The world's greatest wedgie

So we've had the hybrid blog. Well now for the... Tribrid blog. I'm not sure if that's a word. But it should be. Part 1 was hand-written when I was working the Toby chair last Friday (6th Feb). Part 2 was hand-written when I was again working the Toby on Saturday. Then part 3 was typed today. Wednesday.

Part 1

Page 1 Man it's amazing how quickly your opinion of someone can change. Guess where I'm writing this? Hell yeah, I'm back on the Toby today. And I'm working here today with Dan T. (I call him Daunte), who, up until this morning, I'd always considered a really sound guy.

Anyway, we're in the morning meeting in the Great Hall this morning. This is a lifty meeting held every morning to let everyone know if there's anything we need to know upcoming. And chest-packs are given out, one per lift. These are packs, that attach to you with radios in, & groomed run sheets. And on the Toby, the chest-pack has to stay at the bottom of the lift all day. Dan got given the chest-pack this morning. But before today, never have I worked with someone, who just decided where they were going to start & finish the day. You'd normally decide between you. Who got given the chest-pack is an irrelevancy. But with no discussion at all, Dan decides to just throw me the key to the top of the lift.

Now don't get me wrong; just like I'm the only one who likes working the Toby chair, I'm also the only one who likes starting up the top. If you start at the bottom, when you go for your 30 minute lunch-break, you have to ride up the chair to ski down to the Great Hall. Then you have to ride up again to get to the top of the lift. That's about 10 minutes of your lunch-break, spent sat on a chair. Start at the top however, & you just ski down for lunch, & then ski down to the bottom of the lift. Your break is essentially 10 minutes longer. No one else seems to have realised this yet. Plus, if I start up here, I can write a couple of pages when I'm still fresh in the morning. So I actually wanted to start up here anyway. So I let the fact that Dan decided for us both, slide. That doesn't mean it didn't piss me off a bit though.

Just as we're getting to the end of the morning meeting in the Great Hall though, the power goes out. And I don't just mean for the Great Hall. The power goes out for the whole resort. Including chair-lifts. We still make our way down to the Toby chair though. I ski down there, & for some reason, he walks.

Obviously, skiing is quicker, so I get there first. I'm thinking 2 things right now, though. The first, is why the fuck should I start setting up the lift by myself, doing all the shit jobs like putting the bins out, just because I have the common-sense to get here quickly? I can't do anything inside the shack, because guess what? Seeing as Dan took it upon himself to decide that he was starting at the bottom, he has the key for the shack.

The second thing I'm thinking, is that we have no power right now. Why even bother setting up? We might not even have a lift to run. And then what? Page 2 We'd just have to put everything away again. So I just sit down on one of the chairs that's sat in the load station. If we haven't got any power, we may as well relax a bit. We're lifty's after all. If we wanted jobs where we has to work, then we would have got proper jobs.

When Dan finally gets to the lift, he then has the nerve to say to me: "You're as lazy as Laura. Just less whining." This cunt definitely got out of bed the wrong side this morning. I think he was out drinking last night. Not that that's an excuse. You can't handle your drink? Then don't fucking drink. I know I'm as lazy as Laura. In fact I'm probably way lazier. I'll get back onto my workplace philosophy later in this blog. But you don't say that to someone. Especially not in the tone that he used. It's like ugly people. Ugly people know that they're ugly. You don't go up to an ugly person & tell them that they're just as ugly as Stephen Hawking though. You just don't do that. They know they're ugly. You don't have to tell them. Just like I know how lazy I am in the workplace. In fact I'm quite proud of how lazy I am in the workplace. I have the common-sense to save my energy at work, so I'm productive in activities that I will profit from. Rather than burning all my energy making money for someone else. So I have no beef admitting I'm a lazy fucker at work. You still don't say that to someone though. Not unless you're trying to be a dickhead. I think maybe he was just hungover. Like I said though, if you can't handle your drink, then don't fucking drink. Especially if you're going to be around me the next day. Because my bullshit threshold, really isn't too big. There's only so much bullshit I stand for until I react. Luckily, though, in these 2 instances, although he pissed me off, he hadn't done anything I wasn't going to do anyway, or said anything that wasn't true. So I let it slide.

The piez de resistance, or however the fuck you say it, was the third thing that he did. The power came back on. And seeing as Dan had taken it upon himself to hold onto the keys for the bottom of the Toby, he went up into the engine room, to start up the lift. Dan's worked on this lift a lot before. Maybe as much as me. Perhaps even more. Although we've never worked it together before, I've seen him here a lot. So I was assuming that he'd understand how to start a chair-lift. We've all been doing it everday for 2 months now after all. You'd think it would have sunk in, so I leave him to it.

He shouts down to me that there's a problem. So I go up & have a look & there's a fault I've never seen before. A thyrister fault. I have no idea what this is, so we have to radio maintenance.

After we've done that, I go back up to the drive room to have another look. I can't fucking believe what I see. The breaker, the main power to the lift, is switched to off. The reason the lift isn't running; he hasn't turned the fucking power on. The first thing that you do to start up a lift. So obvious that I didn't even bother to check it the first time that I went into the engine room. I wouldn't've Page 3 thought that I'd have to.

We radioed maintenance back straight away. But by that time, it's too fucking late. 3 of them pull up on ski-doo's. And even though I wasn't the one that made this retardation, the fact that I'm standing by this lift that we couldn't get started. Why? Because we didn't turn the power on, makes me look lke a total prick. He came up with some bullshit excuse blaming the people who closed down the lift last night. And to some degree, maintenance bought it. I think. But it still didn't stop me looking like a nob, just because I was with him.

So it goes without saying, I'm not too happy with Dan right now. Something of a spactacular fall, seeing as previously I saw him as one of the better lifty's. Right now at this time though, honestly, I just think he's a bit of an idiot. It was a good start to the day. Lucky that I have my pad of paper to keep me company. Give me a bit of clarity.

In fact at this point, I can't be too far away from lunch I spent so long writing that little story. And I haven't even got onto the world's greatest wedgie yet. I'll have to save that for when I finish off this blog. Because I'm pretty sure I won't be able to fit it in before lunch. So I'm going to stop writing now. 2½ pages written & no one's died on my lift yet, from what I've noticed. A pretty successful morning I think you'll agree. I'm out for now.

Part 2

Page 1 Yeah. So now everyone knows about Dan's retardation yesterday. Serves him right for being such a jackass in the morning.

So guess where I am again this morning? The fucking Toby! I fucking love my life right now. Apart from being paid a shit wage, this is the best job in the world. On the Toby, I won't see a manager here all day. I'm just being paid to relax all day. Slow down or stop a chair once in a while. And pretty much just make sure that no one dies. Which they pretty much never do. It's like being a lifeguard again. It's just here, I don't have to worry about being caught doing things I really shouldn't be. Because in the 1 in a million chance a manager does decide to ride up this chair, I will see them in their orange jacket (the same one that I wear), 3 minutes before they get to the top of the chair. It's brilliant. And really, for my own benefit, I need to keep myself from becoming a good worker.

I said yesterday that I'd get back onto my workplace philosophy at some point in this blog. Well here we are. I've already spoken in a previous blog, about how, seeing as I get paid the same wage as every other lifty, that if I do the least amount of work, then relatively speaking, it makes me better paid than anyone else. That's one incentive to be a shit worker. You may say: "Well aren't you losing any opportunity at promotion then?" What opportunity? Of the 2 crew-chief positions that have become vacant in my tenya here, both have been given to snow-makers who've never operated a lift in their life before. So what fucking promotion opportunities? They burned that motivation by making it clear that snow-makers were more important than we were. And then I need to work at the right level to make sure that I get put on the best lifts.

Me at the Toby chair To most people here, the best lifts, are the mainstream ones, the busy ones, with lots of guests. To me, that just means more fucking work though. More guests means more work, & less time to do things I actually want to do, like get out my pad of paper & write. Plus more guests means more managers. Guests to managers, are like honey to bees. The more guests you have on a lift, the more managers you'll have swarming about. And the more managers you have swarming about, the less crap you can get away with. On the Toby on the other hand, I know that I'll get a crew-chief come here at about 11:00 to give me a lunch-break. And that may be the only person of authority that I see all day. So I'll go outside at about 10:50, & throw a load of fresh snow on the ramp to give over the illusion that I've actually been working hard. And the rest of the day, I can just kick-back. Write a blog. Do whatever.

But here's the dilemma. I need to be as shit a worker as possible for 2 reasons. 1, so I get put on easy lifts with no guests, so I can relax all day. I don't want to run the risk of getting regular shifts on a busy lift. And 2, it makes me the best paid lifty here. But it's a fucking tight-rope. Work too hard, & I'll get put back on the Page 2 Mile 1. But don't work hard enough, & I get fired. You think this job doesn't take talent? Doesn't take skill? Everyday I successfully walk the tight-rope, of just being shit enough. Now that, is not fucking easy.

It's actually already 10:35. I don't know where the time went this morning. But it's only 15 minutes until I have to go outside & throw snow on the ramp. I've only written a page today. Where the hell did it all go? But bearing that in mind, I'm probably not going to have the time to write too much more, without getting cut-off mid-flow for lunch. I'll try & get this blog 'finally' finished either tonight; possibly tomorrow after work. Though there is a lifty social tomorrow. Then maybe Monday after work. Though if there's enough free beer at this social, I might be a bit hungover. At the latest, Tuesday. I have a day off, so at the latest, Tuesday. I'm done for now though.

Part 3

Well I said in part 2 that this blog would be finished, at the latest, on Tuesday. But somehow, after getting up at 06:00 nearly everyday at the moment to get to work on time, I managed to stay in bed until 3pm yesterday. I guess all the early starts finally caught up with me. Plus, having played broomball on both Sunday and Monday evenings, I'm a little banged up right now. In fact, since I've been back from Calgary, I've had so much stuff I need to do backed up, that I still haven't been able to get to the gym. Well I was planning on staying away from the mountain on these 2 days off, and getting myself back into a regular gym routine. Sod's law that the index finger on my right hand is too damn sore to hold light objects, let-alone dumbells, that I'm going to have to push back getting to the gym even further. Even typing isn't too much fun right now. I have a weird typing style. My right index finger is the one responsible for the space bar. So every word I write at the moment, there's a very minor, but very noticeable shooting pain every time I press the space bar. So I thought it best to lay off the dumbells for a little while longer. Which is shit. Because I've finally cleared enough time to start getting back to the gym regularly. But it seems God's being an asshole. And for some reason, he really doesn't want to see me in the gym again. Maybe by the weekend I can finally start getting back into a semi-decent physical condition. That was a damn broomball injury though.

In fact, discouting the last blog entry I wrote, which I only did because I was bored on the Toby if I remember rightly, I haven't written a proper entry since January 29th. That was nearly 2 weeks ago. That's because I've been using my time to get other things done. But looking at my bullet notes about what I've actually been doing over the passed couple of weeks, half of it almost seems too long ago to actually write about. Including the world's greatest wedgie. Though I'm not leaving that out. That's one of my greatest life moments.

So I'm working the Mile 1. It was a while ago now. The Saturday before the Superbowl, 31st January. That doesn't mean I've forgotten it though. I'll remember this until the day I die. So I'm at the top of the Mile 1, on a ridiculously busy Saturday. I was up there for 3 or 4 hours that morning. And not a single empty chair went by. It was that busy. A chair was going by me every 9 seconds. And more often that not, each one had 4 people on. It was a fucking busy day. And this was compounded even more by the fact that we had a butt-load of racers training, or racing today. And as I've said before, around the mountain, the racers are unanimously hated. They're arrogant. They're rude. Everyone from kitchen staff, to lifty's, to management... Everyone hates them. They're just the kind of people it would be funny if they caught AIDS. Like when Jade Goody got cancer. And these racers have these one-piece, full-body suits that they wear. Makes them look like total dicks. But I guess it makes them streamlined as well. Kind of like cat-suits. When they aren't racing though, they'll sometimes take the top part down.

Well at the top of the Mile 1, where people unload from the lift, the chair will go straight as it goes over the unload ramp. Then it will turn clockwise at the top 180°, so it's facing down the hill again. And down it will go.

Well as I'm standing at the top, I see this chair full of 4 racers coming up. The one on the left of the chair, and the 2 in the middle, ski down the ramp fine. But the guy sitting on the right, has got his racing suit, not being worn on the top of his body, caught on the chair. This is unbeknown to him at the point he tries to ski off. What happens though, is the suit acts as a bungee, and as he skis off, he's attached to the chair still, so gets violently jerked off his feet, and pulled back by the chair. We have a couple of signs near the unload ramp, warning people about certain things, and this racer, in this movement, gets his skis caught up in on one of these signs. I see all of this and hit the stop button. And at the same time, he triggers the emergency stop gate. But even then, it still takes the lift 3 or 4 seconds to come to a complete stop. So still attached, the chair continues to turn until it is virtually facing down the hill again. The racer is laying on his side with his skis caught up in this sign. So rather than being carried around with the chair, he is stuck where he is. Unfortunately for him though, his spandex suit is still caught on the chair. So as the chair moves further and further away from him, his spandex suit, which he is only wearing on his bottom half, gets pulled tighter and tighter. He's laying back, caught up on this sign, and his suit must have stretched 2... 3... maybe even 4 yards. Going right up his ass-crack. And he's stuck here for a good 20 seconds. I'm in no rush to help him. And his suit is pulled too tight to be able to release from the chair. So stuck in this position of having a spandex suit jammed 2 yards up his ass, he has to take off his skis, so he can get free, and release the tension in his suit to unhook himself.

It sucks for him, that not only were there 3 other racers on his chair that saw this. But there were also 4 others in the chair in front. And 4 others in the chair behind. And a shit-load of other people hanging around. Everyone cracking up at this jackass getting the biggest wedgie I've ever seen. And it's a measure of the kind of people that the racers are, that rather than anyone showing any sympathy, all his peers just stand there laughing at him. And his coach... all he says is "Well that's exactly why we tie up our suits." No one showed this jackass any sympathy at all. It was just brilliant. I was having a shit day up until then, what with it being so busy. But I would take 1,000 more shit days, just to witness a moment that awesome again. And it couldn't have happened to a better person. Had it happened to a real person, I'd feel bad for them. It was painful and it was embarressing. But it happened to a racer. Which just made it one of the greatest moments in my living memory. I just wish I'd stopped to take a photograph. Because I've done my best here. But words cannot describe how great this was. There's a picture going around of a man who got caught hanging upside down from a chair-lift with no pants on at another resort. This could have matched that if I'd had the time and the sense to get my camera out. I was just laughing too damn hard though. It was genius.

I mentioned the Superbowl a few paragraphs ago. And I think another reason I didn't make it to the gym or write a blog, is that for about a week after that game, I was in something of a state of depression. Not because of the result. But because of me.

The NFL is a big part of my life. I've never made any secret of that. Over the past 12 months, the amount of time I've spent watching games on TV, watching other NFL related shows, doing my fantasy team, watching the draft, going on and other sites, talking to people about football... and a hell of a lot of other stuff like going to games, is worrying. I've probably spent more time on NFL related things over the past 12 months than I have on anything else. I eat at least 5 or 6 times a day. Sometimes maybe 8. But I've spent more time on football than I have eating. It's important to me. So much so, that when I was initially rota'd to work the Superbowl, I said, and genuinely meant, that if I wasn't able to swap my shifts to get that day off, I would quit my job before missing that game.

So when Superbowl Sunday comes around, apart from a quick trip out to go to the liquor store, I'm in front of the TV from when I got up at about 09:00. Some 7 hours before kick-off.

I start drinking at about 1pm, maybe. Nothing heavy. Just a couple of cans an hour. And I'm watching the game. Laying in front of the TV, drinking beer. I watch the first half. See James Harrison make the longest play in Superbowl history. I see Bruce Springstein at half-time. The 2nd half kicks-off, and it's all good. Not an especially good game. The Steelers up 17-7 some way through the 3rd quarter. Then all of a sudden, I look up at the screen, and the American version of the office is playing. I'd seen earlier that they were advertising this as playing straight after the Superbowl, and it dawned on me. At 17-7 in the 3rd quarter, I'd passed out. Too much beer? I don't know. But after spending hundreds or thousands of hours on the NFL since the beginning of the off-season in '08, I'd somehow missed the finale. The Superbowl was over. And I didn't even know who won.

I've eluded in previous blogs, how alcohol very quickly gives me absolute memory blackouts. And for Superbowl XLII last year, although I was in front of a big screen, I'd got so drunk that I woke up the next morning, not remembering who had won, one of the best Superbowls ever. I had to go online, just to find out that the Pats had fallen at the final hurdle, and the Giants were world champs. I think this was one of the reasons that I wanted to watch the game alone this year. Make sure I didn't get too drunk and forget everything. Well I didn't. I remember very vividly up to mid-way through the 3rd quarter. But I woke up at 20:45, The Office on the screen in front of me, and I have no clue who won the game. I'm assuming Pittsburgh, seeing as they were up by 10 the last I'd heard. The first thing that I do though, is go onto my laptop to bring up I knew even then that I'd be writing about this moment, so I took this screen shot of my laptop. Superbowl XLIII

I'd just slept through one of the best finishes ever in a Superbowl. I couldn't believe what I'd missed as I crawled through the stats. And although I watched highlights multiple times that night, and since then... it's just not the same as experiencing it live. Not knowing how one of the great football moments was going to turn out. I couldn't believe that I'd done this. And it put me in something of a state of depression for the next few days. I couldn't believe, after the whole season, that I fall asleep for the 4th quarter of the Superbowl. You don't sit through a marathon, but turn off the TV for the sprint finish. I couldn't belive what I'd done. And just like last year, even though I've watched highlights of Superbowl XLII countless times, it doesn't make up for the fact that I can't remember the actual moment of the David Tyree catch. Or the Plaxico Burress game winner. I just cannot believe I've done this. I've slept through one of the greatest Superbowl wins ever. And even now, 10 days later, I'm still pissed about it. Still upset about it.

I've never hidden how important football is to me. So at work the next day, people who've never seen a game of football in their lives are coming up to me. "Man, wasn't it amazing. What a finish that was." People who don't care. Who don't know. Who don't understand. These people lived that 4th quarter. And I missed it. And I'm so fucking upset about that it's hard to describe. Just makes me want to curl up into a ball and die. I cannot believe that I slept through the most important 15 minutes of football of the season. It hurts. It really fucking hurts. Next year, I'm going to be so spiked on Red Bull, and caffeine, and fucking heroin if I have to be, there will be no humanly way possible that I can miss Superbowl XLIV. Because the last 2 Superbowls have been 2 of the best ever. And one I was too drunk to remember. And one I was too unconscious to see. And that hurts. That really hurts. Never again! Never again!

Like I said earlier, I've got a lot of crap noted down that I could write about in this blog. But most of it's fairly insignificant. One thing that might turn out to be worthwile though, is something that happened right after I'd finished writing part 2 of this blog. Whilst I was still at work still in fact. Down the bottom of the Toby, there was a validator there called Chrystal. Really cool girl to hang out with on a quiet day. She gets relieved for her lunch at about 12:30, and a guy called Pete comes to cover her break. I talk to Pete. Seems a nice guy. Then once Chrystal's back again, I'm talking to her about stuff. And what we're doing post-Pano comes up. I tell her my plans, or lack of them. And one thing I mention, is that I'm looking at doing tree-planting. But I've been onto the website of one of the companies, and it seems that they're only hiring experienced tree-planters. I'm not one to shy away from lying when I need to, but I think that one might be a little hard to blag. So I've been looking at other things as well.

Well completely coincidentally, she says to me "Oh. You should talk to Pete. He's a tree-planter supervisor in Ontario, and he told me to ask about because he's looking for people to work for him over the Summer." What a strange coinscidence. I've just met, about an hour earlier, a guy who might be able to offer me, pretty much a perfect Summer job. I'm thinking about heading East, and I was thinking Ontario. And I was thinking tree-planting in Ontario. Talk to this guy, and I could be set up perfectly for the Summer already.

The only problem is, that was Saturday. And I wouldn't expect this opportunity to be around for long. Now it's Wednesday, and I still haven't seen Pete again. I'm not sure how this one's going to pan out, but in my experience, meeting the right people is vital for getting work sorted. When I went to Vancouver in 2005, with no job, no friends, and no place to live, I handed out literally hundred of CV's. The time of year I was there though, meant it was an employers market. And most employers shyed away from the fact I was only going to be there for 3 months. The 2 jobs that I got; one was through a guy I met in a bar, and the other was through a girl I met in the laundry room in the hostel. For all the CV's that I handed out, this is how I found work. So I've really got to find Pete again. Because if this pans out, so much headache of job hunting could be avoided for the Summer. So I really need to find Pete. Has anyone seen Pete? Because I really should see him nearly everyday. He just seems to be one of those people who you never run into. And I need to talk to Pete. I'll keep this blog updated if this materialises into anything.

I've discovered a great new educational program that's played over in Canada. Trailer Park Boys. Despite spending 8 months in Nova Scotia (where it's filmed), and many times going to Bubble's Mansion in Halifax, a nightclub owned by one of the characters from the program. And despite being named after one of the characters for the time I was in Nova Scotia, I'd never seen Trailer Park Boys. Man I've got hooked on that show recently though. It's funny. And it's a bit like South Park in a way. It'll open your eyes to stuff that you've come to accept as normal, but when you think about them, they're actually pretty fucked.

Something Ricky said the other day I found pretty funny. He was stealing satellite TV. His logic, was that the TV companies are the ones putting the airwaves into his space. So they're actually trespassing. Because if you own land, you own all the space above that land right? So if TV companies are putting signals into you land, you're free to take them. Which, when you think about it, is pretty logical. If you can pick up a wireless signal in your house, then you're free to use it right. Someone else is invading your property with that signal. I just thought that was a pretty funny way of looking at things. But when you think about it, it's actually true. This shows full of logic like that. Well worth watching. Just like watching South Park, you can learn so much from Trailer Park Boys.

Like I said, I could make this blog go on for days. But I'm not really in the best writing mood right now. Sometimes you're in the frame of mind to produce something worth reading. And other times you just aren't. This is one of those times. So maybe I'll write again in the next couple of days and fill in some of the blanks since the last blog. But there really isn't too much to know. I'm finished for today.

Home Back to travel blog Back to top Print this blog