Wednesday, November 6, 2002 - Perspective
The Adventures of a Sketchy Character – Vol. 1, No. 1

- By: Devon Kershaw

Five ten, naturally dirty blond (although now blue), perpetually white (except for the ever sexy farmer’s tan in the summer) and a kid so full of energy he gives every coach a migraine. That’s me, Devon Kershaw; a sketchy character. In this small article I am going to share with the readers a little insight into the sketchy man that Devon Kershaw really is. I moved to Canmore to pursue my dreams of Olympic glory after my last year of high school. Excited and a little scared I stepped into my new home, 866 Laurence Grassi Ridge and met my roommates for the next year. Meeting them for the first time proved a little nerve racking despite having spoken with them previously at various events, and I said a meek “hello.” They returned the greeting and surely thought to themselves, “Could this guy be any shyer?” Well, to their disappointment, within a few hours of living at my new place, I became my loud, obnoxious, and excited self. The Devon everybody here in Canmore knows (not everybody, but the skiers anyway) and love (haha).

Now, some of you might be asking yourself, “sketchy? I don’t get it.” Well, I will try and enlighten you on the term and how it relates to me. First of all, the dictionary defines sketchy as unsubstantial or imperfect. My definition mind you, would be: unpredictable, out there, all over the place, a little bonkos, or straying from normal. Here in Canmore, a lot of my fellow athletes and especially my coach call me “a sketchy character.” I think it’s because I am always talking loudly (mostly about useless s@!# too!), I do hairy things on my roller skis or whatever else I am doing (ie. roller skiing down the Nordic center hill backwards, or running on razor sharp ridges), I get easily excited beyond belief, and most importantly, I have more dumb ideas than Kramer on Seinfeld. I find everything amazing, and wish I could be a million different people at one time. To best describe what I mean, I will use a bit of dialogue.

Friend: Devon, why do you love the Banff Mountain Festival so much? You are addicted man!
Before I could answer the question, another friend pipes in for me,
Chris: Why? Devon loves the festival because in a three hour period, he can white water kayak rippin’ down gnarly rapids, paraglide with Will Gadd, do “sick” flips into freshy powpows with Seth Morrison, and climb the most dangerous and spectacular peaks that the world has to offer. Also, after the fest is over, he can tell us about how he is going to start getting into all this stuff in his “free time.” The funny thing is the guy takes 3hr naps, and is training all the time. So, Dev, I will believe it when I see it buddy...
Again, before I can answer Chris throws in another jab, hitting me below the belt with this comment,
Chris: So, have you taken the duct tape off the end of your ice axe yet??
Obviously I hadn’t, the boys all laughed at my expense…

So, there it is. I have a wackload of ideas rushing through my head every second, and wish I could do it all. Robert Frost wrote in one of his famous poems, “Two paths diverge in a yellow wood, and I took the one less travelled...” I guess I did take the path less travelled; I put my education on hold to pursue one of my dreams. Although like I said above, I wish I could be an amazing climber, a sick downhill skier, a graceful telemark skier, and the list goes on. But in reality, I am a good cross country skier, lovin’ life and lovin’ the one thing I do accomplish on a daily basis: Training for Olympic glory. I am still sketchy; I still believe that I am going to do a million amazing things, and still love the path I chose, the path of the full time athlete.


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