half of my favorite podcast, Dave Shumka also writes funny stuff for CBC Music, like how WebMD would diagnose Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus based on their lyrics.

• Take two minutes and see why Jen Kirkman is great:

Related: My mom really liked that video.

Michael Rand is now shooting daily videos for the Minneapolis Star Tribune's website and his latest captures the pure, unadulterated Dana Wessel Experience.

Gabe Vodicka of Flagpole wrote a really good article about Jason Isbell's success as a solo artist, struggles with substance abuse, and songwriting prowess. I'm going to see Isbell at the Varsity Theater in a couple weeks and couldn't be more excited about it.

• How much payroll space do the Twins have and will they actually spend it?

This exchange made me chuckle. Funny how fast it goes from strong opinion nationally to being nice locally.

• Also: Presented without comment, other than to say those all occurred within 24 hours.

Amy Poehler wrote about working at an ice cream parlor for The New Yorker.

Marc Maron's new stand-up comedy special "Thinky Pain" is now available on Netflix and I love that the first person you see and hear is Tom Scharpling giving a pep talk.

• I enjoyed Todd Barry's chat with Natasha Leggero.

• Does anyone in or around Green Bay have any leads on lodging for Packers-Vikings weekend next month? I'm thinking about driving there with a bunch of doofuses, but hotels are all booked up and we'd rather not make a trek from somewhere like Appleton. We're willing to get creative.

• Some of this week's weird and random search engine queries that brought people here:

- "Professional baseball duos"
- "Aaron Gleeman hot wife"
- "What if I eat Green Giant steamers every night?"
- "Nick Punto head-first slide"
- "Influential conservative podcasts"
- "Aaron gettin fat"
- "0.25 pounds in one day is how many pounds in one year?"
- "Lori Loughlin socks"

• Finally, because I stumbled across this video and immediately fell in love with both the singer and her acoustic rendition of the Whitney Houston song this week's music video is Possum Plow's cover of "I Wanna Dance With Somebody":

Interested in sponsoring a week of and advertising your product, service, local business, or website directly to thousands of readers each day? Click here for details.

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