Mankato

Drove down to Mankato after class to do another motivational speech for teachers tomorrow. Seven hours. Some nice scenery between St. Cloud and Mankato on Highway 15. I look forward to seeing the Minnesota River valley tomorrow during the day. New roads for me.

Got to the Mankato Holiday Inn and checked in. Sort of like Rochester...a quiet downtown.

I thought it was kind of odd that there were a lot of tall guys hanging around the hotel. They looked like basketball players, so I wondered if there was some sort of college tournament in town.

Dumb me. The Timberwolves are in town for training camp. They are staying on my floor. And as of 11 p.m., they are all in bed. The coaches, however, are downstairs gambling at the bar. Not official gambling, mind you. They brought their own chips and deck of cards. I don't know if that is legal, but I will not be the one to blow the whistle.

They're going to be eating breakfast tomorrow at the buffet. Now, if I only knew what some of the players looked like, I could tell you tomorrow night that I saw Kevin Garnett, or whatever, but I am such a non-basketball fan that it would be stupid of me to try to act all awestruck now.

I had it all figured out: I give my big motivational speech at 1 o'clock tomorrow. Get done at 2. The Twins, according to the internet, are playing at 1 p.m. Eastern. So, I figured I would get to listen to them starting when my seminar was done at 2 p.m. Central.

Got my time zones mixed up. One o'clock Eastern is noon Central, not 2 p.m. So, I will spend the bulk of the game at the podium. Bummer.

I kind of like this motivational speech thing. I get about five days wages plus mileage for one hour of talking. Of course, I will, for this one at least, spend 14 hours on the road. But the mileage rate of 44.5 cents per mile means that I am getting a pretty good hourly wage for that time as well.