Never Write Off Winter

That’s the lesson from Friday’s post bemoaning the spring-like temperatures in the Catskills. My friends back in New York spent yesterday snuggled indoors (if they were smart) as the City registered an all-time record snowfall: 26.9 inches in Central Park, some of which came down at the rate of three inches an hour. I am very glad to no longer be a home-owner in Brooklyn, consigned to shoveling out sidewalks and stoops – especially when the snow is followed by a deep freeze, leaving the underlying cement coated with solid ice.

Oddly enough, up in our usually snow-capped part of the world, the blizzard was relatively tame: I ski’d and Campbell snowboarded all through what turned out to be but a paltry five inches of snow. That said, visibility did drop a couple of times to near-zero, for which I blame my first big wipe-out in weeks, and I pity the poor bands hired for the mountain’s annual Telemet North Air Assault (translation: snowboarding-trick ski rail and jump competition) who performed on a stage beset by heavy snow. As the roads stayed readily passable up here and with our house still absent a TV, we headed out to the ever-excellent Windhaven Pub Sunday evening to have dinner and watch the Olympics highlights: living in-between ski mountains like we do, we were hardly the only ones with the same idea and the TV sets were surrounded by knowledgable, passionate vieweers.

Shaun White takes an aerial view of his halfpipe course.

Campbell, who’s proud when he gets a whole foot of air off a natural mountain bump, walked out of the place uttering the name of 19-year old gold medal winner Shaun White like he’d discovered a new Superhero. I was equally amazed by White and team-mate Danny Kass’s mid-air acrobats; and I was both frightened and awestruck by the speed at which Antoine Deneriaz, Bode Miller, and Michael Walchhofer took the downhill skiing course. But for a techno freak like myself, I was most fascinated by the snowboarding team’s Burton-designed uniforms – complete with speakers in the hoods, LCD screens on the inside, and an instant toggle switch that allows iPods to be muted for incoming cell calls. It almost makes up for the fact that the uniforms look like New York Yankees baseball duds doubling as PJs. And yes, I would like one for myself.

The ultimate fashion accessory: the US snowboarding team’s techno-savvy uniforms

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October 2021