My introduction to the climbing world came as a chance to try something different with my brother-in law. I was a gym-rat of sorts in regards to weight lifting, and that had an obvious effect on my first route ascension as I flailed around on the rock looking for bomber jugs and holds I could sleep in; but that was then.
[story by Al Smith III, co-founder of The Climbing Zine. Spoiler alert! This piece is an excerpt from Volume 1, available on Kindle.]
My second-birth into the climbing world came with all of the same anticipation but without the mucus and other body fluids involved in birthing. I don’t recall a specific day but I do know it was an afternoon spent with a few soul-hearty people stoked about climbing. It was terribly easy to feed off one another’s vibes and I eventually found myself the man on the hand – locked, double-backed, and ready to climb on. Watching my friends make mince meat out of 5.10 and 5.11s gave me a sense of completion only proved false by my repeated failure to mount the crux. That first day of my second climbing life was cold and confusing. I had serious doubts about ever obtaining success like my friends seemed to; but that was then.
Puberty came with all the usual annoying things, boners aside. I found myself excited and nervous as if there was a hot girl in front of me for the first time, only to realize it was a fabrication of my mind, and that the hot girl was a 5.9 beauty laced with daggers. Generally, this stage of adolescence takes years to complete but I found myself moving through it with the quickness and amazingly, my clothes still fit at the end of the day; well, except for over my Pop-eye forearms that felt as if they were going to explode. Odd foreplay abreast, I found myself climaxing and coming back for more. Usually I need a 10-15 minute break if she really would like another go, but with only one other soul with me that day, I had to tackle her friend, a 5.10 of even more attractive beauty, with little recovery. Let’s just say, she went quick and I loved the precious minutes we had together, but tomorrow was a new day with ample overnight recovery. The spirit was willing, but the flesh was spongy and weak.
Date two: she looked good from afar and no doubt she’d be a fun ride to the top and back down. Boy was she ever – a sweet piece of 5.11c with slopers to grab up on despite wanting to spend more time around the crimpy jibs of her navel piercing – which believe me, I did. I wish I could say she was the only one I lost some blood to that day, but her long friend around the corner had a habit of scratching when you just wanted to move up, off, and on – a reminder to let you know who was in charge. Sometimes they just can’t play nice. I think the site of my Pop-eye forearms from the day previous is what ruined my chances for another lady love of the solid rock-sort that day. No worries though, I had had my fill and was satiated beyond the physical; but that was then.
Flash forward to now and beyond; what or where will I end up? Lord knows that answer and he may only grant me passage with one more lady love of the solid sort; but, if that day comes, then I’ll be happy to have had my fun and gotten a few rocks off in the process. You gotta draw the line somewhere and as long as she’s good to me, I’ll be just a good to her; and then some.
This is now. I love where I’ve been. Where I’m going is even sweeter.
Read the rest of The Climbing Zine, Volume 1 on Kindle for .99 cents. Volume 5, The Dirtbag Issue is available in print and on Kindle.