The byline for the recent film festival of extreme outdoor activities read,
“The next best thing to doin’ it.”
This, of course, is a lie.
It is nothing at all like “doing it.”
Which—for me—is exactly why I would rather be watching a movie while sitting in a heated auditorium, holding an adult beverage, rather than being with the almost frozen-to-death guys I am watching, as they attempt to climb some obscure 8,000 meter peak in Pakistan. Oh, and it was in the middle of winter.
The movie, by the name “Cold,” which could not have been named anything more understating the conditions, documented the ascent of Mt. Gasherbrum II. Calling the climb brutal would be yet another gross understatement.
Similar to the adrenaline-generating genre of the Banff Mountain Film Festival offerings, which I have attended and reported on, the recent Tahoe Adventure Film Festival provided plenty of presentations to promote extreme outdoor endeavors, which will either scare the shit out of you, or your mother if she finds out what you are attempting to do out there.
Think, going downhill on winding, paved roads at 70 miles per hour on a skateboard. Yeah, that would do it.
That was almost as threatening as the dope-slap the wife person applied when she caught me staring and drooling—just a bit—over the well-sculpted dancers gyrating provocatively in skimpy outfits and platform boots that greeted us as we entered the MontBleu casino theater at Stateline, South Lake Tahoe.
After the last film reel was spent, while the youthful crowd departed the showroom on their way to the after-show dance party, with the snowboarding Hatchett brothers’ 80’s metal band Fortress providing the tunes, the wife person informed me that it was time to go.
To quote Christopher Hitchens before his most untimely death yesterday,
albeit addressing more serious exits,
"It will happen to all of us that at some point, you get tapped on the shoulder and told not just that the party’s over, but slightly worse: The party’s going on, but you have to leave."
Which is kind of what the wife person was telling me as she was tapping me on the shoulder, while herding me to the nearest exit.