© 2010 Nick Babladelis

Matching on a Dyno

Now while I’m not much for hanging from sheer walls of rock while relying on my puny brawn, the good will of some friends, and a seemingly woefully inadequate ‘crash-pad.’ But my friends love the stuff.

I just take the pictures. (Okay, and attempt a basic move or two).

Unlike normal rock climbing, it’s not all about heights. Instead its a free climb where skill and strength turn even a meager 10 foot boulder into a never ending challenge. Different routes are planed, new economies of movement attempted, and quickly rejected with a thud. Thankfully for Brian in this sequence he made it through his route with ease.

But this whole adventure has got me thinking, as I’ve been reading someone who’s reading Derrida. I’ve been left thinking how language is such a peculiar thing. It’s often so inadequate for expressing those raw emotions we feel. Like when falling in love, or taking in that cliched perfect sunset.

So we just re-invent the whole thing.

I guess that’s what language has always been – a (futile?) attempt to express and communicate ideas, thoughts and realities much bigger than us.

But we keep inventing. Case in point: bouldering (and rock climbing in general). There is a whole world of language that imbues this sport. Dyno, layback, crimp, sit down start.

Ok, some of them are more self-evident than I let on. But they’re strung together interspersed with normal language. “You’ll have to dyno up to that hold, but try to match first.” And until you start to pick up on the context clues (or plead ignorance and just ask), your stuck on the outside of some magically clear and concise world where you could climb mountains.

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