March Madness

Few would disagree we live in “interesting times.” Stuff is speeding up and things are changing. March is usually a little crazy around the valley anyway. Spring break normally brings throngs of people to the resort. Cars stop in the middle of traffic to let out the kids anywhere and everywhere. Stop signs here apparently don’t have the same meaning as they do in other places. Lines form early, primarily at the Red Lady Lift. Buses are lined up along the roads and parking lots are full. Good luck finding a ski rental. It feels crazy at points—but is it? Sometimes…

Epic madness

Yeah! CBMR found a date for the superpass prom. And it’s a big one. Partnering with the Vail Resort Epic Pass should give CBMR a solid floor in terms of skier days. It won’t turn CBMR into Vail Lite. Vail people don’t like it here. It’s muddy. Someone just texted that we will now need two Brush Creek projects. We won’t. But Gatesco has to love a new topic of discussion. And we may need a new fur coat…

Weather madness

The immediate forecast in mid-March for Crested Butte includes rain. Yeah. As in “Chance of rain 90%.” And, “Snow showers changing to rain.” The forecast calls for several days with high temperatures in the 40s approaching 50. There are still several weeks left in the ski season, by the way.

Lord knows we need the precipitation. It has been a lean winter. The local folks who deal with wildfire preparation are already preparing. Thank you. There isn’t a lot of moisture on the ground and to get back close to normal will take a fair amount of snow and rain over the next couple of months. Otherwise, every time you see a bolt of lightning or smoke from a campfire, you might want to have that “Go Bag” ready by the front door this July. March (through August) madness.

Business madness

Local businesses are getting pinched. Fewer tourists coming here this winter combined with higher property taxes from increasing valuations is putting the squeeze on retailers and restaurants. It is never easy running a business, period. Running one in a resort town is harder. Running one in Crested Butte, a resort town that is not always easy to get to, is harder yet. So when outside forces collide to make something hard even more difficult, we all are impacted. Those impacts could come in a favorite store closing up shop. It might mean paying more for a steak or burrito. It might be that your boyfriend gets laid off because the business owner had to pay more taxes instead of more toward the payroll. It is a weird situation when a place (Crested Butte) appears to become more well known and more popular but just about everything (housing, business, backcountry management) associated with the place gets harder. Welcome to an evolving Crested Butte. Madness.

Trump madness

One little noticed news report from early this week—according to a number of news outlets, “A longtime personal assistant to President Donald Trump was reportedly fired and escorted out of the White House on Monday, with one report claiming the ouster was due to a criminal investigation. John McEntee was unceremoniously removed from his position because the Department of Homeland Security is investigating him for “serious financial crimes,” CNN reported. So of course, later that day it was reported that… ”the Trump campaign announced McEntee would be joining the reelection effort as a senior adviser for campaign operations.” What’s not normal about that? Nothing, actually. And that’s where the madness comes in.

Trump fired the secretary of state Tuesday without telling him in person because that’s how Trump rolls—on Twitter. It seems that Rex Tillerson was a pretty lousy secretary of state but don’t most of us try to teach our kids to stand-up and confront uncomfortable situations with dignity and with some honor? The leader of the free world breaks up by tweet? What a man. What a role model.

Oh, and then the president moved CIA official Gina Haspel, who has been accused of overseeing torture and destroying videotapes of such acts, into the top spot of the spy agency. Fox News stated, “Haspel reportedly ran the CIA’s first overseas detention site in Thailand, where imprisoned militants were repeatedly waterboarded. She also helped carry out an order that the CIA destroy its waterboarding videos.”

All that was before 9 a.m. Tuesday by the way. And so it goes, on and on and on.

Murder madness

Yeah, there was a murder in Gunnison County made for a movie. A mom and sister are charged with first-degree murder of the son/brother out by Parlin. Plot lines abound. There’s a ranch worth millions, a manure pile grave and waaaaaay dysfunctional family dynamics that make it ripe for Lester Holt on Dateline NBC next year and Quentin Tarantino in 2020. The national press is poking around Gunnison and whenever this gets to trial, the courtroom will no doubt be packed. That is one mad clan.

Brush Creek madness

Never mind. Kidding.

Basketball madness

So the moniker March Madness is tagged onto the greatest time of the year for collegiate basketball. The March Madness tournament gets under way this week. I don’t watch much basketball until tourney time so staying in a pool every year to pick winners is mad in itself. But I do stay in a pool and after reviewing my selections it is obvious I don’t have a clue (an assessment many at the county won’t argue with). So: Go Gonzaga!

Welcome to interesting times!

—Mark Reaman

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