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02/05/2004: "On photography and skiing"

music: Blind Melon - No Rain, U2 - All I Want Is You, U2 - October, George Winston - The Holly and the Ivy, MXPX - Doing Time, Lynard Skynard - Sweet Home Alabama, Green Day - Welcome to Paradise, Smashing Pumpkins – Zero, Offspring – Keep Em Seperated - Nine Inch Nails - Head Like a Hole, Tonic - If You Could Only See, Red Hot Chili Peppers - Under the Bridge, Smashing Pumpkins – 1979, Weezer - Buddy Holly, Wynton Marsalis – Pachelbel’s Canon for 3 Trumpets & Strings (The list is so long because I was multitasking while 'Blogging")
mood: High on life

Richard invited me to go up to the pass with him and a buddy of his. I hadn’t gone yet this season, so I readily accepted – but first, I had to go to photography. So I waited around for an hour – actually, I fell asleep reading the photography book (volume 7!). Then when class rolled around, our teacher showed up to tell us how much or a moron he was because he forgot the slides he was going to show us…
…So the seven people that actually showed all got up and left. I asked the teacher about the last assignment we handed in; in turns out its been sitting in the out box in the photo lab for a few days now. I grabbed mine out, but didn’t get around to opening it until later. Since Dan hadn’t arrived yet, I gave him a call as I walked out and let him know that class had been canceled. It turns out he’s terribly sick – so get well soon Dan! He asked me to take down his dry film for him – which I did (I actually recognized which film was his this time – another time, I couldn’t figure it out, and the teacher asked me to stop looking at other people’s film because “they might have pictures of themselves having sex with their children or something.” He seriously said that. I promptly stopped looking for Dan’s film, kinda freaked out. I think maybe Carlos has spent a little too much time around photo chemicals).
Anyway, back to the story…While on the phone, I overheard a girl from the class trying to arrange a ride home. Since I had some time to blow before my class was supposed to get out, I offered her a ride home. We had a wonderfully engaging conversation all the way to her house in Sammamish - and she’s cute to boot. Yes, I have designs. Its fun to be in this position again, its been a while. Oh, Amanda also opened up my returned photography assignment for me, and I got an A-. I’m happy with the grade – good, but still with room to improve. A lot like the photographs I turned in.
So, once I dropped Amanda (that’s the girl’s name) off and we said out good-byes, I headed back home to get my skis and then I headed down to Richard’s. A little later we took off to pick up Colin, a friend of Richard’s, and head to the pass. We got there just before 4, so we waited until 15 before then headed up and got the night passes. With a coupon, it came out to $20 a person – pretty good.
Once on the slopes, my skiing form came back to me pretty easily, but my quads aren’t what they were at the end of last season. I was feeling the burn pretty good by the end of the day. Of course I was with two snowboarders, so they wanted to do the terrain park while I was more interested in runs like triple sixty face. But I thought I’d give another shot at learning how to jump. You see, I had a bad experience when I was young. When I was 13 years old, I went off a big jump and ended up landing on my head. The ensuing black out has caused me to shy away from jumps ever since. When I did go over bumps, I tended to take it up in my legs.
Today, however, I decided it was time to face down that fear and give jumps another shot. I’m glad I did. With a few pointers from Richard and Colin and a little bit of practice, I was able to consistently land my jumps. It still doesn’t feel natural, but I didn’t wipe out on any of the landing, and by the end of the day I was catching significant air. And it’s exhilarating beyond anything I have done on skis before. I hope to extend my distance and airtime over my next few trips.
On the way back from Snoqualmie, we stopped at North Bend’s Denny’s for dinner. I had an excellent sirloin steak with applesauce and a baked potato. It hit the spot. Food is good. On the way out, I popped some money in the big machine with the claw that grabs stuffed animals – and for the first time in my life, I got one out. It’s a strange but cute green teddy bear in a black and yellow jester outfit. Hopefully I will post pictures soon.
With my recently won prize, endorphins from skiing and jumping, and a girl to top it off – life is good.



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