Rightside Culture Roundup: August Edition

If summer had a flavor, it would almost certainly be cotton candy and freedom, the latter of which is perhaps best summed up by the taste of wind rushing past as you pedal your way to the nearest ice cream shop, or anywhere, really. It’s the heady anticipation of pre-season buffalo wings and trashtalking the friends who don’t share your excellent taste in football teams and the sweet satisfaction of a mellow walk with your favorite canine companion.

At Rightside, our summer game is strong. Besides the appeal of our sunny lake views, we’ve got a Facilities team that coordinates fantastic events and weekly lunches, and a Team Culture squad that puts the “bubble soccer” and “fantasy football” in team.

We believe in .DOG

At Rightside, dogs are an essential part of our culture. On Saturday, August 29, we’re showing our appreciation the best way we know how by participating in the annual PAWS Walk at Marymoor Park to help raise funds for animals in need. With eNom Lead Software Engineer Ron West leading the charge, we plan to walk, drink mimosas, and pet cute dogs in the name of philanthropy, a good time, and canine companionship.

This is Rightside’s second year participating in the PAWS Walk and Ron’s first time coordinating Rightside’s participation.

“I’m a longtime dog lover and my dog with a blog (Riley West) would have given me a very hard time if he didn’t get to go again this year,” explained Ron. “Plus, it’s a really cool feature of the company that we all take advantage of. I guess in the rest of the business world it’s not common to see dogs at people’s desks on a daily basis.”

We get .SOCIAL at every opportunity

If you’ve ever seen the final scene from Grease, you already have a pretty good idea of what the annual company picnic on Friday, August 21 was like–minus the hot rod sailing into the sky. There was tug of war, face painting, a bounce house, and cotton candy, all thoughtfully arranged by the Facilities team.

Despite the combination of physical exertion and carnival food–snow cones, ice cream, kettle corn, and the aforementioned cotton candy–we managed to acquit ourselves respectably, partying away the afternoon with family and Rightside canines (which we also qualify as family) in tow.

We take our fantasy .FUTBOL seriously … except when we’re just having fun

We know that our .FUTBOL and the football of “fantasy football” are not the same football. But for the sake of a not-terribly-witty pun, kindly suspend your disbelief.

Team Culture’s been running a Rightside Fantasy Football league for the past two years, and engineering manager Carolyn Evans has dominated that league every year. In the 2013 season her Pink Poodles terrorized the league. And that was Carolyn’s first experience with fantasy football.

“I try to do pretty much anything that Team Culture offers,” said Carolyn, who considers herself a Seahawks fan, but not particularly zealous about football. “It seems rude not to when they go to so much trouble. And this was fun!”

Carolyn’s strategy the first year was simple: Choose the highest ranked players she could get her hands on during the drafting process.

“The first year I 100 percent went for the best player available that somebody else hadn’t picked. I just used that ranking sheet. Last year I let my feelings get into it a little bit and I picked a lot of Seahawks. And I’ll probably do that again this year because it’s more fun to watch the games.”

That’s assuming, of course, that the players are well-ranked. Carolyn’s not about to let a two-season winning streak come to an end over her Seahawks pride.

Carolyn recalls the rest of the players going for slightly more traditional athletic mascots like the Gladiators and the Terminators. But her success was all the sweeter and her trashtalking game all the mightier with the Pink Poodles at her back. Her second season she cleaned up as the Weedwhackers, with a mascot featuring Snoop Dogg wearing a Seahawks jersey in a cloud of smoke. She’s still waiting for this season’s “lightbulb moment” but saving her nerves for the actual season; despite her success in past years, Carolyn isn’t counting her fantasy football trophies before they materialize.

“There are no guarantees. Last year Rick DeCamp was undefeated all throughout the whole season until he went to the first playoff game,” Carolyn said. She describes the account manager’s team’s loss in the first round of playoffs as “shocking.”

Account Manager Daniel Tanapukdee who runs Rightside’s Fantasy Football league, echoes Carolyn’s surprise over last season’s outcome.

“I want to say those that pick up the best players in the initial draft are going to take the prize but it simply isn’t true,” he said. “The nature of football is very unpredictable. The perfect example is Rick DeCamp. Last season he went undefeated during regular season only to lose in the first round of the playoffs. Carolyn made it to the playoffs as the last place seed and ended winning it all.”

And despite her success, Carolyn hasn’t considered expanding her Fantasy Football domination beyond the Rightside league. “The really fun thing about it is it’s all the people here that I know,” she explained.

Rightside’s third annual fantasy football league season kicks off Wednesday, September 9.

We rock the .BIKE

Downtown Kirkland’s a mile and a half or so from our Rightside headquarters–too close to justify the hassle of trying to find parking and just far enough to make walking inconvenient.

The solution?

Team Culture purchased five sweet bikes for employees to sign out, opening up a whole new world of lunchtime possibility for Rightside employees with empty stomachs and a taste for adventure–and wind.

Send comments to blog@rightside.co.

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