Runaway Pontoon

Last Sunday evening we received a phone call from one of our neighbors up at the cabin. There had been a pretty bad storm, and “the good news is your pontoon is still tied to your dock. The bad news is they’re both floating out in the middle of the bay.”

While the phone call was going on, Pete and Shirley had been walking by our cabin and noticed the unmanned, dock-ridden craft and Pete handed Shirley his drink and the lantern before jumping in the lake, swimming to the pontoon, untying it from the dock, and swimming it back to shore. All of this happened, I imagine, after he gulped down a can of spinach and showed off the anchor tattoos on his disproportionately enormous forearms.

He's Peter the Sailor Man!

Meanwhile, Shirley was left on shore with the lantern trying to explain to our neighbor (armed with a shower cap) who she was and how she knew us while making sure her dad (still fully clothed and wearing shoes) made it back out of the water. Fortunately he did without a problem, and thanks to Pete, our boat was completely fine. Mom and Dad drove up Monday morning to fish the dock and loose pieces of decking out of the bay, and managed to recover just about everything. After driving around and seeing the extent of the damage around other places on the lake, missing a few pieces of decking didn’t seem like too bad of a deal.

Pictured: Insurance Claim.

After work on Tuesday I joined the 17 other interns for an intern outing: seeing the Twins play Cleveland. I was extremely excited as I had never been to Target Field before. The weather wasn’t ideal – the heat index put the temperature around 116°F and the dew point was in the 80s – but we still had a ton of fun. After trailing the Indians 1-0 for several innings, Valencia pulled out a double play that won the game. I’m not even a huge baseball fan, but I wouldn’t argue going back to watch a few more games this season. I even found a Summit vendor, much to the chagrin and jealousy of one of my coworkers.

Sorry, Jon.

The intern bonding continued into Wednesday when we left work early with our HR reps to work at Feed My Starving Children in Eagan. FMSC is an organization that packages nutrient-rich meals to send to other schools and charities located in impoverished countries like Haiti, Kenya, and Ethiopia. It’s a very cool experience, and I hadn’t gone to work there since I was in high school. My favorite part about volunteering at FMSC is getting to see the immediate result. Our group of about 80 people packaged over 26,000 meals in an hour and a half, which will feed about 70 kids for an entire year.

After our volunteer work was over, I went out with my mom and Judy for happy hour to celebrate Judy’s full recovery. Judy was diagnosed with breast cancer last fall, has been cancer free for several months, and just recovered from a very successful reconstructive surgery. Ever the Bono fan, Judy was mostly happy she had tickets to see U2 perform in Minneapolis on Saturday. Having spent four months in Dublin and hearing all the hype (good, bad, and obnoxious) I was happy to be heading to the cabin for the weekend of Bono’s appearance.


The cabin was clearly less excited to see us, and expressed its displeasure by throwing us more awful weather. It had continued to storm during the week after Mom and Dad came back home, which was evident in the large tree worth of limbs strewn across the yard, all diligently gathered and stacked before we mowed the lawn. Saturday it rained, and I decided that having a straight week of 100+°F weather helped make 70°F seem sweatshirt-worthy. The “cold” did give me the excuse I’ve needed to make Irish coffees, though making them at 10pm with fully caffeinated coffee may have been a mistake.

Sunday’s weather wasn’t much better, so after burning the enormous pile of sticks collected from around the yard, we headed for home with the aid of a collective 32 oz. of Red Bull, and I went to Harry Potter again, this time with Dad.

Today was like any other Monday, with plenty of coffee and unanswered emails barricading me inside my cubicle. I also took the Computer Programmer Aptitude Battery, a test developed in 1964 to gauge for programming-minded people. The irony being that I took a test to measure my capacity for technology in a booklet that uses a sheet of carbon paper to compile my score. Half of you are impressed that I even know what carbon paper is and are reminiscing about your first term paper written on a typewriter, while the rest of you have already Googled on your phone what carbon paper is and are wrinkling your nose at how archaic the 1970s were.

They didn't even have reality TV!

I digress. The test actually had very little to do with technology, which was lucky because I can only imagine how a language-specific test booklet from 1964 would have read. The questions were mainly critical thinking and logic based, with one section full of fill-in-the-blank flowcharts, and the other with quasi-math questions that were probably on the ACT or SAT once upon a time. The idea is to get a grip on how we process information, and if we think in a fashion that’s fitting to programmers. Everyone in IS at Securian has taken it at some point or another. I thought it went pretty well, and I’m interested in seeing how I scored.

It’s been a long week, winding down just in time to jump into another one. Can anyone else get over how fast this summer is going?


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