(rescheduled post from 2015; done so to fit with the teenage tarnish that is the highlight of this month’s posts!)
A funny letter by an angry reader inspired by the words “I think that’s pretty rare, especially in a [snowboarding] culture where people love to hate.” -Susie Floros
I read a line in a snowboarding publication the other day, and its brazen statement rang true: “It was odd for a sport based on haters.”
Yes, snowboarding culture is a sport run on hate, and yes, I’ve been a hater for most of my life. The list of things I’ve hated on: it’s endless. I love hating. Hating is so much fun that, when you have nothing else to be happy about, hating makes the bleakest days fun. In a way, the opposite happens when you channel negativity into the worst situations: interesting action abounds. Let me welcome you to my abode of hate.
My friends think I smile too much. I don’t think I hate enough. It’s infectious; it spreads like wildfire. Hating becomes so widespread that it reverses day and night, so that hating becomes lovin’. Just like the day is always for playin’ and the night is for sleepin’.
The most annoying thing to a hater is when no one hates back. It’s like lighting a match and finding out it’s wet: the fire you were expecting sizzles out like a slow-burning hiss of dread, so lethally quiet it deflates you. Hate inflates, despite what endlessly optimistic people would say, and when the fire dissipates, something matchless takes its stead: love. And boy, what a scary replacement that is.
Case in point, when I hated on the snow this season, I was met with a bunch of Likers. People who were upping their game; people who were sticking to the lean slopes even though they were learning for the first time. People attacked the slush and dirt like a pack of blind mole rats. Even the haters that I armed myself with refused to light the fuse with as much abandon as I did (and other things, too.)
The likers and lesser haters tried hard again and again to convince me that I was missing out. That by hating I was actually limiting the amount of fun experiences I’d have-after all, if I only showed up to hate, where would I go when the snow finally come down? I’d have to slither back to my burrow and hibernate until I found another dismal condition to hate, and by then I’d have revealed that the half-alive season had gotten to me. I’d have to admit that a semi-conscious season had taken its toll on me as a hater, and that likers and others were actually having a better time of it, dare I say-enjoying it.
But I rest my case. I have my place in the world. I anger the people who wouldn’t have come out otherwise but do so in order to prove me wrong, and I make seriously bad conditions so much more entertaining. Let’s face it: I entertain you. And you, me. Bad conditions or no, we’re in this together, and because we’re not a sport that discriminates, we’ll be on those lifts together. For better or for worse.
But I’m hoping for worse.