Thursday, November 29, 2007

Season Opener

Well, I did it…I ventured out to the same ole trash heap for another year. I found the same loud mouth punk kids, the same poorly running lifts, and the same set of “winter friends” to sit and have a drink with. I’m not sure when the transition happened, but it seems Mt. Holly has really become the modern day roller rink scene for teenage kids. I keep waiting for a call over the intercom in a textbook cliché cheesy disc jockey voice to say, “This next run is going out to Bobby and Rhonda celebrating thier three week anniversary of going steady…let’s slow it down for couples and backwards skaters only”. I lasted seven runs today before I threw in the towel and rushed home for White Russian night at the Stein Theatre.

Man I missed Mt. Holly

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

It’s not winter until Warren says so. Keeping the dream alive.

Royal Oak Music Theatre
Friday, December 7th 6:30 and 9:30
Saturday, December 8th 6:00 and 9:00

It’s been fifteen years running since I have been making my annual pilgrimage to the screening of Warren Miller’s yearly alpine masterpieces. Through the years I have watched how his films have become more and more commercialized and less artistic. It seems that for about seven years now I have walked out of his movies saying, “Well, it’s official, that is the last time I am giving twenty hard earned bucks away for that awful crap”. However, every time November rolls around I seem compelled to have to go.

To me, Warren Miller symbolizes a dream I once had. When I graduated from college I suffered from a severe case of reluctance to want to join the “adult working world”. Most people see this time as a beginning but I regarded it as a dreaded end. As a result, I spent about a good year or two working as a full-time snowboard instructor, bike shop rat, and professional bum. Within my first year out of the confines of university life I managed to snowboard 109 days in one season…I was living the dream and I didn’t want to give it up. At one point, I seriously considered making this lifestyle my career and perhaps even looking into graduate level ski management programs (yes, they really do exist). During my travels out west, I remember encountering so many people that told great stories of how they had been living an endless winter for 20 years running; I looked at them with adoration and envy. I remember vividly the feeling I had every morning as I took the first chair up the hill, sipping my coffee and truly realizing I did not have one care or stress. I felt blessed and I felt lucky but I knew it was unrealistic to think it could last forever. I had too many dreams and aspirations that this carefree lifestyle conflicted with.

Time passed, and for many different factors and influences, the dream diminished and eventually died. I now have a reasonable mortgage, a car payment, a Master’s Degree, a mountain of student loans, and a lawnmower that starts on the first pull every time. My house is neatly kept, I maintain a good relationship with my neighbors, my yard is always neatly groomed, I am always punctual to work, I pay my taxes, I drive my SUV, and I’m sure the dog, wife and 2.5 kids will come with due time. I have accomplished so much. In the past few years my snowboarding soirée’s have been limited to teaching bulk ski club lessons at Mt. Holly and spending more time in the bar talking about “the good ole days” than on the hill. I watch young riders who effortlessly throw inverted aerials watch me with my “old school antiquated” style as they say to themselves, “Wow look at that old dude, at least he’s still doing it”.

All of the above variables add up to why I uncontrollably gravitate to Warren Miller’s premieres each year, they remind me of a dream and a life I once had.

Tomorrow I will be making my first tracks of the season at Mt. Holly on man-made granulated ice and eventually making my way to the bar to find someone to talk to and tell stories about “the good ole days”…and I can’t wait! The snowboarding season is here.

If anyone is interested in joining me this weekend I will most likely be attending a Friday showing immediately following with hydration exercises at RO Brewery.

Santa Came Early! It’s a Christmas Miracle.

I don’t even have a fireplace…I never even heard his sleigh on my roof.

This is the first full suspension bike I have ridden since the featured beast below. It’s been a whole ten years. I’m not sure but I think FS design has improved since then.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Caption Contest: You could be a winner!

Write and submit a clever caption to this simply awesome pic…the winner will be compensated heavily by none other than myself, the Finkelstein.

Wine-er, Dine-er, 69er!!!

26inch wheel in the rear, 29inch wheel up front. Who could ask for more?

Impulse buys are the best! When I saw this beautiful 21.5inch 2008 Trek 69er look me in the face last week my immediate thought was, “You complete me”. After spending two days establishing a comprehensive eBay plan to liquidate pre-existing velo equity, she was mine.

Build Modification Plans: XTR group, Rigid Bontrager Carbon Switchblade Fork, XXX-Lite Carbon Seat Stick and Steer Stick, Possible wheel swap.

Stay tuned; I’ll post pics when the build is complete.