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Monday, January 31, 2011

Sick

I've been sick for about a month now. Can't help but think that throwing my body down a mountain in 16 degree weather isn't the path to wellness. This was my 55th day of skiing though and I can tell that I'm improving. The predicted high for tomorrow is 4 degrees. Next winter I'm giving my self a surfing challenge. This is just too cold.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

My Dad

My dad turns 61 today and is out cross-country skiing. He is his most active self since high school. Now he gets all day recess. Thanks for making 60 and retirement look so good, dad.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Shakira Skiing

I've finally incorporated my Shakira hip moves into my skiing. Thank God all that time watching YouTube videos has finally come to fruition.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The whole world knows you're thinking it...

You spend the whole day playing the "my life is better than your life" or "my day was better than your day" competition. If you aren't, than you are the loser playing the "My life is worse than you're game. You lose. Time to play the other game.

City vs. Wilderness

My friend from NYC has been spit on by a homeless man. I just worry about being attacked by a bear. NYC seems scarier.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Can'ts

Independence is overrated. It's nearly impossible to make yourself laugh so hard you almost wet a public bench. Can't do it alone. Thanks to all of the wonderful people in my life that make this adventure so fun, so funny, and so possible.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Birthday

Today is my birthday. 27 is my scary age. Luckily, I took a Women's Health Magazine quiz that told me I'm physically 21. The only thing scary about being 21 is the threat of alcohol poisoning. That I can handle.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Holy Moly

My apprentice is a black belt, runs marathons, and has convinced me to go paragliding. The student has become the teacher. I'm scared of throwing myself off the mountain.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Staycation

Today is the beginning of my staycation. This is a bonus to living in one of the most beautiful places in the world. My friend is visiting for a vacation, and since my work burned down, I get to have a staycation with her. Time to see all the out of the way beautiful winter landscapes and have all the wild vacation fun that I usually forego because this is my home. No, more. I'm staying, but for the next week I'm on vacation.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Apprentice

Excellent news. An unsuspecting city girl is coming to visit me tomorrow. She is putting herself in my hands and I am going to make some sort of badass out of her. Oh, Meggs Benedict. You are my experiment and you think you're just having a vacation. I have a fantasy about Michelle Obama funding my Becoming a Badass camp for over weight children. Meggs isn't over weight and she isn't a child but she's all I have to test on. First, my friend, then the entirety of child obesity. Let the games begin.

Friday, January 21, 2011

100th Post and Blood

This is the big 100th post for me. I decided to celebrate by going to a Hockey game. People bled. I love that. Plus, I got to wear my new top and night appropriate eye make-up. What a great night.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Nelson Mandela Says

"We must all exceed our own expectations." Or at least Morgan Freeman said that while portraying him in Invictus. That's what I'm saying in here too. Come people. I kinda remember him saying, "We must all find a way to exceed our own expectations." I prefer that quote, but it's not a quote. You can quote me. Derivative of Mandela.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I Need Examples of Beautiful Women Who Loogie

Women sure do have to put in some effort to keep ourselves from being masculine. The shaving, the plucking, the styling, the moisturizing, the dresses, the painting, all in an effort to be differentiated from those hairy, cracked beast known as men. I love them, one in particular, but when I look at his rugged, scruffy face, sometimes I just want to smack it, cause men were built for this wilderness stuff. Wind chaffing? Grow a beard. Getting wrinkles from too much sun? That's ok. Chick dig it. Chicks dig scars. Chicks dig all of it! Woman, cover you face in sunscreen, petroleum protectant, and make a dermatologist appointment pronto. That shit ain't gonna fly. Another scientifically provable, biological piece of evidence that man was built to do stuff for women. The main physical power women have is appearance. I don't like saying that. It sounds bad. But I skied 6 hours today in powder, and when I couldn't find anymore, I hiked to hiding places. I'm exhausted. The opinion will stand, loosely backed and believed.

The only way I relax when I think about the beating my epidermis is taking is by thinking about my beautiful mother. The woman didn't remove her make-up or moisturize for 40 years and now my friends ask, "Is your mom, like, 37?" She looks good. That's probably just because she is such a kind, patient, and loving person. I'm not sure if I can count on that. Does shallowness age the skin? So, thinking that our actions and intentions create our appearance, I'm really concerned about some of my new habituals. People, I snot rocket on a regular basis. I forcefully expel mucus from my nose into the great wide open. And if that wasn't enough, I'm being tempted into loogieing. Not just basic spitting, but gathering the buggs from my nasal cavity with a sucking and hacking force, and spitting it from my mouth with gusto. My mouth! I've thrown up a little just considering the activity. But, it's extremely practical and may save me from a life of perma-snot-on-face. And if I was a man, this wouldn't even be a problem. Being a girl is inconvenient in the outdoors.

My boyfriend is the one pressuring me to hock loogies. He's tired of the constant sniffle. He was born with very sensitive ears. Where is the line between outdoorsy and androgyny? I gave the loogieing a go today, came home, did my hair and put on a dress. After all, life is all about balance. But I just can't bring myself to loogie freely. I need examples of beautiful women who loogie, please.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Hero Change

The good old days, when my main focus was my outfit and the lovely California weather let me wear dresses in January. I got a wonderful flashback to my past this Saturday. The challenge: Dress for a conservative play, followed by drinks with a long-lost college buddy, followed by a dress-to-impress bash at a bar. God, I love a challenge.

Back in college, I played dress-up everyday under the pretense that I didn't know where I would end up that night. A crowning achievement was one day of class sign-ups. My tiny art school was old fashioned, having everyone sign up at a table with the teacher for a class. No easy feat, but better to me than the dreaded online sign up, and a great opportunity to look fabulous. Over dressing, as usual, I worn a great little belted cream knit dress and some stiletto mary janes. If I wore the same outfit out today in Jackson, girls would wonder if I was part of the Eastern European prostitution ring. Yet, in Los Angeles I wore it to sign up for classes. After completing the dirty work, my friend Itamar invited me on an impromptu trip up to San Fran to spend the weekend with his mother. This is an opportunity I still never pass up. I popped my overdressed butt into his Audi, stopped by home for a few essentials, and rode in style, from my head to my leather seat. Pulling into town, Itamar got a call from his mother saying she could get us into a private benefit with the Israeli orchestra. She wondered if we were dressed to just show up? Was I ever. And the Israeli elite loved my outfit. This is why I still prefer to dress for what I hope will happen, not what I have planned.

Moving to Wyoming presented new challenges. The toughest was a sleigh ride, followed by a corporate dinner at a beautiful restaurant, followed by hot tubbing. Great night, great layering. This weekend, when I wore a little cotton red dress as a shirt with a blazer over, and got to have a superman outfit change in the bathroom, I felt like a hero. Enters, slightly geeky, theater lover and exits, red hot mystery party girl. It doesn't happen as often as it used to, but it feels even better now when it does.

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Single Vote for the Gym

Ain't nothing sexy about skiing. Snot is running down your wind chapped face. You are wearing 14 layers of clothing, none of which are flattering. The only tan you might get is in the shape of goggles on your cheeks. You walk like the terminator because of the ski boots. I think this may be the reason hot tubbing is so popular post skiing. Sure, it's good for the achy muscles, but really, people just need to do something very sexy to off-set the complete un-sexiness of the day. So, to all you out there who don't get the excitement of the great outdoors, trudging away on a treadmill, feel good that there are Kleenex for you to blow your nose on, you've got a sweaty glow, and I bet your butt looks great in those pants.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Me and Byrne

Apparently, David Byrne, of the Talking Heads, bikes to his concerts. He has a book, Bicycle Diaries. His lifestyle was a major influence in NYC getting bike lanes.

This is the type of news I live for. Because here's the truth: Going to the gym to stay in shape it too hard. Most people aren't born with that type of focus, determination, and willingness to suffer. Staying fit should fit into a daily routine or provide some fun. I'm talking about playing or sneaking it in while running errands. Somebody get me in touch with a city planner. I've got changes to implement. Me and David Byrne, working the revolution.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Return of the Party Dress


Little over a month ago I bought a party dress. Then I went into panic over wether I should wear it to my staff party or not. I forgot to tell you guy I did! It was a huge hit. It also toured the town on New Years. I'm so in love with this party dress that I'm considering wearing it to every party. People will know it's a party when they see my party dress arrive. It's perfect, fun and if worn with tights hides all of my bruises. I like battle wounds, but let's face it, not pretty. For all of you who supported the party dress but didn't get to benefit from it's party making benefits, here is a picture.

Bonus! This dress is from the awesome line For Love and Lemons. A gem created by two badass Jackson girls, one of whom is modeling the dress. Fur trim is not included. I highly recommend checking them out. But don't wear this dress to a party I'm at cause then we will be wearing the same thing.

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Good and the Bad

Oh, man. There is so much I want to tell stories about. I have lists right now: history,money, age, competition, finding the groove, spirituality, death, risk. There is a 400 page tragi-comic-documentary inside my mind right now, but I'm too fricken exhausted to write it. This is my 41st day skiing this season. The little muscles holding the big muscles together are screaming, "What happened to tv and shopping?!?!" So, I'll just give you the good news and bad news.

Bad news 1st: I am losing the time skiing competition with my boyfriend still. Bad. Real Bad.
I scratched my face on a branch today. Body bruising is one thing, but this is my face!
I keep having to come up with complecated formulas for why I am a badass compared to the people I know based
on years of experience, height, thigh circumfrence. I shout the excuses at people and they say, "No. You're just
a whiney, little bitch."

Good news: There is a hike at the mountain (this means in ski boots, carrying your skis and poles), in bounds, that should take about 10 to 15 minutes. The Hike is pretty popular and at certain times it looks like a trail of hard-bodied, athletic ants are climbing the thing. I can do the hike, but my greatest fear is a line of kick-ass bro/bras behind me telling me to get out the way. Today, I hiked the thing. No one passed me! I actually passed one person. True, he was a 60-year-old tourist. Who cares? He moved over for ME to pass HIM. Excellent.

Ok. I'm gonna go submerge my body in ice and hot tub. Forgive me little muscles.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

My Apologies and Sincerest Thanks

Okay. Sorry. That last post was needy and whiney. Not very badass. This is why people want to be rockstars. We all crave and deserve to be able to shout to the masses, "Are you out there?!?! I can't here you!" After that people should chant your name.

This isn't just for me. We all deserve cheers. A personal gospel choir that follows us around, singing our praise and hooting thanks for our blessings.

People say to me, "But don't you write just because you love it? Isn't the process enough?" Hell, no. I write because I want to communicate with people. I want to make people laugh. I want people to read a story about me doing something that I didn't think I could do, go out and try to do what they previously thought was impossible. But ultimately it is selfish because it make me feel so good to have people in this journey with me. So, I need to say sorry. Because I shouldn't whine to you people. I should be cheering for you. Raising my glass in a toast.

Plus, people do comment to me all the time. Just usually in person, on facebook, over email. Why just today four different people said, "Hey, badass." (Two of these people were responding to my shouts, "Hey! Look at me skiing backwards!) Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Back to what's important.

As a special treat for you, here is a link to a blog. This is badass in its happiness potential. For the days when you can't climb the mountain, you can appreciate the beauty of the rock. www.1000awesomethings.com

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Everyday

Every everyday? This is crazy. Why would I commit to blogging everyday? This is like the times I've tried to give up candy. I can't do it! Every few weeks I say, from now on, I'm putting my clothes away. There will be no piles of clothes in my life. And then one shirt gets left out, acting as a magnet for all the other clothing. Actually, this is a lot like the past times I've promised myself that I was going to start blogging everyday. Any time more than two blogs have happened consecutively, that is the product of a promise about to be broken.

But here I am. Something is down. This is one more day of doing what I said. Which brings me back to how this whole life style started. Being tired of feeling fat, lazy, and uncoordinated, I made a commitment to myself. I would try to do something everyday: a walk, a run, a dance, or even crawling across the floor. Just something. Hilariously, I still pitch this to people. I tell my parents just do something. A seven minute walk is better than no walk. Six sit-ups are better than five. Keep trying. It's actually worked. So here is me doing something, anything, everyday.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Hitting the Target

I don't really have time to blog today because I spent five hours in the car today going to Target in Idaho Falls. Apparently becoming a badass has many sacrifices. I only got to the Victoria Secret Semi-Annual Sale because it coincides with negative three degree temps. Life is weird.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Cool Kids Aren't Even Kids Yet

Fiona is cool. She wears pink sunglasses when she skis, a sweet onesie, and you can ohh and ahh all you want over her sweet style and she'll just look at you blankly. Fiona is 8 1/2 months old. I had the pleasure of meeting her yesterday on the gondola, which is a box that fits 8 and brings you up the mountain. An enclosed ski lift, if you will. Since she is just getting the hang of crawling, she isn't solo skiing yet. She was in one of those high-tech backpacks. The kid can't eat solid foods yet but she's already zipping down the mountain. Most kids play airplane, being swung around, this little girl is playing turbo jet. Kinda makes you wish you grew up in a mountain town, huh?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Picking Your Poison

David Sedaris, my favorite essayist, writes of calming his severe nervous ticks, we are talking freak show shiz like licking door knobs, by taking up smoking. Apparently he just needed something to do with his hands. My own neurotic tendencies have been tamed by moderately extreme sports. This is a debate I have with my sister. Seeing her with a cigarette in hand, she can sense my disapproval.

"I'm not saying you're killing yourself............... Just you would probably live a longer and healthier life."

Obviously, this is the type of statement that makes me a bitch of a sister and why we can't just love each other in peace. The smoking hasn't tempered her wit.

"Shut up. When you stop flinging your body down a mountain on two little sticks, jumping off waterfalls, and traveling to third world countries alone we'll talk. Until then, remember, you're going to die first if you keep this shit up."

We settle on the compromise that we both enjoy the great outdoors. Whether sitting on a bench, cigarette in hand, watching the wind tussle the leaves or from a ski lift contemplating the physics of snow gathering high on a branch, the actions sprang from the same womb.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Big Strong Men

I can't believe I got myself in this situation, again. Why do something over and over again where you always lose and end up looking ridiculous in front of a crowd? After repeated failures, what makes someone decide to try all over again?

In other words: Why do I keep entering physical competitions with big strong men? I can remember fighting boys in preschool. In middle school, I would challenge boys to arm wrestling competitions. Never winning a match, you would think I would have lost the habit by high school when the boys started to look like actual men, muscles and all. Yet scrawny men, men no bigger than girls with muscle tone limited to their forearms would taunt me as if I was going to win, letting their fist come dangerously close to the table, only to come alive with super-power strength, slamming my hand onto my desk. One single time, during all those school years I won. But victory was empty for me. The poor boy just looked weak, pathetic. I looked scary and masculine. When nobody wins, everybody's a loser. That moment was enough for me to finally embrace a belief that had crept up on me: Men are stronger, which is why they should do stuff for me.

Finally, an answer that got me out of lifting stuff. The world seemed beautiful and right. Why then, ten years later, do I find myself in another competition? This time the opponent is my boyfriend, a slightly more conquerable foe than the previous, all of mankind. Usually, I think that having a 6 foot tall man who weighs about fifty pounds more than me as a huge life perk. I get fifty extra pounds of muscle but don't have to carry it around all day. A big strong man is meant to be enjoyed, not told that he can be out-skied. Why did I bet my boyfriend that I could ski more than him this winter?

My defense: I thought that I was going to have every single day free this year, whereas he would be working five days a week. He might get an extra day off here or there, but I saw my winning as sure thing. I was choreographing my victory dance. There was a chant to go with it. "You's a bitch. Eat my dust." (repeat)

My reality: He is schooling me by an extra third of hours. Just when I'm reaching a point of exhaustion where I fear breaking a leg he seems to be finally warmed up. Unless he is arrested or maimed he is probably going to win.

Let this be a reminder. Men are for carrying stuff, buying stuff, and being allowed the pleasure of making you laugh. Don't compete with them. Enjoy them. You's not a bitch. No one needs to eat dust. Especially since my boyfriend is in the kitchen right now making me a sandwich.

Nobody ever let me arm wrestle this guy.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Keeping Up

You can come as long as you can keep up. As children this point seems obvious. You make the team if you can run as fast as the other kids. If the popular girls skooch together and make room for you on the sidewalk, you can keep up. If they push you off, you'll fall behind. The first time I became conscience of this truth was on my way back from 5th grade recess. By that point we were past playing but not quite sneaking away to smoke. I had a new friendship blooming. Sarah had effortless charm. I had hard-won humor. Jane was striding along with us, a constant companion to Sarah for the past few years, they were best friends and I was the intruder. We all made the walk back from recess together daily, our conversation vacillating between random inside jokes we soon forgot the original meaning to and gossip about who in our class had gotten her period. Days passed, Sarah and I getting more comfortable as friends, our bodies seemed to fill out. We were young and still had some growing to do. It's possible we weren't leaving Jane out, we were just casually expanding her right off the sidewalk. Jane felt the nudge, for a while tagging behind us on the diagonal, but by that time it was too late. Your friendship is over if you say to someone, "Hey! Wait up! Ya'll are leaving me out!" If you end up crying, you might as well fail a grade and try to make new friends the next time around.

Growing up only makes it harder to keep up. As kids, being encouraged to be independent was a form of child abuse. As an adult, it's a requirement. I can comfortably eat lunch alone, travel internationally, and strut into a party dateless. I'm destiny's child. An independent American woman. That all melts like a snowflake though when I'm overcome by the urge to keep up with the cool kids. They come in all genres, but for me, at this moment in my life, the cool kids are those effortless skiers who taunt me with their skill because I can't keep up with them long enough to ever see how the magic happens or how good they really are. Where I fail as an athlete, I make up for with enthusiasm for short term goals. This time the goal was very short. An idea spurred getting off the tram at the top of the mountain. There were those two guys, friends of my boyfriend, who are sweet guys, and great skiers. They have encouraged my skiing, similar to encouraging a baby to walk. Positive support is great, but the false ego which sometimes convinces me that I'm a badass wants to shout, "I ain't no baby, baby!" In the fantasy, I then jump of a 20ft cliff, landing in a soft billow of snow. As I ski away, the guys think, "Damn. That girl can really ski, especially for being as intelligent, pretty, and successful as she is". Sighing, they return to their listless skiing, their motions slowed by the memory of my action.

That's not at all how it went down. For now I'd have to settle for just trying to keep up for as long as I had in me. Skiing as fast as I could, keeping only my destination in mind, being held steady by determination, and these guys were probably waiting up a bit, I kept up. Frozen cheeks drooped on my face like cracking ice slabs as I watched a guy land a 30 ft cliff jump onto a tough snow blanket. So, that's what I've been missing. I can't do it myself, proven once again a few days later when I face planted off a 5ft boulder. I lifted my head, grinning, a strange taste in my mouth. "Am I bleeding?" Negative. The coldness of snow can give the same metallic taste of blood.

Still, haven't been nudged off the sidewalk yet.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Bitches and Ho Ho Ho's

Please tell these excuses to fuck off promptly after reading them. A little less than a month ago, I moved into a new apartment right at the bottom of the ski slope. It has taken me till today to get my internet going. No blogging. I've been skiing almost everyday, because this year I want to ski a hundred days. Turns out, it's physically exhausting being a devoted ski bum. Again, no blogging. This has been hinted at before but ever since I have become a highly active person, it feels like my mind has been slowly shutting down. I'm more efficient in everyday tasks but I have less witticisms to say about them. Who knew my personal laziness was fueling all the delightful neurosis? None of that blogging is happening.

On the exact same day that I moved into my ski accessible apartment, my lovely work had a fire. While there are definite tragic elements, turns out I'm getting paid to not work as the building is healing. As they say on the ski slopes, sick! Just when I had started telling people that my urge to write had evaporated, I was avalanched with free time and mind space. Three weeks later I'm a little bored, a little lonely, and really want to write! Plus, it's been below zero the past few days and I've kept skiing. Pushing my body too far in the effort to secure my 100 days on the slopes has gotten me sick. And laying around has really nestled some sense into me. I want to blog! I miss you guys! I'm not ready to give up! This blog was started in an effort to write more. The topic being practically picked at random, resulting in me badassing so much that I barely write. Well, I'm pretty damn close to my goal weight, I don't smoke, and I'm plenty active. New Year's Resolution: Everyday blogging. At least until I get my job back. I miss chatting with readers and I miss playing with words. It shouldn't be just my body that is being challenged.

Anyone else have some resolutions to share? Anyone becoming a badass this year?

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