Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Literary Tastes of a Flying Green Marshmallow

We all have our preferences for the stuff that works for us, so we stick with it even in the face of improvement. My grandmother has her window air conditioning unit and refuses to get central air, my mother has a VCR and refuses to get a DVR or TiVo of any kind, and I still ski, despite the fact that snowboarding is infinitely cooler.

See, I learned almost 20 years ago, and I'm now proficient enough to actually have fun while skiing. Even though my very first ski experience was a disaster in which I was knocked over and clocked in the head by the ski lift while on a class trip, and this got around the school faster than I could get back, resulting in widespread rumors that I was in the hospital with some kind of skull fracture.
Ah, eleven year olds. It was just a goose egg, people. I kept right on skiing, although it would explain a lot.
When I got my first lift ticket, snowboards were brand new. Like, most hills wouldn't allow them, and those that did had special times and places to keep those punk kids away from us normal, respectable skiers.

No freaking wonder this caught on like hot cakes.

After high school I got a little busy, with things like college and jobs and a husband and a kid, and I didn't get out for years. In the last few years, I started hitting the slopes again, and holy crap, those kids are everywhere.

There are still a lot of us old, crusty 25- and- up types on our comically long and ridiculous skis, with out silly poles and our little knees bent like we're trying to sit down daintily the whole way to the bottom of the course. But everyone under 18 who isn't training for the giant slalom is riding a snowboard. Its just so undeniably cool. And the outfits are way better. Snowboarding gear is in some kind of graphic design renaissance. And everything coordinates, from the ear buds to the boots to the hats has the same design as the image on the bottom of the board. You know, the one nobody can even see unless you're sailing off a huge jump and spinning through the night over our heads.
(also, stuff they NEVER let you do when I was a kid, but now they have whole terrain parks where you are free to smash your face into rails and poles and moguls embedded all over the hill.)
My skiing ensemble is not very cool. Big puffy lime green jacket, big puffy dark green snowpants, mitten-gloves, and a complimenting lime green hat with poofball. Classy.
No, it's not very cool, but I'm warm, and dry, and I don't have to stop at the top and bottom of every hill to take my boots out of their bindings. (Which has to be annoying enough to make up for the coolness, right? No?... Fine)

So my point was- really, this was going somewhere- I know what I like by now.
I don't read a lot of contemporary, or high fantasy, or mysteries. In the interest of professionalism, I'm trying to put more on the list, expand a little, even though I'll probably never write something like that myself. If I'm selecting something I want to read for my own enjoyment, it wouldn't be one of the above categories, either. I prefer adventure, paranormal or magical realism type stories that start off with reality, and then make up a few new awesome rules. But genre categories, unlike the definite ski/snowboard divide, blur a lot. Which is why I will probably never try snowboarding, but I will keep picking up new books and at least giving them a shot.

(spell check does not like the words "snowpants" nor "poofball". Stop being such a snob, spell check)


Tina Lee said...

What kind of writing do you do? I hope it is stories that "start off with reality and then make a few new awesome rules." Because I am really interested. I like how this thought brings me back to that visual on the hill, snow boarders and you, and breaking rules, and making rules. All going down in different directions.

Do you like Kelly Link(Magical Realism)?

Lily Cate said...

I write steampunk, and paranormal, although to me that's usually heavy on the oddball and mythology,less on the ghosts/monsters.

And I will be checking out Kelly Link today!

Tina Lee said...


She writes a little of all that(maybe not steampunk). Short stories. Try Pretty Monsters. I love Kelly Link.

Just Plain Heidi said...