Pique n' your interest 

Scenes from the class war

Page 2 of 3

Locals are being squeezed out of everything these days, and tempers are rising.

In last week’s paper, for example, Pique received a letter from a British woman who was extremely upset when some people in the Peak Chair line-up threw snowballs at her and others in her ski camp because they used their liftline priority to jump to the front on a powder day.

She compared the snowball throwers to the murderous mobs she ran across while working with a film crew in Pakistan, even going so far as to suggest that her Whistler experience was actually worse.

The comparison was more than just a little over the top in my opinion, and I sincerely believe she should seek some help for post-traumatic stress syndrome to help her work through the horrors she saw in Pakistan.

Still, she has a point. People do seem angrier these days, and it’s not hard to pinpoint the reason why.

Prior to the snowball attack – and I’ve seen a lot of similar volleys drop onto the priority lift line in recent years – she viewed Whistler as a kind of sanctuary in this world. This was the last place she expected to get abused by an unruly crowd.

Although that kind of behaviour is never acceptable, I can understand where it’s coming from. The people who threw those snowballs probably waited for at least an hour in that lift line, standing in the cold, feet getting cramped in all of their equipment. I’ve been that person many times.

Then, just when it appeared that lifts are going to open, ski school groups and ski and snowboard camps appear out of nowhere and head to the front of the line.

For the people who pay for ski school and the camps, it’s one of the perks they believe they have coming to them – although most instructors wouldn’t even dream of using that perk until at least half an hour after a lift opens out of respect for everyone else.

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