The end of summer is nearing and, for some of us, meaning those who love to ski, it can’t come soon enough. I run hot, sorta like mice fornicating in a wool sock kind of hot, like a Turkish bathhouse inside of a sweat lodge covered in butter and breadcrumbs and deep fried kind of hot. I can’t wait to be cold. Hopefully, autumn will speed by and snow will start falling and we can all get back to skiing and having fun. I am ready for winter, but more than anything, I am over summer. Here are the signs that you might be, too.
Feeling angry? You’re hot. A 2013 study by the science eggheads at the University of California found that throughout history as summertime temps increased so did violence and aggression between individuals. Our bodies are surprisingly resilient to cold but we can only tolerate minor elevations in core body temperature before we flip out. Quite simply, humans are built to tolerate cold better than heat. Think about it. What sounds more likely to cause a fight: ascending a snow-covered mountain on a packed chairlift during a blizzard or getting your place cut in the summertime music fest porta-potty line after you’ve been waiting for an hour? Think you could keep your cool when sweaty shirtless festival guy leaves a greasy swath of torso gravy on you as he cuts in line? Mmmm, probably not.
Open your social media platforms. Look at your profile pic. Does it have snow in it? Do any of your last ten posts have snow in them? Yes? You, sir or madam, are over summer. No snow in your posts? You’re dehydrated and obviously delusional. Drink some water. Then post some ski pics.
Do you currently have a gourd-themed décor in your home? Have you stopped dead in your tracks to remark upon a single fallen golden leaf? Have you been sniffing the faint yet delightful wafts of pumpkin spice in the air? Are you currently in the midst of an autumn identity crisis? Does your Pinterest account resemble a pile of leaves? Are you currently reading this inside a pile of leaves? Do you smell like apple cider, apple pie, apple crumble, or apple turnover? Are you using cinnamon sticks as decorations? Do you have a leaf-shaped container inside your home containing actual real leaves? Does your leaf shaped-fanny pack contain the book A Hiker’s Guide to Leaf Peepin’? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions then you are definitely over summer. The same is true if your response has been “Eeeeww, no. But I should do that.”
Typically around this time of year, when sandal tans have taken the place of goggle tans and the low tide odor of unwashed Chacos hangs in the air about town, my summertime gear starts to seem, well, a little dumb. Those mountain biking underpants with the built-in tween pad aren’t doing anybody any favors when waddling on Main Street. Trail running is dumb and I hate that I love it. My PFD smells like the last river trip I went on and the umpteen before that. I’m not a climber but if I was I’m sure I’d be tired of my harness’ bathing suit area bunch-n-chafe by now. My camping gear, most notably my kitchen kit, is almost always in my car and, as an avid Subi sleeper, that gear is bound to all seasons.
At the foot of my bed, leaning against the wall, what I see every night before I fall asleep and every morning when I wake is my brand new pair of custom Wagner skis. My sister designed the topsheet art and Pete Wagner and I worked for weeks together on the construction. They’re mounted with the Marker Kingpin and I will use them everywhere and all the time this winter. Some nights, as my head is nodding and I am about to drift off to dreamland, I shake myself awake just so I can gaze upon their glory for a little longer. Maybe it’s a little weird. Or maybe, just maybe, I am way over summer. And I bet you are too.