You mean where I strap both my feet onto a board and slide down a mountain?
Oh, cool. Yes, let’s do that.
Have I done it before?
Dude, do I look like an idiot? Scratch the look part. Am I stupid?
No, I’ve never snowboarded, but hey, how hard can it be?
That was the banter between my friend and I Friday morning. A group of my friends and I had rented a cabin right by Big Bear Lake and now they wanted to snowboard.
Great. Just great.
Here I thought I was going to have a fun relaxing weekend, and I saw no need to risk life and limb on the snowy slopes.
By late Friday evening, after pizza and drinks of course, my risk analysis skills were put on pause, and I promised my friends that I’d snowboard.
Saturday morning I rented my snowboarding gear and off we went to hit the challenging bunny slopes.
Before even getting in line, my friends and I strapped one foot into our boards so I could get a feel for it. Seconds later, a beginner skier came sliding into my friend Nancy and I. We were her crash fence.
Luckily everyone was okay, and after tons of apologies, she disappeared.
The ski lifts were challenging.
No, not the part when you’re scooped up and hauled into the air.
I’m talking about the part when you have to bail the moving chair onto the slippery snow.
That’s right. The lift never stops.
Which is something that totally sucks when you’re the rider. When you’re standing in line, you wish the lift would move twice as fast.
Of course I ate s*** on my first attempt getting off the lift. It wasn’t even a dignified or cool fall.
It was an “I have no clue what I’m doing” fall.
Nobody laughed at me.
At least not that I saw.
My friends and I strapped both feet into our boards and then we cautiously made our way to the top of the slope.
I was scared.
Three of my friends had been snowboarding before so they took off first and then waited for the rest of us a little ways down.
I stood up. Slid. Fell.
I repeated the above mentioned actions multiple times with some peppered expletives.
Somehow, I made it to the bottom of the hill although most of the traveling was done on my butt.
I slipped and slid into the now long lift line, next to some pretty girl wearing skis. She looked at me, and more stated than asked, “your first time?”
Landing on my butt multiple times should have dampened my self-confidence, but no.
My response to her was, “my butt hurts”.
Not my usual pickup line, I promise.
She then proceeded to tell me about her attempts at snowboarding and now her determination to learn how to ski. I asked her how good she was on her skis, and she replied, “my butt hurts too”.
As we rode the lift to the top of the slope, I told her that I knew how to fall in the most awesome manner and promised to show her when we bailed the moving chair.
But Fate was on my side.
I bailed that moving chair like Shaun White.
Miss Skier clapped at my Olympic style moves and then gave me a thumbs up before shooting down the hill.
My second time down the slopes was much better, and by better I mean that my fall count did not hit double digits.
By the 3rd and 4th trip, I was feeling pretty good about myself.
I had managed to cut my way down the hill only falling a couple of times when I braked. Once I had to butt brake to avoid hitting a floundering snowboarder, and the second fall occurred when I braked really hard near the bottom.
But the second fall was kinda cool, because my braking had sent snow flying through the air.
I had lots of fun.
My butt still hurts.
But I’m happy.
Happy that I actually snowboarded. I know I didn’t perform any Evel Knievel stunts or insane half pipes, but I actually snowboarded down a bunny slope.
I’m proud of myself.