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Back Talk - September 2000

First Tracks
posted: 08/25/2000

BEER IN HAND, FOOT IN MOUTH
As a Utah state legislator for the district that includes Park City, I was very distressed to see the article in the February 2000 issue of Skiing Magazine entitled "Got Milk?" I found it both offensive and derogatory. I am at a loss to understand how you could present such a negative and distasteful picture of the state. The only redeeming part of the article is your correct observation that Park City is "chock-full of good bars." Few in Utah would argue that our liquor laws are structured differently than those in most other parts of the country, but most also realize that we have been able to meet most tourists' desires for alcoholic beverages through our present system of restaurant licenses and private clubs. There is little doubt we will be gracious hosts during the Olympics and that most of those attending will have little trouble finding the refreshments of their choice.
David Ure
Majority Whip
Utah House of Representatives

I was greatly offended by the photo accompanying the article, "Got Milk?" Granted, Utah does have peculiar laws pertaining to alcohol consumption. However, to show someone "flaunting it" at the Mormon Church is incredibly disrespectful. You owe the Church of Latter Day Saints an apology.
Susan Harris
Winston-Salem, North Carolina

You know, I usually enjoy looking at the pictures in your mediocre magazine, but the one on pages 30-31 was totally without class or tact. To some people, that building has meaning. What's next? Slamming down pork chops in front of a Jewish temple? Wow, you could do a series! Get back to the skiing. Oh yeah, also stop sending me your magazine.
Name withheld
Salt Lake City, Utah

I am no teetotaler, but I was shocked to see the outrageously disrespectful photo captioned "Flaunting it at the Salt Lake Temple." I grew up in a part of the country where there were many members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons), and they are almost to a person fine, honest, hardworking, and yes, really fun people. Just because their religion proscribes alcohol, tobacco, and stimulants such as caffeine (rather healthy advice for the athletically inclined, I would say) is no reason to hold them and their holiest site up to public ridicule as does your sophomoric picture. An apology is in order.
W. Scott Peterson, M.D.
Middlebury, Connecticut

Your article on alcohol consumption in Utah was first rate (who cares if it was accurate?). And the photo of a guy knocking down a cool one on grounds Mormons consider most sacred, well that was world class. I guess bigotry is okay, just as long as it's targeted at a religiously oriented culture.
Bryce Lee
Salt Lake City, Utah

As we try to move our country toward racial harmony, why do some people and magazines feel it is now okay to choose religious groups to degrade? I will not purchase your magazine again. The editor who allowed this picture to be published needs to be released from his job. The Church of Jesus Christ LDS is the sixth largest church in the U.S. Do you realize how many readers you have offended?
Name withheld
Salt Lake City, Utah

SKIING sincerely apologizes to anyone who was offended by our photo. We may have gone too far in trying to illustrate our point-that when the Olympics come to Salt Lake City in 2002, Utah's drinking laws could put a damper on the party atmosphere that pervades most Games.-Ed.

TURNED ON
Al Hobart's article "Turn It On!" February 2000 was an epiphany for me. Just his single mental image of the upper body "bowing out" over the downhill ski made it all clear to me. With a bit of practice, I have found a dramatic improvement in my ability to hold an edge in the tight, relatively high-speed turns involved in racing. Thanks.
Skip Stephenson
Park City, Utah

Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed Al Hobart's recent article ("Turn It On!"). I had the privilege of working onon-one with Al in the early phases of gorilla-turn development. Not only did it strengthen and improve my skiing, but I had a lot of fun daring to ski differently.
Marti Cole
Waitsfield, Vermont

PSIAed OFF
Al Hobart is, no doubt, a fantastic ski teacher, and I applaud his effort to turn readers on to the thrill of the big carve, but his ski-instructor bashing is inappropriate. Perhaps he should hang out in any PSIA clinic or shadow a lesson or two to observe students learning similar edging skills to promote their carving. Ski instructors are faced with students who may not be as young or athletic as Green Mountain Valley protégés and who are interested in skiing varied terrain. Therefore, an approach focusing on balance, edging, and steering skills on different snow surfaces is quite appropriate for our guests.
Greg Luce
Mt. Hood Meadows, Oregon

Teaching skiing is like skinning cats...you know the rest.-Ed.

GLEN PLAKE, CRAZY?... NAW
I read with interest the article Glen Plake wrote about nutrition and Skiing "Pig Out," March/April 2000. Let's just say that his nutritional theories are as crazy as his hair. While it is true that fat takes longer to digest and protein is an excellent after-activity food, fat is not the primary source of fuel for muscles when skiing. Fat is burned in activities that are low to moderate in intensity and last over 45 minutes. Skiing typically involves runs of 15-30 high-intensity minutes, then it's back to the chair for a ride back to the top as your body calms back down. Because of this, you never reach fat metabolism. Pre ski eating should include some fats but more complex carbohydrates. These replace the glycogen muscle sugars you burn, giving you higher reserves while you ski.
K.M. Casey
Exercise Physiologist
Salt Lake City, Utah

Do you really think Glen Plake has the same physiology as the rest of us? In case you have any doubt, read "Soul Man" on page 142 in this issue.-Ed

APB
Last season, my eight-year-old son was struck by a 10-year-old out-of-control skier. The impact broke my son's leg. My son did heal, but his season was over. The other skier involved got up and continued down the hill-until he hit another skier. Skiing is a great sport that I have done for 35 years without incident. I make an effort to ski with my kids, to get them lessons, and to encourage responsible skiing. I would really like to talk with the reckless skier in the blue ski pants and the green Adidas jacket (or his parents!). I realize I am preaching to the choir; Skiing readers are experienced, avid skiers. Pass the word about responsible skiing to your friends.
Scott Dillman
Cicero, New York

We couldn't agree more. Also, if anyone finds this guy, our fashion editor would like a word with him.-Ed.

EASY LIKE SUNDAY'S LODGING
Your article on Sunday River "The River's Edge," February 2000 was awesome. My husband and I are there every weekend, and I know exactly which snowfall your writer skied. There was only one aspect of the story that was incomplete: There is a lot more slopeside lodging than the two hotels you mentioned. There are excellent slopeside condos in Cascades, Fall Line, Sunrise, Locke Mountain, North Peak, and South Ridge. See you on the slopes.
Becky Tise
Kittery, Maine

WHISTLING THE BLUES
Oy vey! What's with all the hype about Whistler? Yes, the skiing is great-when it's not raining or so foggy you can't see your skis. But I've never been so disappointed in a vacation. Whistler takes forever to get to and is incredibly expensive when you get there. Those much touted favorable exchange rates don't make up for stratospheric hotel, meal, and lift-ticket costs. So, keep going there, suckers, and leave the other slopes to us.
Jack Arbuthnot, Ph.D.
Athens, Ohio

Hey folks, a room just opened up in Whistler!-Ed.

CHEAP THRILLS
In your backcountry-skiing article "Lock Down," March/April 2000, you neglected to mention the Alpine Trekker inserts. Seventy-nine dollars versus new skis, bindings, and boots ($1,000). You do the math.
Dr. Leroy Folmar
Gulf Breeze, Florida

Trekkers are great, but they aren't exactly randonnée gear, which is why they were excluded from the article.-Ed.-skiing article "Lock Down," March/April 2000, you neglected to mention the Alpine Trekker inserts. Seventy-nine dollars versus new skis, bindings, and boots ($1,000). You do the math.
Dr. Leroy Folmar
Gulf Breeze, Florida

Trekkers are great, but they aren't exactly randonnée gear, which is why they were excluded from the article.-Ed.

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