On Thu, 27 Dec 2001, Tag Gross wrote:

> First of all Ben, I am not confusing any issue.

As I just wrote someone else, I think all of us a not listening to each
other 100%.  Nick and I were speaking of the trail in their average
condition.  You and others are speaking of when you add in various
conditions, and human stuff, such as skill, attitude, confidence (or lack
thereof), etc., etc.  Ultimately however, as Nick originally stated, you
can take off your skis (and walk to the side of the trail, so your boots
can get some grip and you are out of the way) and hike out.  Will you (not
anyone in particular) know to do these?  Maybe not.  But the way out
exists.  I basically agree with what you are saying, but it is possible
for you and Nick to both be right at the same time.

> >>Check out the egos on
> the World Cup, for example.<<
> And you have checked these out exactly how? Through news reports and TV
> shows. You don't know anyone on the world cup and you certainly don't know
> what they are really like.

One name: Tomba.  Actually, the World Cup skiers I have met, Doug
Lewis, a few Cochrans, etc., have been wonderfully nice.  But just like
the rest of the world, there are egos on the WC.  And assholes.  I have a
pet theory that a big ego is a psychological mechanism that helps people
such as skiers, opera singers, etc. - people who put themselves on the
line all alone - perform.  But an ego is by no means necessary.

> The interesting thing about skiing that I have
> found over the last 40 years is that in fact the GREAT skiers do not have an
> ego and do not exclude others and are very willing to share the experience
> with others even those who might not be at their ability.

Perhaps I didn't make myself clear enough.  You can be a great skier and a
nice person.  But you can also be a great skier and an asshole.
Performance is not directly linked to personality.  We're too human.

> That's the beauty of
> skiing that it creates a lifelong bond with people you SHARE it with.

I agree 100%.
> This reminds me of something that has been completely lost in our sport and
> Skip pointed it out in his post:
> "Back then, skiers
> would look out for one another...   It helped me to learn the
> etiquette of the sport and gain greater respect for the mountains."

I don't think this spirit has disappeared.  Just think of this list.

> Looking down our noses at those with less skill than us, Yelling "get out of
> my line". Judging whether someone is "worthy" of skiing in the great state
> of Vermont. It's all BS and not apart of the ski community that I know and
> love.

Again, you and I share the same values in this respect.

> Look at this exchange:...
> Sure it's supposed to be funny but it comes from an underlying attitude that
> somehow there are certain skiers who are better and somehow more deserving
> than others. And this is where a lot of your rational regarding the 99.9
> argument comes from Ben.

Tag or Leigh, have you met me?  Then don't tell me what my rationale is
and where it comes from. READ my words before you respond.  I advocate
skiers taking responsibility for themselves and not blaming their
suffering on the terrain.  Just like I was at fault for skiing in the
woods too soon and injuring myself, not the stumps and logs.  This has
NOTHING to do with ability level or a rank of deservation.  GET OFF your
moral high horse, and I'll get off mine.

And what both of you missed is that the whole while I have been advocating
helping those in apparent need out.  I stop to help when I see people
needing it.

> It's not the trails or conditions its the people. I
> did find the perfect analogy for you in defense of your argument:
> "Guns don't kill people. People kill people."
Funny, I was going to bring this up as a joke, to laugh at myself.  But
there are too many differences between guns and ski trails to make the
analogy work.  Funny how great minds work alike, though, isn't it. ;-)

> If you are: "poor and
> can't afford multi-day trips to the great areas of the world." Then I am a
> bit curious as to how you are able to make the broad sweeping statements
> that you have made in your recent posts about skiing. From terrain to
> conditions to individuals you seem to be quite the worldly skier.

If you want to see my savings account statement, my student loan
statements, my pay stubs, bills, etc., backchannel me.  But I try to be a
scam artist (I have  long way to go, though, to reach the level of the
Evil One and Jerm), use the principle of deficit spending, and mooch off
generous phriends like Matt Duphphy.  You want to know what my first ever
brand new pair of skis were?  The CMH Phats.  They'll probably be my last
brand new pair.

That's it.  I'm done with this thread.  If you want to apologize, b/c
me.  I apologize for my rants, and for not bc'ing my invective against
Leigh.  If in the future you are going to judge me, please try tobc me.
I'll try to do the same.  Lets try to READ each others words, and discuss
productively, and refrain from judging.  Agreed?

Ben K.

ps.  If you don't like my humor, don't read my posts.  But careful, you
might miss a phat deal.

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