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The Peak Season fantasy Or the conundrum of throat-spitting your vodka

Yes it's true.

My life is just like Peak Season, I told my friend in Winnipeg over the phone last week. You know, even though I live in a place like Whistler, I still have a regular life just like you. I mean, besides the snowboarding and skiing bit, I also work, drink, grocery shop, and fall in love just like everyone else.

In fact, I said, now gushing slightly, I feel like MTV Canada finally made a television show just about me. It's so exciting. Dre, Lauren, Amanda, Ian, Matthew, Steph and Elle, they each represent a different fragment of my life. When I hear them talk or watch them hang out, I know exactly what they are going through. I've been there before, too.

It's truly breathtaking to watch my story told through the mirror of a heavy-duty video camera, I said, my eyes now welling with tears.

I mean, I guess if you are going to be nitpicky, there are a few itty-bitty things in the "docudrama" that don't quite match up with my world, but they are just tiny, minor points, hardly worth noting really.

Like, if you really want to be technical about it, no, I have never really heard a bartender yell out "Who wants shots!" I think I would remember that, but then again, maybe I've just had my head in the clouds the past few months and have somehow missed the free flowin' fluids.

And another tiny small thing - it's so minor I don't even know why I am mentioning it - I have never seen a chick fight at the bar, or a dude fight for that matter. And, to be honest, none of my friends cry in public, either. In fact, most of the time I find we are actually smiling. Then again, maybe it would be different if we found ourselves faced with the same tragic drama the Peak Season gang is faced with. Those poor seven just always seem to get muddled up in the most stressful situations!

OK, and I guess I should mention the vodka-spitting thing. Yeah, I've never done that. Actually, I thought it was kinda gross. But you know, maybe I'm not really that adventurous, especially when it comes to drinking my booze. I don't drink as much as the Peak seven crew, either.

Oh, and you know that scene were Scoot and his two friends were sitting around comparing girls from the city to cartons of milk? Yeah, I've never really heard my guy friends talk like that. But then again, maybe I've never heard them talk like that because....

Because...

Eff it. I give up. The truth of the matter is my life is absolutely nothing like Peak Season, no matter which way I look at the situation. Or throat-spit my proverbial vodka.

I mean, the thing looks right. I recognize the ski runs, the bars, the restaurants, and that little village stroll bridge that seems to magically pop up in every scene. The people look right too. Sure my life isn't really a carbon copy of Dre et al.'s reality, but some of their day-to-day activities are spot on. And, of course, they are all wearing the loud, eccentric clothing Whistler style is renowned for.

But, once I peel away those superficial layers, once I look past the obvious bits and pieces, what I am left staring at on the TV screen is awkward and embarrassing. I can't pinpoint what it is, but there is something so fundamentally off about Peak Season that the actual essence of the show, the soul behind the clips, smells nothing like the place I inhabit every day.

In fact, I find a significant portion of it cringe-worthy.

Exhibit A: "It's too bad the rest of our friends don't work out, but everyone is still in shape. We should be fat for the amount we drink."

Exhibit B: "Valentine's Day is the one day of the year you shouldn't cheat on your girlfriend."

Exhibit C: "I know it will be really hard, but when you are working you can't get drunk."

Since Peak Season first aired on Oct. 19, it has been impossible to avoid the gossip around town. Everywhere, people are talking, dissecting and re-dissecting, the show about us. You can hear the chatter in our coffee shops, basement suites, and all along the Village Stroll. And through all babble, blather and twaddle, one big fat question keeps punctuating the air: "That isn't what we are really like, is it?"

Sure, it isn't as intellectually challenging and cerebrally warping a topic as, say, the philosophy behind the five rings or H1N1's virility, but it is still a question that speaks to the core of what Whistler is and therefore deserves some good ol' analysis.

Of course, the obvious answer is: "No, we are nothing like Peak Season." The other 10,000 people in this resort municipality aren't duplicates of the carefully chosen crew of party animals and drama queens on Peak Season. We may walk on the same streets, but we definitely aren't speaking the same talk.

But, at the same time, four episodes in, I know that at least I can't seem to look away. Like a horror movie, I'm addicted to what will flash across the screen next and comparing it to my own life.

Yes, it is true, Peak Season may be a one-dimensional, entertainment-drenched version of what "real life" actually is in Whistler, and yet sadly, I already know what I'll be doing next Monday night...

 

 

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