Sunday, January 31, 2010

Progress is the Sweet Victory Of Snowboarding

I love progressing at snowboarding. It's the cheesecake after dinner. It's the scotch at the end of a good night. It's that extra log on your Sunday night fire.

Email me with your favorite euphemism for "progress in snowboarding" at

I finally got the confidence to spin the first of the big jumps in the pro park here at CB. Back 3 lien. On the screws. Stomped. One down, 3 to go. And I've only got about 50 days of lift serviced riding here left. I'd better get to work.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Bluebird Fridays

I think that bluebird Fridays are pretty much the dog's balls. Sorry, Mom - it's a popular British expression. I'm taking a day away from the mountain to let my body rest (although I'm pretty sure that no one other than Eric Hunley would consider a 2+ hour workout day a "rest day"), but you can bet your bottom dollar (Mom, that clean, generic expression was for you - retribution for the "dog's balls" expression) I'll be back out tomorrow.

I've hit 60 days on the season now, which means it's more than half over. Or is it only half over? I'm a "half-full" kind of guy, so I'll go with the latter. Progression is happening, and it's starting to get exciting. You heard it here first (or second if you're a close friend) - I think a 7 is in my reach this season. If you live in CB and ride with me, help me out and hold me to this: I'm getting a clean 720 down by season's end. And I'm going to bite off a good 30+ feet off of one of CB's many, many, many cliffs. Here's to the death of complacency.

I'm taking the day to sweat it out in the gym, do some work on planning for the next 12 month's worth of adventures (if you're into a 6 week bike ride from the top of the Left Coast to the bottom in Septmber/October - let me know), and watch the X Games. I opted to stay in CB and actually snowboard and watch them on TV rather than fight hordes of people for tracked out lines in Aspen all weekend. But if you want to see the pinnacle of sporting ridiculousness, you should consider tuning in this weekend. Names to watch: Kazuhiro Kokubo, Torstein Horgmo, Levi Lavallee.

Lila and I did some recording at the Princess last night - I'll post the audio when I can.

Quit reading my garbage and go play outside this weekend.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

I'm going to let this speak for itself...

Saturday, January 23, 2010

2010 Brings the Rain (Snow, Actually)

It's PUKING outside. Vomiting. Yakking. Dumping. Insert synonym for "lots and lots of snow". The best part (since the other parts just aren't good enough): I have tomorrow off, they're opening the steeps tomorrow, and it's NFL Championship weekend. You can't even hurt my feelings. You could tell me "Hey Chris - someone stole your car and burned down your house.", and I would reply something similar to "Oh, that's awful. I'll address that just as soon as this storm is over and it's not my day off." I've come to the conclusion that not many things will come to ruin if you take a personal day/week/month. Of course, you have to use your best judgement and discretion when you're trying to vanish and play for an extended amount of time - if you have a deadline at the office or at school, or have rent due in a week and a $12.57 bank account balance, you should probably consider hunkering down for the short term for the sake of the long haul. But never lose perspective - you have to get out and take the opportunities you are presented with to live a little. All you have is your time and your health - take advantage of both. Know your work ethic - in many situations you can be just as productive after a personal reprieve (if not more productive) than before one, or (God forbid) if you don't take personal time at all. I may be playing in the white room for hours and hours over the next few days, but I do so knowing that I have the discipline to get down to business in the PM. Create your work ethic. Enforce your own discipline. The rewards are great. Trust me.

On a sad note, I said goodbye to a loved one this week. My Burton Se7en: 2007-2010. She met her maker on January 20 in the early afternoon. She got roughed up by a rather large and immovable pine tree. She will me missed.

On the upside, I welcomed a 2009 Ride DH2 to my quiver this week - hands down the raddest board I've ever strapped myself onto and slid sideways on. I highly recommend demoing one if you have the chance, fellow mountain enthusiasts.

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to snowboard until my legs almost died, go work out at the office with a few clients, and play music with Lila (we have chosen the moniker "Beau et la Bete" - look it up if you're witty). I had to physically stop moving for a minute to count my blessings - how many of us are fortunate to enjoy 3 (three!) of our favorite passions in the same day? Take the time to think about your good fortunate - we're all luckier than we know. If you're reading this, you're better off that a very large portion of our planet's population. You have a computer (or possibly even a smart phone), electricity, and the time and luxury to enjoy a moment to yourself. Breathe it in, and try and live like you don't take it for granted (saying you don't take it for granted then not thinking about it for a week doesn't count).

I'm off to go play a show - Beau et la Bete is playing our very own Haiti Relief Benefit tonight at the Princess (see: we're better off than a very large portion of our planet's population). It should be a great time. I'm going to try and record a show soon (possibly even tonight) and upload the audio to the WWW sooner than later. I'll include a link on this blog for sure.

In the meantime, consider listening to M.Ward's "Hold Time" and sitting down for an evening with Vonegut's "Welcome to the Monkey House". Excellent.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Thinking Ahead

So it's been a pretty killer week here in CB, all things considered, although I think many of us local residents are close to agreeing to kill each other if it would bring some snow. I'm delving into the extensive backcountry options here tomorrow with my buddy Tom in an exhaustive effort for some deep snow. It's necessary. I'm hoping to get some photos while we're out - it should be bluebird and make for a great photo album. Especially if we find some stash. Pray for us.

I've had a fair amount of time this week to build some enthusiasm at the gym and start a new training program (Eric, you're inspiring me more than you know - keep flipping tires), work on catching up with my To Do's (they got sort of extensive when I was hosting the CB3 team), and catch up on some rest. I did take some time to get out and work on some new tricks, and go out for a nighttime jib session with Fritz (the winning photo is at left). I've also given some thought to what my summer agenda will hold. Any recommendations? Email me with your ideas at I'd love to hear what you think I should do with my time - sincerely, bounce some ideas off of me. I'd love to get into some adventures with any and all of you that take the time to read this blog.

I'm thinking 3 bike rides for sure: the STP ( the 200 mile beast from Seattle to Portland) in July, the RSVP (Seattle to Vancouver) in August, and the holy grail - a 5-6 week tour from Seattle to LA and back in September/October. 1,436 miles. Each way. Who's interested in accompanying me?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

3 Week Update

Yes, I know it's been a minute. You can feel free to let me know how you feel about that, but it's going to fall on deaf ears. You could be about as offended as you could possibly be that I haven't been blogging lately, and I will continue to just smile and nod. I've spent the last 3 weeks enjoying friends, family, holidays, riding, mayhem, wholesomeness, and just about everything in between; and taking a few minutes away from the people who deemed it important enough to come see me to spend savings and take time out of their busy lives just wasn't in the cards. It means the world that everyone who came out to visit did so, and I couldn't have possibly enjoyed the last few weeks of my life any more thoroughly. I got to enjoy a meal with my family, work out with my brother, ride with friends and family alike, snowboard in the dark holding lit flares, hike the jib park by moonlight, party like it was 1999, lose pretty much every match of Bear-Ninja-Cowboy I played, learn some new tricks, and generally enjoy living in the present for a while. My landlord may not appreciate that (where do you buy a new towel rod?), and my liver definitely doesn't appreciate that, but for better or worse I enjoyed every second. If you haven't opened your home to a throng of your closest friends lately, I suggest you make some phone calls. Just cover your furniture in plastic and consider buying renter's insurance. If I could do it all over again, I would. Twice. I'm 9 bag explosions short of a up-to-par snow bum living room. Want to save on heat? Get a half dozen or so people to live in your living room and continuously have a fire going. If you don't have a fireplace, you should consider moving to Colorado. Things I've learned in the last 3 weeks:
- my family is the best, and my friends are too.
- bonus Jaime is even better than regular Jaime
- you can make pancakes without eggs as long as you use a LOT of milk
- Kelley Ritchie has ruined meals for me forever - no longer does a Clif Bar suffice as a quality dinner. Neither does queso and chip crumbs via spoon. Send recipes, Kelley. And cooking abilities.
- celebrating New Year's Eve is better in a non-East Coast Time Zone; you get to do it twice. Three times if you Youtube the ball drop the next night.
- snowboarding is easy. Snowboarding in the dark barkwards while carrying lit torches is a little tricky.
- friends who trick together stick together.
- I have met at least one girl skier who can own me on a snowboard anytime, anywhere- thanks for humbling me, Susan Mol.
- my brother is brutally huge.
- Colorado is God's country. And all dogs should be raised here.
- backcountry booters are a blast.
- Eric's ankle disagrees with the Wu Tang.
- Sunny B. takes great photos.
- I have some seriously rad chicks for roommates.
- 9 people run through toilet paper at a pace normally reserved for Usain Bolt.
- engineers can lose a camera in their pants.
- Sass is still the man. All Hail Sass.
- Next winter is going to be gnarly.

If you can't get as excited as I am over your last 3 weeks, you should consider altering your lifestyle. It's just not worth it to deny yourself the pleasures of good company and great memories for the sake of someone else's expectations, your own fears, or because "there just isn't enough time". You're right, there isn't enough time. So call in sick tomorrow and go spend some time with your friends and family. You won't regret it - I know I didn't.

To good friends and better trips.