Choice Mindsets

Choice Mindsets

Tony: “Dan, is Barney having you topo the whole office?”
Dan: “Yeah, I told him it wasn’t level and he needed to reconstruct the whole thing.”

Topographically surveying the entire Sidney office to ensure it’s perfectly level isn’t a stretch for a details person like Brian “Barney” Barhorst. In fact, Barney has a to-scale AutoCAD drawing of both offices, complete with desk assignments, filing cabinets, and, of course, Canteen snack storage*. (Yet we’d be darned if those drawings don’t come in handy when we want to rearrange furniture or provide a “map” for new hires.)

AutoCAD isn’t the only software we’ve uncommonly employed. Our traffic engineers daydream of laying out the traffic counting tubes indoors to transfer interoffice “traffic counts” into Synchro software*. Then we could predict when Jeff Puthoff is coming to harass the Michigan fans (oh wait, the clunky cowboy boots give that away) and analyze the optimal times to find an open restroom by avoiding peak hours (like after Tony’s long meetings).

Like a lot of engineers, we use fancy MS Excel spreadsheets for the NCAA pool* and the large format printer to display embarrassing photos on birthdays*, but we like to imagine that our particular use of engineering technology borders on engineering creativity. (Yes, we just used “creativity” and “engineering” in the same sentence.) And if that means Ryan Lefeld can use HEC-RAS software to calculate the forecasted Lake Erie water temperature for Ty Thobe’s upcoming bachelor party to Put-in-Bay, we’re all for it.

*Not an exaggeration.

Office Supply Deliveryman: “Looks like you hired someone new?”

We sure get them started young around here, don’t we?

Meet Ryann, Megan Bornhorst’s delightful baby girl. She stopped in the office to visit and we didn’t miss the opportunity to put her to work. Apparently she’s not impressed with filing—it’s put her to sleep.

Whether she knows it or not, Ryann is now a part of the Choice One family. (Poor thing!) Before long, she’ll understand the finer points of traffic signal timing and intersection safety, be able to command three computer monitors right from her crib, and be tying tiny shopping bags over her tiny feet to keep her tiny shoes dry just like her mom. But all joking aside, Ryann’s pretty lucky, as we feel the Choice One family includes not just us here in Sidney and Loveland, but all of you who have become our extended family and friends over the past 20+ years. Just remember to ignore our crazy Uncle Tony.

Oh! One last thing, Ryann. Your mom must have forgotten to tell you: you’re not in mandatory Choice One green while in the office. Soooooo, you owe us all lunch.

P.S. Only 5 more days until the 2015 Choice One Charity Cup. Come help us support a great cause!

“One of the benefits of riding a bicycle for 15 minutes as fast as physically possible is that we will get to enjoy ice cream, right Nick Selhorst?”
– Michael Seeger

Nick Selhorst eating ice cream.

This weekend, the Choice One crew will be participating in the Cincinnati area Race to Anyplace, a fundraiser that benefits the Tri-State Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. For those not familiar with this event, it involves riding a stationary bicycle as fast as possible in 15-minute shifts. For each mile ridden, participating teams—Choice One’s “Wheels of ONEder” included—collect donations.

For some crazy people (ahem…Tony and Kaye), having a crowd watch as we thrash about awkwardly on a bike sounds like a blast. (Although Kaye can’t help being awkward on or off a bike.) But all of us are more than willing to make the sweat fly for such a great cause. The complimentary bagels, pizza, sandwiches, chili soup, Mt. Dew, and ice cream are just gravy. Or sprinkles.

Considering the high likelihood of overworked legs, sore butts, and hastily consumed ice cream, we expect plenty of aches resulting from the Race to Anyplace on Saturday. Most importantly, we expect a successful fundraising event for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, not to mention plenty of laughter. Good luck to all of the teams participating—if there were dust in the Mason Community Center, our inexperienced riders might be left in it!

*Speaking of fundraising, all are invited to our annual Charity Cup on March 25, which benefits a really fantastic organization called the Miami Valley Down Syndrome Association. And since WE make the rules at this fundraising event, we get to watch everyone ELSE thrash about awkwardly as they attempt to play cornhole backwards, with their eyes closed, on one foot. This year’s event is themed “Choice One Under the Big Top,” and it promises not only to benefit a great cause, but also to provide a circus full of Choice One clowning around.

Text conversation between Kecia Flaute and Wes Goubeaux:

Wes Goubeaux, Tony, and Brian Barhorst are soon headed out together on a four-day ski adventure in Colorado. Tony and Brian are experienced skiers. Wes is not. In fact, other than a few trial runs at a local Bellefontaine slope (which is a far cry from Vail and Beaver Creek), Wes has about as much skiing experience as Kecia’s son Kole. And to be honest, Wes, Kole is a touch more adorable flailing about in the snow than you.

Fortunately, Wes has a good sense of humor about learning to fall-er, ski-and gets right back up. Granted, he got back up in this instance to avoid being teased, but being able to laugh at himself is commendable, regardless. Indeed, Wes’s good-natured attitude is going to be put to the test in Colorado–not because he could twist an ankle, but because he has to spend FOUR WHOLE DAYS with JUST Tony and Brian.

The bonus? Not only do the rest of us get the better part of a week free of Wes, Brian, and Tony, we can be sure that if Tony or Brian would happen to fall, Wes will be on the spot to snap a photo (even if he has to fall down, too). And fear not, we’ll make sure THAT photo makes its way into a Choice Mindset, too.

“Tony, your meeting was so long that when it began I only had 12 grandkids, and when it ended I had 13!”
– Nick Sanders

Congratulations to 13-time Grandpa Nick Sanders. And to 13-hour meeting producer Tony.

Ok, it wasn’t that long. But if Nick can add a whole new person to his family during a company meeting, we can surely hope for a few things to miraculously appear at the meeting’s conclusion. For instance: a third restroom. Because, let’s face it, after that company-wide meeting ends (and as a consequence of lots of coffee and Mt. Dew), getting 33 people through two bathrooms is a traumatic event, to say the least. Or maybe we could add another Brian, Michael or Jeff. We keep trying to find decent ones, but clearly, after acquiring three of each, we haven’t succeeded*.

While another restroom and a shiny, brand new Jeff may not be in the immediate future, we all did enjoy a photo of Nick’s new granddaughter Alice after that long January company meeting. If nothing else, we can rely on the upcoming February company meeting to supply another Choice Mindset.

*We’re now attempting a “Craig” hunt, as we welcome engineer Josh Craig to our Loveland office. Hey, we’ll count any kind of decent Craig, first name or last, to boost our current collection (Craig Frilling and Craig Eley).

“Tony, didn’t I ride my bike to the Loveland office before you did? Slacker.”
– Craig Eley

    

Two points of recent Choice One Engineering bravery:

  1. Hiring another traffic engineer to join the ridiculously intense Matt/Mitch/Allan traffic debates.
  2. Hiring another cycling geek like Tony.

Both converge into one new green shirt: Craig Eley*, a cycling enthusiast and former ODOT District 7 Traffic and Safety Engineer, who has joined the Choice One team. With Craig on board, hopefully the rest of us are off the hook and no longer have to pretend to listen when Tony talks about “riding centuries” or the finer points of the fit of a perfect saddle (that’s a bike seat to the rest of us).

Craig’s comment references the fact that despite Choice One opening a Loveland office in 2011, avid cyclist Tony has yet to ride his bike from Sidney to Loveland (though it has been promised many times), where the Little Miami Bike Trail passes literally 20 feet from the Loveland office door. However, Craig (along with former co-workers Matt Parrill, Gail Gildow and Randy Chevalley) has ridden his bike to the Loveland Office. And obviously, Craig has quickly caught on to the importance and enjoyment of beating Tony at anything, even if it does mean starting his ride at Urbana as opposed to Sidney. Winning.

Welcome to Choice One, Craig. We are all hoping you like soccer as well. That way you can absorb Tony’s boring soccer talk, too.

*And yes, if you’re counting, that makes two Craigs, three Michaels, two Nicks, three Jeffs, two Allans/Allens, two Ryans, three Brians, and a partridge in a pear tree.