Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thoughts while skiing this morning

Time away from the usual routine, even just a 45-minute ski on campus, lets thoughts bubble up. Here's today's mind wanderings for what they are worth. My contribution to the lexicon I don’t text much. When I do I don’t tend to use lots of LMFAOs or such terms. But now I find myself wanting to contribute SOYOL to the texting lexicon. For the past few weeks, the ski conditions have been, well, not so good. I don’t want to say crappy because any skiing is better than no skiing. Last week it was nothin' but ice - all glide, no kick. Tuesday of this week was even worse – so sticky that I had to walk down the hills and snowballs built up on the skis. Yuck. But I did not give up. I soldiered on. I knew that hard work would pay off eventually (when I tell my students that hard work pays off eventually they respond, ‘but lazy pays off now’). The payoff was today. Steady snow showers lent a snow-globe appearance to campus. Wet flakes, but not too wet. With the trail packed from Tuesday’s labors, it was just enough kick, just enough glide. Smooth downhills with just enough speed to be fun, not so much to be 'too much fun.' Gliding down one hill I said “Oh Yea!” outloud. I think I’ll go out on the campus loop again this afternoon. I hope to say oh yea out loud again. Home and Away With a nice day skiing, I found myself wondering if I’d like to drive the 40 min north and pay the trail fee to ski at the special ski place. It is special and offers vistas and long trails not otherwise available. It's a several hour time commitment. Hmmm. Skiing my favorite, local, free, just-my-own places is fun, too. Maybe I’ll make the extra effort to go to the special place, maybe I’ll stick by home. I know someone who loves to hunt. He has an away place he goes to hunt. Briefly he lived on some acreage upon which he could hunt but then hunting wasn’t so special. Apparently it had to involve going somewhere else and making a weekend of it, not just an evening on the home place. Making Lemonade? When we have prospective faculty members on campus for interviews, we joke with them about our winters if they are from areas without what we would call winter. We want to make sure they won’t run off after the first heavy snowfall or the first -20F temps. I don't think it's really an issue. They are afterall applying for university faculty jobs. They are smart enough to know that the eastern Lake Superior area woult have winter. Years ago, I was on a job interview where winters are not at all reliable. The interviewer knew that I do like my winters. He asked whether I could stand the lack of winter. I replied that cross country skiing is what we do up north because the cycling season is short. Then I thought to myself whether cycling is just something to do when the cross country season is too short?

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