Saturday, February 18, 2006

Olympics


  1. 90% of the time speed is your friend.
  2. Don’t ride scared.
  3. Always respect your board.
  4. Who’s ready to ride?
I snowboard with a tight group of snow enthusiasts made up mostly of my brothers. When we are out in the cold we have a handful of sayings that we repeat to each other. Three of them are warnings; one is a mantra. The warnings are akin to such battle-tested phrases as keep your eye on the ball, hydrate or die, and never leave your wingman. We recite these quips because we have learned from experience that they are true, and because in the excitement of a powder-filled slope or even in the forgettable flats near a lift-line they will keep you off your butt.

Especially, always respect your board.

A snowboard is a fickle friend. Its balance beam-like properties and opposing edges should never be disrespected. As soon as you drop your guard, you will catch an edge. At no time should you relax.

No one knows this better than Lindsey Jacobellis. I don’t think the now infamous, method-grab was to blame for her crash. Nor do I think that it was any more unwarranted than a racer pumping their fists in the air before they cross the finish line as Tanja Frieden did while capturing the gold in women’s snowboardcross. Where Lindsey made her mistake was not heeding warning #3. When she launched from the second to last jump in the race her mind was thinking gold and not about respecting her board. The style-filled backside grab was the beginning of her celebration and should not be questioned. Her mistake was not the jump--it was the landing. Seeing her bounce across the blue-painted snow should serve as a reminder of how capricious a snowboard can be.

While it is sad to see Lindsey miss the top spot on the podium, I admire her spirit. She has admitted that she “messed up”, but is quick to add that “snowboarding is fun.” In my opinion it is one of the most fun events they air. The competitors in the snowboarding events are riding because they like it and it is fun. The medals are nice, but I’ll bet each of them would be out riding even if there were no Olympics. (I doubt you could say that for many of the sour-faced, pairs figure skaters.) Which is why we snowboarders always answer the fourth question enthusiastically: “I’m ready to ride!”

9 Comments:

Blogger Johnny said...

I like your comments and had very similar thoughts as I watched her fall. I was impressed with her interview with Bob Costas. She seemed to be able to put it into a proper perspective,"snowboarding is fun."

Sat Feb 18, 10:34:00 AM PST  
Blogger Carol said...

She wasn't the only one who put a little flair into it, she just had the misfortune of coming down wrong. I think it is sad that some look at this as a national failure to dominate the sport. These are Olympic games, games are played for fun.
Have you heard anything about the girl who fell and had to be sledded off the course??

Sat Feb 18, 01:39:00 PM PST  
Blogger Jason Hill said...

Mom, she was taken to the hospital and then released with no injuries.

Sun Feb 19, 12:07:00 AM PST  
Blogger Dawnette said...

Snowboarding has certainly captured Miriam's attention! Partly because of the adventure and partly because of the fun. Now all she needs is an uncle to come up and giver her a lesson or two. Any takers?

Sun Feb 19, 04:59:00 AM PST  
Blogger Steve Maxwell said...

Uh! Yes Dawnette, J-Hill would be glad to come and teach Miriam how to snowboard. If you look at his recent posts he is looking for "excuses" to ride on powder. I am more comfortable on a Artic Cat or a Ski-Do but I would be interested in learning for enjoyment sake. The fact of the matter is I have always been discouraged because of how much "foot" (size 14, 15) the Lord has blessed me with. But I would follow J-Hill up a mountain and to Africa. :-)

Wed Feb 22, 05:43:00 PM PST  
Blogger KK said...

not that you know me and not that you care for my opinion... but here it is. I thought she handled herself well considering all of the negative press ove the whole issue. but isn't it sad that if she would have landed the jump and won gold that this would be the only thing the press would be talking about. so the lesson learned for me is: It's okay to show boat, just land the jump!

Mon Feb 27, 12:44:00 PM PST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yea i think it was her fault cuz she needs to think bout where shes going and she needs to respect her board it can be very dangerous skiing and snwboarding even though i ski oh and she shouldnt have popped the jump

Mon Apr 03, 10:25:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yah i kinda think it was lindseys fault when she fell at the olmpics because she should have just rode the jump and not have popped then she would have won the race and that would have been kewl i wish she wouldnt of done that

Mon Apr 03, 10:25:00 AM PDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yah i kinda think it was lindseys fault when she fell at the olmpics because she should have just rode the jump and not have popped then she would have won the race and that would have been kewl i wish she wouldnt of done that

Mon Apr 03, 10:26:00 AM PDT  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Older Posts Newer Posts