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Met on Main Street: Jim Miller

Jim “super star” Miller sits on Main Street with his homemade cart. (Nick Longworth / Enterprise)

For the past week or two, ideas for this column began to run dry. Ironically, the weather may have caused part of this; we will call it half.

The other half stemmed from sourcing, and inspiration.

I intentionally don’t want this column to become mundane, or repetitive.

I would rather not write anything at all than put my name on some weekly obligation that lacks creativity and substance.

In an effort to obtain this goal, I specifically stray from a general “question and answer” rubric; I won’t be asking anyone about their favorite kind of food, music, or whether you like dogs or cats better. That idea has been done before, over and over; that idea got old awhile back.

If you’ve ever met me when I’ve been on assignment for this column, you know that I approached you purely at my own will. A completely random mesh of time, place and opportunity, I never plan to meet anyone that I’ve met – it just happens.

I’m trying to meet people, and see what their story is all about. I’m not trying to meet people and get the answers from them I already wanted before we ever even met.

And like so, I met Jim “super star” Miller on Main Street outside of Fuller’s Pawn.

An eccentric local who lives only a couple of blocks away, Miller was sitting on his homemade blue cart (complete with self-promoting logo), singing “Old Hank” and George Strait country tunes through a portable boom box that sat on top when I first approached him.

He was talkative and very open. He’s out there with his cart, a couple days a week (typically from noon to 2 p.m.), on any given corner of Main Street that catches his eye that day.

Retired a few years back, he’s simply “having a little fun and just messing around.”

With a stain on his shirt I guessed to be some sort of chocolate ice cream, he insisted that this form of entertainment – singing his country songs and watching people – is far better than sitting at home watching TV.

Sometimes locals just want to enjoy their own streets – even when, or perhaps especially when – they become a hub for out-of-towners and strangers.

It doesn’t take a tourist coming from afar, spending money on a vacation to make Park Rapids a cultural hub for the area.

Maybe all it actually takes is a super star or two.

Until next time, have a great week. Maybe soon it’s you I will meet!

Nick Longworth
A graduate from St. Cloud State University, Nick photographs and writes a variety of stories for nearly every section of The Park Rapids Enterprise. His duties also include section layouts and online content submission.
(218) 732-3364