Monday, March 06, 2006


Dirty Slopes

I know slope is a derogatory term for some group of people but I can't remember who, so to those, I'm sorry for the racist double entendre.

We went skiing this weekend at Sugar Mountain in Banner Elk, North Carolina this weekend. It was wonderful. We had 21 people go with us and we stayed here and here.

Nice places and across the street and up a small hill to the slopes. I've snowboarded twice so I decided to try skiing. I'm definitely a convert. I've never been good at skateboarding or surfing and I don't think I have to right balance for those sports, so I opted for skiing.

The only lesson I've ever had was the South Park episode that made fun of all the juvenile skiing movies where there are the popular rich kids and the unpopular cool kids and they race, etc... But I gleamed "french fry" and "pizza" from that episode. Make your skis look like french fries (parallel to each other) and you go fast. Make your skis look like a slice of pizza to stop or slow down. Very basic but it works.

So we're (J and I) skiing that first day and get more confident so we try and go higher up the mountain. Unfortunately we were misinformed by a friend and got on the wrong lift. The yellow lift has a dropoff that is just above the green circle (easy) slopes. As we ride past that one I realize that we are on the grey lift that only goes to much higher on the mountain to the blue squares (intermediate) and the black diamonds (expert). Crap. No problem, we'll just ride the lift back down. I've seen the workers do it, so no big deal. Nope. We get to the top and the dude freaks out and won't let us ride down. Luckily (I thought) the ski patrol guys were there and could talk some sense into the guy. 1st time skiers should not be made to try and ski down the mountain. But Mr. Ski Patrol says the the workers are "trained" to ride the lifts down and that the only way down for us is ski or walk. Fuck that. It would take an act of God (or the threat of a revoked lift ticket) to get me to walk down this mountain. So the Si Patrol guys take off our skis (we're a good 4 feet off the ground) and try to move the lift to where it's not so high. Oops! Went to far. Oh well, just ride the lift down, just remember to put the safety bar down. (Thanks Mr. Ski Patrol) So we ride down and as we're going down I see a ski patrol guy with our skis in hand gracefully making his way down the mountain. Phew.

But it's not over. I'm becoming more confident and want to try something a little harder. So I convince J to come with me again with the idea that we'll get off on the first unloading spot. Well, J isn't ready to get off so as I'm sliding down the unload ramp I look up and see her going up. To the top of the mountain. Again. Ugh. So she gets yelled at by the ski patrol guys (Sorry sweetie) but gets to ride down the mountain in the sled. So the guy asks if she wants to go fast. She of course says yes and gets a great ride down the mountain by a snowboarding ski patrol guy.

So thanks Sugar Mountain Ski Patrol for the understanding attitude and not kicking us newbs off the mountain.

Going up sucked cuz we were in a caravan of 3 and there was some 2 lane road stuff which meant no passing for me. And some stupid Camry had the audacity to do the speed limit (35 mph) on some nice twisty roads that I did 50 mph on the way back down in a minivan. So it took 3 hours and 45 minutes to get up there with no stops and 3 wrong turns. Coming back it took 3 hours and we even stopped for dinner. And of the 5 drivers who drove back, only 1 got a ticket. 15 over in a 50 and that driver was not me!

Tomorrow, be prepared for the post dedicated to riced out cars in all their glory, courtesy of The Princess of Power's question:
What does ricey mean in the context of a vehicle??

Be afraid. Be very afraid.


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