The other day while having coffee at Vics, the neighborhood café, a few people came up to me and said they liked the cover shot of Outside Magazine this month. This month’s gate-cover photo shows Lance Armstrong, Ben Harper, Amanda Beard, and Kelly Slater on the front page, and on the foldout page you see Ed Viesturs, Laird Hamilton, Jake Burton, Scott Lindgren, and myself.
It was certainly an interesting experience to meet this cast of characters. I was curious to read what was written about each of us. The article starts out with Lance of course and the title is: “Heavyweights: Nine all-stars tell it like it is.” As it turned out, the journalists captured whatever we felt like talking about in our brief telephone conversation.
Overall I liked what Grayson Schaffer wrote – except the last few words of one line: “And I still think that climbing attracts people who question authority and question logic.” I like the first part but I really don’t remember saying anything about “questioning logic.” Given a chance to explain further, I would say, “question tradition” as a means of evolving and improving – not just as it relates to climbing, but in all aspects of life.
I think the last part of this blurb captures what I meant when talking about my first free ascent of the Nose route: “Even if it’s not rational, if you believe in yourself enough, that desire can make you rise to the level of whatever you’ve imagined. Being small, being a woman, being tall – it doesn’t matter. It’s about adapting to the rock in the best way possible with what we’ve been given.”
Simply put, I believe that passion creates possibility. When the attainment of a goal has a positive effect on others, it’s possible to access a kind of magical power that’s much bigger than myself.