Archive for the ‘flo’ Category


The final run

March 3, 2007

With Dave and Aggles re-boarded, the four of us jumped onto the bus down the valley back to Bad Hofgastein. A quick trip up the Schloßalmbahn and the necessary cable-car saw us quite adequately to the top of Schloßalm. One long run—the same as Dec and I descended the previous day—and our holiday would be done.

The summit was quite different to the glorious weather of the previous day. It was snowing heavily, and the light was very flat. We quickly got down to our first regrouping point—the first restaurant. Dave took back to the board like a duck to water, and Flo like a duck to an oil slick. At the restaurant, we had a quick drink, where Dec realised that he had spent the whole week doing his boots up wrongly.

A long, trouble-free toe-side traverse followed, at which point we stopped for a bit of filming. After a few days of flawless sliding-backward-down-an-Alp-while-singing-Danny-Boy-and-saluting, Dec did of course cock up the take completely. A steep but mostly unchallenging hundred metres or so gave us the ability to get a bit of speed up for a long flat section over a bridge, after which a few km of tree-lined avenues would give us the chance to sod around a bit. A thoroughly enjoyable rest break featuring a half-arsed snowball fight encompassed the incompetent-yet-contented theme which had been running so happily through the week.

The last few km saw a bunch of slow turns, the kind of which I’d been enjoying all week. We stopped toward the bottom for lunch, and another snowball fight, followed by the last few hundred metres of boarding, and then—at the top of the Schloßalmbahn—I unbound for the final time the board which had been the catalyst of my experiences for the previous week. Part of me was sad to see it go, and other parts—my calves—were overjoyed to see the back of the bastard.

After a taxi ride back to Bad Gastein, checking the boards and boots back in, the boarding part of the trip was done. A night of hideous entertainment was all that now stood between us and the bus back to Salzburg.  More on Power Unit tomorrow.


The Pointlessness of Fondue

March 1, 2007

At the end of day two, we were invited by our rep (Scottish and as competent as their rugby team) for a spot of ‘traditional Austrian food’, schnapps and tobogganing. After a half-hour scaling of half the mountain we arrived at a dubiously rickety one man chair lift to hoick us up to our restaurant du jour. At this point it was snowing rather heavily – good news for the next day’s activities but less so for the idea of hurtling down on a kid’s toy.

Upon arrival at the top we had a nice warm Austrian Chalet awaiting us, with cold beer and that most preposterous of meals – the cheese fondue. Along with the joy of dipping stale bread in tepid cheese, one gets to eat meat dipped, out of sight, for an indeterminate amount of time. This is not the set-up for michelin-starred goodness. This is the set-up for crap meat cooked craply and dipped in crap cheese.


Quotes of the week

March 1, 2007

You’re a horrible boyfriend.
Dec lays it out to Bingo.

What I need is a montage.
Dec couldn’t be arsed actually learning to board.

I’m terribly sorry, I’m a gentleman.
Ant, sliding slowly downhill, apologises after grabbing two handfuls of Austrian instructor funbag.

The next time I see a 5-year old I’m going to glass the fucker.
The talented wee bairns on the slopes upset an inept Dec.

I smell like a donkey sanctuary.
Après-ski, Ant gets a whiff of his socks.

A – I’m going to be the big spoon.
D – Then I’m going to be the teaspoon.
A – Cool. Fine by me.
D – Can Teddy be the egg spoon?

Ant and Dec discussing the night’s sleeping arrangements.

I don’t care who you’re talking to – hang up. It’s bang-bang time.
Ant emerges from the shower clad only in a towel and insists that Dec curtail his conversation with The Girlfriend.

I’m so glad SHOUTY’s not here.
Declan sees the bright side in the midst of a long-winded conversation about semantics.

Dec: There hasn’t been enough homosexuality on this trip.
A: Suck this and say that again.

Ant brings Dec up on a point of order.

I’m still obsessed with Ant’s wanking spanner.
A qoute by Bingo. Genuinely, I have no idea of any context in which this is acceptable.

L – Who sings this song?
A – Aaron Neville.
Dave – Gary Neville?

Dave refuses to hide his knowledge of soul music under the bushel of silence.

So is she all about the Lego and the bacon, then?
Dec questions a complete stranger about his Danish wife.

I’m having a problem with the snow.
Dave puts his finger on the problem with snowboarding.

L – Oh Christ, we’re bad. What’s snowboard speak for “Less than rad”?
A – DEG?

Ant earns mad respect from his boarding homies by breaking out jokes about scientific calculators.

I think I’m ready to go now.
Dec’s “Captain Oates moment” before sliding backward down an Alp.

But then I forgot I had a maglev installed in my arse.
Lawrence tries to explain away another of his sliding-down-the-hill-leaving-an-arsefurrow moments.

Dec – I was contemplating a serious blog post about family, friends, and syphilis.
A – I’ve got all three of those.
L – Piss off – you’ve got no mates.
Dec – And your family did all die of syphilis.

Stark reality is gently unveiled to Mushy in the kind, caring way that his colleagues know best.

Dec – Sprechen Sie Deutsch? Parlez vous Fraincais? Do you speak English?
Girl – Nederlands.

Dec tries to engage the 6 year old girl with whom he’s sharing a chair lift in conversation. Dec failed.

He’s young, dumb and full of cum.
Ant appraises the new boarding instructor.

I’ll pop a lid in your ass.
Dec gets street on the slopes.

I think it’s because you’re old and you suck.
A precocious 16 year old Dutch girl appraises Ant’s snowboarding malaises.

Ist Kapitalismus nicht wunderbar?
(Is capitalism not wonderful?)

Dec, while walking through a crowded outdoor bar brandishing an empty bottle of Champagne.

You never vote for us in Eurovision.
Enraged, a visibly shaking Dave pulls out the campest insult of the holiday, directed toward a random Maltese bloke.

Perl strikes me as a particularly effete language.
Ant plumbs the depths of his boundless knowledge of IT, to serve up some more wisdom to the admiring masses.

I know that one of them is clubs, and the other spades.
Amarillo Dec shows his poker face during a game of Cards.

And was the holy lamb of [thud]
Ant sings hymns down the side of an Alp while faceplanting the holy living shit out of himself.

A – You’re the most middle-class looking person I’ve ever seen.
Dec – If I were any more middle class, I’d be outside gunning down migrants.

Dec puts forward his candidacy for UKIP.


A game of two halves

February 28, 2007

Our usual instructor today got called off onto skiing duties, so the four of us had to be assimilated into other groups. Dave and I went up one group, and Bingo and Osty stayed with a similarly skilled group. The new group was mostly made up of kids; even the instructor was only 18. The first thing we did was jump into a gondola and head to the top of the mountain. No main problem, but the gondola rises about 1 km in altitude. I was now somewhat scared.

When we got to the top, the difference between our heavily-bashed icy nursery slope and the powdery wonder created by 2 solid days of snow became suddenly apparent. All of a sudden, I could turn in both directions, and board really well on both edges. It was going to be A Good Day.

The morning session was pretty much how I expected snowboarding to be – really deep powder, long luxuriant turns, and soft landings. On one occasion, while heading in the direction the board points, the nose got stuck in a drift, thus catapulting me over the top of it. If I had attempted my particular choice of landing – a graceless shoulder-plant on the nursery slope, I would probably stabbed myself in the ear with my collarbone. Instead, I just dug into the powder a bit, got up, dusted myself down, and carried on. Life was good. I also wiped out a 6 year old boy in our group, but that’s not important.

After a lunch trading insults with a 16 year old Dutch girl, we were off for the afternoon. Brimming with confidence from the best morning of the trip, I promptly got my arse handed to me by a T-bar lift. It’s less effort to walk up the sodding hill. The afternoon was more tailored to the advanced boarders, with a lot of steep, narrow red runs. I just went down most of them on my heel edge, as any mised turn would result in the mother of all faceplants at the bottom of a cliff. It was a bit much for a few other group members – I discovered that 14 year-old Dutch girls can still grumble while slipping backward down a mountain at 20 mph – my first ever Doppler moan. Another moment of stark realisation on a T-bar, and we were ready for the final descent of the day. As I was doing up my bindings, the instructor and group all pissed off, leaving me alone at the top of the mountain. A bad tempered-descent followed. When I finally found the group again, the instructor suggested we try something new. My shouted interjection was along the lines of “How about trying not fucking off and leaving me at the top of a mountain, you twat?” By this time, I was pretty shagged, so just edged my way down the rest of the hill, and that was it for the day.

Champagne Tuesday followed – more about that later – but for now, another day of great snow and blue runs follows. Our lessons are over, and now we’ve just got a bit of time to fool around, and work on some languid turns. There’s been another 6-8 inches of snow overnight at base-camp level, so I’m looking forward to seeing what has happened 1 km further uphill. I have every fear that today could end up being rather fun.

On a separate note, Bingo has chickened out and turned ski on us, and Dec thinks he’s broken his arse, in spite of it being padded by both a Norwegian striker* and 26 years of overindulgence. I’ve never wanted to kick anyone right up the arse as much as I do now. I’m down to my last reserves of willpower, which I fear may be eroded tonight at the first whiff of booze.

Peace out, my homies.

*An Aasgaard


After Action Report (Day 2)

February 25, 2007

A quiet calm has descended on the picturesque spa town of Bad Gastein. After a hard day on the board, and a surprising amount of it vertical, we have retired to our hotel rooms to count our losses and regroup.

After 4+ hours sur la piste, there are few injuries to report. In fact there are none whatsoever meaning our numerous wives, sweethearts and graduates will have to wait at least another day for the telegram and Death In Service payout. In true Gays on Trays style, lets do this boarder by boarder.

The ladies’ favourite is also a dab hand with the ski instructor – Gunther. When not sweetly carving his way down the slopes, Ginger can be found garnering some extra tips from our Ski Lehrer. But it appears to be paying off because after Day 1, Dave has made the most progress, switching sides like an opportunistic Italian at the first whiff of defeat.

At the other end of the spectrum we have our plucky Irishman. His footwork is so fucked-up that no one knows whether he’s a natural, a goofy or just inept. Having shown him how to ride goofy all afternoon, the instructor realised that Dec’s board was set for natural. Having sorted that out, Oddball shot down the mountain, pulled off a turn, shouted “Look at me Ma, I’m king of the world” and promptly did a face plant. On the plus side, he does walk up a hill like a demon. Well that’s something, isn’t it?

The good doctor is a revelation. Despite his considerable girth, he’s been been turning like a pint of milk in a thunderstorm. He quickly clocked that standing up was a good way of not falling down and it’s been downhill from there. But it’s not all been sweetness and light from Ant. The day kicked of with him grabbing two handfuls of female ski instructor bosom despite the fact that she was profering her arms to a wildly flailing Ant. He was swiftly transferred to another group and is now on the Austrian sex offenders’ register.

Last and by all means least, we come to Aggles. Not in the same league as Dave and Ant, but better than Dec, Bingo has been cutting a mediocre dash through the field. Resplendent in his blue elf hat as he face plants his way down the mountain, he’s nothing if not a good slider. One of the day’s highlights was Bingo sliding down the hill on his arse in a slow tragic pirouette. The first 100 metres were funny, the second slide-splitting, the third the stuff from which legends are made.

Off into town now where Dec has promised to glass the first under 5 he sees. The little brats are pretty impressive on the mountain. Ah the mountain…


In the air

February 24, 2007

This seems like as good a time as any for a moment of quiet introspection after what can only really be described as a rather hectic night of booze-sodden silliness. Ginger tried to stop a train using his shoulder, and has already fallen backwards down a flight of stairs. Odds are shortening on him picking up the first major injury of the trip. Osty O’Porosis (Dec) of course remains a firm favourite. I (Mushy) have already picked up the first minor prang, nearly braining myself on the car boot as I tried to get Dec’s bag out of the boot of the Taxi. Blood has been drawn, so I suppose that it’s fair to say that the holiday has started.

As I write this, we’re 35,000 feet over Strasbourg. With Stuttgart straight ahead of us, Salzburg seems a short hop on the in-flight map. From there, it’s a coach journey to Bad Gastein, and our impending doom.

The trip has so far been quite educational for all of us. Dec has learned that I really do snore like a train, and that my olive branch gift to him of a pack of earplugs was not an overreaction. Ginger has (hopefully) learned that writing blog posts when hammered results in utter utter gibberish. Bingo seems to have cottoned on to the fact that to check a blog using a Blackberry the second that his friend saved it on an MDA makes the pair of them look like gits. For me, the real revelation is that if I want to work for St. Margaret’s Taxis, all I have to do, is follow these general rules.
1 When arranging to pick up four men with big bags, send as small a car as possible.
2 If facing a long journey, filling the car up beforehand with petrol is entirely optional.
3 Circuitous routes are always best; “as the crow flies” is for pussies.
4 Wiper blades are to be replaced with oily rags. That squeak.
5 Stick rigidly to the middle lane. Especially if you’re on a two lane road.
6 There’s a fan built in to the car, which can demist your windscreen, so that you can actually see where you’re going. Don’t ever use it.
7 Sharpen the edges of your boot lid so that smart-arsed fatsos have something to occupy their thoughts which isn’t their impending doom.

Righty ho – Stuttgart is now a distant, yet fond memory. Our descent – in so many ways – has begun. I’ll write more if I live that long. Adieu, mes amis.


Con te partiro

February 23, 2007

Farty O’Breakshisbones (dec) has begun the holiday safely, rather than risk himself on the danger of the pizza, he’s gone for chips. So potatoes then. National stereotype’s truly safe. Ant’s consideration for all mankind has extended to small yellow things to shove in one’s aural canal. Dave is dumbstruck with a mixture of horror for what he’s in for and bliss for being on holiday.

I’m tingling to the jingling of Ant’s thighs.