8.17.2009

these are not the droids you are looking for

Obi Won uses the force to bypass the storm troopers
on youtube
(well... I did not watch it... but I have seen that scene too many times on this vacation as my boys have been involved in a STAR WARS MARATHON!)

in my youth I found myself in this situation a number of times
trying to use the force so that the Storm Troopers are unable extend the long evil arm of intergalactic law my way
after two years living in Colorado I returned to visit friends in Breckenridge in the several times each year over the following years
being that I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth I had to get creative to get on the hill

having lived in Colorado I knew that Breckenridge had its "back door"

there was the risk of borrowing someone else's pass
there was the C Chair Shuffle...

there was a hike that dropped into the Falcon Chair...
and there was the use of a ticket for a child under six

as children under six skied free

well... these efforts were often a cause for an elevated heart rate
I will not try to justify my actions
nor will I expand on them
it is just how things happened... otherwise they would not have happened

once on the mountain I stayed on the parts of the hill where they did not check for tickets
which was fine... as these were the better parts of the mountain
six chair... imperial bowl... even peak ten

after returning the bike and getting out of my cycling gear and into some civilian gear I went to watch my family loop from one activity to another... Putt Putt... Human Maze... Climbing Wall... Trampoline with Bungee Cords... and of course the LONGEST ALPINE SLIDE IN COLORADO
sure enough... I found the family looping the line at the Alpine Slide


I had taken a few breaks before to watch the family
clearly the Alpine slide was the big winner...
with the bike away I palyed dad with the camera


when Dean came down the slide and rushed for another ride down he petitioned that I join him
Dean wanted to share the Alpine Slide Adventure with his father
and well... I wanted to ride


the lift operators seemed cool

the guys at the base knew Dean and Grant by name at this point
I considered asking if I could go for one ride... then I remembered hearing that they check for tickets at the top
and the bottom
I watched as Dean got on the chair... then Lisa passed me her ticket and I got on a few chairs behind Dean

anxious in the chair I was pleased that I was able to get on the chair with a simple scan of the UPC code
then the tension began
I played through my head all the possible scenarios
the notion of me riding the sled down the slide did not even reach the top ten possible scenarios

it was awkward... it was ugly

I knew that "theft of services" was a felony
I knew that they could not "bust" a person at the base for waiting in line

I knew that they would check the ticket before I headed down
I took a look at the computer generated ticket... in red Sharpie Marker there was an obvious "F"
"F" for FEMALE... I am clearly not FEMALE
I feared getting busted

as we neared the top I watched the mountain employees at the top

two young boys unloaded the sleds from the chair
then a third person stepped out of the lift op booth...

again different scenarios played through my head

my vivid imagination went wild
my heart raced... I knew I was busted
I thought about my potential response to their approach

petition for forgiveness? swing wildly? RUN?

I thought of the life operator at the base... her with her walkie talkie sending the message to those above
"WE GOT ONE"

"ON CHAIR 24! A TICKET-LESS RIDER"
back in the day when I would play this game and run this scam I knew that there was a bounty offered to the lift ops who busted the scammers
I feared that I had been caught


my chair reached the top... I dismounted... I moved like I had been there before

clear past the lift ops at the top I called to my son Dean
Dean was stoked and surprised
I took things into consideration
rather than try to work the scam I asked the Lift Op checking tickets if I could take a ride down
with mention of dangers and liability I a heard a firm no
I did not push the issue...

I hiked down
it was not worth it


I am too old to work the scam
sneaking in the Exit Door at the Movie theater is for kids in their young teens
scamming the lift at the sky resort is not for adult fathers of two


happy to escape the worst case scenario I ran the long winding single track trail to the base of the mountain
ecstatic that my Winter Park experience was not tainted with a court date and a ticket for theft of services


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