Earlier this week a sign-up sheet for a company skiing/snowboarding trip was floating around the office.
Captain Crunch: Are you going to go?
Me: I dunno, I’m not really good at skiing or snowboarding.
Captain Crunch: You’ve done it before?
Me: Once…about 10 years ago?
Captain Crunch: Well it’s my first time so you don’t have to worry.
Me: Yeah, I guess I’ll go.
As I wrote down my name on the sign-up sheet an odd feeling washed over me. I dismissed it as uneasiness about my lack of experience. I later realized it was my survival instinct.
We departed for the mountain at 4:30 in the morning. By about 8:00 AM I was standing at the top of the beginners course decked out in full snowboarding gear.
Company Guy: Alright let’s go!
Everyone kicks off and starts sliding down the mountain.
Except for me.
Company Guy: Try focusing your weight on your heels.
Company Guy: Don’t lean forward so much, just stand straight up.
Annie: Try grabbing the front of your board and standing up.
Company Guy: …
After about an hour I managed to tumble down the slope and to the safety of flat ground.
Company Guy: Were gonna go up again, you’re coming right?
Yeah, like he would really subject himself to that again
Rather than just starting down the course again they decided to focus a bit more on my inability to stand up. After about 30 minutes I had made no progress.
Company Guy A: I can’t think of any other ways to explain it.
Company Guy B: Yeah…I’m out of ideas too.
Me: You guys go on ahead, I’ll just practice by myself.
Company Guy A: Alright, we’ll be back to check on you.
Two hours later.
Captain Crunch: Hey, do you want to grab lunch?
Me: Yeah…but that involves going down the slope.
Captain Crunch: Yeah, there aren’t any restaurants around here. You could take the ski lift down though.
Me: Nah, I don’t want give up like this.
So in an effort to protect my pride I started down the slope once again. And somehow managed to stand up.
Going kind of fast…. tree, tree, tree, tree
Me: Just gotta turn…
Thanks to my new found speed I managed to tumble several times before I skidded to a stop.
This pattern continued for the next hour as I made my way down the slope with the exception of replacing tree with child/fence/pole/snow bank.
After tumbling my way down the slope a second time I hobbled over to the rest area and ran into one of the guys who had tried to help me earlier.
Company Guy B: Are you OK?
Me: Not even a little.
Company Guy B: That’s too bad, but I admire your persistence. If I fell every 30 seconds like that I would have given up by now.
Company Guy B: And it’s not all bad, everyone was impressed by how violently you fell. Even people going up on the lifts were like “Hey, check out that guy!”
Upon hearing that I knew exactly how I was going to die.
Officer A: So what happened here?
Officer B: Some guy was going down the beginner’s course and fell. He hit his head against his knee so hard his entire body imploded.
Officer A: That’s horrible…
Officer B: Yeah, it looked pretty cool though.