Skiing, or Falling Gracelessly Down a Mountain

Yesterday evening, I decided to go skiing with my boyfriend and our friend.  I had all the tools: skis and boots, warm clothing, goggles, and friends to either laugh at/motivate me when I would inevitably fall.

I realized I was in trouble when I was on the ski lift.  Correction: I realized I was in trouble as I was getting on the ski lift.  I had no ski poles, which would turn out to be a major oversight later, and it was quickly obvious that I wasn’t going to get onto the ski left gracefully or without being hit by a moving chair.  As the boyfriend watched, and glimpsed a hint of what was to come, a helpful attendant took me by the arm and glided me over to where I was supposed to be.  I successfully got on the chair lift, and there was no going back.  I was going to have to ski down this mountain.  It was at this moment that this realization began to sink in, along with many other discomforting thoughts and questions.  (When was the last time I’d been skiing?? Ten years ago? Hadn’t it taken me a while to get down the mountain? Hadn’t I been run over by a skier before? What if I fell off the ski lift? Were there bobcats out here??)  I also remembered my fear and trepidation of getting off ski lifts.  I have never gotten off a ski lift successfully or gracefully, and I did not break my tradition yesterday.  I fell pretty much immediately after leaving the chair.  My boyfriend helped me back into my skis, and we headed towards the run.  It was at the top of the slope that I completely lost my nerve.  I was on the verge of tears. and a heart attack. and peeing myself.

Let me stop right here to explain my fear. I am not afraid of heights, and I never have been.  I’m not even really afraid of falling.  I’m afraid of skiing off into the woods, breaking my limbs, being left for dead, and being eaten slowly by a bobcat that I can’t fight off with my broken limbs.

My boyfriend finally convinced me to take the plunge and I was off…for all of five seconds.  What’s worse than falling after 10 feet with skiers and snowboarders whizzing past you?  Falling after 10 feet and not being able to get up with skiers and snowboarders whizzing past you.  This would prove a problem for the rest of my skiing adventure.  When I would fall, oh and I would fall many, many times, I could neither push myself up nor get my skis off.  Eventually, I wouldn’t even try any more.  I would just lie helplessly in the snow.  Actually, some credit should be given to the other people on the mountain, who always gave me plenty of room despite my erratic skiing and falling.

I could go into more details about my falling and inability to get up, which became the recuring theme of the evening, but I’ll spare us both the pain.  What happened was this: not even halfway down the mountain, my boyfriend, friend and I realized that my skiing attempt was better left for another day.  So, I walked with my skis the rest of the way down and waited in the lodge while my boyfriend and friend continued skiing.

I figured I’d already lost my pride up higher on the mountain when the skiers had started lapping me.

Finding a Job

I have applied approximately 1,000 places, give or take.

Ok, I haven’t applied 1,000 places, but it certainly feels that way.  With no financial aid this semester, I need a way to make money.  A girl’s gotta eat.  Plus, I’ve got this contract with Mountaineer Village that claims I owe them money every month.  What a hassle.

I wish job applications were different.  Not different from each other, because they’re all basically the same, but different from how they are now.  If you haven’t applied for a job lately, you might not know how mind-numbing the process really is.  Even worse though, is the fact that these job applications reveal very little about their applicants.  It tells you where I worked and my skills and experiences, sure.  But can it tell you that an applicant stayed up half the night with a sick friend?  Or that an applicant is charismatic and funny and puts others at ease?  Or that that the applicant is inconsiderate in traffic? (I believe this last one in particular is very telling about a person’s character.)

I think job applications should be closer to college applications, which admittedly, have their faults, but at least attempt to get to know the person as a whole.  How is a college application different from a job application?  They have essays.  An essay allows you to get to know a person as a writer, therefore, on a much deeper level than the typical job application.  I’m talking about short essays, 1,000 words or less, or short answer questions.  Employers can get to know their prospects as a whole this way before, or even without an interview. (I just want to interject that I am in no way saying that essays should replace interviews.  Interviews are obviously the best way to know someone.  I’m suggesting that an employer without time for interviews could use a few short answer questions instead.)

Ranting aside, I am looking at jobs in Boone and Wilkesboro, so shoot me an email if you hear of anything I might find interesting!

Fall Break

After two weeks of midterms, I have happily escaped to my parent’s cabin.  At home, I have three roommates in a small apartment with paper-thin walls, so a house to myself is a welcome change.  I don’t have to be back until Monday, so I should have four days of bliss. I would, but I’m hungry. 

A few weeks ago, I decided completely out of the blue that I need to learn to cook.  Billions of people successfully cook every day; surely I could do the same.  I filled my grocery cart with fresh produce, spices, and uncooked meat.  A week and a dozen failed attempts later, I found myself slinking into the kitchen, yet again, after peanut butter– the one food I had that didn’t require cooking.  After a date pointed out that peanut butter cannot sustain me forever, I began cooking again, very. cautiously. (Looking back, I’m not sure why I listened.  He’s allergic to peanuts.  What does he know?)  By the grace of some higher being, my food was edible.  Not something I would serve to company, but edible.  So when I was able to leave for the cabin, I threw clothes in a bag, grabbed a few unread books, and packed what was left in my fridge with a small prayer. 

This morning, I woke up, showered, and descended upon the fridge.  I was determined.  I was ready.  I was foiled by a pilot light.  The cabin has an old stove/oven that uses gas.  I have no idea in this world how one works this infernal thing.  I’m beginning to gain respect for people like Mrs. Cleaver.  I grew up with an electric stove, and the one in my apartment is electric too.  I spent over an hour looking in the stove, under the stove, behind the stove, etc.  I finally broke down and bought a dollar cheeseburger.  I’m sure Wikipedia could have saved me a lot of time and frustration, but the cabin has no internet connection or cell phone signal. I’m hungry, stumped, and fairly certain I would be one of the first to go in a postapocalyptic society.