Much Ado About Rock Climbing

Posted by on Feb 19, 2015 in Musings | No Comments

Today at the rock climbing gym where I am an erstwhile member, I saw two little kids (probably about 7 or 8) playing rock-paper-scissors for the privilege of climbing the wall first.

One kid played by the rules: rock, paper, scissors, display on shoe. The other blatantly waited for his opponent to reveal his hand, and then, a second later, played his.

Boisterous Kid claimed victory, and Shy Kid didn’t object. But the staff did, and suggested they play again. So they did.

And damned if Boisterous Kid didn’t try the exact same trick. He got caught again, everyone laughed, and Shy Kid got to climb first, but the episode got me thinking: one kid clearly understands how our society works and isn’t afraid to shamelessly take advantage, and the other kid either doesn’t understand or won’t bend the rules.

Guess who succeeds* in life. Womp womp.

As I write this, another kid who just reached the top of her climb is screaming bloody murder because she’s too afraid to let go of the wall and trust that her belayer will let her down safely. Poor kid. Her dad had to climb up and he’s negotiating with her now. She’s still really, really, REALLY doesn’t want to let go.

And some dude behind me just said, “Yeah. This happens pretty frequently.”

Rock climbing is awesome though. Just not if you’re 8 years old and terrified of heights.

*By traditional (and, IMHO, largely incorrect) measures.

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