two talented men, one rambling chump!

So, I go away for a couple of weeks and come home to a flurry of internet buzz, ‘First Round, First Minute’ 5.15a? “CLOSED”?  Interesting?

This is obviously a scenario that’s been blown way out of proportion but since every person and their mother has weighed their opinion, AND I’m stuck at terminal D at 7:30 am with nothing to do with my life but waiting for a flight to Chicago from Seattle, I’ll join the armchair athletes with my two Canadian cents, even though I know I shouldn’t and don’t deserve to.  Nalle has a right to fly to Spain to climb rocks.  And Chris has a right to politely ask climbers to respect his project.  I personally feel that if Nalle had of just asked Chris in the first place, this probably would have been a positive and exciting thing instead of an inter-web shit show .  I’ve never met Nalle, he seems like a level headed guy, and nice enough, Chris is one of the nicest guys in the world, and I’m sure neither of them want this to escalate any further, but from what I’ve read, this sounds like it all comes down to a blend of mis-communication and a lack for forethought.   SICK PHOTO btw…

I applaud Sharma for standing his ground.  I think anyone would be slightly offended if someone came to try our project without so much as a heads up, especially since it was their first visit and the only route they wanted to try.  I don’t think Chris wanted to say no, but I.m guessing Nalle put him in an uncomfortable situation, and so he did what he felt was right, what anyone would do, he asked for a bit more time.   When I was 22, I once did something to an established climb (sort of by accident) without notifying the first ascentionist first.  I felt terrible when it happened, but the point is, my lack of consideration nearly cost us our friendship.  It’s all good now, but I will try to carry that lesson with me.

Things happen, putting ourselves in other people’s shoes, and imagining how they might feel under the reverse circumstances is all it takes.  I think, Nalle being from Europe all his life, stands by his claim that nothing in Europe is red tagged, therefore it didn’t really cross his mind to ask permission, which is also understandable, I suppose, but if he had, out of respect, I think there would be a much, much greater shot of Chris opening it up.  In conclusion to this pointless dribble, it just seems like a mis-communication, lost in translation type of deal.   I wish them both mucho successo in Spain.  That country is so amazing.

My plane is now leaving,  I’m out.  See you all in Chicago tonight at 7pm – and then the RED RIVER GORGE – and then COLUMBUS – Ohio – STOKKKKKKEEEEDDDD!

  • Steve Traversari

    Hey Sonnie,
    I don’t know about your view of the sitiation. Nalle sounds like a bit of an opportunist, no? Kind of like waiting in the bushes all camouflaged and ready to pounce as soon as someone else spots a killer line.
    By the way that incident with your now ex-buddy, that’s a long time ago, right? There’s been lots of water under that bridge. Wouldn’t it be time to shake (hands) and move on? Perhaps Nalle and Chris may come to the same conclusion. But regrettably I think that even in such cases only practice makes perfect.

  • Sonnie

    Steve, agree to disagree? All is well with my friend, no worries, we shook hands a long time ago, thanks.
    Mr Me, you’re absolutely right, thanks for putting me in my place.

  • Fraser

    Preface: I’m only basing my opinion on what I’ve read on the net to date regarding this subject. As ever, there is no doubt more under the surface that has not been reported and may have cast a different light on the subject.

    Having said that, I’d have had more respect for Sharma if he’d “taken this stance” against *anyone* that had asked to try the route, and that would surely include friends such as Graham & Andrada. To be so selective about who can or can’t try the routes seems a bit unfair.

    From Nalle’s blog: ‘When I arrived in Spain, Dave Graham told me he had been working on it with Chris, so that also meant it must be open. Before I ever got on it, Chris asked me to give him a chance on it, so I did.’ That seems a pretty clear cut statement, and one which begs the question: why were Graham and Andrada ‘allowed’ on it but not Hukkataival?

  • Sonnie

    Maybe you guys are right – but the real truth is, we don’t know shit, and it’s wrong for us to speculate. Especially on the net. I should take back what I wrote. All I was trying to say was that PERHAPS things would be different if Nalle stopped and just asked Chris politely if he could try it, instead of assuming that he could. It’s a lesson we can all relate to, consideration towards others. That’s all, nothing more. Feel free to continue this discussion if you’d like, but I won’t be partaking in it anymore, I feel bad for even raising the issue. Because honestly, I don’t really care that much, it just made me realize how important mindfulness can be, and I attempted (poorly) to illustrate that. Best wishes and happy climbing to all.

  • K

    They seem to have gotten along well enough to have a beer together.

    The rest is probably just internet hype…

    Thanks for the updates Sonnie and looking forward to see some footage of the trip to El Gigante.

    Cheers, K