Friday, October 23, 2009

SteveCentury: Ski-eeved

I'm a land creature. Airplanes aren't my thing. Neither are beaches for that matter. Ocean water is so salty and yucky!

I'm also bad enough as it is on my two feet so add anything else to the occasion, like a scooter or Rollerblades, and I'm in even bigger trouble.

The first time I tried to use a skateboard, well, you can guess. Right on my ass.

The first time I tried rollerblading in Rhode Island (I can't remember the name of the place. In Warwick somewhere. It was a hot spot for years. Any help from my Rhode Island buddies? Roller World maybe?) it was a ghastly experience. Nothing infuriated me more to see little kids gliding along with no problems while I summoned every ounce of strength and balance to prevent a hilariously embarrassing fall.

While in college I tried ice skating. You already know how that turned out. Not only was I terrible, I had a foot-long blade attached to my feet. I could have killed somebody.

This all leads to a ski trip I took - with the usual suspects, of course. I forget where we went. It was a mountain of some sort. And cold.

I had no idea how to ski. None. Zilch. Too cheap to pay for lessons, I decided to wing it. The beginners' slope was supposed to be easy. Little boys and girls, handicapped people, dead people all skied down the slope like Picabo Street. Some had help, but still.

For the life of me I could not stay on me feet. Criss-crossed, my legs gave out on me right away. I almost couldn't get started. When I did, I onlymanaged to go a few feet before falling again. Then another few feet, followed by another tumble.

Oh, I couldn't go straight either. Nor did I know how to stop. It got so bad I would just fall on purpose lest I slam into someone else or a tree. At one point, I had veered so far off the slope that I was under the ski lift ... unable to get up.

Jeff reminded me of this story during the Cape Cod League game we saw in July. I had burned that day from my memory until he resurrected it from the ashes. He told me he asked, "Where's Steve?" and from the bottom of the slope he looked and looked until he spotted me all the way to the side under the ski left pounding down on the snow in frustration.

I admit, it had to be funny to see. I was so tried from getting up so many times and trying so hard to keep my balance that I had a mini-temper tantrum. This probably occurred within the first 15 minutes.

So while my buddies skied the slopes without me, I soldiered on the kiddie slope. After an hour, I was able to ski down at least half the slope before falling down. Satisfied, I moved on to a real slope, taking the easiest route.

I almost collied into a tree. And I think I invaded some other routes mistakenly. I can't remember what I did for the whole day, besides fall down and get up. By mid-afternoon I was absolutely exhausted and EXTREMELY frustrated. Try failing at something continually for hours. You just lose it. Or at least I did.

I had bruises on my thighs and my muscles ached for days. While I appreciated the experience, I vowed never to touch skis or snowboards ever again. I just wish I remembered that day better, but I must have suppressed it. But the story of me flailing on the ground under the ski lift brought some of it back.

Now only if it would disappear again ...

1 comment:

  1. Here's how I remember it...

    We got to the bunny slope and I, not knowing how to snowboard either, went from point A (top) to point B (bottom) in one straight line. I did a controlled fall on my ass and that was it.

    I looked back up the slope and as you said, couldn't find you anywhere. Finally, Illana came swooshing up to me (she knew what she was doing)... and I asked her, "where did Steve go?" She smiled and pointed.

    The funny thing was that not only were you all the way to the side, under the ski lift... it was that you were only like 20 feet from the top. And it was a sight! You were lying on your stomach, try to get up, slip and then pound the snow with both hands. ::and repeat::

    And as I remember it... when you finally did get to the bottom, you said "see you in the lodge." Didn't see you again till we left.

    Ahhh memories.