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My grandfather the president

Compiled by Allen R. Smith

At our resort, children are not allowed to ride the chairlift by themselves. As a result, ski instructors are routinely asked to accompany small children to the top.One morning, I was asked to ride to the top with a 6-year-old child. Naturally, I said that I would and introduced myself to “Christian.” To make conversation, I leaned over to the young boy and asked him, “Christian, where do you live?” He thought for a moment then said, “I live in California. Rancho Mirage.””I think I know where that is. My grandfather used to live very close to there. He lived in Palm Springs.” Christian said, “My grandfather lives in California, too.””Really? Who’s your grandfather?””Well, he used to be the president!” Caught off guard, I looked down at the name tag on Christian’s skis. It read, “Christian Ford.”I positioned my name tag in easy view for the boy and said, “Well, you tell your grandfather that he’s a very nice man and he was a great president. You tell him that I told you to say that.”- Rick Engel, Beaver CreekCurse of the slopesWhile taking a group of young snowboarders through a carving session, we practiced making controlled, even turns down the hill. I sent the most advanced student ahead to make wide, even turns and had the rest of the group follow the line. We occupied a reasonable swath of a very wide trail. A man decked out in a loud, one-piece racing suit came barreling into our group, wiping out one of my students from behind. Once we determined that no one was hurt, I could hear the man’s wife ranting, “What’s wrong with you snowboarders? Why do you always make such wide turns?”I calmly explained that the downhill rider has the right of way, and I was sorry to say, but that her husband was in the wrong. She fumed, “All of you @#$%^ snowboarders are dangerous!”One of my 8-year-old students shouted to her, “Hey! Watch your language, lady! There are @#$%^ children here!”- Russell LiBrizzi, Okemo, Vt.Vail, Colorado


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