The anecdotal evidence that skiing is bad has been mounting ever since I had to be pulled down a frosted North Carolinian precipice by an instructor on my first and only ski excursion after a pouty hour spent refusing to move. I was nine? And prone to surrendering my will with terrible timing, but still. Some things have gotten better since then, certainly not skiing.
All skiing content I encounter only reinforces my deep skepticism of this sporty leisure activity. Just last month, Gwyneth Paltrow (not my role model) was sued for allegedly skiing into a man and then skiing away, in what has the appearance of a very ruling-class hit-and-run. Skiing has robbed us of Natasha Richardson and Sonny Bono. Here’s a picture of Ivanka and Jared and Eric skiing. Ruben Östlund’s 2014 film Force Majeure teaches us that skiing trips are too much for traditionally staid and modest Swedish families to bear. As a girl, the illustrious Madeleine Davies was once rejected by a boy on a chairlift.
And now it’s being reported that the daddy of skiing, International Ski Federation president Gian Franco Kasper is having to apologize for loving dictators too explicitly!
The Guardian reported on Thursday that the 75-year-old, who’s held his post since 1998, recently told Swiss newspaper Tages Anzeiger “dictators can organize [big] events…without asking the people’s permission…from the business side, I say: I just want to go to dictatorships, I do not want to argue with environmentalists.” He also minimized global warming, referring to the phenomenon as “so-called” climate change, in addition to blaming immigrants for the decline of winter sports in Switzerland.
Look, I’m not here to gloat, but the man represents skiing, and he just told you he’s all about denying and disparaging the lived experiences of basically anyone who is not the Dictator of a Mountain. He has since backpedalled, saying that that his comments resulted from a “misunderstanding” and “were not meant to be taken literally.” But, come on. Though the prosecutorial pile of snow injustice now surges far above my head, I’ll just stay down here and drink hot chocolate with my feet up, thanks very much. I rest my case.