Call for Submissions: In the RED

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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Andrew » Tue Jan 31, 2017 10:14 am

That story makes me cry everytime. Brad is a beautiful story teller, and if that story isn't in the intro of your book, then your book is not a true story of the red.
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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Ascentionist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:57 am

businessprofessional wrote:I've heard the Dick Doctor story (top notch), but never the My Bro Just Sent Twinkie story. Any way an entertaining summary can be provided here?
Anybody know when this story happened? Just wondering cause I might know the guy and his boy. I had some local friends who used to knock around the gorge doing shit like that. They actually climbed stuff like Twinkie but it wasn't pretty. They're all too old and fat now and busted up from their tours of duty.
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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Ascentionist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 6:26 pm

So while we’re at it, I’ll tell my best Phantasia story.

I worked for Jim at Natural Heights. The ending of that story was ugly, and what I’m about to tell was the beginning of the end, but this was when Natural Heights was still somewhat viable as a business and we were all relatively happy providing outdoor recreation services to visitors to the Gorge.

A bunch of guys we all loved called “The Hippies” were hanging around the shop one chilly winter evening. Yours truly was upstairs deliberately watching TV in the apartment. I liked everyone in the group but my fundamentalist Christian upbringing made me uncomfortable around so much illegal vegetation. I wanted to have plausible deniability when the local residents called the cops. I didn’t want to break my mama’s heart with a drug arrest. Maybe I was a bit paranoid from the smoke wafting upward into the cold night air. Oh, and Tuna Boy was there pretending to get wasted with everyone else.

I wandered down to grab an Ale-8 just in time to overhear someone suggest a nighttime climb of Creature Feature. Without acknowledging the group I tried to slink back upstairs. While I was a sucker for such antics I most definitely had no desire to climb a route I had climbed a dozen times or more by headlamp in sub-freezing temperatures with a bunch of inebriated degenerates.

“Chaney! You’re our DD!” My shoulders slumped. I tried to beg off. I really didn’t want to babysit the bunch of them out in the woods in the dark. I said no and went back upstairs.

A few minutes later I heard a car horn honking. After a few minutes I looked down to see why no one downstairs was answering the horn. It was because the whole group was packed into Jim’s SUV—Jim himself in the passenger seat and honking—and they were laughing and beckoning me to come down and drive them over to Phantasia. Tuna Boy sat in the back pretending to have drunk too much beer.

The fundamentalist Christian in me was split. And doing mighty battle within my skull. On one hand I couldn’t enable the sinners, but on the other if I didn’t drive them to Phantasia and accept the mantle of babysitting them until all we returned safe likely someone would die and I would feel even more guilty than I already did.

I grabbed my harness but not my shoes and stormed downstairs. When I plopped reluctantly into the driver’s seat Jim was smiling like the Cheshire Cat. The poor Cheshire Cat…always getting compared to people doing stupid things!

The drive over was raucous. The SUV swayed with the physical antics of a bunch of high rock climbers giddy to be off on some novel adventure. I complained about the difficulty in keeping the car on the road, but no one listened. Jim cranked the music.

We went through Nada Tunnel and someone reached over my shoulder to honk the horn. I refrained from biting the hairy arm as it was pulled into the back again. We continued down, across the iron bridge, and up 77 toward Frenchburg. At the appropriate pulloff I eased the jam-packed SUV onto the narrow shoulder. The downhill side dropped off in a fifty foot bank. The opposite side of the road was equally steep and the short, severe trail that accessed Creature Feature was visible until I turned off the headlights.

“This isn’t the parking spot!” one of the hippies in the back cried. They all took up the protest, telling me I didn’t know where to park and that I needed to go farther up the road.

“Okay,” I said through gritted teeth and turned the key. I drove slowly up the road to the next pulloff, the one just past the approach for the routes Twinkie and Phantasia, and parked again. The hippie horde flooded out of the truck into the cold darkness on the side of the road. They began unloading the hatch and doling out backpacks to each other as I stood quietly beside the front of the truck. The shenanigans continued, and I tried to keep anyone from falling over the hill, but I was getting tired of the group telling me I had been stupid to park further down the hill.

Once everyone was shouldered into their packs the group moved en masse across the road to the vertical bank opposite.

“This isn’t the approach!” the original complaining hippie cried.

“No, it’s not! It’s back down there where I first parked you idiots!” I laughed.

They shrugged their collective shoulders and trudged down the road. I followed reluctantly but still hoping to prevent any of my otherwise friends from getting killed.

When I brought up the rear to the base of Creature Feature the group was whining and fussing because the route was pouring an icy waterfall onto the base and splattering everything within a twenty foot area. Neither climber nor belayer would be able to avoid the cold water and no one wanted to die of hypothermia. I was hopeful that sobriety was winning out until someone suggested they get on Creepshow instead. With thunderous agreement they moved slightly up the hill to the overhanging moderate sport route.

I could feel a heaviness in my gut. The start of Creepshow had a high first bolt and the fall from anywhere before the first clip would be injurious and disastrous. At that point I was sure I that I should have just lived with the guilt of letting someone die and NOT being party to the actual death. Tuna Boy was still crying drunkenness and therefore pushing all belay duties on me—now the official designated belayer—and the group was becoming anxious to get on the rock.

Keith volunteered to hang the rope and draws. Keith could hardly keep his head up and I was sure was going to fall down the hill as he tried to balance on the steep slope while stepping into his harness and putting on his shoes. I made sure his harness was buckled and I think I tied his knot for him just to be sure, but I stopped short of praying that he wouldn’t die because I knew God was looking down with extreme disgust on me for allowing these drunken shenanigans to continue and would not hear my prayers.

I decided maybe there was some deity that would look favorably on me—a lowly sinning rock climber—so I did end up casting some random blubbering prayers into the darkness to the effect that Keith would just get the first goddamn bolt clipped before he fell. He did. He clipped it and hung. He got the second bolt clipped and hung. Somewhere along the way he took a good whipper, but somehow he managed to eventually clip the anchors when I was fairly certain he couldn’t have zipped his fly after taking a piss in the state he was in.

Once he was on the ground and the rope was up everyone agreed they’d just TR the route. I breathed a sigh of relief and thanked whatever demi-god had kept my can out of the fires of hell by getting Keith to the chains.

When Tuna stepped up for a “burn” on the route I was pretty sure I would just drop him out of spite. I think he actually wanted to get in a pitch instead of just being along for the party atmosphere of the night. Still begging off of belay duties as being too drunk though.

One aspect of the night I have yet as failed to mention. Tuna Boy was supposed to be keeping an eye on a pretty young charge of his. If I remember correctly he was renting a space from her mom and he had agreed to make sure she got from their home in Campton to a date with her boyfriend and back home without getting raped or hypothermia. He’d left the girl a note at Natural Heights that when her boyfriend arrived there to drop her off to either wait there or come out to Phantasia to meet him so he could take her home. God, I hope he’s never procreated.

Anyway, just as the night was winding down at the base of Creepshow a car came up 77 and slowed beside Jim’s truck.

“What’re those fuckers doing?” someone cried. At the time break-ins had been a big problem in the Red and the whole group of messed up stoners was ready to go down and fight whoever was getting ready to break into the truck. The car had stopped. A door opened and then closed, and the car started to drive away.

Now, I knew the girl’s boyfriend. He was in high school at the time too. But high school or not, there’s no way I would have ever let my pretty young girlfriend out in the cold, dark night to hike into the woods and meet a gray-headed climbing bum and his baked friends. The girl’s boyfriend did just that.

Tuna called out to her to come on up and after a few minutes it was obvious that the girl and her girlfriend were not going to be able to make it up the slope in their drunken states. Yes. I found myself babysitting a group of drunk adult males and two underage drunk females. Fuck me. I should have stayed at Natural Heights and let God strike me dead.

It didn’t improve the situation that both girls were dressed in party shoes, jeans, and thin tank tops. Not a jacket between them. They were apparently numb to the cold.

The hippies immediately latched onto the girls. Lechery was redefined that night. I was trying to belay and run interference but the girls didn’t help. They flirted back, accepted someone’s down jacket, and then decided they had to pee. And instead of moving away out of sight they took advantage of the communal headlamps and more lecherous hilarity ensued.

Finally, when I was ready to tie a noose in the end of the climbing rope and take “the big swing” to escape my spiritual and social torment everyone began demanding we leave because it was goddamn fucking freezing.

There was one teeny, tiny little problem. We came to Phantasia in an overcrowded Chevy S-10 Blazer. There had to have been six of us to begin with before the girls showed up. The hippies crammed back into the truck and bade the girls climb in and sit on their laps. Thankfully one of them crawled on top of the packs in the hatch (minimizing the eventual charges to be filed)) but the other ended up having to lay across the laps of four dingy dirtbag climbers.

I commenced to praying to whatever dark demon god had gotten me into the mess to get me back to Natural Heights without getting pulled over. I was betrayed in that respect, but we’ll get to that.

At the bottom of 77 one of the girls announced she was going to puke. And she was true to her word, though I was able to stop dead in the middle of the road and let her out before she did. Cleared of all of those nasty poisons (so I believed) she got back in and we headed briskly on toward the top of Slade Hill and (I believed) the safety of Natural Heights.

Somewhere between Slade proper and the top of the hill on 15 the same girl had to pee. I was ready to let her pee on herself, but the whole group chided me into pulling over yet again and letting her out. The hippies were shining their headlamps out the window to help her see where to go.

Once the girlfriend was back in I hammered it trying to get to the store before anything else happened. Somewhere along the way a car came up behind me, and as we pulled into the parking lot in front of the store I notice it was a police car.

I heaved an interdimensional sigh. Fuck that dark imp who had heard my prayer. Fuck him, and fuck his demon cohorts, and fuck weed, and beer, and climbing ropes, and hippies.

“You been drinkin’?” the cop asked. The cold air in my face was refreshing. I ungritted my teeth and answered with as much respect in my tone as I have ever been able to muster.

“No, sir, I don’t drink.” The peanut gallery in the back seat was giggling furiously. I cast a scowl in their general direction to no effect.

“What’s wrong with them?” he asked, nodding toward the back of the vehicle.

“They’re just being stupid,” replied.

“You going anywhere else? You in for the night?” he asked.

“Yes sir, I’m heading straight to bed and I think these folks are spending the night.” Please don’t notice the minors! Please don’t notice the minors! Please don’t notice the minors!

“Alright, you all have a nice night and don’t be out on the roads.”

“Thank you, sir,” the entire truck chorused as he walked back to his cruiser.

That was my last babysitting gig ever.

Post script,

I still consider all of those people (save one) as friends and don't wish for anyone who was on that particular adventure to take offense to my tale.
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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Andrew » Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:09 pm

Ascentionist wrote:
businessprofessional wrote:I've heard the Dick Doctor story (top notch), but never the My Bro Just Sent Twinkie story. Any way an entertaining summary can be provided here?
Anybody know when this story happened? Just wondering cause I might know the guy and his boy. I had some local friends who used to knock around the gorge doing shit like that. They actually climbed stuff like Twinkie but it wasn't pretty. They're all too old and fat now and busted up from their tours of duty.
Probably 2008 to 2010. Let me see if I still have Brad's number and I will ask him, but only if you put the story in.
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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Andrew » Thu Feb 02, 2017 7:16 pm

Ascentionist wrote:So while we’re at it, I’ll tell my best Phantasia story.

I worked for Jim at Natural Heights. The ending of that story was ugly, and what I’m about to tell was the beginning of the end, but this was when Natural Heights was still somewhat viable as a business and we were all relatively happy providing outdoor recreation services to visitors to the Gorge.

A bunch of guys we all loved called “The Hippies” were hanging around the shop one chilly winter evening. Yours truly was upstairs deliberately watching TV in the apartment. I liked everyone in the group but my fundamentalist Christian upbringing made me uncomfortable around so much illegal vegetation. I wanted to have plausible deniability when the local residents called the cops. I didn’t want to break my mama’s heart with a drug arrest. Maybe I was a bit paranoid from the smoke wafting upward into the cold night air. Oh, and Tuna Boy was there pretending to get wasted with everyone else.

I wandered down to grab an Ale-8 just in time to overhear someone suggest a nighttime climb of Creature Feature. Without acknowledging the group I tried to slink back upstairs. While I was a sucker for such antics I most definitely had no desire to climb a route I had climbed a dozen times or more by headlamp in sub-freezing temperatures with a bunch of inebriated degenerates.

“Chaney! You’re our DD!” My shoulders slumped. I tried to beg off. I really didn’t want to babysit the bunch of them out in the woods in the dark. I said no and went back upstairs.

A few minutes later I heard a car horn honking. After a few minutes I looked down to see why no one downstairs was answering the horn. It was because the whole group was packed into Jim’s SUV—Jim himself in the passenger seat and honking—and they were laughing and beckoning me to come down and drive them over to Phantasia. Tuna Boy sat in the back pretending to have drunk too much beer.

The fundamentalist Christian in me was split. And doing mighty battle within my skull. On one hand I couldn’t enable the sinners, but on the other if I didn’t drive them to Phantasia and accept the mantle of babysitting them until all we returned safe likely someone would die and I would feel even more guilty than I already did.

I grabbed my harness but not my shoes and stormed downstairs. When I plopped reluctantly into the driver’s seat Jim was smiling like the Cheshire Cat. The poor Cheshire Cat…always getting compared to people doing stupid things!

The drive over was raucous. The SUV swayed with the physical antics of a bunch of high rock climbers giddy to be off on some novel adventure. I complained about the difficulty in keeping the car on the road, but no one listened. Jim cranked the music.

We went through Nada Tunnel and someone reached over my shoulder to honk the horn. I refrained from biting the hairy arm as it was pulled into the back again. We continued down, across the iron bridge, and up 77 toward Frenchburg. At the appropriate pulloff I eased the jam-packed SUV onto the narrow shoulder. The downhill side dropped off in a fifty foot bank. The opposite side of the road was equally steep and the short, severe trail that accessed Creature Feature was visible until I turned off the headlights.

“This isn’t the parking spot!” one of the hippies in the back cried. They all took up the protest, telling me I didn’t know where to park and that I needed to go farther up the road.

“Okay,” I said through gritted teeth and turned the key. I drove slowly up the road to the next pulloff, the one just past the approach for the routes Twinkie and Phantasia, and parked again. The hippie horde flooded out of the truck into the cold darkness on the side of the road. They began unloading the hatch and doling out backpacks to each other as I stood quietly beside the front of the truck. The shenanigans continued, and I tried to keep anyone from falling over the hill, but I was getting tired of the group telling me I had been stupid to park further down the hill.

Once everyone was shouldered into their packs the group moved en masse across the road to the vertical bank opposite.

“This isn’t the approach!” the original complaining hippie cried.

“No, it’s not! It’s back down there where I first parked you idiots!” I laughed.

They shrugged their collective shoulders and trudged down the road. I followed reluctantly but still hoping to prevent any of my otherwise friends from getting killed.

When I brought up the rear to the base of Creature Feature the group was whining and fussing because the route was pouring an icy waterfall onto the base and splattering everything within a twenty foot area. Neither climber nor belayer would be able to avoid the cold water and no one wanted to die of hypothermia. I was hopeful that sobriety was winning out until someone suggested they get on Creepshow instead. With thunderous agreement they moved slightly up the hill to the overhanging moderate sport route.

I could feel a heaviness in my gut. The start of Creepshow had a high first bolt and the fall from anywhere before the first clip would be injurious and disastrous. At that point I was sure I that I should have just lived with the guilt of letting someone die and NOT being party to the actual death. Tuna Boy was still crying drunkenness and therefore pushing all belay duties on me—now the official designated belayer—and the group was becoming anxious to get on the rock.

Keith volunteered to hang the rope and draws. Keith could hardly keep his head up and I was sure was going to fall down the hill as he tried to balance on the steep slope while stepping into his harness and putting on his shoes. I made sure his harness was buckled and I think I tied his knot for him just to be sure, but I stopped short of praying that he wouldn’t die because I knew God was looking down with extreme disgust on me for allowing these drunken shenanigans to continue and would not hear my prayers.

I decided maybe there was some deity that would look favorably on me—a lowly sinning rock climber—so I did end up casting some random blubbering prayers into the darkness to the effect that Keith would just get the first goddamn bolt clipped before he fell. He did. He clipped it and hung. He got the second bolt clipped and hung. Somewhere along the way he took a good whipper, but somehow he managed to eventually clip the anchors when I was fairly certain he couldn’t have zipped his fly after taking a piss in the state he was in.

Once he was on the ground and the rope was up everyone agreed they’d just TR the route. I breathed a sigh of relief and thanked whatever demi-god had kept my can out of the fires of hell by getting Keith to the chains.

When Tuna stepped up for a “burn” on the route I was pretty sure I would just drop him out of spite. I think he actually wanted to get in a pitch instead of just being along for the party atmosphere of the night. Still begging off of belay duties as being too drunk though.

One aspect of the night I have yet as failed to mention. Tuna Boy was supposed to be keeping an eye on a pretty young charge of his. If I remember correctly he was renting a space from her mom and he had agreed to make sure she got from their home in Campton to a date with her boyfriend and back home without getting raped or hypothermia. He’d left the girl a note at Natural Heights that when her boyfriend arrived there to drop her off to either wait there or come out to Phantasia to meet him so he could take her home. God, I hope he’s never procreated.

Anyway, just as the night was winding down at the base of Creepshow a car came up 77 and slowed beside Jim’s truck.

“What’re those fuckers doing?” someone cried. At the time break-ins had been a big problem in the Red and the whole group of messed up stoners was ready to go down and fight whoever was getting ready to break into the truck. The car had stopped. A door opened and then closed, and the car started to drive away.

Now, I knew the girl’s boyfriend. He was in high school at the time too. But high school or not, there’s no way I would have ever let my pretty young girlfriend out in the cold, dark night to hike into the woods and meet a gray-headed climbing bum and his baked friends. The girl’s boyfriend did just that.

Tuna called out to her to come on up and after a few minutes it was obvious that the girl and her girlfriend were not going to be able to make it up the slope in their drunken states. Yes. I found myself babysitting a group of drunk adult males and two underage drunk females. Fuck me. I should have stayed at Natural Heights and let God strike me dead.

It didn’t improve the situation that both girls were dressed in party shoes, jeans, and thin tank tops. Not a jacket between them. They were apparently numb to the cold.

The hippies immediately latched onto the girls. Lechery was redefined that night. I was trying to belay and run interference but the girls didn’t help. They flirted back, accepted someone’s down jacket, and then decided they had to pee. And instead of moving away out of sight they took advantage of the communal headlamps and more lecherous hilarity ensued.

Finally, when I was ready to tie a noose in the end of the climbing rope and take “the big swing” to escape my spiritual and social torment everyone began demanding we leave because it was goddamn fucking freezing.

There was one teeny, tiny little problem. We came to Phantasia in an overcrowded Chevy S-10 Blazer. There had to have been six of us to begin with before the girls showed up. The hippies crammed back into the truck and bade the girls climb in and sit on their laps. Thankfully one of them crawled on top of the packs in the hatch (minimizing the eventual charges to be filed)) but the other ended up having to lay across the laps of four dingy dirtbag climbers.

I commenced to praying to whatever dark demon god had gotten me into the mess to get me back to Natural Heights without getting pulled over. I was betrayed in that respect, but we’ll get to that.

At the bottom of 77 one of the girls announced she was going to puke. And she was true to her word, though I was able to stop dead in the middle of the road and let her out before she did. Cleared of all of those nasty poisons (so I believed) she got back in and we headed briskly on toward the top of Slade Hill and (I believed) the safety of Natural Heights.

Somewhere between Slade proper and the top of the hill on 15 the same girl had to pee. I was ready to let her pee on herself, but the whole group chided me into pulling over yet again and letting her out. The hippies were shining their headlamps out the window to help her see where to go.

Once the girlfriend was back in I hammered it trying to get to the store before anything else happened. Somewhere along the way a car came up behind me, and as we pulled into the parking lot in front of the store I notice it was a police car.

I heaved an interdimensional sigh. Fuck that dark imp who had heard my prayer. Fuck him, and fuck his demon cohorts, and fuck weed, and beer, and climbing ropes, and hippies.

“You been drinkin’?” the cop asked. The cold air in my face was refreshing. I ungritted my teeth and answered with as much respect in my tone as I have ever been able to muster.

“No, sir, I don’t drink.” The peanut gallery in the back seat was giggling furiously. I cast a scowl in their general direction to no effect.

“What’s wrong with them?” he asked, nodding toward the back of the vehicle.

“They’re just being stupid,” replied.

“You going anywhere else? You in for the night?” he asked.

“Yes sir, I’m heading straight to bed and I think these folks are spending the night.” Please don’t notice the minors! Please don’t notice the minors! Please don’t notice the minors!

“Alright, you all have a nice night and don’t be out on the roads.”

“Thank you, sir,” the entire truck chorused as he walked back to his cruiser.

That was my last babysitting gig ever.

Post script,

I still consider all of those people (save one) as friends and don't wish for anyone who was on that particular adventure to take offense to my tale.
That was awesome, thanks for sharing.
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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by bcombs » Fri Feb 03, 2017 10:47 am

pumpout2004 wrote:Or the "my boy just sent Twinkie" story? One of the most epic examples of gratuitous spray. Not sure that is what Chris is looking for, but it is one of my favorites.
Good times! It was in the fall of 2007. I never did send Twinkie though. :cry:

Come to think if it, I don't think I sent Creep Show that day either.

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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by milspecmark » Fri Feb 03, 2017 12:42 pm

These are great stories. Please keep em coming

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Re: Call for Submissions: In the RED

Post by Ascentionist » Mon Feb 06, 2017 12:29 pm

Andrew wrote:
Ascentionist wrote:
businessprofessional wrote:I've heard the Dick Doctor story (top notch), but never the My Bro Just Sent Twinkie story. Any way an entertaining summary can be provided here?
Anybody know when this story happened? Just wondering cause I might know the guy and his boy. I had some local friends who used to knock around the gorge doing shit like that. They actually climbed stuff like Twinkie but it wasn't pretty. They're all too old and fat now and busted up from their tours of duty.
Probably 2008 to 2010. Let me see if I still have Brad's number and I will ask him, but only if you put the story in.
I think I'll have to do that. Can I edit/embellish? Or would someone like to do that? I want this to be consumable for the masses so I need to translate some climber-speak at times. I don't know though, so far its been pretty heavy with climbing stories...maybe it'll just end up being a climbers' book.
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