So a couple of years ago (there was no snow this year in Washington) I decided to learn to ski, and off we went to the slopes. My friends would vanish to the high pistes, and I would practice on the bunny slopes with the babies. I'd lie on the snow like an overturned tortoise while these tiny space creatures would come flying past me, sailing on toy skis. One of the space creatures - I will always remember this - was clutching a blankie.
So two things mark the beginner skier: the whole lying-on-the-snow thing, and the brand-new shiny ski clothes. Meanwhile local kids in ratty rain gear pulled over their jeans are carving up the mountain, way up there on those peaks that will be forever foreign to me.
A while ago I bought a spiffy Adidas running shirt. I loved it so much - it really does wick everything away, an important factor when you sweat like I do - that I went and bought the matching shorts.
This morning I pulled them on and just before leaving saw myself in the hallway mirror in my matching branded shirt and shorts, and thought: You look like a dork.