Clink. Clink. Clack. Take! Take!
Max's eyebrows stared furiously at the gri-gri. He was not amused. We had rolled up to Little Si in a crew of six: Courtney and Kelly, Cole and Joel, and Max and I. Thirty minutes into our session at Little Si, the locals, the bros and dudette from Seattle, showed up, and started assaulting the crag. The steep rhyolite, or whatever type of rock is at the crag, acts as their training ground, and a rotating group of eight to twelve climbers trampezes around the cliff Tuesday through Thursday from 4:30 to 9. Courtney and Kelly hide on the far left side of the crag while Coel and Joel worked some uber hard route in the middle of the face. Max and I stuck ourselves in the middle of the scene. Lame. My forty-three days of sport wanking at Jailhouse trained me well for this scenario. I tuned out the spray about drop kneeing, the barking dogs, and the talk of the douche bags, and managed to dog my way up the wall. Max, however, was not pysched at all. He prefers to climb when no one's around, like in the mountains and stuff man. Maybe that's why he slogs so well. I managed to convince Maxwell to belay me for a few hours and we eventually pulled out, letting the noise of the smacking carabiners and sport wankers behind.
Clink. Clink. Clack. Take! Take!
We stayed that night at Kelly's house, which is a full on climbing pad in north Seattle. Joel, Johnny G, Kelly and Michele all climb fiendishly and all live together. We barbequed some steaks, ate some awesome cilantro and lime Mission tortilla chips, and drank a few beers. Fun times. Max sprawled out on the futon in the living room and I was ready to pass out on a couple of crash pads when Michelle came in to say good night. I mumbled good night, as Michelle and Maxwell engaged in a bit of small talk. Max pointed to a big looking crashpad propped against the wall. "What's that?"
"It's a massage table," Michelle said. "I do some body work sometimes. It's really fun. I enjoy working with my hands, helping people get the kinks out of their bodies. I totally massage my friends sometimes. Don't hesitate to ask me if you ever want me to rub one out for you."
I turned into my sleeping bag and choked my giggles. Did she really say "rub one out"? Michelle left the room as I gagged on a down feather from my bag. That's when Max chuckled too. Within a minute we were roaring. Classic stuff.
The next morning, yesterday actually, Max and I rallied around the city, grabbing a bunch of gear for his upcoming two week trip to the Bugaboos. We stopped at Trader Joes' to pick up food- eggs and powerbars for me. Beer and tortellini for Max. Next at Second ascent, Max scored a pair of crampons, some approach shoes for Jens, and a funky headband/ear muff piece, a very hipster piece of clothing. Max likes to look cool when he's slogging. Then off to REI (Return Every Item) where my sponsors generously gave me my money back for the shoes I bought, and worked, six months ago. I should feel guilty about abusing the companies liberal satisfaction guarantee but my desire for a new pair of Miuras always beats the shit out of my conscience and the guilty from stealing. Maxwell also returned some shoes and got a decent amount of money in store credit...a hundred fifty bananas! Yeah sponsors! He then proceeded to waste the money on more gear for his mountain climbing- fuel canisters, a spork, and little clear canisters- which were "great storage for my uhh...medicine," he said. After that, we drove out to Redmund, stopped by Vertical World and grabbed a bunch of gear that Max and Jens had ordered and a few items that Jens had left with his friend, including his pot, the small round metal kind.
All the driving around the city, Trader Joes to Second Ascent to REI to Redmund, tweaked me out quite a bit. I recently started driving again. Max left my last car on the side of the road in Yosemite about 5 years ago and for the entire time I was in Santa Cruz, I was rigless. I don't have much driving experience and frankly, I hate being behind the wheel. When we hit traffic on the five, I nearly lost it. Serious road rage. Who can deal with all those damn cars anyways?
Beep. Beep. Boop. Honk! Honk!