Live and Let Live

We live in a culture that thrives on comparing ourselves to others. She’s a better climber, you’re richer than me, I’ve got nicer hair, so on and so forth. As climbers, even though we like to think we’re different than mainstream society, we tend to follow these same social norms. You don’t have to look far to find people who chime in on MountainProject discussions and drop comments that purposefully make others feel like idiots. Come on, maybe they really DON’T KNOW that you can use a Gri Gri for belaying trad climbers.

Why do we feel the need to impose our personal style on others? Look, you like to wear a beanie without a shirt on, sometimes I wear manpris and a tank top, and sometimes you even see people dressed up in banana costumes. Instead of scoffing at the habits you don’t understand, what if you took the opposite approach? What if you tried to put a positive spin on everything? Hey man, that beanie looks great with your chest hair. Thanks dude, those manpris really bring out the curve of your calves. And holy cow can that banana climb! Awesome, high fives all around.

Labels only serve to divide, and there’s enough of that in the world. I am a climber, I like sport, trad, aid (well, aiding up sport climbs anyway) whatever. I like being outside, with friends, pushing myself physically and mentally. I love learning new things. And I love how we all bring something different to climbing, and how it allows for individual expression on a level not experienced in many other activities. What if we celebrated our many differences, instead of coming up with clever ways of putting each other down all the time?


5 Responses to Live and Let Live

  1. great article, what climb is that banana on?

    coop September 4, 2012 at 12:59 pm
    • I think it’s Walkin Talkin Bob at the Fin.

      BJ Sbarra September 4, 2012 at 3:36 pm
  2. I got a good laugh out of this… especially the beanie and chest hair comment. Awesome. Hope all is well BJ.

    Jamie Gregory September 4, 2012 at 7:04 pm
  3. Well said.

    Benjamin Eaton September 5, 2012 at 9:44 am
  4. Great stuff. If most everyone would adopt this attitude the vibe at the crags would be awesome.

    Jason Halladay September 5, 2012 at 9:54 am
Locals Corner

Bulldog Creek Dog Walk (IV WI 4+)

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