Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Minnesota Summer "Work Week"

I think I've been a little slow in the posting lately because I feel like I haven't done anything spectacularly Minnesotan lately. Partly because I've been working a lot, but then I figured out that the Minnesota Summer "Work Week" definitely deserves a post.

We've planned a trip to the Boundary Waters, and Calhoun and I are taking two of my friends from school along. Uptown, as you know, is from the great state of Pennsylvania. The other friend we're taking, Judo, is from Arizona and pretty much hates Minnesota and most things about it. But, we took him out in a canoe for the first time at the beginning of the summer and as we glided along the water he turns to me and says, "this is great. I can see how this makes people forget that it sucks here nine months of the year."

And Judo, in all of his wisdom, is right. Minnesota summer is the best, and people forget about how miserable it is here for the rest of the year and lots of times they similarly forget to go to work.

Have you ever tried to do business on Friday afternoon in the summer? It's pretty much a no-go. When I worked for a liberal arts college right after graduation most offices closed by 3 pm and by noon on Fridays. Now that I'm back in school, I find that the same is true of my University - I am frequently surprised by how many emails bounce-back with an "out of office" response. Not to mention, I have taken my fair share of early Fridays or Friday's off altogether, and am astounded by the full light rail on the way home, the multitude of people riding on the parkway and the roaring grills in the backyard at 4 pm.

So yes, Minnesota winters are long and dark. But it seems to be the well recognized rule that Minnesota work weeks are short and sweet, and time off doesn't necessarily require a vacation day.

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