As the first snow begins to fall in the Alps and in North America, those who are new to the slopes or even embarking on their 10th season would do well to prepare for the types of people they are likely to run into, (or not), throughout the course of the winter. Not only do Sport Pursuit provide you with the best equipment money can buy, but also with free, sterling information on the unruly characters lurking in a ski resort.
The Park Rat – Often French kids with some time off school, or possibly English kids who incidentally are also talking a language you don’t understand, a park rat is a staple in any resort jungle. True to their name, they will be loitering around the snow park pulling off airs and grinds, but they are also easy to spot due to their tiny skis and poles, and t-shirts past their knees (not a joke).
The British Seasonnaire – Very likely to still be intoxicated, at any given time in the day. Many seasonnaires give up on the actual skiing by February (can you blame them with the Alps’ snow record last winter) and are more likely to ski purely to reach one of the mountain’s piste-side bars such as the Krazy Kangaroo in St. Anton or Val d’Isere’s Folie Douce. Credit where credit’s due however, these uniform clad gap-year kids will be the reason you have a good holiday – they can bake a nice Victoria Sponge.
The Older Seasonnaire – Currently on a sabbatical, gap year, mid-life crisis etc. this seasonnaire falls into two sub-categories. The first is that of a successful businessman who isn’t going back to England for the foreseeable future, often renting out a room in the hotel where he slowly but surely becomes a ‘legend’ for buying shots ‘til the early hours for the staff that work there. The second case is that of the genuine sabbatical, somehow above the law of the management purely based on age. Prone to taking changing beds slightly too seriously.
The Ski Instructor – Particularly relevant at this time of year as Movember continues all winter long with these guys, although it is not just the incredible facial hair and technical skiing ability that sets them apart. I’m not aware of any other profession that is capable of simultaneously impressing the father, charming the mother and reducing their child to tears. Answers on a postcard please!
All The Gear, No Idea!!! – Whilst the name no doubt speaks for itself, it is important to stereotype further purely so you don’t inadvertently accuse a genuine pro, or reversely feed an ATGNI’s ego. Will often be heard telling his inferiors about his recent off-piste conquest, which nobody saw, or explaining why he needs the benefits of merino wool and the rest of the chalet don’t.
The non-skier – The only excuse for not skiing in a ski resort is an injury in my opinion. Often seen wearing fur coats and Ugg boots, (I’m talking predominantly about the men) whilst perusing Prada for fur coats and Ugg boots, these folk enjoy scowling, shopping and swimming in the heated outdoor pools.