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March 25th, 2011

Hot Wax

— sign outside the rentals shack at SkiBowl

you know what i would like? if i had time to 1) clean the house 2) finish writing my book 3) write a post about skiing in Oregon (“It’s either rain or ice, or sweet, sweet powder and spring skiing, do you have a preference?”) that gives the subject its just desserts. If i only had one of those timepieces like Hermione, I could twist twist and get it all done, but alas, alack, etc.

My daughter loves to ski, we just found out. (Lie. We’ve been knowing it.) she’s been begging to go skiing for a few years — she’s eleven now — and Steve finally got around to taking her for the first time last year? She loved it loved it, nothing above it, she’s our little hotdog. “We’ll go again next weekend.” Next weekend turned out to be… yesterday!


okay, we’ve been busy. Do i ski? not anymore. my entire family used to ski (mom’s side), my boyfriend growing up was a total maniac (him: “You can’t go, you wouldn’t be able to keep up.” me: “Screw you, anyway.”) So i started skiing with other friends, friends who didn’t insult me, WHEN I WAS 16. (that’s old for skiing, around here.) Downhill, cross-country, tore the shit out of my ACL (that sweet little bit of cartilage that holds your knee together), refused to have surgery because I Am Stud.

me, spring skiing, age… whatever. (a long time ago.) wearing a tank top, bibs, my goggles, happy as hell getting a tan and flying as fast as I could go. Guy next to me starts singing, I wish I was in/Tijuana/having sex with an iguana… and goes hurtling down the mountain.

Pure bliss. Good times.

Then one day, i was skiing at Mt. Hood Meadows, crappy conditions, and I was standing balanced way up at the top of this icy, icy run, pointing my skis straight down, teeter-tooter, teeter, and i thought, I could be swimming somewhere warm right now. Or doing yoga and drinking mint tea. What the hell am I doing at the top of this damn mountain? And how am I going to get down it? (step/slide/step/slide/glide glide glide was how.)

Unlike some people, I’ve never looked at a mountain (climb it, why? because it was there) and thought, Need to conquer. No. I look at mountains and think (tiny voice), You don’t scare me, cussing mountain. OK, let’s go drink at the lodge now! (Hot Apple Pies, mmmmmmmm…)

Steve telemarks. Do you know what that is? No, I don’t, either. Maybe he’ll be sweet (“you wouldn’t be able to keep up”) and leave a note in comments. I think it involves downhill/cross-country/total insanity/back-country and having the need to carry an ice ax with you, in case you need to build an ice cave and hide out ’til spring.

My ex-boyfriend was a studly jock and all, but Steve? Steve is from Iowa (no mountains) and Colorado (all the mountains) so he knows how to paint a barn and ski Loveland AND A-Basin AND Cooper, wooooooooot.

For vacations, I’ve been to Sun Valley, Denver, Banff, Vail. (when I asked my sister-in-law if I was dressed fancy enough for Vail, she said, all casual, “Eh, it’s not Telluride.” Steve was all, “Or Aspen, God. It’s not Aspen.” Everybody, Ha, ha, ha…)

Oh, God, of course, what was I thinking. It’s not Aspen.

Seriously, i am not snow bunny, so i find the whole thing kind of hilarious. But I do enjoy the apres ski, yes, I do.

But then he discovered his Love Of Hockey and stopped skiing. And my mom’s family stopped skiing years ago, when it got too fancy and all.

Me? I still long for the Caribbean but whatever. I live here and I can’t fly anymore (inner ear problems).

Anyway, back to Wacky Girl. We all had a blast, even tho she was the only one who skiied, and it did us all good to take a fast vacation. Stayed the night at an inn in Government Camp, hiked and played in the snow, had dinner at a the Rat’s Cellar and watched the snow fall, bought candy bars at the little store and watched American Idol… Then got up and skiied and played in the lodge for all morning.

Blew out of there, had lunch at the Elusive Trout in Sandy (my other favorite mountain restaurant/pub), drove through Boring (“the town that lives up to its name) (HA! KIDDING) (not really).

my favorite sign on the way home


Are you looking for a boring-ass city, somewhere in Oregon? C’mon over this way…

We were home by 3.

And we have the rest of the weekend left.

Maybe we should head back up tomorrow?

Question for the day is: Do you ski? Do you like it? Does it scare you? How about water skiing? How about lying at the beach? That I can handle.


— wm


  1. Dan Hortsch says

    Never skied. Didn’t grow up in a family that did or had the means to do so. I wouldn’t be good at it anyway.

    Rat’s Cellar. Clever name.

    March 26th, 2011 | #

  2. The Other Laura says

    Too clumsy to ski (once almost broke my ankle falling off a SHOE!) and I think it might be hard on my control-freakish nature.

    Have a great weekend!

    March 26th, 2011 | #

  3. Neisha says

    I’m with you. Skied in my 20s as part of being a good sport, then decided that going down an icy mountainside really fast while *standing up* was not only no fun, but counter-intuitive. I guess I’m a Midwest girl at heart. So, the boys will go, and I’m all about the hot tub and apres ski. Snow-shoeing is fun though, I’ll do that!


    March 26th, 2011 | #

  4. Steve R. says

    Telemark == nordic downhill.

    Other kinds of nordic skiing include cross-country and ski jumping. They differ from alpine skiing in that the heel of the boot is not attached to the ski. You could go cross country on telemark skis (with extra effort), but you definitely wouldn’t want to do much serious down hill on cross-country skis. Backcountry involves climbing on your skis (usually with climbing skins — actually made of rubber) or with crampons on your boots and your skis on your back, then skiing down.

    And yes, last time I went skiing, I found myself fighting the lousy conditions, my equipment, and my outerwear, and thinking, I like playing hockey so much better than this shit.

    March 28th, 2011 | #

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