The Snow Gauge

Running the rule over the ski & snowboard industry since 1995

Is this a snow column?

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Australia, New Zealand | 0 comments

Before I move on to the amusing but unfortunate “the back bowels are open” tweet I am going to reveal a little of myself and my own ineptitude. Bear with me as this could get a bit weird.

Some time before Facebook and Twitter in a land far, far away I wrote a story for our national newswire on great Australian surfer and world champion Mark Occhilupo. If memory serves me correct he was trying to win the triple crown in Hawaii and I was fortunate enough to jag a phone interview with the great man.


He made some references to the alas, subsequently departed Andy Irons. Now, I like the concept of the beach but am certainly no surfer. I grew up near Maroubra (think Bra Boys) but having skin the colour of a cumulonimbus it unfortunately didn’t work out so well for me. Enjoying a sport where you had as many clothes on as possible and then some seemed like a much more sensible option.

Thing is I didn’t refer to Andy Irons in the story as Andy Irons. I called him Jeremy Irons. You know, the English actor – bloody good in Dead Ringers all those years ago but still wondering why a classically trained thespian served up twaddle like this:

Anyway, the unfortunate thing was that our overworked sub editors failed to pick this up too. So did the bevy of newspapers that ran it across the country. Jeremy Irons v Mark Occhilupo it was. Occy was a shoo-in as everyone knows the English can’t surf!

How I actually got to that point was an interesting story in itself. I had over lunch been reading a Sydney Morning Herald profile on Ron Jeremy, aka “The Hedgehog”, the hirsute adult star who was touring Australia for Christ know’s what reason (yep, and I read Playboy for the articles too). So somehow in the recesses of my mind Andy Irons morphed into Ron Jeremy and then into Jeremy Irons. All makes perfect sense really.


So as this is a snow column, it is fair to assume you must be wondering where all this is headed. Well, it all came flooding back to me after Coronet Peak’s tweet about the “back bowels” opening today. I don’t know where to start. One thing I certainly won’t be mentioning is my previous story entitled: “Big Dumps in NZ”. It would seem childish if I did.

A little “e” hasn’t caused such a kerfuffle  in my mind since clean-living Gwenny Paltrow admitted to popping one earlier this year.

It also got me thinking about some other small but important things in the snow industry like remembering to go to: instead of to check out the conditions. The latter is now the “No.1 tattoo website in the world”. It used to be something even more revealing.

Then there is the great Hotham patroller, avalanche guru, Gulmarg expert and all-round good-guy Billy Barker’s website:

Bill is a top bloke but I don’t want to see him get his gear off. I put the potential dual meaning of his website to him the other week and he just laughed. “Yeah, we only thought of that afterwards,” he said with a chuckle.

So there you have it. If I can quote Australian author Marcus Zusak from The Book Thief:  “I have hated words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right.”

Not always, but we’ll all keep trying eh?

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