Girl on Boy Action

The agony of pulling my Black Diamond skin apart from itself is akin to the agony of attempting to pull up an enormous dandelion from the ground — a dandelion the size of a German Shephard, rooted deep in the ground since before aliens, slaves or whoever finished up the pyramids. As I am wallowing in this gritty agony, ripping apart my girlie chest muscles in an attempt to dislodge my first skin from itself, I look to the horizon. What do I see? My lanky  husband Tyler and our friend Steve, already marching uphill into the trees, happily chatting away. Tyler’s new skis are so wide they are less skis and more brightly colored rafts. He appears to hover above the surface of the snow, the upturned shovels on the back of his rafts shivering pleasantly with each giant step.

Back to me. I am spread out across the clearing like I am ready for a picnic — one of my gloves is dangling from a ski pole that is barely upright in the snow (the other has already fallen). I have the other sodden glove between my teeth as I yank my second skin apart with a yell that would appease Tarzan. The final burst of momentum when I finally get that stupid skin apart sends my glove flying out of my mouth and onto the snow, open end down where it then proceeds to fill at least half up with snow. I lunge for it, effectively sinking to my waist in the shallow snowpack. My boot touches something which in texture and truth is probably dirt. A startled snowshoe hare takes one look at my predicament and runs for the trees, probably to alert its a brethren — happily skipping about on top of the snow — to my predicament. By the time I attach my skins to the bottom of my skis, figure out how to get on my skis (which are waist height and facing the wrong direction), forget to zip up my backcountry pack twice and slam my goggles down onto my panting face, the boys are halfway up the ridge, their athletic little butts wiggling through a patch of trees with more grace and speed than rocket-powered mountain goats.

Today, like many days, I am back country skiing with boys. I am the token girl. Skiing with another lady these days has become so rare as to be mythical. To say, “Today I skiied with my girlfriend _______” is almost like saying, “Today I saw a unicorn,” or “OJ Simpson didn’t do it.” Really, it’s just not true. More likely, I skiied with a bunch of dudes, and they were ahead of me the whole time. I was off the back somewhere ogling the faraway peaks and clinging to my dignity, humming Abba songs to pass the time.

Seriously, though. Those boys — they have more energy than a nuclear power plant. Often, our morning “what we gonna do today” sessions go like this:

“So, first we could hit up the back bowls at Keystone,” says Tyler. “We could do — ”

Three, I think.

“Five laps in Bergman and Independence Bowls,” he continues.

“Yeah!” Says Steve/Aubrey/Michael/Marcus/Keith/Luke/other male friend.

Ugh, I think.

“And then,” says Tyler. “We can –”

Watch a movie, I think. And eat ice cream.

“Go up to A Basin and ski the Professor and then –”

Watch another movie, I think.

“Do a sunset skin up A Basin!” says Tyler.

“Yeah!” Says Steve/Aubrey/Michael/Marcus/Keith/Luke/other male friend.

Honestly at this point, I have absolutely no idea if I am actually in shape or not. The only people I can consistently compare my fitness to are a handful of guys — husband included — whose body fat percentage matches the average winter temperature of coastal Antartica. My buddy Google tells me this is around -40 to -50 degrees Fahrenheit, to give you an idea what kind of superpowers I’m dealing with. At least at the finish line, food awaits — glorious food. I force myself up mountains to the tune of Breyer’s Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream and a mental vision of a giant, greasy burger and fries hanging in front of me, just over where the boys are dancing up the skin track.

When I get home, I have half a cup of ice cream, an orange and a grilled cheese sandwich. Husband has a pint of Ben & Jerry’s Chubby Hubby, five slices of pizza, a monstrous bowl of Barbara’s Peanut Butter Puffins with whole milk and two week-old slices of lemon pound cake I snaked from Starbucks’ discard bin. Where do they put it all? Maybe there is some magical guy second stomach that has the properties of the bottomless bag in Harry Potter. Hermione fit a tent, changes of clothes, books and Voldemort knows what else in there. I know proof of the bottomless man stomach exists: in college, my friend Brian and I went on a hike. Afterwards, he put down an entire medium Domino’s pepperoni pizza, a grilled cheese sandwich, several cookies, a huge glass of chocolate milk, half a bag of chips and an apple. It was horrifying, but I couldn’t stop staring. It was like watching a hairy, 350 pound man stroll down the beach in a speedo.

I digress. Being a girl in a ski town can be interesting. Here, a girl can enter almost any building and be surrounded by dudes. Bearded dudes in Patagonia  down jackets. Skinny, slouched dudes with long hair, flat brimmed hats and long, neon t-shirts. Unshaven dudes with Carhart jeans, dirty fingernails and smudged jackets with construction company logos. Dudes in button up shirts with mugs of tea and two golden retrievers outside in the truck. Here, wearing a skirt — yeah a skirt, you know, that flowy thing that doesn’t look like pants? You know… a skirt.  Okay, nevermind.

But way up on the top of some mountain, it’s ski pants and boots not skirts. Tyler whips one skin off one monstrous ski, then the other without removing either ski. As he nibbles on another frozen wedge of lemon loaf and checks out our waypoint on his Dumb Phone, I am tipping like a drunk ballerina on one ski. The other is upside down on the snow and one of my poles is trying to head down the hill early. Steve is taking pictures as I awkwardly rip the second skin from my frigid ski. I nearly donate it to Aeolus, the Greek God of wind who must be above splitting his sides with laughter.

“F-” I yell and the wicked winds at 12,000 feet wipe the other letters from my thirsty lips. Tyler and Steve grin at each other. Just me and the boys, and — just between you and me — I wouldn’t have it any other way.

7 Replies to “Girl on Boy Action”

  1. Really liked this one. And seriously, where does it all go? I like to think that we are superior beings with highly efficient digestive systems that just can’t let anything go to waste, an obvious benefit several centuries ago, but a boon now. Until World War III, that is 😉

    1. Hey bro-sef, thanks for reading 🙂 Great to see your name around these parts in the blog-o-sphere 🙂

  2. Hm, guess there is no edit button on here. Lame! I meant NOT a boon now.

    1. Hi Pamella! Thanks for reading and for your comment. What is

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