Originally Posted by beyond
Originally Posted by SlowObstacle
Additionally, the self-congratulatory tone of "the poor fools, they will never understand what they're missing" is more than a little off-putting. And on a more practical note: if you're trying to sell skis, or even to produce reviews that are useful to a reasonable population of skiers, then is aiming your reviews at the top 0.1% really all that productive?
I really don't get that from Dawg's post. I think he's bringing up two interesting issues that must vex most sellers: That 1) a low angle passive "riding the arc" may be carving, but it's a very different kind than instructors want us to accomplish, and that 2) most folks who think they carve actually carve the first 2/3 of the turn and then skid the finish. IMO this makes selling carving skis an intriguing proposition. Do you stay realistic and push a ski that will forgive us our trespasses, even if the buyer suffers from grade inflation? Or do you respect what they tell you, period, and sell them a ski that will toss them every 4th turn? Or just be wasted potential? And should manufacturers design skis to satisfy most skiers' actual abilities?
I get the distinction between low-angle park-and-ride, and higher-angle, more dynamic turns. And as I said, have no problem with either that distinction or with evaluating skis (and skiers) with respect to it. But he specifically said that your first alternative wasn't carving, at least not what he meant by it...
Moreover, I know him sorta, and Dawg's about the last person I'd call "self-congratulatory." In his videos he frequently posts, he often critiques his own skiing, and he's very clear that he's on a learning curve.
It was the combination of posts 1-3 that lead me to make this comment. dawgcatching started the discussion of defining "real" carving, and the observation that very few people do what he would like to call carving. Which is why I referred to this as a process of redefining terms to exclude people. slider and JMD piled on. Possibly I over-reacted. As I said, I get the distinction between the different kinds of turns and in the skills required. But I really DON'T like this recurrent theme that "true" skiing is reserved for the elect, or at least for the cognoscenti.
So he can get pretty enthusiastic about what he's learning, and maybe some of that leaks through the questions he raises. But y'know what? So do most of us putting ourselves through the same hassles for some intangible finish line. As I write this, I've got a cold pack on a nice bruise from a SL gate that decided to attack me today, and my right knee (the good one) is swollen from punishing that gate with one tip while the other decided to run away. The most charitable thing my coach said was that " I finally found a good line. Until I got lost." Now that's encouraging! Sigh.
Now as far as where to aim, Epic is, as the opening page states, for dedicated skiers. (Cf, above comment about intangibles) That alone probably eliminates the majority recreational skiers in the U.S. For whom I have the greatest respect; not everyone should be as neurotic as many of us here. I ski every year for a week or so with a bunch of college buddies who are happily terminal intermediates. All good. We have a great time. But I wouldn't expect them to hang out here.
Thus, what many of us here like about Dawg's reviews is precisely that he's not going to simplify things to a gold-silver-bronze ranking, and he's not going to iron over flaws in a ski because it may be the best choice for many skiers. He really breaks things down for those of us gearheads who want minutia, who distrust pros without cons. Reflexivity - locating yourself in the review - is part of good writing, IMO. If you want reviews for that 99.9% - really only .01% care about getting better? - then Skinet.com is your ticket.
I'm going to assume you didn't mean that last bit to be quite as condescending as it reads.
I don't think I said anything at all about only 0.1% "caring about getting better." More like if you're evaluating a ski using only criteria that only apply to that 0.1% top skill, then lots of people aren't going to care too much. And just to be clear, I like his reviews, too. In part because I can generally tell when a ski is likely to be more than I can handle, from his comments. But do you really think that only the top 0.1% of skiers cares about getting better? Really? One of the reasons I do hang out here as much as I do is because of what I can learn. Or do you think that they (you?) are the only ones who qualify as "dedicated?" If fussing over equipment makes you dedicated, pretty sure I qualify. Spending the time I have on the hill trying to get better, same. On ability, experience, days I manage to get out any given year (as opposed to what I'd like), not so much.