708 N. 1st St.
Minneapolis, MN 55401
Region: Minneapolis (Downtown)
"I'm an outsider," says Bengt Washburn (the "g" is silent). "I grew up Mormon; devout Mormon, not crazy polygamist Mormon, not irreparably an outsider." He married a Catholic girl. "Now I'm outside of that culture, but I can never fully assimilate into the larger American culture." Being named Bengt was a catalyst to that feeling, he reckons. "She was building her own eccentricity, and we were part of that," he says of his mother. "We were accessories to her eccentricity. 'I'll have one kid named Bengt, and one named Taffeth.' I'm glad she did it, because we were different." That has translated, in a way, to his marriage. Bengt's wife is in the Air Force. The relationship is a case of opposites attracting, he says. He was smitten right from the start. "It was a blind date," he recalls. "I didn't have a house. I was living out of my car and in a tent. Her friends didn't tell her, because they didn't know. They weren't screening her blind dates very well. Technically they set her up with a homeless guy." After the first date, he realized he was going to need to find permanent housing. "I thought, 'Wow, I'm going to need to get an apartment if I'm going to hang on to this.'" That eventually led to his theory that men can only be civilized by the possibility of sex. "Straight guys, anyway," he notes. "I'm not sure what it's like on the other team, but if there was no possibility of sex, I'd be living in a box and would never shower." 18+.
May 21-25, 8 p.m.; May 24-25, 10:30 p.m., 2013