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Off Key


Skiing may once have been a virile sport, engaged in by virile people. Virile people may still indulge in skiing, for all one knows; Down but the number of other And Out trades that have horned in for their share of the profits, the number of remarkable people that engage in it, and the number of north country inhabitants that have cut the wood off their slopes--except the stumps--and who pray for snow with which ton lure the city slickers makes it doubtful. In its position in the national economy skiing may well be held a phenomenon comparable to mah jong, mumbledy-peg, or peewee golf.

Now that the exercise has been removed from the game of the Viking, what remains is little more exciting than a trip on the roller coaster at Revere--the speed, twists, and turns are even less threatening. The only distinguishing feature is the pleasure, If such it be, of exposing all the most valued parts of the anatomy to fracture and contusion, subject to the whim, not of some human opponent, as in the great game of football, but of Newton's three laws. There is a savage pleasure in kicking the opposing tackle in the face, but one can only metaphorically spit in the eye of the law of gravity.

And certainly the arrival of a room mate with three or more pairs of skis on a Sunday evening does not tend to improve either one's own or the biddle's good humor. Commercialism always wins out in this country of ours. And the fashion trades and the sporting goods stored being so firmly intrenched in the coils of the new slippery sport, we may never see the end of it. One can at least be grateful that most skiers retire themselves at the age of 70. Official action is not necessary to speed up the descent. THERSITES.

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