Doping 101: Teachable Moments in Lance Armstrong’s Biggest Crash

It was a typical evening scene in our house. My husband and I were chatting about current events lite—weather, gas prices, potential carpet colors—while my youngest son was ensconced in a project at the kitchen table, paying us little to no attention. That is, until the conversation turned to Tyler Hamilton’s newly released book, The Secret Race, and Lance Armstrong’s demise. From his seat at the table my son suddenly engaged into our discussion. “You … » read more

It’s a long road for a box of chocolates.

Note: I first wrote this on March 1, 2012. Since then I’ve reposted it every year in early March. Deep breaths and smiles everyone. It’s quite possibly a long, rollercoaster month ahead! It’s that time of year. March Madness. And of course I’m talking about skiing not basketball. This is when it all happens—regional champs, state champs, Junior Olympics, etc. Lofty goals and supercharged energy converge as the biggest events in a young ski racer’s … » read more

The Winter of Our Discontent

Early January, 2012 I went upstairs to wake the kids a few days ago and the first thing my younger son uttered was, “Is it raining?” “No,” I answered, a triumphant hint of optimism in my voice. “It’s cold and gray.” Something on the other side of the room made a quilt-muffled snurfling sound, and Thing 1 piped up again, cheerlessly, “This is like the worst winter ever!” He’s not far off, though old timers, … » read more

“Clearing” up the issue: an anti-cross blocking manifesto.

“When can I cross block?” Once the slalom gates are set in the snow that is the most common and the most cringe-worthy question a ski coach for junior racers gets asked. The answer? “How about never?” First off, the term cross-blocking is misleading. It is often referenced as a good thing, a sign of advancement, while in reality it is quite the opposite. “Blocking” is simply clearing a gate out of your path. “Cross,” … » read more

The coolest family vacation

An abridged version of this ran in SKI this fall, but the part about the guy I almost killed got cut. So here’s to you…well, you know who you are. “Can I ski this?” The question, asked with a smile that belied terror, came moments too late. A friend and I, on our first multi- family ski vacation together, had just crossed a knife-edged ridgeline traverse, and dropped into an unexpectedly steep chute. Above us, … » read more

Foul Weather Friends

An oldie but goodie for this time of year…as seen in SKI mag 1999 Late every October, Granite Chief, a ski shop back home in Squaw Valley, Calif., stages something called Junior Race Night. For one spectacular evening, all the junior gear is discounted. Company reps show up to talk to kids about equipment, parents talk shop about tuning, everyone gorges on Halloween candy and, at the end of the night, the place looks as … » read more

Peaking too soon

Peaking too soon Our team just got back from a big weekend at the races, where we experienced a rollercoaster of high expectations and low moments. At the end of the weekend events conspired to create some truly valuable perspective, both on the weekend and on the general purpose of our relationship with this sport. Bear in mind, this scenario could have played out after any junior sporting event: After the awards ceremony and an … » read more

The Greatest Gift

This appeared in the December 2010 issue of SKI mag. It’s a decent perspective giver if you’re feeling the stress of the buying season. The Greatest Gift By Edie Thys Morgan We have developed a tradition in our house at Christmas. Every year the kids ask for a Wii, and every year they don’t get one. This is not because we are the meanest parents in the world (though on some days we’d easily get … » read more