The Outsider: Thanks-jibbing Day at Copper
On Thanksgiving night, when a few friends and I were comatose after homemade lasagna and baked Brie with orange marmalade, nothing sounded better than sinking deep into a recliner for a film or two.
First up was our traditional Turkey Day flick, “Thankskilling.” I won’t get into how ridiculously cheesy this horror-comedy is, but let’s just say the main villain, Turkie, is essentially a rubber hand puppet that smokes cigars and spouts one-liners like John McClane. It’s streaming for free right now on Hulu, no account required.
After our fill of murderous fowl we turned to snowboard videos. But not just any snowboard videos — old-school Mack Dawg videos. They’re the ones I grew up with, titles like “Pulse,” “Stand and Deliver,” “Decade” and “True Life.”
When watched side by side with something like Travis Rice’s “Art of Flight,” the riding in a Mack Dawg video just feels … different. Each 30-minute edit has only one or two 1080s, if any, and there’s hardly a helicopter in sight. The ramps and kickers look beat to hell, and every segment comes paired with an MTV-style music credit in the bottom corner. It’s safe to say even a casual snowboarder would notice the difference between a Mack Dawg joint and a Travis Rice glory-documentary.
And there’s nothing wrong with that. I think both have their place. But, call it nostalgia or whatever, I get way more stoked to ride watching guys like JP Walker and Kevin Jones than I do watching super-humans in the “Art of Flight.” The hits are still huge and creative — Joni Malmi was trying to stick a rodeo to frontside boardslide in 2001, kids — but they seem attainable. It’s riding with a crew of bad*** buddies over riding with a crew of untouchables, and the family vibe in something like “True Life” was fitting for a Friendsgiving. It made the perfect post-lasagna nightcap.
Time for a serving of cheese: I’m thankful for the direction snowboarding is taking these days. When I interview freestyle athletes I tackle a standard set of questions, and one of them goes a bit like, “Do you like how snowboarding has progressed over time?”
Everyone has a different answer, but over the past year or two I’ve heard more and more athletes talk about style — style like you find in a Mack Dawg flick. Sure, competition judges will always give the gold to someone with back-to-back acrobatic 1260s, but lately, they’ve been just as likely to reward a massive switch air if that’s what athletes are throwing.
When the first Rev Tour qualifier of the season comes to Copper next Wednesday, I hope the youth freeskiers and snowboarders ooze style in the halfpipe. They probably will — the best youngsters are in touch with their roots and both sports are rooted in style. Here’s to them.
Yam Jam at Copper
The first public rail jam of the season comes to Copper this Saturday (as in today), right in time to jib off those Thanksgiving pounds. The Yam Jam, sponsored by Woodward and GoPro, begins at noon with warm-ups just outside of Center Village at Lower Bouncer. To register, drop by the Woodward Cage store in the village from 11 a.m. to noon. Cost is $15 per participant (all ages and abilities, skiers and boarders), with prizes including a Never Summer snowboard, a GoPro Hero 4, Von Zipper sunglasses and more. Even if you don’t compete, drop by at 3 p.m. to catch the open division jam session and finals. These Summit rail rats have style to spare.
Apologies to the McCrereys
On Nov. 25, I printed a joint interview with Tucker and Taeler McCrerey, two Summit natives who are now making waves on the collegiate Nordic ski scene. Only problem is I misspelled their last name as McCreary. That misspelling made it to the headline of the article in big, bold print.
There’s no excuse for such a careless mistake, and I offer my sincerest apologies to the whole family. Taeler and Tucker (and several other McCrereys) have been in our newspaper before, always with the proper spelling. I simply had to check past articles to catch my mistake. The interview is now corrected online, and I definitely won’t be misspelling the McCrerey name in the future.
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