It’s bold, not old
I’m getting old.I don’t look old (still getting carded on a regular basis, thank-you-very-much) and I don’t feel old (I can walk on my hands and, if boy in question is worth trying to impress, I can still do back handsprings like a high school cheerleader). But after a couple of days at the X Games, I’m going, “Is this what the kids are doing these days?”Listen. I am so down with the whole action sports crowd it’s ridiculous. I’m out there with the VIP credentials sticking my recorder in Shaun White’s face going, “Dude, are you bummed the judges shafted you after you threw down that stalefish Cab 1080 and stuck it clean? You went so huge, it’s ridiculous.” But I’m also at Buttermilk thinking the music sucks and wishing someone would turn it down. Even though I do think Brian Deegan is adorable and love the idea of watching him flip upside down in his cute little moto outfit, the incessant snarl of revving motorcycle engines is giving me a headache. Throw in the stench of snowmobile exhaust drifting into my brain cavity (a cause for cancer no doubt) and the bright lights and the flips and the spins and the giant outdoor TV thing hovering eerily in the night sky, and I’m feeling like I’m going to throw up any second. I have this flashback from when I was 10 years old, begging my mother to take us to the amusement park again, even though she made it clear that it was only a once-a-year thing. “Oh, god. That place makes me nauseous,” she’d always say. “And all those people, the public – it makes me want to run home and take a shower.” (Turning into your mother = getting old.)As much as I consider myself on top of the current trends, I’m wondering what parents would let their kids out of the house dressed like that, their pants around their knees, despite those hideous studded belts to hold them up. And what is with the whole one-piece coverall look? Someone needs to explain to these kids that gasoline attendants do not wear those outfits because they’re flattering! Then I’m walking up to the halfpipe through that awful sugary snow (Can someone please explain to me why it does that? It’s like one of those nightmares where you’re trying to run but can’t get anywhere. Annie Brown, what does it all mean!?) and I see these three cute local 12-year-old girls draped in stickers and buttons and “Think Outside The Bun” Taco Bell hats and Mountain Dew this and Rockstar Energy Drink that, like human Christmas trees. And they’ve got “I love Shaun White” scrawled across their faces in eyeliner pencil. I ask them why, and they go, “We love him! He’s so hot!” And I’m thinking he looks like a gnome, but hormones can make a prepubescent teen crazy like that. And then I’m bummed because I’m realizing that I can actually see the difference between “hot” and “not” and what’s the fun in that? These poor girls are all jealous because I’m allowed to go into the VIP area at the bottom of the pipe. What they don’t realize is I don’t really care about being within spitting distance of Shaun White’s fire engine red hair. What’s cool in my mind is I’m in almost every shot the big camera dude is getting of pro snowboarders’ parents and wives and brothers and sisters, even though he keeps telling me to move, shooing me away with one hand while he balances that massive camera on his shoulder. Whatever! I deserve to be on TV as much as anyone. What those poor girls also don’t realize is even though I’ve got the best seat in the house, I’m wishing I was at home in the bathtub reading In Touch magazine instead of standing outside in the middle of the night (OK, it was like 9 p.m., but still) freezing my ass off watching a bunch of circus animals hopping around in the u-tube. Don’t get me wrong – it’s rad and all, but I would have just as soon watched it at home on TV, lying on the couch with my feet up while I let my toenail polish dry. (Then again, I’d probably be watching “Sex and the City” reruns, but that’s beside the point.) The one good thing about almost dying of hypothermia because I’m watching a snowboard contest outside, at night, in Colorado (Whose bright idea was that?) is I had a good excuse to go out and buy a pair of those hideous Tecnica fur boots I’ve had my eye on for years. I know it’s pretty obnoxious to wear dead animals on your feet, but it was either be politically correct or have my toes amputated. I mean, which would you choose? Anyhoo, I love them because they’re warm and fuzzy and they make my thighs look skinny, so there. Except that when I brought them home the cow hair or whatever it is was so long that I kept stepping on it and it got all muddy and wet so I had to trim it with scissors. And I’m sitting there going, “I just gave my boots a hair cut. Does that mean I’m old, or does it just mean that I’ve gone completely insane?” Then I go to pick up my friend Tiffany who is in town from Tahoe working for ESPN. Of course she’s pregnant since she’s in her 30s and married and stuff – but that still doesn’t stop her from being all young and hip and cool. She wore baggy plaid snowboard pants and a beanie with a brim and oversized sunglasses. When I walked in the door, she says to her friend, “Don’t mind the boots. She dresses like that because she lives here.” And that’s when I realized I’m not old at all – I’m sophisticated.The Princess is going to be 35 years old on March 1. E-mail her so she can tell you what she wants for her birthday at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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