Intimidated bro Chicken-leg Charlie suppresses insecurities while taking in his girlfriend's big, luscious cams. Sam Morse photo.
Dear Bumion, I’ve got a #skitownproblem,
About three weeks ago, I Tinder matched with a beautiful woman. Her profile had pics of her doing adventurous stuff that made me feel like I knew her in a shallow, superficial way.
It was love at first swipe.
The first time we got together, we realized we were both climbers, and I was stoked to get out and send with her, until … we whipped out our gear.
When I say I like climbing, what I really mean is that I like bouldering with my shirt off and getting chalk all over myself. I’m actually terrified of heights. But, when my new lady friend revealed her full double rack, it triggered deep feelings of inadequacy. I mean, her nuts are literally bigger than mine!
I mean, her nuts are literally bigger than mine!
I haven’t told her how intimidated I am by her huge, size four Camalots. And I’ve done a decent job bullshitting while she tells me about her multi-pitch exploits. But, sooner or later, she’s gonna know something’s up. The charade can’t last forever — I keep declining her invitations to climb. My fear must reek like revolting, unwashed Capilene.
Things came to a head the other day when she told me that sometimes, she likes to run it out without protection. I was kinda into it, but the potential consequences scare the shit out of me. I mean, one mistake would be the end of me.
The point is, I really like her, and I want it to work out. But I’m terrified that the second she realizes who I really am, she’s gonna be looking for new belay partners to share her portaledge with. Please help!
Sincerely, Chicken-leg Charlie
Dear Chicken-leg Charlie,
We’re sorry to say it, but, you’re effed. Situations like this are more common than you’d think, and it’s certainly not the first time we’ve heard of such mountain town incompatibility.
There are several problems we’re dealing with here:
1.) You've been less than honest. It’s not a severe lie, but moving forward, she’ll always have issues trusting you — secretly wondering if you’re going to be a liability on that next trip to Yosemite. A shaky foundation is no place to erect your tent.
2.) Your ground-loving spirit won’t be enough for her. Once someone gets the trad bug, that’s all they want to do. Are you cool having a girlfriend who is constantly on the road (with other dudes) chasing down new "classic" climbs and fresh crags? You may trust her, but a crash pad in the back of a Subaru is a pretty small space to fit two bodies…
3.) You’re going to run out of things to talk about. Sure, you have mutual interests, and she’ll love talking about your lovable border collie, Fluffball, but it will always come back to climbing. You’ll see the way her eyes light up when she runs into her climbing partner, Ben, and all of a sudden, you’re third wheel at dinner and they are talking about future "projects."
We know this sucks, especially because there are things that tie it together. Do you think she’d be willing to meet you in the middle, and maybe spend more time bouldering and/or top roping? We doubt it. She may say she doesn’t care, but eventually she’ll begin to resent you for holding her back.
Be honest, and let her know how her rack makes you feel. But for fuck’s sake, be prepared if she decides to cut the rope.
P.s. If it doesn't work out with your girlfriend, please let her know that I'm available to hit the Creek next weekend (I've got some 6's and I'm down for some Off-Width)!
From The Column: The Bumion
As fall fades and snow paints the landscape, countless mountain folk begin to feel the existential tug of winter. But there’s one type of outdoor enthusiast who’s commitment trumps all the rest. Masters of the art of discomfort, these individuals are known by many names: vagrant, gypsy, transient, bohemian, but most of the time, these restless wanderers prefer their given moniker: The Dirtbag. Styling out destitution like a badge of honor, poverty hasn’t looked this good since the Buddha
Zac Efron's dream of becoming a pro-skier is temporarily on hold. While we don't actually have any evidence that he has (had?) aspirations of becoming a pro, who wouldn't want to ski for a living? Either way, the Wildcats' team captain is sadly laid up following an ACL tear. While in Park City for the Sundance Film Festival, Efron went on a guided-catskiing tour which ended in injury. Don't worry Zac, the TGR crew feels your pain and would like you to know that we're all in this together.
Those living at the fringes of the American Dream are most likely to shake up the system. And those that live to ski are decidedly living at the fringes of the American Dream. Jason Levinthal, founder of Line Skis and former CEO of Full Tilt boots, undoubtedly lives to ski. Levinthal’s dossier is, in a word, stacked: X Games athlete and medalist; twin-tip pioneer; veteran of the ski industry trenches; serial entrepreneur. But most importantly, like any self-starter with a nose for success,