Epiphany Postponed in Reberty: Where is The Hoff?

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The stars are brighter when you are closer to them. Every night Orion watches my careful steps to bed, his rhinestone-studded belt blinking above the La Masse summit. But he is always out shone by the piste bashers; headlights like diamonds. These huge machines appear as stars for hunkered, set into the mountains, combing the hard packed snow in the darkness.

And it would be the light from these mechanical shepherds, that would guide The Messiah home. If he were coming, that is.

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Messiahs are unreliable. They are permitted this discourtesy because by our definition they are Divine; there must, therefore, be a reason of significance for their lateness (I wish the same could be said for mine).

So, I cradle the hope that The Hoff is late. And as my anticipation grows I imagine him bourn on the top of a piste basher (for this is most certainly how he will arrive) his singing face illuminated from beneath (never the most flattering lighting, I grant you) by the machine’s huge strobe-like headlamps…

Which brings me to the what might be the most interesting part of the promised arrival of The Hoff; the excitement and anticipation it sparks in others. Because while The Hoff’s star has burnt out somewhat since the days of Knight Rider and Baywatch, mention his name to anyone, any age, and there is no doubt as to who he is and a dusting of either excitement or slight hilarity descends.

Personally, I have kept a close eye on the Powder and Shine chalet next door. For several days now it has been conspicuously empty, as if preparations are being made. One guest speculated that perhaps the chalet was being sprinkled with sand and hung with red buoys in honour and respect of the arrival.

Another wondered, how his arrival would come about. Helichopper, surely. Lowered on a rope to the piste all the while singing about getting in his car (a popular song of his, according to the same guest). I wonder now if he might do this clad in leather and red polo neck pulled up as far as it will go to stave off the cold.

If this happens then skiers and snowboarders will halt in respect. Snow will spray simultaneously before arms are raised to sway and lighters are struck to salute the rock ballad and its perpetrator.

But how to meet him? Shyness, awe, a heightened sense of the ridiculous cannot defeat a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet and touch a deity. Licking will only be permitted if he is wearing a onsie (see YouTube ‘onesie licking’ clips, a barely recognised Three Valleys pass time).

‘Disturb him in the outdoor
hot tub. You can see it from the balcony,’ one guest pointed eagerly through the break in the soffit to the next-door balcony. I wondered briefly how she thought I would disturb him, before she went on; ‘you might be able to take a photograph of his arm…’

‘Take him out,’ another said. I choked back an ‘easier said than done,’ and instead politely pointed out that I would have to meet him first and the chances of him saying yes were small to not at all. ‘No, on the slopes; floor him,’ she said, her usually angelic face suddenly devious.

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Another guest giggled: ‘Imagine, he’s parallel turning, it’s neat, tidy, competent but not out of this world. He’s wearing a yellow onesie, it catches the sun when he turns. Perhaps the sheen of the suit blinded you because you hurtle into him, blindsiding him, having taken some air from the lumpy off-piste, arms waving, feet clueless about how to – and oooops, you caught an edge, this is going to be bad – straight across the yellow skier, on your back and he’s down too! The Hoff is down!’

A great plan, but the outcome is unpredictable: a polite apology, feigned dawning recognition, an embarrassed request for a photograph before sliding away with the prize and the seeds of a blog entry in my tangled mind; or, The Hoff takes exception. He is getting on and the crash has exacerbated an old crime fighting or life saving injury. He is unhappy; a strong believer in technique before speed. He is hurting, his fur lined hood is ripped, he has no patience with those who cannot control themselves on the slope, its just like being on the beach again, so many careless people waiting to be saved, asking for it, well he’ll show them, by god he will: he breaks my face.

Even that situation would not be lost, surely the Daily Mail would buy Hoff Breaks My Face article?

But none of this matters if The Hoff doesn’t come. Some religions are simply prepared to worship and wait. This one is more aggressive; a dance, a drug or a sacrifice are in order…

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