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How to Humiliate Yourself in Colorado

Colorado Student Work
by Brian Lewis Aug 23, 2015

Stop the lift.

Novice skiers know the most stressful part of your day on the mountain is getting on and off the lift without impaling yourself on your ski pole. You really don’t want to be responsible for dozens of people suspended motionless in the frozen air wondering if they’ll ever be able to feel their toes again. So keep your tips up, watch for the “prepare to unload” signs and think again before you triple-dog-dare your friend to stick his tongue to the metal frame.

Wander around Target looking for the weed aisle.

Just because it’s legal doesn’t mean there are no rules attached. Educate yourself before you show up at a medicinal dispensary without a red card, spark up in the public park or try to check a suitcase of edibles at the airport on your way home.

Go to a brewery say “I usually drink Michelob Ultra. Do you have something like that?”

No, they don’t. Maybe there’s a Buffalo Wild Wings nearby?

Burn your brakes out on the pass.

Mountain driving sometimes requires you to shift — even if your car is automatic and you don’t really know what that means. If you’re lurching down Monarch with the brake pedal to the floor, things are about to smell like a tire in a pizza oven. Let’s hope there’s a runaway truck ramp coming up on the right.

Get lost on the Front Range.

Pull your car over, take a breath and look out the window. Do you see any mountains? That’s west. Drive towards them…even if your intended destination was east, heading west will likely be much prettier and will result in a whole lot more fun.

Bring 3.2 beer to the party.

There’s nothing more confusing than differing state liquor laws and there’s nothing more embarrassing than showing up to a Broncos game-day party with a 12-pack of beer-water you picked up at King Soopers. All you need to know is stay out of the grocery store if you’re looking for “real” beer.

Require a rescue.

Some of our hiking trails are pretty strenuous — combine that with unpredictable weather and you get busy search and rescue squads.

Oh, a marmot stole your sandwich? You’re feeling tired and don’t feel like hiking down Longs? Maybe it’s not quite time to call 911 or break out your Bear Grylls-brand signal mirror — let’s try to remember that there may be actual emergencies that these badass volunteer crews need to respond to.

Expect mountains everywhere.

What? You thought the Rocky Mountains would be a little rockier than this? Before you pull a Lloyd Christmas and say “that John Denver’s full of shit,” you might want to look at a map. The Western Slope is a glorious desert wonderland and the eastern third of the state is basically an extension of Kansas.

Forget your sunscreen.

You decided to pop the shirt off while hiking Pikes Peak yesterday? I couldn’t tell. Try not to pick at those blisters.

Try to match your sea level alcohol consumption.

Better cancel all plans for tomorrow and get the Advil out now. If shots are involved, you may as well unroll a Therm-a-rest next to the toilet.

Ignore the wildlife warnings.

Someone put that “Camping in Bear Country” sign up for a reason. Don’t want any unexpected visitors in the night? Maybe using a bag of marshmallows as a pillow or using bacon grease as an anti-aging night cream isn’t such a good idea after all.

Ask for a Georgia Peach.

I’m pretty sure every time you throw a non-Palisade peach in your cart, the terrorists win. You don’t want that on your conscience, do you?

Join a Segway Tour

Please stop this madness and just go for a hike.

Two words: clothing optional.

Muscles a little sore after a day on the trail? Hot springs sound great, but you might want to do a little research before heading out for a nighttime soak at Strawberry Park.

Get into a Native vs. Transplant debate

This ridiculous debate over who really belongs in Colorado is more futile than pushing a boulder while skinning up a slope of ballbearings. Do yourself a favor and join my side. Unfortunately, I haven’t figured out a way to fit “who gives a shit because I like it here and the only real natives are the Utes” on a bumper sticker.

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