Wednesday, January 27, 2010

My First Time Skiing

Last weekend, I braved the 3,600-foot mountain that is Mt. Snow, VT, and went skiing for the first time in my life. For starters, I had a helluva time deciding whether to board or ski. The majority of my friends board. And my snowboarding ex spent a good year ramming into my brain the fact that a skier is nothing more than a "two-plank fruit-booter." I did not know what that meant, but he said it with such disdain that I resolved never to boot fruit. Ever. But when J recently invited me on a winter-wonderland getaway, I was faced with two options: To ski or to ride? Skiing looked doable. Riding looked like a combination of skateboarding, surfing and breaking my neck. But it wasn't the falling that scared me. It's just that I know me, and I knew that if I tried to place both feet on one stationary board, I would get insanely frustrated with my inability to stay off my ass. And seeing that I vividly recall eating pavement in 10th grade thanks to a skateboard, along with the fact that I'm about as coordinated as Screech Powers... well, my choice was clear.

We arrive at Amazing Planet! late Friday night. Gotta love a farm that contains an exclamation point in the name. The next day, I slip into a pair of hand-me-down ski pants, a purple coat borrowed from J and a pair of too-big ski gloves courtesy of S. Mismatched gear and all, I. Look. Awesome. While my experienced boarding friends scatter, I schlep to the ski school alone, where I wait in line behind a bunch of 5-year-olds. After 10 minutes, a woman kindly points me in the direction of the "adult school." Oh. There I meet my instructor Joe, who spends the first 20 minutes instructing my group on where to place our lift tickets. Note that my group consists of five people: a guy about my age who wouldn't stop talking about how great of a skier his girlfriend is, a 13-year-old girl, an older man missing a few teeth, and an excessively made-up blonde woman straight out of the Housewives of New Jersey.

Here, I am given a pair of ski boots covered in duct tape. Literally. The boot buckles look as if they could chop off a finger and they're so heavy, it's like walking in quicksand. Um, ski boot or torture device? Anyway, the boots seem to be putting an exorbitant amount of pressure on my calves. I don't know if this is normal, so I inquire. Joe inspects my leg and says that because women typically have larger calves, they need to invest in custom boots. Er, excuse me? Birthing hips? Check. Slight love handles? Check. Arm flab the size of a small Christmas ham? Check. But I do NOT have fat calves!

Joe then ushers us into the supply room. We get our planks and our poles. The poles are divided by height. After trying the 5'6" pole, Joe insists that I need the 5'10" pole. As soon as he walks away, I switch 'em. We spend the next hour shuffling around on our skis. I have not yet hit ass to snow and am feeling smug. Then we go down a mini hill. I am having trouble turning. Joe approaches me. "Because of the way their bodies are made, many women are bow-legged. I think you have the same problem as Sonia." I protest that I do not think I am bow-legged, nor do I know Sonia. He stands firm. "You need custom boots."

After the lesson, I bid Joe farewell. The 13-year-old girl and I decide to give it a go and hop into the beginners' lift to brave the bunny slope. I assume this is the bunny slope because it is highlighted on the map in pink. Not blue, green, red or black. Pink for two-plank fruit-booters like myself. The girl and I pretty much roll off the lift and tumble down the slope. I spend the rest of the afternoon falling on my ass practicing. I fall a lot. I slide, roll, tumble and get tangled in my skis. I frequently collide with other skiers. I look longingly at the snowboarders, feeling embarrassed of my footwear and of my lackluster skill. My second to last run, I get on the lift with a 5-year-old boy, also learning to ski.

Me: Hi! I'm Tina.
Boy (shrinking into his hood with a grin): I'm Davey.
Me: Nice to meet you, Davey. Is this your first time skiing?
Davey (whispers): Yea.
Me: Me, too! It's kind of hard, right?
Davey: Yea, but you got to PWACTICE.
Me (duh): Oh, yea, of course! Definitely! All it takes is some practice!

Davey skis off the lift like a pro. I fall. Again. And then give Davey a high-five. The best part? I skied down the slope those last two runs, and I did not fall. Not once! I felt the wind in my face, the snow wooshing beneath my skis, and I loved it. Someday, I will be one of the cool kids snowboarders. But for now, I can honestly say that I enjoy being a two-plank fruit-booter.

* Many thanks to J for organizing the trip! Note that the woman above is NOT me.


  1. you crack me up. seriously. write a book NOW. or keep writing it!

  2. To my "two-plank fruit-booter" daughter,
    Sounds as though you had a great time on your butt. I'm jealous! I have wanted to fall on my ass at some ski resort all of my life. I don't know if it was the sking I wanted or maybe it was all the women I see in the magizines. Look like a lotta women. Oh well... I'm glad you went. ILU, TOM
    ps I agreee with Ryan and Kim... write a book... dammit! Again, ILU, TOM aka Dad... huh POP... Mike

  3. This is great miss Tina! You crack me up...your such a funny writer..and talented! Glad you enjoyed skiing...maybe we can go sometime and embrace the "two-plank fruit booter" because they rock!

  4. *blushing* THANKS guys! And dad! :) xoxo


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