I’ve mentioned already that Reberty is a small place – one pub and one pizzeria small. The downside to this is there is no escape, you rattle around a small pen on the side of the mountain. The upside is that it is so small that even if you are out of the loop you are still likely to find yourself in the loop, that is given that a loop can only be so small and Reberty 2000 is smaller.
So that is how come we came to find out, on Christmas Eve, of the coming of the messiah, to Reberty. Not Jesus – incidentally one of the most mispronounced names in the world, discovered courtesy of the chalet quiz – but David – don’t hassle the hoff – Hasselhoff.
Christmas Eve in Reberty was looking pretty underwhelming. Many of the chalet staff sat bored-shepherd-esque in Le Ferme nursing alcoholic drinks while the lights from the piste-bashers shone from the mountains. It was hard to hear over the raucous shouts of the seasonnaires from other companies, cheering a round of tequila or jäger bombs. One by one we dropped out, our manager first after doubt was cast on his last season’s conduct (totally spuriously, as it turns out, which is a relief because now I can eradicate all thoughts of him doing the helicopter), then another, then another. Soon, we were pretty much a handful, still sipping, talking rubbish, waiting for midnight.
At midnight along came 18 year old Ski Host, Thomas (aka The Prophet) and Girl whose name I didn’t catch, but whose butt was commented on favourably and who it was agreed (not by me) wore Thomas’s hat well, albeit not in the ‘flaccid’ (I am not joking, a direct quote from The Prophet) way that he wore it. I had had two red wines by this point and was indifferently swimming through its fuzz while muttering acknowledgement of the fact that Thomas’s family had a chalet in another valley where he had stayed since he was small and in the UK he was eating 3400 calories a day. ‘Why?’ I asked, puzzled as much by the fact that he was counting, as much as by the large number. ‘All you need to know is the number,’ he replied, immediately confirming my instinctual disinclination to speak to him. He rumbled on talking, no gushing, about things he liked to talk about and no doubt had done do already that evening; food, particularly tartiflette, him eating food, him skiing, and rival chalets and one in particular by whom he seemed to feel snubbed. ‘Oh, they’re always going on about which celebrities are staying with them. Oh, this week,’ and at this point he had begun to effect an even more affected accent than his own (a stretch), ‘they had Greg [some name that left me blank but to which I nodded], then next week they have…[another blank] and David Hasselhoff.’
I was immediately shaken in my semi-soaked state. By the time I had swum to the top I was all
Knight Rider. A shadowy flight into a dangerous world of a man who does not exist…
I was lost somewhere between the red polo neck, buoy and bomber jacket with multiple theme tunes waving through me. My childhood hero was coming.
Although having said that, The Hoff appears to have been more lost than messianic in recent years, the depths of which were that video of him slurring and vomiting in a drunken mess on the bathroom floor. It almost goes without saying that he will fit in perfectly here. But, seriously, beneath the theme tune and the 80’s sheen (because everything from the 80s glitters) there was a lingering doubt. He’s 60, dating a girl in her 20s, this coming or arrival may more likely be the final awakening of my adulthood, the grit of reality, the shattering of dreams, something not far from finding out that Santa does not indeed exist.
But never mind. Hoffwatch commences Saturday 29th December, bring on that illusion-shattering-in-my-face-ugliness…
Or indeed the devil himself…shit that is scary!!