Climbing is not a sport people feel ambivalent about.
Some gravitate towards it with obsession. Others question why anyone would get up for it at all. If you’re not sure yet which end of the rope you fall on, these points might help you recognize if you are “not” a climber.
Your mind is in knots trying to remember how to tie knots.
The clove hitch, munter, prusik, or double fisherman’s? You may not be able to reproduce them, but you would order them at a bar because they all sound like the names of delicious cocktails.
You don’t cram your feet into shoes that feel three sizes too small.
As far as you’re concerned, foot binding is an antiquated practice that should have been outlawed in the last millennium. Plus, you prefer your toenails to be a healthy pink.
Your first choice of a hangout spot is not a precarious ledge.
If you are near an area that’s climbing worthy, chances are you will be spending time chilling on a ridiculously vertical piece of rock. Your idea of “living on the edge” might be more like sunning yourself at a clothing-optional beach.
You cringe when your skin feels dry.
To deliberately coat your hands with dusty chalk seems gross. Never mind come home with it in your nose, mouth, and eyes. You’re more the type who liberally applies lotion at the first sign of dehydration.
You don’t enjoy crushing your bits.
Whether it’s for reasons of sheer vanity or propagating the human species, it seems questionable to cinch your beloved jiggly parts into a harness, also affectionately known as a “sausage casing”.
You have trust issues.
With your life on the line, you’re not sure if balancing on minuscule footholds while dangling several metres off the ground on a rope that has seen better days with a relative stranger holding the other end, is the best of ideas.
You don’t show off your shredded skin and bloody gashes with pride.
The activity of climbing also includes falling. On hard, sharp rock. You think of broken skin as an indicator that something went horribly wrong and not a sign of a really good time.
You don’t stare out the window and sulk whenever it’s raining.
When the grey skies open, you excitedly bundle in your waterproof gear and get the heck outside. You feel vibrantly alive. You are not deprived of your joy in life because the “rock is wet”.
You wouldn’t purposely tie yourself to an anchor.
Your growth-seeking spirit does not want to be tied down to anything designed to hold you in place, especially something associated with sinking.
You don’t give a crap about getting to the top of anything.
Whenever you see boulders, rock walls, or 3000 foot monoliths, you recoil at the thought of scrambling up to their lofty peaks. You don’t even take elevators to penthouse suites. Too high.