In celebration of hitting our Artist Shop reservation goals, the Threadless family set out to Camp Wandawega for some off-site hangs. I’m not really sure what I expected from it; I think I was mostly just eager to immerse myself in nature and have all the beers with friends.
But I still find myself reflecting on how it was much more than that.
Aside from the workplace, it’s been awhile since we’ve all been together in one place. And when that place is a camp on an idyllic lake with a rope swing in Elkhorn, WI? Life becomes quite alright.
We spent the morning in three groups: co-workers you don’t normally work with, co-workers you work with but could work better with, and finally all the co-workers that are part of your department. I was a bit apprehensive at first, thinking that these activities would be your cliché trust fall icebreakers. But instead, it opened up genuine conversation; genuine conversation that was much needed. And we got to do it amongst a myriad of activities, from rope swinging, to rowing, to archery.
The moments when you make yourself uncomfortable, open to judgement, and just honest, are likely your most respectable. I found these conversations connected us a lot more. My appreciation for my co-workers grew as each person shared a little piece of themselves. I feel more aligned with a bunch of people now, and I’m grateful we had the chance to partake in that experience.
And of course, for all the beer and wine we shared.
It rained…a lot. But, I don’t think anyone really minded it because at the end of the day we were all just shootin’ the shit together under a tent with a pig roast and enjoying each other’s company. There were impromptu jam sessions (lasting four hours) in the lodge, flip cup games (still salty I lost it for the team), photo boothing with stuffed raccoons, and much more.
In the middle of one conversation, the ‘less’ part of ‘Threadless’ came up and someone said it made no sense if you didn’t know our company’s history. I think it does, though. The threads of a t-shirt focus only on what constitutes a t-shirt; that’s it. But a lot more goes into making a cool t-shirt, and that’s what Threadless is. We’re technically a t-shirt company, but at the end of the day, the people have made this company what it is.
Threadless is Wilson starting the bonfire with a flamethrower. A freakin’ flamethrower.
Threadless is Kyle catching all the frogs and toads.
Threadless is pouring beer into Lance’s mouth from up in the treehouse.
Threadless is miraculously finding Conrad & Jake’s glasses in bundles of seaweed.
Threadless is Jake playing 24 variations of Row Your Boat on the lake at 9 AM.
Threadless is family.
Until the next shenanigans.