Avalanche Control

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Parallels of an emotional slide
lessons
They call it avalanche “control,” but it’s more like mitigation. Ski patrollers use explosives to start avalanches because it’s safer to release pent-up energy with intention: to initiate moderate releases rather than letting skiers get caught off guard by catastrophic ones.

Imagine how, if no one attempted to control the slope, a skier would drop in, tantalized by cold face shots and an exhilarating run. Her heart would knock against her eardrums as she completed her first turn—and it would gain pace as slope beneath her unfolded, the stiff slab breaking apart. The slide would overwhelm her, much like a flood of emotion. If she had overestimated the strength of the snow’s façade, she would be helpless.

Avalanche potential hides beneath dusted layers of snow, like the layers we develop to hide our own weaknesses. Sometimes it takes the action of a patroller—a friend, a sibling, a lover— to expose our faults and protect us from the strong façade we build upon our own angled faces. Sometimes the bomb they life more prepared, lay down perfect turns, and let cold powder spray your face in a place that’s safer than where you started.

—Kim Kircher

Last modified: November 14, 2010

2 Responses to :
Avalanche Control

  1. Amy Claussen says:

    Nicely said Kim.

  2. Kim Kircher says:

    Thanks Amy. Glad you liked it.

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