Diary of a World Cup snowboarder

By ANTON POGUE

Special to the News Greetings from Whistler. I recently had to qualify for our first World Cup event in Chile. I performed great and was on my way. We went early and got insane surf at Pinchy Lono. It was huge! The racing started with a Boarder Cross on an active volcano. I made the finals and was pushing for a win, when the hugest French dude ever cut me off! I tried to run him over, but this move rendered me unconscious. I ended up finishing fourth and because of the grogginess from my fall, I didn’t answer some questions right so I was denied training for five days. I was going to fight the doc, but my shoulder was so hammered I thought I needed surgery. Huge setback. The World Cup Giant Slalom came and went, and I did terribly. I like to blame it on the shoulder injury. Then the slalom — my specialty — came around. Slalom day was my day, although I almost missed my start. There were no trees to hide behind so it was a huge crow-pleaser. I normally wear bib #2 because I usually win with it. I had a good start, but I squandered my lead and fell at the second gate. The rest of the day went well, and it must have been 80 degrees. I rode in shorts, then headed to the outdoor pool to hang with other competitors. Later, it was on to a dance. My next World Cup was in Isgle, Austria. Slalom only, as I didn’t qualify for Giant Slalom. I placed 16th in Slalom, and again, a Frenchman spoiled my day by knocking me out in the first round of the finals. Now I’m in Whistler, Canada, where we have been plagued by snowstorms and soft snow (not good for boarding). My friend has a “Powder Sucks” T-shirt, which is kind of funny if you’re a racer. I am praying for hard snow soon so I can pursue my Giant Slalom revival. I’m actually going to have a Boarder Cross retirement party, due to my injured shoulder. Not to sound like a bad wheel, but having this party will also be a Giant Slalom rebirth. I can only pray it is not too late. I almost forgot: two of my best custom Giant Slalom boards got the edges smashed in on the flight to Europe. They aren’t as fast now, which is yet another setback. I’m in the process of getting them replaced, but it takes about three weeks. I’ve had some sad moments so far, but don’t worry. I still have an Olympic dream to pursue. I’m actually starting to get more excited about my riding. Today I beat the Swede that took second place in the previous Giant Slalom World Cup. Although I am having a great time, I look forward to getting back to my new Chevy Silverado. I have not broken it in on a Baja surf trip yet, but took quite a few trips to the Oregon coast. The 4-wheel-drive got me over the sand dunes to a great spot that I could not access before. See you next month!

Hood River resident Anton Pogue is a U.S. Olympic snowboarding hopeful and is one of 40 athletes from across the country who received a vehicle as part of Chevrolet’s Team Behind the Team program. Team Behind the Team is designed to help relieve some of the financial burdens Olympic training can place on an athlete and his or her family. Pogue will be submitting a monthly diary to the Hood River News to chronicle his training for the 2002 Olympics.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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