Poverty and Rock Climbing

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Sarahbelzile
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Sarahbelzile » Mon Apr 24, 2017 10:09 am

OK, noted, friends... yes, those were all generalizations and I can see how they would strike a nerve, thanks for the feedback, even if it's hard to hear. I know that when talking about this subject, it's a tender thing, lots of strong feelings, including mine. I did go ahead and call the Beattyville Housing and Development office, I have a meeting with them on May 4th, just to have a conversation about what they do. I am about to figure out how to respond to the messages I got as well. More soon!

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:29 am

Please don't take my comments as critical; simply informative. I typically only take offense to the stereotypes when committed by my fellow Eastern Kentuckians.
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by whatahutch » Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:33 pm

It's a preachy opinion piece against generalizations and assumptions that makes a huge assumption about poor rural people. I did not grow up in an Eastern Kentucky hollow, but I did grow up in a rural Kentucky hollow. Not everybody from a economically poor area wants to leave that area.

"Unlike many of the people who call Slade home, the climbers who visit have the option and the funds to leave when they want to," the author of the opinion piece stated. It is a big assumption to make, and then to base a flawed argument around.

Take for instance my brother. He now lives on a small farm next to possible meth dealers (he hasn't asked why they need so many visitors to their home in the middle of the night, but he has made the logical conclusion that constant visitors throughout the night means stimulants are probably involved, and it's probably not ritalin their slangin'), but he lived in a trailer for five years before he bought his little farm.

He lived in a trailer, with the vomiting guts of a junk shed spilling out beside the trailer, because he bought the trailer for $1,000. The trailer was on a lot on the backside of a farm. The lot fee was $75 dollars a month. He paid cash for the trailer. He had no house payment.

Take that as a living space, and compare it to the price of a home in an affluent neighborhood in Lexington, Louisville, or an affluent part of Michigan. Maybe the redneck that lives in the trailer by choice is on to something. A debt load of $375,000 or more for a home in rich white America seems foolish compared to living in poor white redneck America with $0 in debt.

Now, my brother traveled/travels to go to work, though. Everyday, he traveled/travels an hour and 15 minutes, one way, to go to work in Louisville. He sacrificed his time, in place of his money, to live where he so desires. He no longer lives in the trailer, but he still lives in rural poor Kentucky. He now owns 25 acres with a four bedroom house, a couple barns, and a garage and pays about $600 a month for it. This is just my own assumption, but you won't get that type of deal anywhere near a suburban neighborhood.

When I went to college at Eastern Kentucky University, my boss drove everyday from Pebworth, Ky. Pebworth is in Owsley County, a neighboring county to Lee and the Motherlode, one of the poorest counties in the nation, and often the top three poorest in Kentucky. His wife was a school teacher, and my boss worked at EKU as a grounds foreman. He drove an hour and 15 minutes one way, each work day, until he retired because he didn't want to move away from the hollow. He had the money to do it too, because compared to some of his neighbors and friends from his home, he was an affluent man. He had money, and he still stayed in the hollow.

The article is junk. FAKE NEWS, people. FAKE NEWS, because it is all based on flawed opinion. A better way to write something like that is to not make assumptions and to go ask real questions and get real answers.
"Come to send, not condescend" - Eddie Vedder

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by whatahutch » Tue Apr 25, 2017 3:03 pm

Also, a good comparison chart might be the investment amount it takes to make a high volume meth lab and compare that to the cost it takes to get into climbing. I bet the return for the investment is greater to the redneck meth dealer than it is to the new climber. I know. I know. The fun you get from climbing is a worthy return, but a toothless, glass-pipe-sucking redneck might disagree with that statement too.
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Wed Apr 26, 2017 4:36 pm

Excellent comments!

Like I said in an earlier post: I'm a native by birth and by choice. I'm what you call an Appalachian boomeranger. I move away--I move back. I move away--I move back. Hopefully this time its to stay, or the next time is to stay away because I don't think my wife would put up with another move BACK to Kentucky. She is NOT a native by birth or choice.

But I had a job in Golden, Colorado working for county government. We liked living in Colorado. But I like living where I do now just outside the RRG. My mortgage is $400 a month and I am fifteen minutes from world class climbing, hiking, paddling and eventually mountain biking. Much like WAH said I could live in Lexington near where I work, but I would put most of my income into a space to sleep and hate my life. I also currently live next to a meth house (no one has so many different friends that only stay five minutes) which has expanded to include prostitution (alas, it is a cousin who is providing the services) so there are tradeoffs.

But I live within walking distance to both of my 80-something grandmothers and when the lab is down for cleaning its a pretty peaceful place to be. I can walk out my backdoor into the woods or drag my kayak up to the family pond and paddle. I hesitate to say this, but I make almost $50k a year. I don't HAVE to stay where I am. And I am not part of the local wealthy elite. I am maybe average of income or maybe slightly above in the circles I inhabit.

But my story never gets told. The state and national news like to talk about all of the bad things about Appalachia and there is a blind spot when it comes to the perks.

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Nick » Thu Apr 27, 2017 1:34 pm

375k doesn't sound like such a bad price to not have meth dealers as neighbors and not have a drive to work that is literally longer than the drive from Lexington TO the red. And no the article is not FAKE NEWs, it is simply just someone's opinion piece even if I don't agree with a lot of what they are saying.

Speaking of stereotyping, I jumped a guy's dead battery in the rest stop parking lot last Fall who was wearing overalls, no shirt, and no shoes. I don't blame any locals who hate climbers. I pretty much can't stand most other climbers with their fucking hammocks, stupid dogs, and avocado lunches. I'd smash the shit out of every last mazda protege window!

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by nik » Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:56 pm

i feel you with the hammocks (and dogs, to a degree), but what did avocados ever do to you? haha

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by SpikySkaKid » Thu Apr 27, 2017 3:04 pm

This conversation is fairly interesting and entertaining. One thing we have to remember is the human brain is designed to use stereotypes. We categorize things so we can process them and understand our world. But they only work to a degree and once we start talking about individuals, all bets are off. And speaking of stereotypes, I remember specifically disliking rock climbers in college because I was a semi-angry punk rock kid and I saw all rock climbers as dirty hippies who played ultimate Frisbee, listened to PHISH and ate granola. The funny thing in my late twenties I went climbing and have been forever hooked. 6 years later and now I'm the dirty hippy who makes granola bars and drives from Michigan to the Red at least once a month to climb in the best place on Earth, though you will never catch me listening to PHISH.

Oh and the comment about avocado lunches made me laugh so much.

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Fri Apr 28, 2017 8:26 am

Nick wrote:375k doesn't sound like such a bad price to not have meth dealers as neighbors and not have a drive to work that is literally longer than the drive from Lexington TO the red.
My other neighbors are all dear family. And in fact, the meth dealers are family though not so dear. I've started referring to my cousin's boyfriend as "Skinny Pete" cause that's as close to Breaking Bad as he's ever going to get.

In regards to the drive: mine is literally shorter than the drive from Lexington to the Red as I live on the Lexington side of the Red. The worst part of this arrangement for me is the drive itself and that I actually have to work in Lexington. And since we're speaking in stereotypes: Lexington is full of pretentious horse fuckers and UK basketball mind slaves who can't drive for shit. I'll save my money and live in my crappy house fifteen minutes from Slade.

But that's just how I try to organize and understand my world.


Please understand that is all said for comedic effect. I have lots of friends in Lexington and my wife would love nothing more than to move out of the holler and live in a suburb. I'd rather free solo Nevermore in the rain.
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by ScottB » Fri Apr 28, 2017 10:03 am

"Lexington is full of pretentious horse fuckers and UK basketball mind slaves who can't drive for shit."

Are the people pretentious or were you referring to pretentious horses? If the latter, then what about all of the unassuming horses? Are they lonely? Just seeking clarification. Thanks in advance.

The comment about basketball is accurate, but I consider it a feature, not a bug. Is it a bad thing that so much of my emotional well-being is controlled by 18 year olds on a basketball court?

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by clif » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:36 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgZMPT0ulC8

spikyskakid and the rest of you, just wanted to offer this bit of historical perspective. best wishes.
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Mon May 01, 2017 7:35 am

ScottB wrote:
Are the people pretentious or were you referring to pretentious horses? If the latter, then what about all of the unassuming horses? Are they lonely? Just seeking clarification. Thanks in advance.
Rich people's pet horses dictate too much of what goes on in and around Lexington and everyone just fawns over them. Folk in the bluegrass region like being penetrated by the large animals on a regular basis and seem to enjoy it regardless of how it negatively affects politics and development in the region. But that's just my humble opinion.

This is my attempt to establish a comparative stereotype that Eastern Kentuckians can fling back at the rest of the state when they perpetuate the negative stereotypes for EKY. Bluegrass region residents participate in cultural bestiality.
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Wed May 03, 2017 7:28 am

Not even a chuckle?
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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by captain static » Wed May 03, 2017 6:14 pm

Now this is the redriverclimbing.com that I love and miss. Thanks for the historical Dead tune link Clif.
"Be responsible for your actions and sensitive to the concerns of other visitors and land managers. ... Your reward is the opportunity to climb in one of the most beautiful areas in this part of the country." John H. Bronaugh

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Re: Poverty and Rock Climbing

Post by Ascentionist » Thu May 04, 2017 8:32 am

captain static wrote:Now this is the redriverclimbing.com that I love and miss. Thanks for the historical Dead tune link Clif.
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