Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Kiszla: Bode Miller skis like a rebel and cries like a man
First Published Feb 17 2014 02:41 pm • Last Updated Feb 25 2014 04:52 pm

Bode Miller is not dead. So he cried. And the tears made him feel alive.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Miller wept without shame, his cheeks awash in emotion, after he became the oldest alpine skier in Olympic history to win a medal with a third-place finish Sunday in the super-G.

At age 36, Bode Miller remains a red, white and blue rebel, doing it his way on the hill, inviting a legion of critics to kiss his ski tails. The American rebel wept for his dead brother, Chelone Miller, a snowboarder who had dreamed of competing at the 2014 Games until he passed away last spring after suffering a seizure in the van that served as his home.

Bode Miller wept because he’s still alive and kicking.

"Everybody thought I was joking, back when I was 22 years old, and I said my biggest goal (in skiing) was to not kill myself, not hurt myself," Miller said. "It’s such a brutal sport. The injuries are so extreme."


story continues below
story continues below

This is the brutal truth about skiing at the Olympic level. It’s dangerous. It can maim. It’s guaranteed to hurt.

Although old enough to know better, Miller keeps pushing the envelope, daring his body to hold an impossible line down the mountain without shattering.

"Risk doesn’t work in a linear fashion in skiing the way it does in most sports. In football, if you’re not diving into guys and you’re not head-butting, you’re going to stay more healthy. But, in skiing, if you back off, if you ski a little more tentative, you’re almost more likely to get hurt," Miller said.

"If you ski like you’re invincible, a lot of times you stay invincible. I am maybe dumb enough — or maybe I have a bad enough short-term memory — that I keep convincing myself that I am invincible, even if I’m ancient and have dealt with a lot of injuries."

A skier can go faster on his boards than you do rolling down the highway in your car. So every racer must make peace with the frightening reality that, sooner or later, the sport is going to break the body.

Next Page >


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.