Every New Year Jimmy resolves to stop swearing. Alas after 21 years of marriage I’ve come to the conclusion that my husband is powerless to profanity.
Ski trips are an especially ugly trigger.
Over break we headed to Lake Tahoe for a few days. There we were changing in the frigid Sugar Bowl parking lot, only to discover that Sax was busting out of his old snow pants. They were two sizes too small, total floods. He couldn’t even zip them.
Already exhausted from packing, driving and unpacking our equipment, that snafu set off Jimmy’s cussfest. “Dammit Kim! I told you to have Saxon try on his pants before we left!”
“Come on, dude!” he yelled, shoehorning the kid into his puffy polyester Daisy Dukes. “BUTTON that F***ER!”
“I can’t!” Saxon whined.
“Um, dad, where’s my ski jacket?” Tanner asked sheepishly from the back seat.
“What do you mean, where’s your ski jacket?” erupted Jimmy. “You F*CKIN’ forgot it? You’re 16! What the F**K, man?”
In calmer moments, Jimmy has admitted the reason behind his pyscho-ness. He says it’s because our teenagers have a case of pussitis. He has a point, I thought, as I watched Tanner wrestle his foot into his new-used ski boot along with two pairs of socks and the bottom six inches of his sweatpants. “Dad!!! This boot is too small! If I shove it in, my ankle’s literally gonna break.”
“Well, why are you wearing two pairs of effing socks?” Jimmy yelled, violently ripping a pair off Tanner’s feet, “and get those sweats the hell out of there!”
By now people in the parking lot were staring. I was mortified. When we finally got up the mountain, the weather was windy and freezing, but we toughed it out until the last lift closed. Then per tradition, we warmed up in our toasty car with apres ski brie and brews, sparkling Clementine Izzes for the dudes. “Ahh,” sighed Jimmy. “Maybe skiing is worth all the hassle.”
After crashing at our pricey one-star hotel, we got a late start the following morning, and SKI NAZI was raging. “This trip is costing me BANK! Why can’t you guys get your A$$ES out of bed earlier?”
I felt bad that we slept in, but I was wiped from the holidays. Plus I was dreading the single digit temps. Thankfully it turned out to be an epic day at Squaw Valley, sunny and gorgeous and…
…Uh-oh. There was Jimbo, lumbering across the frozen tundra like a rabid polar bear. “Guess how much 2-day passes for a family of four cost?” he bellowed. “Seven hundred and forty-eight F*CKING bucks!”
Oh shoot. It was 11 a.m. and we were just now hitting the slopes. Plus the mountain was packed. It was practically costing us $10 a run. Jimmy and Saxon left Tanner & me in the dust. Just as well. I needed a reprieve from the cuss-a-thon.
That night we met friends for dinner at Village Pizzeria. We had a great time, that is after Jimmy made it back from Sports Exchange in downtown Truckee to buy some used ski poles for Saxon. Unfortunately, we neglected to take into account that when your kid sprouts five inches in one year, he’s probably going to need taller poles. Saxon’s were so short, they looked like he stole them off Verne Troyer.
I googled the store’s address and offered to Map it on his iPhone, but Mario Andretti peeled out of the parking lot before I had a chance. I shrugged and went in and added our name to the 45-minute wait list. Five minutes later, my phone rang. “WHERE is this place?” Jimmy screamed. “What’s the EFFIN’ address?”
The next morning we rallied and hit the slopes by 9:30 a.m. SKI NAZI actually sweetened up: he tightened our boots, reminded us (nicely) to bend our knees and treated us to warm chocolate cookies from Wildflower Bakery. The four of us skied together and had a blast.
At 4:30 p.m., we trekked to the car, pounded a post-sesh Modelo, packed up, and headed home. Or at least we tried to. It took 35 minutes just to inch out of the parking lot.
“This traffic is SUCH a Cluster F**K!” yelled Jimmy. “The equipment, schlepping, packing, whining, crowds, everything!!! I F*cking HATE skiing!!!”
Look on the bright side, Jimmy, all those coins in your New Year’s swear jar will buy us another trip to Squaw Valley.