Harder they Fall
Some people say, “falling off a route.” Others prefer to say, “falling on a route.” Still others think “falling on lead” is better. But nobody wants to say, “It’s my fault I fell.”
Vaughn Medford, manager of Sacramento Pipeworks, was changing bulbs on the wall lights one day when a guy lowered off. “I overheard him tell his partner (only half jokingly) that he fell because the light was in his eyes!” Medford says.
And who can blame the mother who said she gets distracted when one of her kids starts arguing with someone below? Or worse yet, crying? “I find it hard to demonstrate cunning layback technique or raw power when that happens,” she says.
Next time you need a good excuse for taking a plunge, here are some of the best gathered by Touchstone staff over the years:
* I couldn’t do it because I’m too tall. (What’s next? “I’m too strong?”)
* It’s too hot (or cold, or humid, or dry, etc.)
* It must be a high gravity day.
* It’s too reachy.
* I left my other climbing shoe at home.
* I forgot to take my glucosamine.
* My arsenal of moves is so vast; I didn’t know which one to use.
* And our all-time favorite from a climber who shall remain anonymous: “It was during a dreadful period of my life but I was climbing like a fiend. I had a bad habit of chewing Redman tobacco because of my hillbilly climbing partner from Tennessee. I didn't usually climb while chewing because I didn't want to spit all over the rock. I was in the middle of the first pitch not realizing that I had this big chaw in my mouth until I had to spit. All of a sudden I had this head rush and I started gagging on the juice. At the exact moment of spitting the whole chaw out, my body flung back as if a torpedo hit me and I took a huge whipper off a No. 1 camelot. I didn't get any sympathy from my partners who were laughing hysterically.”
Oh, the name of this very easy warm-up route? Chewbacca. FEEBACK:
What is the best excuse you've heard? Send it to us
and it might show up on our next Top 10 list.
Labels: climbing, touchstone