On the Hill: Dumb and dumber | AspenTimes.com

On the Hill: Dumb and dumber

Janet Urquhart
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

ASPEN ” You’d think leaving unsecured skis and poles on the top of my car would be the dumbest thing I did Saturday, but no.

A friend and I were pulling out of the Rodeo Lot at Snowmass when she yelled, “stop, stop, stop!” What she meant was, “Ease slowly to a halt ” we forgot the skis.”

My skis careened down my windshield and bounced off the hood onto the pavement when I hit the brakes. It wasn’t the last time I’d need to come to a stop.

We were headed for Bumps at Buttermilk, where another friend assured us the bartender, Craig, made a fine margarita. He must. After downing a couple of them on the sunny patio, all three of us grabbed cafeteria trays and trudged up that first huge jump at the base, intent on sledding, or inadvertent suicide.

Judy went first, rocketing down the steep pitch, tucked completely on her tray. I followed, shoving my heels into the slope in a feeble, Fred Flintstone braking maneuver. It sent so much snow spewing into my face, I couldn’t see anything through my sunglasses, save Judy, who must have been falling off her tray, as I was in danger of overtaking her or, more likely, running into her. I bailed from my own tray, clipped her as I passed by and tumbled for what seemed like an eternity down the slope. I came to a stop looking skyward, the sun blazing through the frost caked on my shades.

Our third, Cindy, wound up going backward early on, rolled off her tray and watched the carnage below as she slid, spread-eagle, on her belly.

My hands were numb. Gloveless, I’d tucked them into the sleeves of my light jacket and apparently tried to brake with them, too. Naturally, the sleeves were pushed upward as I was shoving the palms of my bare hands into the icy snow. About 12 hours of stinging and one blister later, they would recover.

We staggered to our feet while somewhere far below, on the Bumps patio, applause drifted upward from an apres-ski crowd imbued with an appreciation for stupidity. Or, maybe they were just glad we were all still alive. I know I was.


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