Singing the Smass blues |

Singing the Smass blues

Jon Maletz

Living in Aspen is making me, contrary to all those go-getters out there, grow more lethargic with each passing day. At least when it comes to skiing. On more than one occasion this winter I drove the more than 20 miles to El Jebel on a whim because of a sudden hankering for a Wendy’s classic double. I even made the trip to Glenwood Springs one Tuesday with the sole purpose of buying “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” But, as hard as it is to believe, I have skied Snowmass just two days this year and one was Thanksgiving. It’s obvious my free time is better spent on other endeavors (see above).The bus ride, is far too long and tedious for an impatient person like myself. And to the seemingly endless line that forms at the base of the Village Express six-pack, I say no thanks. On weekends, the crowds that descend on Fanny Hill are so overwhelming that lift operators could post theme park signs – ‘The wait is 25 minutes from this point.’ I’ve taken the lift only a handful of times, but on almost every occasion I’ve been stuck with a family of five for the entire trip to the Sam’s Knob summit. The ride gives young kids ample time to complain about their cold hands, feet, uncomfortable boots and the one sibling that just won’t leave them alone. And at least one of them is always hungry; I’m convinced engineers had me and other singles in mind when they installed the midway unloading station.Funny, my friends and I used to take day trips to Mount Snow in Vermont, which was three hours from home. Now, I live by an unwritten rule: If I can’t see the mountain out my apartment window, I probably won’t be skiing there regularly.Tell me I lack variety. Call me lazy. Dull. But at least call me productive. Have me head to Ajax at the exact time another boards the Snowmass shuttle. I bet I’ll be two or three runs into my morning before the other guy even takes his spot at the back of the six-pack lift line. I’ll be feeling the burn long before he reaches the Big Burn. To me, the decision is obvious. Plus, with the all that time saved, I’ll have afternoons full of options.Anyone up for a Frosty?