Saturday, February 11, 2017

In praise of old gear

A long time ago and in a galaxy far away, I had a husband. The "wasband" had a few quirks, as most people do.  He enjoyed spending money, while I was more of a saver (for those of you not yet married, beware this scenario.  Work this out beforehand).  His reasoning when wanting to buy something new when we had a perfectly good version of it was, "But it's old!"

Don't get me wrong.  New stuff is fun, and often necessary.  A toaster that doesn't have smoke coming out of it.  Running shoes.  Athleta dresses!  Well, maybe Athleta dresses aren't necessary. But I digress.  Old stuff often still works, sometimes even better than the new versions.  In many cases it was built to last.  I can't bring myself to throw it all out.

It's been a snowy winter, a shovel-every-day, roof collapsing, roads closing winter.  One morning I eyed the foot of new snow and thought about my cross country skis.  They languished in a shed, hardly every used these days, partly because there's so many other things I like to do, and partly because of a long-ago ankle-breaking incident in West Yellowstone while they were strapped to my feet.

These skis are from the early '90s.  They're skinny, without metal edges.  They came as a package with poles and boots, probably costing around $100.  If I was going to start skiing again on a regular basis, maybe it was time to buy newer gear.

I stepped into the bindings.  My street is one of the last to be plowed, so I could ski from there to the woods a quarter mile away.  As I entered the forest, instead of fumbling and falling, the stride seemed familiar.  My muscles remembered how to do this. 

I don't need new skis.  Maybe if I decide to tackle steeper backcountry terrain, I'll look into it.  But while I was skiing on my old skis, a lot of memories came back.  Living in Grand Teton National Park and "crust cruising" beneath the mountains.  Skiing on frozen rivers in Alaska.  I'd once spent a lot of time on these skis.  Even though they were old, they could still take me places.  It wasn't time to give up on them yet.

11 comments:

  1. My XC skis look at lot like yours - and I think they were also purchased in the 90s! I agree, if I have something that still works, I hang onto it until it falls apart.

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    1. Good to hear somebody else is still rocking the 90s skis. I looked at new ones in the store and saw how much they cost...No, can't do it.

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  2. Look at new skies, but keep the old.
    One may be silver, but the other is gold.
    We feel the same way about cars, houses, etc. Lots of better things to spend money on, when something still works and you enjoy it.

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    1. Oops--didn't mean skies, but those things you strap on your feet.

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    2. Yes I'd rather spend money on travel.

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  3. Like the image of the old skis coming out of seclusion and both woman and skis remembering how it felt to glide (or even trudge) Nice image...maybe I should take my old skis out of the garage corner and take the old road back to the field!

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  4. if stuff is good i never feel the urge to update but if its not, i can't wait to get something better.





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    1. Yes some things should be upgraded. Nobody wants to see 90s clothes.

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  5. When compared to new products i prefer old ones. Old is always gold. Now a days they don't have the older age quality in any of the things.

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    1. True. Some of the older gear really lasts.

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