Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Bolting Rocks: An End of The World Scenario

This is a post that most of you won’t understand at first because it’s climbing related, but i’ll try to explain it as best as possible, so hopefully this is more of an informative one than just me barfing out words. It’s also possible that i don’t “get” it because my viewpoint is slightly different than other climbers. And by slightly different, i mean the right view point.

Here are three definitions of bolting. the first is the computer’s definition, the second is mine, the third is what i’d imagine the definition would be if written by people who get really angry about bolting.

1. Bolting: The action of driving metal pins into rock faces so that ropes can be attached to them.

2. Bolting: Putting a tiny metal thing in a rock that doesn’t actually effing care that you put a tiny metal thing in itº. Mostly only visible when either really really close, or if you’re actively looking for them. Sometimes, not even visible when you’re trying in vain to find one, only to realize 10 minutes later and 30 feet lower that it was right in front of your face.

3. Bolting: The worst thing that any human could possibly do on the planet. If you added a value of terrible to death panels, communism, and cock fights, the combined total would be 1/1,000,000,000th of what it means to put bolts in rocks. When a person puts a bolt in a rock, it warrants death, as well as trash talking on popular rock climbing forums, and occasional anthrax filled hate mail sent to popular rock climbing magazines stating the sender will no longer be supporting humanity. On top of all that, bolting rocks automatically puts you in the same category as famous figures such as hitler, obama, and satan.

There you go, if you couldn’t tell, number 1 and 2 are the most unbiased definitions. Number 2 especially.

Anyway, am i taking crazy pills? Why do people get so passionate about stuff like this. I mean, it’s not just in climbing. People get so worked up about a lot of things that maybe they shouldn’t get worked up about, like soccer (soccer fans kill other soccer fans for being soccer fans of soccer teams they don’t appreciate), democracy, gas prices, sales at department stores and twilight (the book, not the time of day, although i’d imagine that somebody getting worked up about twilight (the time of day) would be pretty entertaining. . . . . . “TWILIGHT, AGGHHHHHHHH, I HATE YOU”.)

But i digress. If you bolt something, you’re not ruining the rock. The route is still there, you can climb it using the bolts, or you can climb it using traditional gear or you can free solo it, or you can not climb it at all. Or you can look at it with binoculars wishing you were strong enough to climb it. Or you can not care about it because it’s just rock climbing. The choice is yours and the possibilities are endless.

Some people argue that it ruins the experience, but i’d venture to say that those people have a lot of other experiences ruined through “no fault of their own” and are probably pretty mad all the time.

I mean, at the end of the day, climbing is stupid, so who gives an eff?

º it’s true that the rock doesn’t care if you chip holds off, spray paint, blow up, carve phallic images, lay on it in jean shorts or ignore it. This is all true. I’m just talking about bolting, so eff off.


merk said...

why DO people get so passionate about things? like bolting, soccer, vibram five finger shoes... snuggies... rolling backpacks. i don't know. some people just have issues.

MindySue said...

ouch. he has a point.