I was thinking the other day about why I dirtboard, indeed why I partake in any hobby at at; and just to be clear I have a lot of hobbies with varying degrees of fanaticism at different times. As the title of the post suggests, it’s all about the challenge.
I love board games, in these games you are often testing your logic, pattern recognition and occasionally planning against other humans. I laugh when I’m winning, quiet and contemplative when I’m not or I’ve got big plans in motion, but no matter the outcome I have fun. In videogames you are often also testing yourself against other people, sometimes you are challenging what the game programmers put in front of you in preparation. I could go on but this blog is ostensibly about mountainboarding.
Mountainboarding is a wierd one. There are disciplines where you fight opponents (bordercross and trick competitions) but more often than that your out with your buddies just cruising, trying to find that sweet patch where the boards come into their own. In this sense you are constantly battling nature, tree here, gravel there, a long downhill [blind] corner, the weather.
Then again, nature’s not fighting back, so are you not more than anything challenging yourself? Can I turn before I hit that tree? Will I stay upright with the upcoming gravel? Do I think I can take this corner? Is it worth going out in THAT!? All these questions have to be answered twice, once for your proficiency on your board, and once for your cajones.
Of all the sports and things I’ve enjoyed in the past dirtboarding is the one where I’m most willing to push myself through the fear of pain and more often than not I’m rewarded with a new level of understanding and respect for how much these boards with big wheels and suspension can handle.
To bring this back to my original thought, everything I love about hobbies is the challenge, not necessarily winning. Being able to go up against someone in a straight fight and seeing who comes out better, for luck, skill, reactions or whatever, then seeing if you can change the results in further attempts. I always respect my opponent – even though I don’t really show it on the outside – and am thankfull for anyone who wants to see who comes of better in a challenge.
So challenge me, that includes you nature 🙂
P.S. – This was ranty and my first attempt at writing original content since high school. Let me know what you think.