February 19, 2013

Big Red Ambition #6: Sled Down Libe Slope During a Snowstorm

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In the past few weeks, quite a few Sun columnists have written about how they’ve essentially given up all hope in completing the 161 Things Every Cornellian Should do. Well, let’s all get real for a hot second: None of us are going to complete the list; it is simply not in the realm of possibility. It was last updated in 2009 and is in dire need of a facelift given the vast amount of changes across campus in the last four years. Regardless of my inability to check off all 161 things, in my last few months here, my ever-dwindling amount of time on the Hill has led me to try even harder to successfully check off every item possible (and yes, mystery commenter –– that means I will be addressing numero uno).  So, let’s start by talking about #6 (Sled down Libe Slope during a snowstorm).

I’m sure all of you remember Blizzard Nemo (is that how you correctly refer to a blizzard?). Well, my friend, A, who had just ordered inner tubes, and I decided that if Nemo was going to force us to think of a non-slippery path to get to Rulloff’s, it would also provide us the opportunity to sled.

Well, first came the snowball fight. First, I feel like I should apologize to anyone attempting to sleep on Catherine Street that night; from 1 to 2 a.m., there was a fairly large group of people sledding down Catherine Street and throwing rather impressively-made snowballs. Personally, I have the snowball-making abilities of an infant who has no motor coordination, so my “snowballs” kind of looked a lot more like me throwing powder at people.

Then rather suddenly, there was this mass exodus to Libe Slope. A and I were very committed to the sledding expedition and trekked through piles of snow that were easily half our height to get to the slope. When we did, we looked down, and I can’t speak definitively for A, but I definitely questioned my decision to sled that night.

Let me digress for a moment. When I was little, my (relatively flat) driveway seemed like Mount Everest whenever I would stand at the top of it in my rollerblades. Whenever I skied, the hill would look insanely steep to me, no matter how easy the trail –– hell, the freaking bunny hill intimidated me at points. One time, I freaked out so much whilst skiing that I kindaaa facilitated the tearing of my dad’s rotator cuff. Oopsies. Anyway, for whatever reason, I have this fear of hills that I constantly tried to overcome, but I’m still not quite there.

Thus, as I stood at the top of the slope, my first thought was, “Oh my, that’s quite a steep hill. This is kiiiinda scary.” Well, thank goodness I have this blog because the only reason I actually sled down Libe Slope was because I didn’t want to write about that time I chickened out of actually sledding.

So for those of you who know me, I’m a small girl, and if anyone has ever seen the waterslides where you can race someone you know that the smaller person will go farther quicker. In case anyone was wondering, the same holds true for sledding. I got on the sled, and pushed off so I was going down the hill, and I was flying. I tried slowing myself down when two guys started yelling “Nah nah, don’t slow down, let it happen.” Well, I had a friend who sled down the slope, and literally sled into the War Memorial. Awkward. I was trying to end my sledding expedition before entering West Campus, so I tried my best to slow down and eventually did: about a foot away from officially being on West.

After I hiked back up the slope, I watched A sled down with another person named A (crazy!) on a bed. Those two didn’t get too far, but it was sure entertaining to watch.

Well, there it is. I hope all of you get the chance to sled down the slope at 2 a.m. before you graduate; it’s definitely something worth doing. I could not be more excited to spend my last few months here checking off more 161 items; I hope you’re excited to read about ’em.

Original Author: Jaime Freilich