Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Buying stuff

This last weekend, as previously mentioned, I went up to the cottage belonging to Worried.  During the trip it became apparent that much of the equipment at the cottage was not particularly suited to me due to my somewhat boat-sized feet.  I tried to go snowshoeing but the snowshoes would not wrap around the back of my shoes so I had to just jam my feet forward really hard, put a ton of torque on the forward straps and hope for the best.  I did a bit of wandering around like that and it worked, but not well.  I certainly couldn't move quickly and the front of the snowshoes sank deep into the snow due to the very uneven weight distribution - better than just shoes for moving through deep snow but not ideal.  I also ended up remembering that I don't actually find snowshoeing all that fun anyway; it isn't bad but it isn't particularly compelling either.  The story as far as cross country skiing goes is similar but since that requires special shoes I couldn't hack together a solution and just sat out.

None of this bothered me.  Cross country skiing, much like snowshoeing, is fine but not that interesting.  I am perfectly happy to wander around in my boots and I don't need special equipment.  At the end of the weekend though Worried asked me if I would mind going to MEC (Mountain Equipment Coop) and buying snowshoes, ski boots and any other equipment that goes along with those on her dime.  She was obviously somewhat flustered and embarassed that I had to sit out activities due to equipment restrictions despite my insistence that I was perfectly content with the situation as it was.  The two of us sit pretty far apart in the universe of "How much stuff do you want to own?" and similarly far apart in "How prepared do you need to be to be comfortable?"  I generally am averse to getting anything new and much prefer to just continue to use things until they become very broken indeed.  My favourite jacket is a jacket my father gave me 15 years ago or so and when he gave it to me it was quite used.  The jacket is worn and the inside of the pockets is tearing out but I fully intend to get another 15 years out of it.

It's still good, It's still good! - Homer Simpson, re: Flying pig.

It is very much like my Christmas presents conundrums.  Other people like to get things and buy things and I don't.  It isn't one sided as I am just as happy to get no presents in return but I am pretty weird as far as this goes.  Worried really wants to acquire new things for the cottage and is fine with spending quite a bit of money on equipment that will be used 0-1 times a year for half an hour while I find that quite ridiculous.  Clearly it is her money to spend and yet I don't particularly want to be part of the stuff acquiring engine even when someone else is paying when that stuff is being bought almost exclusively for my use.  I am unsure how to proceed.  I don't want to offend, and the gesture to buy things just so I can use them is appreciated, but I don't really want to spend the money in ways that I find superfluous.

The really silly thing is that I will probably get more use out of the current crop of non fitting snowshoes that any new ones.  Trying to go snowshoeing in inappropriately sized gear without falling down or any other such shenanigans is a challenge I find interesting - snowshoeing in proper gear much less so.  I suppose I can be reasonably accused of being quite silly in that regard.


  1. Go buy some stuff. Keep her happy. Or take a load of old crap from our house and help out my cause! Dad says you can have your old X-country skis (which he sometimes uses). He'll mail them to you. BTW your favourite jacket (if it's the leather one) was new 15 years ago. The used one is still hanging in our closet. Take it too.

  2. I guess I may have been wrong, but I really don't recall getting a new leather jacket. I recall getting a used one.

  3. "It's just a little airborne"

    The used equipment route sounds like a good compromise. Kijiji??

    You should get some three pin skis. If hipsters xcountry skied that what they would use.