A recent trip to a ski-shop reminded me that I am sliding into the newest generation that is becoming “uncool”.
Uncool = defn. “Not owning or sporting the latest trendy gear, do-dads and thinga-ma-jiggies”
or the “alternate” definition = “Unaware, due to constraint of age, concern etc. for the latest trends in ‘anything’ deemed as ‘cool'”
If you have kids (teenaged especially), you’ve already experienced this painful reality. For me, the paddle of humility smacked me on the butt as I observed that I was no longer “up to date” on the latest sport doo-dads and thingamajiggies at the local sports store. Now, I’d have to say that I have kept up with technology in general. I know how to burn CD’s, I can re-toggle and top up my iPod with all of my favourite discoveries, I am fashionable and health conscious. But, I am still, however “uncool” in the realm of ski equipment.
I have a secret.
My boards are over 180 cm long, they are Salomon’s and they are only 10 years old (if you are one of the trendy ski people – don’t laugh!). When did the transition to strapping on “beginner length” skis to one’s feet enhance their down-hill way of going? Back in the day (ahem, cough, cough, the 70’s and ’80s) when I was learning how to ski (yeah, I started young), shorter skis were considered to be beginner skis (ie. you didn’t ski in them unless you were continually slamming your butt to the ground in an attempt to keep your ski tips from crossing). Now, it is uncool to have skis that are longer than either chin or mid-forehead. Man. I am going to get some looks this Friday when I hit the slopes (but, geee……I am wearing a fancy new fur-trimmed ski-jacket…jeesh).
I have another secret.
I belonged to that crazy generation that would whip atop and amongst layers of moguls and tree-laden glades just for the thrill of “not” cracking your skull open. I thought nothing of hurtling down an icy slope (on skis or any other wickedly slippery device), at top speed, just for the thrill of dumping some adrenalin into my bloodstream. I have never worn and have not owned (until just recently), a ski helmet. Oh, and did I mention that I used to be a Ski-Patroller? Ha! Take that Mr. Safety Man (that would be Tony the Touque….). Did I mention that Canadians are a little strange?
So, yesterday, as I was musing upon all of this, I started laughing to myself. I thought of the kids in the ski-shops that were sporting the latest fashions and buying up all of the latest gear and realised that I used to be that young-adult. That, “yes”, there will come a time in every outdoor sport junkie’s life when they are smacked by the “uncool” paddle of humility. There will come a time when your sports equipment begins to look as archaic as the old wooden skis (complete with leather bindings) that used to hang on nail-hooks in your grandfather’s garage (I learned to cross-country ski on a pair of skis just like those ones, I might add! – and I’m a much better skiier for having had that opportunity!).
Now, instead of hurtling down the slopes, at top speed, trying to keep up with the boys….PM’s experience will be a bit more like this.
1. Relaxing hot chocolate experience in the lounge (ah…let’s soak up that mountain view). No, I will not spike that drink with “Bailey’s” (think “safety” damnit!), although, I might be tempted once I am finished skiing (as an apres skiing treat, much in the manner of “Yay, you did it without cracking your skull open! You sly ski-fox you!”).
2. A few unhurried traverses down the slopes on my “retro” 180 cm+ boards. Oh, and let’s be graceful and safety-smart in our descent of said-slope and protect that egg-shell skull of mine with that new ski helmet (I’ve spent too many years educating and nourishing that mushy brain of mine).
3. Another relaxing hot chocolate in the lounge. My feet are cold and my butt is out of shape from too many gas-station burritos (thanks desert expedition).
4. Another couple or three runs to the sophisticated sound of Alice Russell (emanating from my iPod, not my “Walkman”, “Boom-box”, tape-recorder or phonograph). She replaces some of the gut-wrenching psycho-technics that used to comprise my ski-music. I might be a little wild and pop some of The Killer’s tracks onto my iTunes list. Actually, I shouldn’t lie, I do still listen to some rather “heavy” music at times.
Hmmm…I like this type of “uncool”. Sounds a little more humane and sophisticated, if you ask me.
Just not too sure what that “first-run of the season video” is going to look like! We’ll just have to wait and see! I’ll keep you posted…
Here’s to being “uncool”! Take it away Tony………….!