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  • 25 Nov 2017 3:13 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    I have been saying for most of the year that Christmas will be here before you know it. Well, here it is and it is just shining, waiting on us.  WOW!!! This year has really flown.

    It has been a good year for the club and we have had some great times, good laughs, and lots of really wonderful memories from our trips, meetings and parties. It is nice to know that good times are not just for us to recall from the past, but like a good soufflé, you can plan to make good times happen in the future just by planning them out and getting others to join in.  

     CHRISTMAS PARTY - CHRISTMAS PARTY - CHRISTMAS PARTY

    Yes indeed, we are having the Hamilton County Social Event of the Yule time year, the CHATTANOOGA SKI CLUB CHRISTMAS PARTY at the Car Barn, December 12, 2017 beginning at 5:30 p.m. and lasting till 10:00 pm. There is a small charge for the party and it will be really something to behold just like it was last year. It appears we are going to have a crowd so please contact Mike Hood or register from the website and make plans to attend. This is a great way to begin the Christmas season and hope to see you there.

    A CHRISTMAS THOUGHT

    This time of year is generally left for refection and as we all know everything good in life revolves around skiing. With that in mind, I would like to offer the following during this special time of year to all of us.

    When we look back over the previous year, I will assume that we all have had many cold mornings that we have gotten out of bed (even when it was a 100 degrees outside during the summer) and really wished we could stay in bed rather than go out and tackle some large mountain that existed just down the road.

    But just like on a ski trip, over the past year, even with our heads hurting from too much booze the night before and our bones aching because we did not exercise enough, we still went out and got on that ski lift of life to do as much damage as we could to the hill or challenge that was just out of the door.

    I am sure in the past year, we were able to slide through some days just like our skis cutting into soft four inch powder. Everything was just so easy. And at the end of those good days we felt like we had finally got this skiing/carving/living thing right.

    Then, the next day was just like looking down a mile long mogul field with no way to go side out and when we got down to the end of those days we looked in the mirror and said,  ”I’m never doing that again,” as we made plans at dinner after a couple of drinks to go out and fight the Philistines again tomorrow even harder.

    Life is like a box of chocolates, but I think life is more like a skiing vacation. You never know what you are going to get, you never know what the weather may be, and you never know what is over the next hill, even when you've been over it several times.

    We all want to love bizarre, but more so, I want to believe we all want to ski well and have the family healthy.

    Merry Christmas to everyone and the most hopeful wishes for a very good holiday full of cold weather and snow.

    See you at the Christmas Party,


    Ashley Ownby

  • 25 Nov 2017 2:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Eighteen Chattanooga Ski Club members flew or drove to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida (a city famous for Spring Breakers and beach vacations) a day or two before our adventure cruise began so they could enjoy the beauty of Florida as well as this wonderful city.  Some went sightseeing before the cruise, while others took excursions, such as an airboat ride through the Everglades, at the conclusion of the cruise.


    On Saturday, October 21, we boarded the beautiful Caribbean Princess and left the port of Ft. Lauderdale.  Members used this time to explore our ship and discover the many amenities it had to offer as well as enjoy their favorite beverages.
      Sandy, our travel agent, delighted and surprised all of us with a coupon for a free bottle of wine waiting for us in each of our staterooms.Sunday was a day for beaching at Princess Cays.  Cruisers were tendered (taken by boat) to the private beach to enjoy many beach activities, favorite beverages, beautiful clear water, and food cooked by the ship’s crew right on the beach.

    Monday and Tuesday were sea days as we headed to Cartagena, Columbia.  Everyone had a great time at the private cocktail party that the Princess sponsored for the Chattanooga Ski Club on Monday afternoon.  Other popular activities on these days were eating, sunning, exercising, reading, listening to one of the many music performances, or participating in the many family games and activities offered on board the ship (not to mention gambling in the casino).  After dinner, it became a custom for almost everyone to head to the Princess Theater, where we were treated to the most lavish, professional, and enjoyable productions I have ever seen on a ship.  We soon learned to get there early because the theater filled up every night.

    On Wednesday, we woke up docked in Cartagena, Columbia.  This vibrant City harbors a fascinating and colorful past, which can be seen along its cobblestone streets, in its Spanish colonial homes with wood-beamed balconies and stone towers, and its impressive salt-bleached stone walls.  Our members enjoyed many excursions, most of which highlighted the “Old City”, the history of the area, and the Fortress.  Economic fact: 95% of the world’s emeralds come from Columbia.

    Thursday was our day to go through the Panama Canal, sometimes called the eighth man-made wonder of the world.  We didn’t realize it when we booked this cruise, or even when we boarded the ship, but this cruise was a big deal to the people of Panama and to Princess Cruise Lines.  Our ship was the largest passenger ship to date to go through the NEW locks, and the first ship of Princess Cruise Lines to do so.  As we passed through the new locks we observed news media and photographers documenting this newsworthy event as the mayor of Panama gave speeches and posed proudly.  The passage through the locks was an experience we will always remember and talk about.

    On Friday, our ship docked at Limon, Costa Rica.  Our members enjoyed many of the excursions that were available in Limon, most focusing around the rain forest, Tortuguero Canals, local culture, local animal life, banana and coffee farms, and zip lines through the forests.

    Saturday was a scheduled sea day.

    Sunday was supposed to be our day to visit. Grand Cayman, in the Cayman Islands, but the wind and waves were such that it would have been unsafe to try to load and unload the tender boats. For the safety of the passengers, we had to forego our visit to Grand Cayman.  We regretted missing our visit to this beautiful port, but we appreciate Princess Cruise Lines for making our safety their paramount concern.

    As a result of the cancellation of the Grand Cayman stop, both Sunday and Monday were sea days.

    Every night of the cruise we were seated together for dinner (three tables of six).  This was a special time for sharing of the day’s activities, laughing, and eating too much.  Our group contained a mixture of members from various parts of Tennessee and Georgia.  We also had a member of the Nashville Ski Club who became a member of our Club in order to join us on this adventure.  Some cruisers knew some others before the cruise, but we all regarded everyone as friends at the end of the cruise.  On the second evening we started a random rotation of our seating at dinner so everyone got to know and enjoy each other better.  The quality and presentation of the food and the service at dinner every night exceeded everyone’s expectations.  Our group consisted of first time cruisers to very experienced.  They all liked the fact that, although this was a group trip, each person or couple individualized the experience and activities to their own desires.

    We woke up Tuesday (Halloween) at the Ft. Lauderdale dock, disembarked the ship, and flew (or drove) home with many lifetime memories of our fun together on this adventurous cruise. 


  • 25 Nov 2017 2:24 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We have 6 rooms (for 12 people) left for the Len Foote Hike Inn, Saturday, September 29, 2018.  At this time, there are 25 members of the CSC hiking this 5 mile trek.  It is a moderate uphill hike on a well-traveled trail. 

    Our plan is to fill the 20 rooms with CSC members. If we don’t we will meet new friends and hopefully some of them will become members of the CSC.  Somehow when others are around us, they are drawn to our outgoing, fun-filled, exhilarating, intoxicating, electrifying, inspiring club members. 

    We will meet early Saturday morning for breakfast, convoy to Amicalola Falls and hike as a group to the Inn.  Some of us will hike faster, stronger and will get there before those of us that hike slowly.  Either way when you arrive, for those of you that have not done this hike before, you will fall in love with this place. 

    “Why,” you ask, “do we need to sign up so early?” Because Len Foote has a year waiting list and they have hikers just waiting to take your place. The last date for cancellation is seven days before your reservation to give those on the waiting list time to plan their trip.

    Please see event list on Chattanoogaskiclub.org for more details on the hike.  If you are not listed as CSC members registered at Len Foote Hike Inn then you are NOT registered to stay at the lodge.  You must sign up and pay on Len Foote Hike Inn website to be a bona fide part of this hike.

    Please join us and let’s fill this trip with CSC!!!

    Barb Wise

    barbwire@flash.net

    423-902-6095


  • 23 Oct 2017 12:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Hello Everyone,

    FLAT DUCK, FLAT DUCK, FLAT DUCK  

    Yes, we have gotten through the troubled times with Tennessee getting the yearly massacre from Alabama, and, to recover, we have the Halloween Party at Hilda Jones's that takes all pain away from the beginning of the year to this point.

    Hilda says there is a detour on Three Notch Road but you can follow it to get there.

    It is this Saturday the 28th, always a great time and look forward to seeing you there.

    NEW CATERER
    We the Board have heard your cries and we have a new caterer for the November meeting.  We will be getting into the holiday spirit by having turkey and dressing with some if not all of the fixings. Please try to attend and please make plans to eat with everybody.

    Ina’s comin', hide your heart, girl
    Ina’s comin', hide your heart, girl

    Ina Gerlach, the broker who has helped us with our European trips, is going to be at our next meeting so please try and come and show her our good old southern hospitality.

    She was born in Germany, and after living in Houston a short time, she now back in Bavaria and making a special trip to the States for business and to see us.

    Please, please try to attend and make a special effort to say hello to Ina at the meeting. 

    WHAT’S GOING ON !!!!!
    We are about a month and a half from the Steamboat trip and everyone is getting ready for the ski camp both physically and mentally. As I always say, as a club, “This is our time of year.”

    One of my favorite memories is when Pat and I were at Steamboat many years ago and we were in the middle of a nice ski week. Most times, going in a little early on a ski day was the norm, but on this particular day it was cloudy, snowing, about 2:30 in the afternoon, and Pat looked at me and said, “Let’s keep going.”

    I have never forgotten that afternoon.  We were just enjoying ourselves on a beautiful gray day, skiing for utter enjoyment, with it snowing lightly, and nothing else mattered. We did a 4:00 o’clock Bob Tramel before it was really cool.

    The other day, I was trying to get myself “spiritually” ready to ski this year, and I plugged in the above memory in my brain’s ever trusty memory viewfinder, when all of the sudden, the following words came rushing into my mind like a flashing neon sign on the backside of a snowy Colorado mountain and refused to leave. These are the words that kept flashing the following:

    Mother, mother
    There's too many of you crying

    Yes, I know, that’s the first verse to the old Marvin Gaye song, “What’s Going On.” These lines would not go away. Darn it Marvin, get the devil out of my head!

    Brother, brother, brother
    There's far too many of you dying
    You know we've got to find a way
    To bring some lovin' here today, Yeah, Yeah

    Marvin, I am trying to do personal spiritual improvement here, will you get the hell out!

    Picket lines and picket signs
    Don't punish me with brutality
    Talk to me, so you can see
    Oh, what's going on

    Marvin Gaye was shot by his father fourteen years after he wrote and sang these words. He was living with his parents because, after an amazing career in entertainment and a recent hit song globally, he had tax issues, drug issues, and some think he had nowhere else to go. Even though he was totally dysfunctional beyond dysfunction outside the concert hall, the lyrics are still ringing true almost 50 years after he wrote them.

    We all seek some type of relief from troubled times.  Whenever we hear him singing that song or listen to another track on that album, everyone understands Marvin was trying to build a bridges with soulful refrains during the early 1970’s when everything was put on its head socially, civilly, politically, and any other way possible.  

    It is my hope, using Marvin as a guiding light, that when we all ski together on trips this next season, we also try to spend some time reflecting how we can talk to people and try to understand “what’s going on,” with everyone around us. We can in no way change people’s attitudes or feelings. So let us simply really just make an extra effort to get along.

    Remember, we all agree with no exception, skiing is next to godliness.  See, we all have at least one thing that we can come to an understanding about.

    As a great man once said:

    I suppose leadership at one time meant muscles; but today it means getting along with people.

    Mahatma Gandhi

    See you at the next meeting,


  • 23 Oct 2017 11:28 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    A Perfect Weekend!

    The weather was perfect, the rooms were perfect, and the places we stayed were perfect.  All cottages were within walking distance from the bike shop.  The Barter Theatre was perfect, our seats were perfect (second and third row-middle), the Music Man was perfect, and the Tavern Restaurant was perfect.

    Best of all the Creeper Trail Ride was perfect!  Trip Captain John Hilbrandt briefed everyone in the parking lot of the bike shop before the ride, he gave elevation details, arranged for everyone to meet up at Green Cove Station for the traditional "CSC Group Picture".

    Most important, John informed everyone where the bathrooms were located along the trail.

    Of the 24 riders only six of us (including me) rode 17 miles to Damascus and rode the shuttle back to Abingdon. So proud of the rest that rode the entire 37 miles to Abingdon.  I plan to ride the entire trail when we return in May 2018.

    I thought you might enjoy reading some quotes from fellow Creepers.

    Hey Barb,

    Just wanted to say what a great job you did in organizing the Creeper trip! The trips keep getting more enjoyable each year!  

    The play "Music Man" was absolutely spectacular! The "Tavern" was great, but not sure about the moment we all were starting to look at the Ghost picture and Larry's phone rang, displaying a six digit number with a hyphen between each three - pretty scary!!!!

    Thank you for all that you do!!! Gail Tallent

    Barb,

    Thanks for organizing a great trip!  Our bed and breakfast had wonderful food, the trail was well maintained and the company was great! The scenery along the trail was really beautiful and weather perfect!  Thank you!  Let's do it again in the spring!  Suzanne Grueser

    Barb,

    First, thank you for your hard work on this trip. I think it's one of my

    favorite non-skiing trips so far. Loved all the fringe in Abington so that we could get together...even for drinks on a porch. The play was fabulous, the riding was fabulous, the Tavern was fabulous. What more can I say? Sorry I don't have an  entertaining story or something. I just plain enjoyed the weekend.  Cindy Dees

    Barb,

    What a wonderful weekend in the great state of Virginia!   The play was great, the ride was great, the Tavern was great, and all the people that went on the trip made it great.  Looking forward to doing again in the future.  Mike Hood

    Barb,

    Thanks for organizing a great Creeper trip.  I had a great time.    Thanks John

    Barb,

    All good for me I had a most wonderful time riding this weekend and of

    course the show and the dinner! I hated I missed the winery but I think the riding was better for me anyway.    Janet Brooks :-)

    I had an absolutely wonderful time, even though I decided not to do the ride because I’m having knee surgery in a couple weeks. The trip was wonderfully organized, the restaurants were Top drawer and Music Man at the Barter Theater was first rate!  We went to Rain on Friday night and the group dinner at the Tavern on Saturday night, and the weather could not have been better. Everyone who took the ride enjoyed themselves, though it was strenuous for some. The group dinner at the Tavern turned out to be the highlight of the weekend, except for the ride itself. Hope everyone had as good a time as I did. Wayne Wilhelm

    Hi Barb!

    Thanks for organizing such a great trip! The area surrounding Abingdon is so charming; energetic farmers market, mountain and pastoral scenery, artist co-ops, antique shops, galleries, theater and restaurants, all make for an enjoyable weekend. Faith

    As you can see it was a “perfect” trip!!!!

    Go with us next time,

    Barb Wise

    A huge shout out to our Trip Captain, John Hilbrandt!!!


  • 23 Sep 2017 5:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hello Everyone,

    Hey, more things have been going on than my uncle with a drinking problem getting a job as a whiskey taster. Let’s see where do we start?

    SUP PARTY

    This was a great time at Jan Wyant's place and we had the best weather and the best day to try out HALU paddleboards with the local rep from Johnson City. They even had a party boat paddle board that was impossible to fall off. It was a great!!!!!

    Three cheers to Barbara Wise for all her efforts and we had a nice crowd come eat and later paddleboard. Hopefully, this will be a yearly event and it was a barrel full of monkey fun! 

    BOURBON TOUR

    Now, I have been to Paris, been all over France, but Bardstown, KY is just a real kick in the rear. I had the privilege to go with club members to six (yes six not five) distilleries in Bardstown and I must say that the closest that I have come to seeing eternal light and true understanding of being was when I started drinking bourbon at the Wild Turkey Distillery at about 9:30 in the morning. Wow was it neat! We learned all the bourbon history of the area, had great meals, got to shake hands with Jimmy Russell, the distiller with Jim Beam they named RUSSELL BOURBON after. It was just a great, great, time.

    The smell of a bourbon distillery is like a brand on your skin it never goes away - only gets stronger.

    HALLOWEEN PARTY

    DO NOT FORGET, come to the Halloween Party at Hilda’s the 28th of October. It will be a great time as always and because it will be in the Barn the weather does not matter.

    A TRAGEDY IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE

    As we age we always think seriously about all the things we have put off in our lives or whatever reason. Then we understand, if we are going to do what we want, we just decide, get determined, and try and get it done.

    Well, I have always wanted to write a play, but not just a regular play, an epic tragedy. I really think that epic tragedies will really be the rage in the future due to the way things are on the planet presently. Shakespeare was the god of this type of art form and I think it is time to do another.

    The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, often shortened to Hamlet is a tragedy written by Shakespeare at an uncertain date between 1599 and 1602. Set in Denmark, the play is about the revenge Hamlet is urged to wreak upon his uncle by the ghost of Hamlet's father.  Hamlet’s uncle had murdered his father and seized the throne, also married his mother.

    I am writing a play called, The Tragedy of Neblett, French Son of the Chattanooga Ski Club. Now, right off the bat, I will have name recognition.

    I can shorten it to simply Neblett, and it can be a tragedy about revenge he is urged to wreak upon all his friends that tell him he should not go on ski trips with the Chattanooga Club because he will not have a good time. He is urged by the deceased club members Dan Paul and Harry Weil to physically harm the president of the Chattanooga Club, who is gender-challenged, and telling Neblett not to go on trips for his own wellbeing.

    Yeah, it sounds really good I know. 

    I am still writing it but I wanted to let you in on one of the soliloquies that I have done for the second act. As the old saying goes, “the opera ain’t over till the fat lady sings,” well you cannot have a tragedy unless you have a good soliloquy.

    I am pretty proud of this and feel blessed to let you in on what may be something that will be spoken about and outlive us all for centuries. Here we go, and get ready to get amazed by the following prose:

    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………

    To ski, or not to ski: that is the question:
    Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to have knee replacement and nerve impingement surgery
    Or deal with the slings and arrows of living in Chickamauga all by myself, alone, at the house,
    Or to take up arms and try and beat the s#!t out of my stupid neighbors,
    And by red neck meanness, kick their stupid  a$$ just because.

    How about dying or sleeping the angst away;

    Yeah sleep, and by a sleeping never ski again………

    Oh, the heart-aches of getting up early on Saturday morning to catch a bus,

    The natural shocks of late flights, being constipated in a different state, and it being just too cold to get out thin air of despondency on the slope
    That flesh must taste the cold time after time again, will it ever end……..[wow this is great]
    Devoutly I would rather die or go to sleep watching NASCAR than ski;
    To sleep watching Kurt Busch race: Maybe I could dream about skiing

    But here is the rub: When you dream of skiing you miss it

    Like missing a Krystal hamburger on a fall afternoon when ending a multi-day drunk
    For in that sleep of death, which watching stock car racing can cause, when we are on a snow covered ski run dreaming on the couch,

    When we have shuffled off – piste and look to find our moral center in a bump run from hell,

    We must have pause: there’s the option of blowing out the right or left knee in the bumps
    Now that is the decision that is full of calamity, but makes for a long fulfilled life;
    Yes whomever bears the scars of operations on knees, elbows, shoulders, and backs

    These are merely the rat-tail whips and scorns of time we place upon our bodies,
    the ski patrol telling you to slow down, the good skiers being snarky with contemptible smiles,

    The horrors of seeing a wonderful blue ski run that will not be groomed the next day,

    Having to wait for hours for Jim Mullenix to pick out his best looking one-piece to wear daily,
    The insolence of hot dog skiers and snowboarders that do not even deserve to suck eggs,

    When instead of putting up with all of this, you could take a .45 and shoot off a couple of toes
    Never to feel the cool breeze of winter air flying madly against your face ever again

    Too damned insane to stop eating Cheetos and having GI issues from fast food  

    The onus of a weary, weary, life

    But if we do not ski and we die, then what are we going to talk about in heaven?

    Now that is the” Nut-cutter,” because heaven is forever, one continuous ski club meeting.

    Yes, we put up with physical issues, being teed off on ski trips and going to ski club meetings because that is what we have always done

    What are we going to do different? Join a hiking club? Buy Braves season tickets? Pull for UT?

    Well thinking about not skiing makes one a severe sissy and wusses up everybody around

    I guess, the first thing one does is say I have had enough of snow

    and all the bad things that are associated

    But when we really think about it all great ideas get flattened out and right this minute

    I’m not going to do a damned thing until I get better after surgery!!!!!!!!!!!

    ………………………………………………………………………………………………

    See you at the next meeting!


  • 20 Sep 2017 11:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    What is the Angels' Share?        

    What is the Devil's Cut?

    The name Devil’s Cut is a play on words from a common term used in liquor production. The phrase ''angels' share" is used to describe the natural evaporation that occurs while the whiskey is aging.

    Distillers have come to expect a little less liquid to come out of the barrel than was put into it and that the angels' have taken their share.

    Jim Beam's Devil's Cut takes advantage of the flavors left in the wood of freshly used barrels. Through a proprietary process, they inject water into bourbon barrels that have just been emptied. This extracts more of the bourbon and oak notes found in the barrel and that water is then used to cut Jim Beam bourbon that receives just a little extra aging time down to its bottling proof.

    The result is rich, deeply flavored bourbon that both enthusiasts and newcomers to bourbon will enjoy.

    • All bourbon is whiskey, but not all whiskey is bourbon!
    • 96% of all bourbon is made in Kentucky!
    • There are more kegs of bourbon in Bardstown, KY then there are people and horses!

    If those of us that journeyed to Bardstown, KY, learned anything, we all learned the above information on Bardstown and bourbon.

    We had a wonderful trip, the weather was perfect, and the people that went on the trip were perfect...well, except for Ashley, however, he does have an excuse.  Thank you, Ashley, for asking for this second trip.

    What a treat, little did I know that there would be a Chihuly exhibit at Makers Mark.  That was an added bonus.  Little did I know there would be a BBQ cook-off at Jim Beam, another added bonus. 

    I wish I could end this with, “Go with us next time!"  This will be my last time to lead this trip, but I will be glad to give information to anyone that would like to lead another trip.


  • 24 Aug 2017 4:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hello Everyone,

    Wow, summer is almost gone. Hope one and all have had good times in the heat which has not been too bad this year.

    Remember this Sunday, August 27th; we have a Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP) Party to give a final wave goodbye to the Summer of 2017.  Contact Barb Wise and please come and socialize. We have a sizable group and the more we get the better time we’ll have.

    WHAT WE SAY IS WHAT EVERYBODY REMEMBERS!!!!!

    I was watching my usual highbrow, intellectual, and international antiquities television shows when I learned that the writer of our United States Constitution, Thomas Jefferson, said one of his most profound truisms during what was the most turbulent and stressful time of his life.

    I understand that during the pressure of the creating a new country and being charged with writing all the documents it would need to survive, Jefferson was almost driven to the point of a nervous breakdown when he uttered these few but memorable words; “Hey, who is that hot chick with the light brown skin over there next to the butter churn?”

    Now that statement means something to me.

    It has limitless depth, complexity, and shows one of our founding fathers’ true moral make up and what he was really all about.  Could it be fake? No! It must be true because the journalist who relayed the unforgettable statement, Tina Fey with Saturday Night Live Weekend Update, is someone I have trusted for years due to her giving out the news to the public just the way she sees it.

    Now, I thought it would be great if I did a little digging through my favorite website, www.makeitupasyougoalong.com and happened to come up with some other less than memorable quotes from some great men and political leaders of our nation that also have some spunk.  I think you will be surprised at some lesser known but still profound quotes which are the following:

    1. “I have been rich and I have been poor. Being overweight is better.” William Howard Taft

    2. “I would rather belong to a poor nation that was free, than to a rich nation that had a really overweight president (referring to Taft).” Woodrow Wilson

    3. “America's present need is not heroics but healing; however, colored beach balls can only be held underwater so long.” Warren G. Harding

    4.  “The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing.  Now, if you can crash an economy, then you've really got something.” Calvin Coolidge

    5. “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and then spend all the waking hours applying the wrong remedies.” Gerald Ford

    6. “Anyone who says he can see through women is really missing a lot.” Lyndon Baines Johnson

    7. “Behind every successful man is a woman, behind her is his wife.” Franklin Delano Roosevelt

    8. “There are three kinds of men: the ones that learn by reading, the few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence to learn for themselves.” Harry Truman

    9. “One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas. How the elephant got in my pajamas I do not know.” George W. Bush

    10. “Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.” Richard Milhous Nixon

    11. “Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes?” Ronald Reagan

    12. “Military justice is to justice what military music is to music.” Dwight D. Eisenhower

    13. “Politics doesn't make strange bedfellows - marriage does.” George H. W. Bush

    14. “There's one way to find out if a man is honest - ask him. If he says, 'Yes,' you know he is a crook.” Jimmy Carter

    15. “I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.” Bill Clinton

    16. “A woman is an occasional pleasure but a cigar is always a smoke.” Bill Clinton and several others

    17. “No, Jackie, that is not a white hair but a blonde one. And no, I do not know how it got stuck in my teeth.” Jack Kennedy 

    See you at the next meeting!


  • 24 Aug 2017 2:16 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Just a quick reminder of all the events coming up this fall. We are truly becoming a year-round club, with local events, regional weekend trips, and of course, our Panama Canal cruise. Hope everyone has a great time with your fellow Chattanooga Ski Club members at the following:

    • Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) party, August 27
    • Kentucky Bourbon tasting tour, September 8-10
    • Virginia Creeper bike ride and stay in historic Abingdon, Virginia, October 13-15
    • Crescent Ski Council Conference in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, October 20-22
    • Panama Canal Cruise, October 21-31

    Thanks to Barb Wise, Don Tomlin, Bobbi Witt, and Jim Bates for coordinating these terrific events.

  • 24 Aug 2017 2:09 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Why I strain and struggle to develop a decent developé, and something that resembles an arabesque in ballet classes several times a week, isn’t because I have delusions of professional ballet in my future.  Hardly.  I’m pushing 60. What I’m after is far more ambitious and seemingly impossible.

    I had the most fortunate luck to be named P.R. Coordinator at Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort in the summer of '88.  I worked for the crazy and amazing Dick Bass, climber of all seven continent’s highest peaks, including summiting Everest at my present age! WOW!

    At the time, we in P.R, and mainly Marketing, (it was Marketing’s idea), decided to give away free skiing to all over 70 years old.

    Not an inspired decision in the land of non-drinking, non-smoking Mormons and friends who skied religiously every year of their lives for an average of 50 days a year.  Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort was overrun with skiers over 70, 80, and even 90 years old.  There must have been what seemed like 50,000 daily taking advantage of this great offer.  As you can imagine, they bought nothing.  They brought picnics and spread out in mile-long lines across the slopes stopping all non-septuagenarian-pluses from skiing at all, or forcing the youngsters to go around the hordes of elderly ski bums.

    We in P.R. and Marketing had to rescind our offer swiftly by bumping the age for free skiing to over 80.  There were still hundreds and maybe thousands taking advantage of our misguided generosity.

    It was then I determined to do everything in my power, short of giving up ice cream, to be one of those octogenarian skiers who ski for free and piss off the younger generations. 

    Of course, I’m not “of the blood” like the Mormons, and neither Norwegian nor Swedish with a propensity to live forever, sporting joints made of rubber bands, or matched with the energy of a robust Viking seeking Valhalla.

    I’m Italian.  Have you ever seen an old Italian woman?  We look like a box-of-female with a mustache.

    We are short, more than plump, and we shuffle rather than walk.  These are the genes I wrestle against while I age.  The mustache is under control for the moment, but fighting the box-of-female physique takes a herculean effort. 

    It requires many ballet lessons in a room full of 20-year-olds in leotards, (an act of bravery even Vikings couldn’t endure).  There are hundreds of pliés with crunching knees, the sound of which distracts the young dancers.  There are battements that are downright embarrassing.  The real dancers are looking directly at their knees in front of their cute little button noses with straight legs.  Mine are nowhere to be seen down around the 90-degree angle rather than the 120-degrees.  Holding the barre with a death grip, straining to remember the combinations with steps that number into the teens, I struggle to try to follow without screwing up the girl standing behind me.  I make feeble jokes, and smile to polite or no replies. They look at me like I have no business in that room.  They are right, and I ignore the truth and keep attempting to get my body to do what my brain imagines it can do. 

    The heat creates swollen creeks of sweat rolling between everything, and down my face.  I run to get a sip of water and try to get back to the barre without looking at my out-of-place form in the mirror.  Barre is over and we move to the center for turns.  Hundreds of turns in complex combinations that stagger my brain to retain half of the string.  After three or four stabs at it, sometimes I get the combination only if I’ve attempted the same in many previous classes. I feel like I’ve just won an Oscar, or the lottery.  I will be humbled again in just moments, but for a split second of mastery, I’m triumphant.  We line up for adagio with more lengthy strings of many steps this time on relévé to passé to attitudes, tombé to pas de boureé,  and chock full of arabesques; extending the leg back straight-kneed, and as high up behind your head as you can in relévé.  The movements are supposed to be smooth and look effortless.  Mine look strained and sad, but I keep up.  I notice that my arm placement has improved and my hands don’t look too bad anymore.  My feet are pointed nicely.  I keep my focus on my hands and feet in the mirror instead of the avalanche of flaws in between.

    At last we bow to our brilliant teacher signaling the end of the lesson. My muscles shake as I anticipate the pain levels in a day or so.

    Despite my ineptitude and frustration these lessons improve my kinetic balance.  Kinetic balance is an absolutely necessity for skiing and aging.  In skiing the terrain changes constantly and responding immediately is demanded every second of the descent. The same with aging. 

    On the days I don’t attempt ballet, I rollerblade, work out with weights, swim, hike and any other activity I can squeeze into my too tight schedule.  The result is a slightly slimmer box-of-female physique I hope to keep intact for the next decade or more.

    My goal to become an elderly ski bum is in sight, if only I can practice balance daily, keep most of the ravages of age at bay, and focus on the gleaming goal ahead: free skiing.  Who’s with me?

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