etc. etc. etc.

14 10 2008

i was going to take a look at the production of climbing discourse by sorting through the use of particular modifiers to describe routes/problems on  for instance, when was the phrase “full value” first used to describe a route/problem, in what context, and by whom?  how has this phrase proliferated (both in quantity and in/over space)?  my concern isn’t with what “full value” means (though it does strike me that nobody calls anything half-value or quarter value), but rather how our discursive connection to the rock changes over time.  this doesn’t change the experience of actual climbing (in the moment), but it certainly has an effect on our memory of climbs and probably plays a part in defining quality in climbing.  it might also be useful to flip through old guidebooks and older issues of climbing to do similar work.

but i’m not actually gonna write a foucauldian research post.  instead:

etc. etc. etc.:

– i am currently on a no-booze binge.  i like to enter into these anti-faustian bargains every now and again to balance out all the benders i’ve gone on and to (re)convince myself that ‘a social life’ really does hinge on the presence of alcohol.  of course, i’m also down with the health end of a no-beer life.  but when i went searching for a congratulatory list of ‘way to go dude!’ sobriety benefits, all i got was this article.

– i recently found out the best way to accurately grade an area is to do all the problems in 1 go in 1 day.  you’re welcome.

– elite local downgrading of old problems should be banned.  let me explain.  if problem X was a v5 when you were projecting it, it probably has not gotten objectively easier now that you project v9 and run laps on it.  now i don’t know about you, but i can only ‘see’ about three shades of difficulty relative to my limit: the limit, a bit easier, and substantially easier.  my sense of difficulty at my limit, however, has a much broader spectrum (say 10 shades).  that said, it seems like the most capable person to grade problem X as a v5 is the person who finds it at the edge of possibility, not the jaded person who does it in tennies.  this point actually highlights the only reason i find useful (other than hilariousness and potential research fodder).  it actually allows for a democratic consensus (via the open entry of grades) rather than a top-down imposition of grades (which happens in the south every year during the triple crown) from locals who have the whole joint on lockdown.

that’s it.

63 degrees and sunny in the red this weekend.  booyah.





5 responses

14 10 2008
peter b

Full value might be originally a product of British climbing vernacular but interestingly enough came to prominence in our own country in our Second, now deceased, Gilded Age. Thus metaphors of value and the market naturally would find a home in climbing I suppose. Whether or not the specter of post-structuralist textual analysis ought to be visited upon climbing discourse is a debate for another time. Given the effect it has had upon enthusiasm for the humanities in general, I’d advise against it. On the other hand there might be less crowding at the crags and boulders.

14 10 2008

…or more people reading books between burns.

huh. i wonder if we traced ‘full value’ if we would see it slip from market metaphor to a more mystical experiential qualifier back to a market metaphor (in the 8a age)? it might even be the case that what we have now is a hybrid of the two in which quality of experience and market value (i.e. grades) have become indistinguishable.

14 10 2008
Climbing Narc

That’s easy, Sharma uttered the words “Full Value” in Dosage 3.

14 10 2008

even though adam henry can do the millipede in the middle of the summer in tennis shoes doesn’t make it any less of a V7 for me. in fact, in light of my small stature, and the amount of effort and raw power on my part to do the problem, i’m upgrading it to V9. because really, i don’t see any difference between this and some giant rating bum boy V2.
you’re all lame and i will crush your heads with my biceps.

15 10 2008

argh. that sharma and his….um…. words. truth be told, we could probably link gobs of climbing speak back to ole chris.

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