Welcome to my fourth annual post highlighting my top ten experiences of the past year. I was inspired to start this post after noticing a shift in society to value experiences over material goods.
2014 saw less travel – evidenced by my Delta miles being a piddly 7,000. This means 2015 will not be blessed with Platinum status so I’ll be at the back of the plane and boarding in Zone 3 with the rest of you.
To all my friends and family who didn’t make the list this year or disagree with your placement, remember there is always next year. Cheers to another great year and for what 2015 has in store.
10. Ran the Torchlight 5K
My sister Ellie and I ran a 5K through downtown Minneapolis in July. Thanks to the countless times running around Lake of Isles, I finished with a time of 21.30! The actual race was brutal, but drinking the free Mich Goldens with Ellie at the finish line was very rewarding. Look for us to bump up to a 10K in 2015.
9. Hog Roast / Camping with Friends
I went on two camping trips during the summer of 2014.
The first was to attend the Hog Roast at my friend Ryan’s cabin on Pocket Lake (picture above). Side note: Ryan and another friend Mike recently launched an organic grab-and-go eatery in the Minneapolis Skyway called SIMPLS, check it out. The Hog Roast has been an annual tradition for the last four years and has somehow alluded the Top Ten list thus far. Nothing beats eating some slow cooked hog, playing yard games and getting the crew together for some fun in the great outdoors.
The second camping trip was with my friends Riley, Megan and Karla. It was a great trip except we had one casualty: Riley’s left flip flop. Despite my valiant attempt to save it, it will never be seen again. Sorry about that bud.
8. Moved into a New Apartment
I moved into an apartment near Lake of the Isles in the Lowry Hill/Uptown area. It’s small and has some character, but has a great location – its proximity to downtown gave me the opportunity to bike to work during the summer. I also want to formally go on record with my claim as the fastest biker on a Nice Ride in the Twin Cities. Challengers please take a number.
7. Ice Fishing
2014 was the year I finally became a true Minnesotan: I went ice fishing and hunting.
Riley and I went ice fishing with our good high school buddy Chad. Riley fit in well with his ’80s moon boots and JanSport hat (pictured above). Despite his best efforts to scare all the fish away with this outfit, we did catch some fish..or was that each others lines?
Part two of me becoming a Minnesotan was going hunting for the first time. My college buddy Derek and his family graciously took me in for the weekend and introduced me to the hunting culture in Wadena, MN. From filling our thermoses with coffee at 5am to stopping by the VFW for a nightcap, I enjoyed every minute of it including shooting my first buck. If anyone wants some venison, I have a very full freezer.
5. Virtual Care Inflection Point
Zipnosis had white-hot growth in 2014 driven by patient demand for new virtual access points. We are now powering virtual care with several health system partners across the country, have a great team and are poised to make a strong push in 2015.
4. Jerry Seinfeld
Karla and I got to see my favorite comedian Jerry Seinfeld at the Orpheum theater in January. Seinfeld is my favorite show so of course I spent the whole show laughing as Jerry brought his act into the current age of cell phones, social media and the Internet. Seeing him live, you can really appreciate his humor and the amount of time he invests in his craft. I wrote about how Jerry spends years writing and tweaking his jokes to get the perfect reaction from the audience here.
3. Sailing on Lake Harriet
Since I moved to the Uptown area, I wanted to take advantage of my proximity to the lakes by buying a buoy on Lake Harriet for my dad’s sailboat. After spending 20 years in my parent’s garage, the sailboat was finally able to stretch its legs on the cool blue water of Harriet. I built my confidence as a sailer through changing winds, different weather conditions and the occasional 747 flying overhead. The experience wasn’t always perfect as we had to devise strategies to prevent the boat from turtling during storms, cleaning up after the ducks and rowing a half mile each direction to and from the buoy. Overall, it was a great summer spending time with my dad and family that convinced me there is nothing better than the wind in your sail and the sun dancing across the water.
2. Golf Trip to Whistling Straits and Erin Hills in Wisconsin
The Bash Bros / Good Ol’ Boys crew really outdid ourselves by playing 63 holes over four days at Whistling Straits (host of the 2004, 2010 and 2015 PGA Championships) and Erin Hills (future host of the 2017 US Open) in Kohler, Wisconsin.
Whistling Straights sits atop bluffs overlooking Lake Michigan with panoramic views that rival my 2013 golf experience at Torrey Pines. Erin Hills is nestled in between the corn fields of the Wisconsin heartland. These courses were challenging and really tested both your mental and physical toughness. The Good Ol’ Boys ran away with the title, but if I could have hit every shot as my caddy recommended then it would have been a different story…
1. Ski Trips
Karla and I made our way to Colorado in February and December for some skiing at Copper Mountain, Breckenridge and Loveland.
We were very fortunate to have perfect conditions for both trips with fresh powder each day. We got absolutely dumped on with 22 inches of snow over 2 days during our trip in December. Karla has yet to see the sun and blue sky in Colorado so she is hoping for that in 2015 and I am hoping for more 22 inch powder days.
WWE Elimination Chamber at Target Center
I am not a big wrestling fan, but when 15 of my friends booked a suite to watch the WWE’s Elimination Chamber pay-per-view event, I couldn’t say no. Daniel Bryan’s YES! chant really was pretty incredible.