Tuesday, 30 March 2010


This is a small vademecum for the beginner, especially, but it may result useful for many. It comes from years and years of observations and reflections, it's a simple list of -hopefully- clever advices not to be labelled as an idiot after your first step in the gym.
1) Camouflage. Try to look as others look. Do not wear stupid clothes or funky hats. You're not worth it. When you'll be strong you can wear all you want, but for the moment, please pass unnoticed. '60s style Tie and Dye pants straight from an LDS trip are banned even if you flash Font 8c.
2) We don't give a fuck. Do not wear, in the climbing gym, t-shirts of some other discipline, especially from competions you may or may not have attended or won. Just because we don't give a fuck if you are an Olympic gold medalist of some sort, in the climbing gym you are just another fucking punter greasing our favourite holds, so please, at least don't try to look cool.
3) Emulate, but do not replicate. Just because the gym's owner does some campusing, you're not supposed to campus. The simple thing that he climbs 8b and you climb 5b should suggest you something. Use your training time wisely because you're not immortal.
4) The walking advert. Please, please, do not wear a single brand from head to socks, or you'll be forever known as "Mr. E9" or "Lady Sportiva". Reflect: no one is going to think that you may be sponsored, so, unless you want to raise the Bloomberg rating of your favourite climbing brand, buy from different brands or at least wear only one garment at a time.
5) Try to understand what you do. Why, please tell us why you come into the gym fully dressed in cool climbing clothes, telling everyone how much you paid for them, but then you still climb with shitty shoes borrowed from the gym? Maybe you didn't notice the dozens of climbing shoes on the shop's shelves, or the fetish climbers have for climbing shoes?
6) Do not die in the gym. If you ignored advice N.3 and get on the campusboard, when you fail to latch a rung, please don't try to catch any other rung on the way down. Just fall off. The sound of your fingers snapping from every line of rungs is horrible and recalls memories of injuries.
7) Talk the talk. Do not talk the talk until you can walk the walk. Listen carefully as climbers speak, so when you will be addressed you won't look puzzled if someone uses some specific term. Do not try to create new lingo: remember, an undercling will never become an inverted.
8) We don't give a fuck part II. Don't come to the gym with cultural or geeky books to read during your rests. First because you are not supposed to pause for 21 minutes after a 6a circuit, and then because, again, we don't give a fuck about your IQ. The only numbers we care about are grades. And our grades are bigger than yours.
9) For fuck's sake. Use you brain. Ask. Listen. Observe. And if you can't, get the fuck outta here.


Unknown said...

Keep writing the truth. It's amazing to think how many on the list I did when starting on the road to power. My favourite blog, you the man.

lore said...

hey dan, thank you.
we all did that! well, i don't know about others, but i, for sure did!!!

Fiend said...

LOL, excellent post dude, that should be printed out and put on all the climbing walls!

Unknown said...

most is truth.
however. whilst revising for my exams i would do a multiple choice question between laddering up the campus board at the foundry. it worked well, forcing me to rest.
another one for the list. take your socks off.

lore said...

james, you are beast, you can do whatever you want and read whatever you want. this is not a democracy!