7 Minute Miles

Cisco Live! Orlando 2018

Posted Wednesday, June 20th, 2018 03:08 pm GMT -5 in Disney,Family,Food,Technology,Travel,Work at 3:08 PM

Last week I attended my second Cisco Live! conference in Orlando (last year was my first in Vegas; next year will be San Diego). It blows my mind how much it must cost to host 25,000 people in a facility like the Orange County Convention Center – setup, food twice a day, video production for keynotes and sessions, utilities, staffing, etc. And then there was the customer appreciation event Wednesday night at Universal Studios, which not only included exclusive access to the original park for four hours, but also had free food and drinks everywhere and big name concerts from Leon Bridges, Cake and Sam Hunt. No wonder my annual maintenance bill never goes down…

Speaking of bills, I needed to do this trip on the cheap, so I stayed with my brother and his wife and leaned on them for ground transportation (along with some 25% off Lyft rides). He took me to Animal Kingdom on Sunday night after I arrived so I could check out the new(ish) Avatar stuff. Na’vi River Journey has the cool Audio-Animatronics Shaman of Songs, while Flight of Passage lived up to the nearly two hour wait. We had dinner at the excellent Satu’li Canteen, which really elevates the whole theme park food quality experience, in my opinion.

My conference pass this time was a new intermediate “Imagine” badge, so I didn’t get access to all of the sessions (or a T-shirt or backpack). It did get me into all of the keynotes and Innovation Showcase presentations, though, along with the “World of Solutions” trade show, the party at Universal and free food for breakfast and lunch each day. I found most of the sessions to be useful and not just a week-long sales pitch to buy new stuff (like you get at some conferences). I learned about a lot of new technology trends, including improved security techniques, software-defined networking and container-based development, along with the evolution of the Cisco platforms and products we’ve deployed at the stadium (which thankfully I don’t need to replace right away).

After the conference wrapped up, I had a little extra time to kill before flying home (I wish the standby rules for Delta were more customer friendly). I spent some more time checking out all the changes at Disney Springs, where I had had dinner earlier in the week with my brother at Art Smith’s wonderful Homecomin’ restaurant. World of Disney was half-closed for remodeling, but I still managed to find some things for people. It was interesting to see retail additions like UNIQLO and the dining scene continues to impress with the likes of Morimoto Asia, Jock Lindsey’s Hanger Bar and The Boathouse (in addition to all of the old favorites). Also caught Deadpool 2 at the AMC and made a quick trip to Tampa to check out the very impressive Seminole Hard Rock Tampa complex.

See you in San Diego?

Innovation Showcase

Posted Tuesday, June 12th, 2018 02:56 pm GMT -5 in Technology,Travel,Work at 2:56 PM

Lots of interesting presentations @ Cisco Live!

Florida NerdFest 🤓

Posted Monday, June 11th, 2018 08:58 am GMT -5 in Technology,Travel,Work at 8:58 AM

Cisco Live! 2018, Orlando

Off to Orlando

Posted Sunday, June 10th, 2018 06:25 am GMT -5 in Travel,Work at 6:25 AM

The early air choo-choo

Today’s office doge

Posted Thursday, June 7th, 2018 10:13 am GMT -5 in Pets,Work at 10:13 AM

See what happens when you open the beef jerky?

Not the outcome I wanted

Posted Monday, June 4th, 2018 03:54 pm GMT -5 in Biking,Work at 3:54 PM

But still proud of the 430+ miles I rode

Turn out the lights…

Posted Sunday, April 29th, 2018 11:52 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 11:52 PM

…the party’s over

No snow or ice here

Posted Saturday, April 14th, 2018 11:27 am GMT -5 in Sports,Work at 11:27 AM

Just a whole lotta dirt and gas fumes

The choo-choo wins again

Posted Saturday, April 14th, 2018 09:02 am GMT -5 in Personal,Weather,Work at 9:02 AM

So thankful for this option

Party in the Pit

Posted Saturday, April 7th, 2018 02:55 pm GMT -5 in Work at 2:55 PM

Monster Jam 2018

Last Day

Posted Sunday, March 11th, 2018 06:19 am GMT -5 in Baseball,Work at 6:19 AM

Three early baseball MOD shifts for 2018

Got my Duke

Posted Wednesday, March 7th, 2018 12:44 pm GMT -5 in Football,Shopping,Sports,Work at 12:44 PM

The big staff sale finally made it reasonable

Life after LII

Posted Tuesday, March 6th, 2018 02:39 pm GMT -5 in Football,Personal,Work at 2:39 PM

Now a full month in the rear-view mirror, Super Bowl LII is history. It’s hard to describe what it feels like to have this over and done – we’ve been talking and working towards that day for more than two years. I wrote a tweet about looking forward to the Monday after, but even that day had an early start and a full day of work breaking things down to prepare for the next event in the building.

People have asked me how it went, what would I do differently and how many celebrities I saw. My number one goal was to not be in the newspaper for the wrong reason, so mission accomplished in that regard. In fact, we did get some great press about crushing the WiFi record, so I’m very happy with that. The Super Bowl isn’t truly our event – the NFL runs and controls everything and we just assist as needed, so there wasn’t much I could really change. As for stars, I (politely) asked Peyton Manning to get out of my way, but that was about it.

The NFL uses many different companies to help put on the event and it was a pleasure working with all of them. In the technology realm, we worked with WBL Services of Seattle, owned by Bill Lipscomb. He and his team of nerds (lead by the super smart Nikos Mouat) were a huge help in supporting not only the stadium, but all of the activations around the metro. Todd Barnes and his team from Populous performed with a logistical calmness that would drive most people insane. I was also impressed with the graphics team from bluemedia, who created signage and displays all around town that looked beautiful.

In addition to all of these groups, we re-enlisted many of the people that helped design and build the stadium to come back for game day support. This included my favorite team of engineers from CenturyLink (Andy, Mark, Evan, Dennis and Greg) and the amazing group of WiFi experts at AmpThink, lead by Bill Anderson and Wesley Terry. Parsons, Cisco, Verizon and WIN also had small armies of support people ready to help if needed and the Department of Homeland Security had our back monitoring for network threats the entire time. And kudos to the NBC broadcast crew, who really turned out to be self-supporting the entire week.

So what’s next? Personally, I’m going on vacation later this month with the whole family. Events like the Super Bowl require a ton of time away from home and come with a stress level that is not “super” beneficial for one’s health, so it will be good to get away and recharge. I’ll also pay a visit this month to Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the home of Super Bowl LIII. Their team was up here before our event and I’m looking forward to sharing stories (and seeing their cool new building). Everyone is now talking about the Final Four, but we have a whole lot of other work to do before then. Never a dull moment…

Baseball ready

Posted Monday, February 26th, 2018 02:09 pm GMT -5 in Baseball,Work at 2:09 PM

First games start tomorrow

From SB to Home Show

Posted Friday, February 16th, 2018 10:52 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 10:52 PM

Way to rock it, ops department


Posted Friday, February 9th, 2018 10:26 am GMT -5 in Football,Links,Technology,Work at 10:26 AM

Fans use 16.31 TB of Wi-Fi data during Super Bowl 52 at U.S. Bank Stadium

Look what I found

Posted Thursday, February 8th, 2018 02:46 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Football,Music,Work at 2:46 PM

JT, you forgot your sign

My partner in crime

Posted Tuesday, February 6th, 2018 10:53 pm GMT -5 in Football,Friends,Technology,Work at 10:53 PM

He’s the secret weapon

Not my best side, but OK

Posted Tuesday, February 6th, 2018 02:36 pm GMT -5 in Football,Links,Technology,Television,Work at 2:36 PM


Two achievements unlocked

Posted Monday, February 5th, 2018 12:42 pm GMT -5 in Football,Sports,Work at 12:42 PM

Step 1: open building. Step 2: host Super Bowl LII

Purple and gold in ATL?

Posted Monday, February 5th, 2018 10:42 am GMT -5 in Football,Work at 10:42 AM

Yup, the confetti was shaped like the trophy

Fly Headless Eagle Fly

Posted Monday, February 5th, 2018 02:55 am GMT -5 in Football,Work at 2:55 AM


JT was here

Posted Monday, February 5th, 2018 02:54 am GMT -5 in Concerts,Football,Music,Work at 2:54 AM

I don’t know, I thought the halftime show was pretty good


Posted Monday, February 5th, 2018 02:52 am GMT -5 in Football,Television,Work at 2:52 AM

This made me laugh

Thank you, Arizona

Posted Thursday, February 1st, 2018 01:48 pm GMT -5 in Food,Work at 1:48 PM

University of Phoenix Stadium sent us donuts

Enjoying my promotion to CIO

Posted Thursday, February 1st, 2018 11:48 am GMT -5 in Business,Links,Technology,Work at 11:48 AM


Suit & Tie

Posted Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 10:41 pm GMT -5 in Music,Quotes,Work at 10:41 PM

Going out so hot, just like an oven. And I’ll burn myself, but just had to touch it…

A Historic Night

Posted Monday, January 15th, 2018 12:04 am GMT -5 in Football,Work at 12:04 AM

Proud to be a part of this team

These are kinda cute

Posted Sunday, January 14th, 2018 12:07 am GMT -5 in Football,Shopping,Work at 12:07 AM

Mini SB helmets in the office

It’s really happening

Posted Tuesday, January 9th, 2018 09:40 am GMT -5 in Football,Work at 9:40 AM

The tents are going up

Defend the North

Posted Sunday, December 17th, 2017 06:49 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 6:49 PM

Congrats to the Vikings on winning the NFC North title

Cool to be on the floor

Posted Wednesday, December 13th, 2017 09:24 pm GMT -5 in Sports,Work at 9:24 PM

First annual Minnesota Sports Awards, Target Center

Movie Night 🍿

Posted Wednesday, December 6th, 2017 08:03 pm GMT -5 in Movies,Work at 8:03 PM

Elf on a very big shelf

Son of a…

Posted Saturday, December 2nd, 2017 04:27 pm GMT -5 in Cars,Work at 4:27 PM


Anatomy of a touchdown

Posted Saturday, November 25th, 2017 12:26 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 12:26 PM

So. Much. Football.


Posted Friday, November 24th, 2017 12:42 pm GMT -5 in Football,Television,Work at 12:42 PM

Games 15 through 21

What is this madness?

Posted Wednesday, November 8th, 2017 05:21 pm GMT -5 in Food,Football,Work at 5:21 PM

Doritos taco carts at the stadium

Last 4:45am start this week

Posted Thursday, November 2nd, 2017 06:04 am GMT -5 in Schools,Sports,Work at 6:04 AM

MSHSL State Soccer Championship Day ⚽️

Nice addition to/from Delta

Posted Sunday, October 22nd, 2017 08:57 pm GMT -5 in Business,Football,Work at 8:57 PM

At least I think this was new…

The trek begins

Posted Wednesday, October 18th, 2017 09:23 am GMT -5 in Work at 9:23 AM

Still a highlight of my work day 🚈

Digging the newest art

Posted Friday, September 29th, 2017 04:29 pm GMT -5 in Art,Football,Work at 4:29 PM

Lower Pentair gate, U.S. Bank Stadium

Dragon Fire

Posted Monday, September 25th, 2017 11:41 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 11:41 PM

Another nice win by the home team

What are you waiting for?

Posted Friday, September 22nd, 2017 12:15 pm GMT -5 in Technology,Work at 12:15 PM

Seriously, WTF takes this so long? Every. Single. Time.

I’d pay big money

Posted Friday, September 22nd, 2017 12:14 pm GMT -5 in Design,Work at 12:14 PM

…to have this as my office throne

I miss my grandfather 

Posted Thursday, September 21st, 2017 01:40 pm GMT -5 in Family,Personal,Work at 1:40 PM

Thank-you box from 3M arrived in my office today

There will be shenanigans 

Posted Monday, September 11th, 2017 04:45 pm GMT -5 in Football,Work at 4:45 PM

Card tricks are hard when no one is there to hold them up…


Posted Saturday, September 9th, 2017 04:09 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Music,Work at 4:09 PM

So much power

Lobby upgrade

Posted Thursday, September 7th, 2017 06:18 am GMT -5 in Work at 6:18 AM

Lookin’ good

Expensive graffiti 

Posted Thursday, September 7th, 2017 06:17 am GMT -5 in Football,Work at 6:17 AM

Hidden in the visiting equipment room

Thanks, London Dave

Posted Sunday, August 13th, 2017 05:14 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Music,Work at 5:14 PM

This totally made my day

I spy a Snoopy bunker

Posted Friday, August 4th, 2017 08:36 pm GMT -5 in Friends,Golf,Work at 8:36 PM

Golf with ops @ Highland National

Birawer 3D baseball

Posted Thursday, August 3rd, 2017 02:35 pm GMT -5 in Art,Baseball,Work at 2:35 PM

Meetings with the Twins

The greatest living guitarist?

Posted Sunday, July 30th, 2017 11:15 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Music,Work at 11:15 PM

Lightning is right

Adam was busy

Posted Monday, July 17th, 2017 03:14 pm GMT -5 in Art,Pop Culture,Sports,Work at 3:14 PM

So much cool X Games art

Thanks Atmosphere

Posted Sunday, July 16th, 2017 08:05 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Music,Work at 8:05 PM

Closed it out right

It’s a wrap!

Posted Sunday, July 16th, 2017 06:31 pm GMT -5 in Friends,Sports,Work at 6:31 PM

X Games year one is in the books – learned so much

X Games Reflections

Posted Saturday, July 15th, 2017 03:06 pm GMT -5 in Sports,Work at 3:06 PM

Medtronic Plaza @ U.S. Bank Stadium

Not a bad view

Posted Friday, July 14th, 2017 11:20 pm GMT -5 in Sports,Work at 11:20 PM

The Big Air people aren’t right in the head

It’s almost showtime

Posted Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 12:58 pm GMT -5 in Pop Culture,Sports,Work at 12:58 PM

And I think we are mostly ready

Work Art

Posted Wednesday, July 5th, 2017 09:21 pm GMT -5 in Art,Work at 9:21 PM

$150k, right?

A New Era with Chuck

Posted Monday, June 26th, 2017 01:02 pm GMT -5 in Business,Casinos,Travel,Work at 1:02 PM

The 2017 Cisco Live Keynote @ Mandalay Bay

Watch out, Vegas

Posted Saturday, June 24th, 2017 11:52 am GMT -5 in Friends,Travel,Work at 11:52 AM

The Vegas virgin has arrived

Taking an old one

Posted Saturday, June 24th, 2017 05:54 am GMT -5 in Travel,Work at 5:54 AM

MSP-LAS Flight #DL2847

I spy a pizza girl

Posted Thursday, June 22nd, 2017 01:43 am GMT -5 in Family,Food,Work at 1:43 AM

Kid two started her new summer job across the street

Shh! It’s really a work trip

Posted Monday, June 12th, 2017 07:27 pm GMT -5 in Food,Travel,Work at 7:27 PM

Vegas in two…

Glad Bono reconsidered

Posted Thursday, June 8th, 2017 07:42 pm GMT -5 in Concerts,Music,Work at 7:42 PM

Happy to have this one at my office

Happy Birthday Jen!

Posted Monday, June 5th, 2017 07:49 pm GMT -5 in Food,Friends,Work at 7:49 PM

Three martini Mondays are a great way to celebrate @ Freehouse

2017 TC 1 Mile

Posted Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 12:04 am GMT -5 in Friends,Running,Work at 12:04 AM

A week ago Thursday was my fifth TC 1 Mile (and second as a captain in the Corporate Team Challenge). We had a small team this year, but I found it funny that the U.S. Bank Stadium team was larger than the U.S. Bank team (we also had more people than Best Buy, Cargill, Medica, Buffalo Wild Wings and HealthEast). This qualified us for the fastest team competition, which required a minimum of five participants (with at least one woman and one person 40 or older). Our combined time of 1:02:46 was good for second to last place, but I’m extremely happy with our group. The winning team from 3M was amazing: a blazing 25:30, which included a 4:38 by a 46-year-old (!).

Our two fastest runners from last year did not return to defend, so I was just trying to stay in the sixes (while not getting injured before Grandma’s). My PR was set in 2013 (6:10) and I’ve been all over the map (6:20, 6:28 and 6:47) before trotting to a 6:58.4 this year. This was good for 726th out of 1,962 overall and 52nd out of 103 in my age group. I still really like the new route by the Guthrie, but could’ve swore we turned left at Izzy’s and not one block further down. That was a tough one mentally, but the bigger problems were my lack of training and the extra weight my doctor wants me to shed.

Thanks to Shelly, Liz, Erin and Sarah for joining me this year – well done!

Work road trip

Posted Wednesday, May 10th, 2017 12:21 pm GMT -5 in Technology,Work at 12:21 PM

Mall of America and CiscoVision

Today’s view

Posted Friday, April 21st, 2017 01:35 pm GMT -5 in Work at 1:35 PM

Manager retreat @ Maslon’s 33rd floor


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Husband, dad and stadium IT director

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Personal Records & Mileage

  • Mile - 6:10
  • 5K - 21:42
  • 10K - 44:40
  • Half - 1:38:40
  • Full - 3:43:32
  • 50K - 7:37:00
  • 2018 Run Mileage: 93.2
  • 2018 Bike Mileage: 583.8

Upcoming Races

  • Get in Gear 10K - 4/27/2019

Upcoming Sporting Events

  • Twins vs. Boston - 6/20
  • Saints vs. Winnipeg - 6/24
  • Saints vs. Sioux City - 6/27
  • Saints vs. Lincoln - 7/8
  • Saints vs. Cleburne - 7/9
  • Summer X Games - 7/19-22
  • Saints vs. Wichita - 7/25
  • Saints vs. Grand Prairie - 7/29
  • Twins vs. Cleveland - 7/30
  • Tottenham vs. AC Milan - 7/31
  • Saints vs. Kansas City - 8/5
  • Saints vs. Gary - 8/12
  • Twins vs. Pittsburgh - 8/15
  • Vikings vs. Jags (PRE) - 8/18
  • Vikings vs. Seattle (PRE) - 8/24
  • Saints vs. Winnipeg - 9/2
  • Vikings vs. 49ers - 9/9
  • Vikings vs. Bills - 9/23
  • Vikings vs. Cardinals - 10/14
  • Vikings vs. Saints - 10/28
  • Vikings vs. Lions - 11/4
  • Vikings vs. Packers - 11/25
  • Vikings vs. Miami - 12/16
  • Vikings vs. Bears - 12/30

Upcoming Concerts

  • Har Mar Superstar - 6/23, Fitzgerald
  • Chris Koza - 6/28, Music in Mears
  • Trampled by Turtles - 7/7, Bayfront
  • Dusty Heart - 7/12, Music in Mears
  • Dan Israel - 7/26, Music in Mears
  • HazelFest 2018 - 8/4, Hazelden
  • Jack White - 8/6, Armory
  • Beyonce & Jay Z - 8/8, USBS
  • Aby Wolf - 8/9, Music in Mears
  • Kind Country - 8/16, Music in Mears
  • Pearl Jam - 8/18, Wrigley Field
  • Pearl Jam - 8/20, Wrigley Field
  • Twilight Hours - 8/23, Music in Mears
  • Erik Koskinen - 8/30, Music in Mears
  • Taylor Swift - 8/31 & 9/1, USBS
  • Liz Phair - 9/15, First Ave
  • Leon Bridges - 9/20, Palace
  • Avett Brothers - 10/11, Mystic Lake
  • Ed Sheeran - 10/20, USBS
  • Hippo Campus - 11/23, Palace
  • P!nk - 5/5/19, Xcel