I have probably heard or read this phrase once or twice before, but if so, then for whatever reason it never really stuck. However last night I was flipping through the Fall 2008 Patagonia catalog and there was an amazing photo of Colin Haley. He was on a wall in Argentina and it looks like it was pretty nasty out. He has some snow on his jacket, his helmet was wet, and his nose was covered in slush. The caption read:
Colin Haley grins through some screaming barfies – the painful sensation of blood rewarming frozen hands that have been elevated above the heart during climbing.
Anyone who climbs often knows this sensation. I remember being shocked by the pain the first time I ice climbed… I’m not sure it made me want to scream and barf at the same time, but that is as awesome a name for it as you will find.
Edit: After posting this I found a hilarious photo montage, over on the The Mountain Culture blog, of someone acting out (I think) the screaming barfies – which they call the screaming meemies: http://www.themountainculture.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/01/screaming-meemies-lg.jpg