Bouldering & Buildering

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sun Nov 28 21:23:20 UTC 1999

     Everest is all over the place lately.  The IMAX Everest movie was shown on tv.  A George Mallory biography was excerpted in today's Sunday NY Post.
    I've been reading HIGH EXPOSURE by David Breashears (who filmed the IMAX movie).  He briefly explains two terms:  bouldering and buildering.
    The OED has "bouldering" from 1920.
    I'm having difficulty with "buildering."  I looked in the OED, OED Additions, Barnhart's, and 50 Years of Among the New Words.  Maybe I just missed it.

7 November 1977, NEWSWEEK, "Trade-Center Stunts," pg. 18, col. 1:  Moreover, their successful feats have given rise to an increasingly popular sport known as "buildering," in which city-dwelling adventurers pit their skills against man-made structures.

3 May 1978, WASHINGTON POST, "Scaling Concrete Heights: There's an 'Outlaw Appeal' to the Growing Sport of Buildering," pg. D1, col. 1:

     Buildering, or the art of climbing buildings is a little-known sport that has been given greater public notice by climbs like Joseph Healy's ascent of Chicago's Sears Tower on Monday and George Willig's conquering of the World Trade Center last May. (...)
     The name comes from bouldering, a form of practice-climbing done on small rocks that can be jumped or fallen off without serious bodily harm.  One of the first printed references to buildering is in a 1930s volume called "The Night Climbers of Cambridge," detailing how devil-amy-care undergraduate curfew-breakers took to climbing buildings to get back into the college after the administration had made fences too horid to attempt.

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