Chances are if you weren’t shredding in the 90’s or as some have called it “The Golden Age” of snowboarding you probably have never bore witness to The Old Guard. That closed minded group that was still making sure to hold on to the feud between skiers and snowboarders. They were the ones that still felt the urge to let it be known we had no place on the mountain.
There’s two things that are guaranteed in this world death and taxes. With time being one of those things that any cultural revolution has on its side we slid forward with progressing not only our sport but the fashion, art, and everything associated with it. Times changed as did mindsets and generally most people decided to let the supposed flash in a pan fad that we were into their on hill games.
Its always interesting to read on a forum or blog when someone has an encounter with the old guard. Especially if the person hasn’t been riding for that long, they can’t believe people like that exist. Being that I grew up in the great Western New York time warp where everything is always about 5 years behind the times these occurrences were very common place. Getting in a fight in the park happened so often you could set your watch to it. Being spit on or pelted with beer bottles from the chairlift were far from rarities.
So here we are in a new decade going into what will put snowboarding roughly into its forties we can say most of that is behind us. Why is that? The plain truth is most of these people are dead, retired, or so old and decrepit they aren’t on the slopes. Sure small minded individuals lurk on the edge of lift lines everywhere and there’s still some that are in positions of authority, but they are few and far between.
One thing we all owe a huge gratitude of thanks to is the oldschool fuck you attitude. This attitude was what gave the persistence to keep coming back for more when people kept putting us down. So next time you think you have it rough in this day and age think about those of us that rode before you that dealt with the old guard.