Snowboard bums don’t exactly have the greatest reputation outside of the snowboarding world. They’re thought of as slackers with no ambition in life and no real plans for the future.
I think people are just using the wrong measuring tools.
In defence of snowboard bums
1) Appearance is not a measure of success
Why is it snowboard bums get downgraded just because they refuse to wear suits and nice clothes every day. Why do comfy jeans and a hoody automatically classify you as less successful?
Here’s a little secret… most truly successful people don’t dress up when they don’t have to.
I’ve worked in retail before and there’s one thing I noticed when I worked the register. You see, there’s a certain card called the American Express Centurion card, aka the Black Card. To qualify for such a card, you have to spend roughly 150k+ per year on your American Express card.
Seeing one of these cards was rare and I took note of those who had one. The interesting thing is 9 out of 10 people using the Black Card dressed in casual jeans and t-shirts and some were even wearing sandals.
The more successful people I meet the more I find out that they care less and less about wearing nice clothes to impress other people.
2) Degrees are not a measurement of success
There’s the notion that snowboard bums aren’t successful because many of them never go to college or uni. That’s a load of crap.
You know who has the greatest marketing teams in the world? Colleges and universities. They’ve convinced the entire world that you must have a college education to be successful.
If you want to be a Doctor, Dentist, Engineer or some other job that actually requires a degree, that’s great and you actually require college. However, if you don’t, why do people measure your success based on getting a degree you’ll never use?
I’m sorry, but if you’re not intending to go into a career that actually requires a degree, then I find it a big scam to have your parents or you save up thousands of dollars to pay for classes you don’t want, for a degree you don’t need, to be successful.
We’re living in a world where you can take free online classes from Stanford University. You won’t get the piece of paper at the end of each class, but if knowledge and learning is really your objective then a piece of paper shouldn’t be the goal.
A snowboard bum can easily pursue knowledge and learning using this new tool called the ‘internet’, so why is their success measured by whether they spent 3-5+ years of their life getting a paper certificate for something they don’t care about.
There’s an unending sea of people who are successful without having gone to college and anyone who measures your success based on your college degree is an idiot.
3) Possessions are not a measurement of success
There’s a highly overused, slightly cheesy quote that’s still very true:
“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.”
The average snowboard bum doesn’t have a fancy car or a big house, but you know what they do have? Epic life memories (and I’m not talking about getting drunk and partying).
When you’re old and wrinkly at the age of 70 and you’re looking back at your life, it’s not a Ferrari or a big house that will make you smile.
It’s that time you woke up at 6am for fresh tracks on the most epic powder day ever or the time your ski shuttle’s battery went flat and you and your friends had to push the bus down a sketchy NZ mountain road surrounded by 20 meter drops to get the engine started (true story).
Those are the moments that you’ll look back on and think “yeah… that was some good times”. Heck, I’m not even old yet and I still think using a sketchy hill in NZ to jump start a flat battery was hilarious.
I’m not saying having a garage full of Lamborghinis wouldn’t be fun, but success in life should be measured by the number of amazing experiences and memories you’ve made, not by the suit you wear or the degree you hold or the car you drive.