Accumulating Vertical Feet? You're Ruining the Skiing Experience.
I will quickly apologize in advance for this article not being able to pertain to everyone. However, not everything is about you so just put a lid on it for this rant and enjoy the ride. Also, allow me to apologize for the Axe experiencing a brief hiatus. This will not happen again.
Today I would like to voice my opinion on a little bit of nonsense I discovered just this year. To bring you all (y'all for any southern folk tuning in) up to speed we're talking about skiing. I live in Colorado where skiing is a way of life for a large percentage of the populace, and rightfully so. The sport/activity/hobby is damn fun. Really, it's exciting. Whether one crawls down a green (easiest) run or drops into some back country terrain, you can't help but have a smile on your face. It's the dry land version of riding on a jet-ski. Pure ecstasy.
Now take that happy little activity and imagine someone trying to sour the delightful taste with their shit ingredients. It's not that there are too many cooks in the kitchen, rather it's one cook being an asshole. I'll explain.
I was having a conversation with a friend of a friend while skiing this past season and here's a brief bird's eye of how that discussion went:
Friend: Hey! So I heard you were up here yesterday skiing, too! How was it?
Friend of Friend: Oh man! You don't even know! We did over 30,000 feet of vert!
Friend: NIIIICE! That's crazy! Tons of vert! No idea how you pulled that off.
F of F: Yea well we just decided before we got up here that we wanted to get over 30,000 so we just hauled ass all day!
Me: (Silence. Letting the crickets sing their song.) What the hell was I supposed to say? I was stunned.
I will now attempt to break this down as best I can (more than likely failing miserably). What the two ass clowns above were talking about was vertical feet. That measurement can be calculated by taking a chair lift up to its highest point and from that top point down to the base of the mountain you get your total in vertical feet traveled. OK, I may not have hit a bull's eye with that definition but I'm somewhere on the cork board.
Apparently over the last few years this concept of tracking your vertical feet traveled has grabbed a bit of traction. It's a shame really. It's as if we didn't already have enough activities in our lives to track and trace and compete among one another. Skiing?! Come the hell on! Whatever happened to just hitting the hill and enjoying the day and the fact that you're SKIING?! Can't measure a successful day by smiles or laughter? You just cannot simply enjoy a day up on a fucking snow-covered MOUNTAIN?! And do not tell me you're still enjoying yourself you attention-starving slut. All you care about is racking up numbers. Numbers that quite literally mean nothing. You will get no prize, you will get no money, and there will be zero shits given to you. You're running low on the tank of self-esteem, friend. Is there some sort of discount you can claim at the crossfit gym you go to by accumulating these vertical feet? It can be the only explanation for such a shit idea. Good news for you, though! Now you get to tell everyone about TWO things instead of just crossfit!
As you may have gathered by now, there's an app for this horseshit. This little joke can follow you everywhere and it even does a great job of disrupting other people out on the mountain trying to actually enjoy their day! Hell, the creators of this disaster have even sweetened the deal! You can achieve or unlock or win some sort of pins and medals! YEAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!! Pins AND metals?! You betcha. And that's not all! You can have these pathetic 'achievements' automatically sync up to your other social media accounts! You all know what that means, right? It means that now you can pretend everyone who sees your posts is going to think your life is amazing! That, or they're going to get your address and send you an envelope stuffed with Anthrax. Uh oh, better tack on 6 more vertical feet to that profile because that's how far underground your coffin will be buried.
Why do we need yet ANOTHER reason to keep our phones glued to our person 24/7? Here's a ludicrous suggestion; leave your phone in your car! Why on God's sweet green Earth do you need your phone while you're embarking on a delicious day of snow sports? One single excuse gives you a pass and that's to track down someone you might be trying to meet up with. THAT IS IT.
I just don't understand why someone would need this crap. Track your vertical feet? It just sounds stupid. Just go out and enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Remember when folks could pull that feat off with ease? Nowadays we have to track the miles we run, the calories we burn, the points we've tallied, and it's never good enough to just FEEL GOOD. We have to best someone. We have to beat a time. We can't simply do things and just accept that that's an achievement all on its own.
Time to loosen our grip on bullshit and get a grip on life. And for all you circus acts who actually tally your vertical feet while skiing? I'll do you a favor and count however many feet it is from the top of the building you should jump off of to the sidewalk below and then we'll put that number toward your goal. Shut up and stop being an idiot.
Nighty night sleep tight kids!!