Global Skiing League
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The Global Skiing League (GSL) is an organization of skiing professionals world wide. The headquarters of the GSL are based in Wladiwostok.
One of the main activities of the GSL is, to organize conventions on nonsensical subjects like the rights of flowers to keep their bright colors and the rights of ducks to have access to proper sanitary facilities in urban areas. They organize these conventions in places where there are ample skiing facilities, like the Sahara and the Gobi Desert. The city of Wladiwostok itself has fantastic high mountains with snowy summits. This was not the main reason for choosing Wladiwostok for the HQ of the GSL though, the central location of this city in the rest of the world in general and Alaska in particular was decisive for that decision, at least that is the official reason that is given for the choice of this location.
edit Mission of the GSL
The main mission of the GSL is, to have at least one nonsensical convention organized in at least one city per country of the world. In order to be able to ski in countries that traditionally do not cater for this sport, mostly this is for religious or cultural reasons, a mobile 1:1 real size replica of the Matterhorn is taken to the country in the days prior to the convention. At customs, people do often complain about the size of this luggage, but in general, there are no problems taking this "GSL-Matterhorn" as it is called to a country. At times, even the head of a country is involved as hosting a convention in the country is good for its economy and welfare.
Creating the GSL-Matterhorn has taken centuries, as sculptors could easily work on the first few meters of the full size replica of the mountain, at larger heights this became somewhat problematic. The GSL-Matterhorn was finished in the year 1979. In that year, the snow was added to the top of the artificial mountain by a very large team of bakers, who considered this the finishing touch of the project. Whilst the Matterhorn was a Swiss invention, or to be more accurate the result of a combined Swiss-Italian Venture, the GSL-Matterhorn replica was made in China, after which it was taken into mass production. Why go to Switzelland if you can ski on a fake mountain? is the slogan of the product.
edit Strategies of the GSL
A common strategy is, to convince the mayor of a not so well known city to make his city world famous by hosting a very important convention. Often, making the mayor jealous of other cities in his country that are already world famous because of some unimportant Treaty or Convention or Conference helps in letting him make the right decision for his city. If this strategy does not work, alternative strategies are to convince the mayor's wife that it would be so nice for the city to have its own convention, or even his children or his pets.
In those rare cases that a mayor's pets are convinced that the city should have its own convention, things get interesting, as the pets must in turn be able to convince their owners of that fact. Some members of the GSL are specialized in animal psychology just for that reason, and in recent years even animals themselves have been recruited as members of the GSL. The most empatic animals that have the best results appear to be ants. It helps, that the ant is very good at communicating with mayors and mayor's children.
Another strategy of the GSL is, to make advertisements on a convention of their choice in local newspapers of the city. This gets the locals talking on the subject, which prepares them for the idea that a convention would be a useful thing for the city. Several conventions that were initiated by the GSL were based on such rumors. Usually, when the local population is in favor, the mayor will go along just fine.