Shhh…Don’t Tell Anyone



Read this post and tell me if the advice I am about to give isn’t proven here.  If you’re not in the mood to write, don’t write.  This post feels a lot like my time working today.  Frankly, I wasn’t much in the mood to sell, so I went skiing instead. 

They say that discipline is an important part of success, but so is sanity.

This morning our sales team met and reviewed our sales numbers from the last year.  Not bad, not fantastic, but certainly respectable and getting better.  Those are all good signs and usually very motivating.

Unfortunately when the meetings ended my thoughts of work were ambivalent at best.  I was tired, even a little cranky and impatient.  I simply felt flat.

I shuffled some paper, chatted with a colleague or two, and reluctantly prepared to work leads.  I felt lousy, but that would soon change.

Outside snow was falling in big soft flakes.  Stepping into the snow made me feel entirely different, optimistic and happy.  The last thing I wanted to do was fight traffic and walk through slush and meet ungrateful clients.  I decided to do something else.

There was one client I needed to see, however, but I knew the chances that he would actually keep his appointment were very slim and he did not disappoint.  When I got to his office it was dark.  I quickly went back to my car and left the rest of my planned day behind me.

My skis were at Afton Alps where I left them two months ago for a tune up.  That is where I was going to go.  A couple of car accidents in December along with other inconveniences kept me from getting to my skis and on the slopes.  Today was too beautiful of a day to let that delay last any longer. 

And the drive to Afton Alps still is very nice on a snowy day, despite the best efforts of suburban builders and their aesthetically-challenged clientele.  Yes, eyesores have replaced too many rolling acres of field and wood, but if you get moving the old beauty still lingers on the edges of it all. 

Afton State Park.

The snow made everything especially pleasant.  This was a picture perfect snow, the perfect stuff of Hollywood films.  Big dry fluffy flakes that slowly twist and spin as they fall.  If you look carefully, you can see them join up and break apart as they fall from the sky.  Truly beautiful snow.

I wasn’t dressed for skiing.  I had a pair of my tights on under my pants, but no ski pants.  I keep a heavy turtleneck and other cold weather clothes in my car along with a ski shell to cut the wind.  I put that over my shirt and tie and that would be as ready as I would get.

Picking up my skis felt good.  I felt excited, like a kid getting a Christmas gift.  The skis are now tuned up and ready to go.  Back at my car putting my boots on was a challenge.  I have been doing this for years and I still haven’t mastered ski boots.  I struggle and tug and get cramped up trying to get those things on my feet.  They were especially stiff and cold today.  Made it all more challenging.  It is embarrassing, but eventually the boots were on and I was ready to go.

Thursday noon is a good time to ski.  No lines.  Interestingly the slopes appeared to be used mostly by people like me, people skipping work.  There were not many young people at all and no kids.  The snow falling made everything feel even more quiet and cozy, but it was damn cold…at least for me.  My clothes were not quite right for today.

On my first run I thought it was strange that my fly felt open.  I usually wear ski pants, but I had only a pair of wool dress pants today.  I presumed the wind cut into the pants more easily than they would ski pants.  Makes sense.  But when I got to the bottom of the hill I had to check and lo!  My fly was open.  I wonder how often I wander around with that happening?  Unless I’m racing down a ski hill in 10 degree weather, I might not notice.

I fixed that problem and skied for another 30-40 minutes.  It really was a little too cold and feelings of responsibility started to creep up on me.  I felt great though.  My face was frozen and smiling.  I went back to my car, took off the boots (a little less clumsily than putting them on), and got into the car one very, very relaxed guy.

Ski Pants Have Come A Long Way

The snow continued to fall, even picked up a little, as I pulled out of Afton Alps.  Memories of riding home as a young boy through what was then mostly farm land made me feel very good.  I daydreamed a lot on the way back toward the office and felt absolutely calm and happy.  As soon as I started seeing the gaudy convenience stores and fast food restaurants, stop lights and dirty traffic, however, my mood changed, and changed in a bad way.

Reluctantly I drove back to the office, driving past the ugly freeway cityscapes that make me feel sour.  I had some work to do, but I wasn’t in the mood to do it. 

Eventually I got on the phone and called some clients, cleared some issues at the office, and dropped off some paperwork.  All the while I was kind of scratching my head…wondering what I was doing.


2 thoughts on “Shhh…Don’t Tell Anyone

  1. Yu No Hu

    Maybe you’re a nature boy and shouldn’t be working in the big city at all. Or maybe you’re right where you should be since you can go skiing on your job, and you’re close to the restaurants and bars, and can get into nature pretty quickly.

    As far as your frozen, smiling face, I’m not sure how you could tell the difference between your normal face and your ski face.

    Your ski raiment sounds hilarious, and skiing in dress wool pants is outre–far more outre than leaving your fly open.

    Just keep SALES the biggeset word in your cloud tag.


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