Sunday, July 7, 2013


Nothing about roller skating is remotely appealing to me.  I don't really understand how to do it, and I am physically incapable of making the skates cooperate.  In my mind, I feel as though I look like a newborn calf trying to walk for the first time.  On the other hand, my other half is somewhat of a roller disco phenom.  Jambo loves to tear up a skating rink, and if they ever cast an all black remake of Xanadu, he'd gladly take over for Olivia.

Well, Jambo recently celebrated a birthday, and wanted nothing more than to skate the night away.  He had his heart set on be-bopping around the rink to his favorite hits such as "No Parking on the Dancefloor" and "Don't Stop Til You Get Enough."

Obliging, since it was his birthday, I rounded up a couple of people and headed to the skate center.  I did some research before hand, and on this particular evening it was supposed to be Adult Skate.  I also really wanted to take my own Rollerblades in - those I can handle, and although I cannot stop smoothly on Rollerblades, I can at least do a few laps without looking like a complete fool - but I was informed that if I had worn my blades outside, I would be unable to bring them into the rink.  Who the hell has a pair of indoor only Rollerblades anyway?  Jambo however, came prepared, and brought a pair of his very own roller skates to use.

Within moments of stepping inside, my anxiety level shot through the roof.  The place was packed...with children.  Everywhere I looked children and tweens and teens were zipping around the place on skates.  It appeared as though there were even skate gangs.  First off, I cannot handle large groups of awkward teenagers to begin with, but I especially cannot handle them on roller skates.  These fools were zipping in and out of every nook and cranny possible...I'd be doing well enough just to stand alone on skates.

Once skated up, Jambo took off.  He left me high and dry without a second thought.  Holly had joined us for the evening and even he was able to join the flow without any second glance.  However, Petunia deiced to hold down the wall...with me.  Our job was to make sure no one ran off with the wall, mostly because we CANNOT skate.  At all.

Jambo was in his element.  He tore up the skate floor, and all the while Petunia and I watched with obscene jealously.  Even the seven year olds who littered the rink were able to jive with the best of them.  Petunia and I tried to self talk our way onto the rink, in every way possible, with no avail.

In skate world there's also a fad known as "trucking."  Trucking occurs when a group of people skate around the rink and bob to the unison with each other.  I cannot even manage a trip to the bathroom, let alone truck along with a bunch of other synchronized fools.  On roller skates, I was a complete novice...maybe even a step below a novice, and the only way to get to where the other novices skate was to cross the Ring of Death.  It's probably not refereed to as the Ring of Death to other people, but to me it is.

The Ring of Death is blocking the inner track of the skating rink where all the beginner skaters skate.  The Ring of Death is the entire floor, where anything is game.  Crossing through the Ring is social suicide.  87% of skate center participants are skating around the Ring, in top speed and doing fancy tricks where they criss-cross their legs or skate backwards...Jambo and Holly are those people.

Before long, Cookie joined us.  Cookie started off as a friend of Holly's, but now she's my friend too.  Wearing a full length skirt, Cookie tied the excess up around her knees and was ready to go.  Luckily for me, Cookie wasn't as proficient as Jambo and was also needing to skate inside the Novice Circle...inside the Ring of Death.

Cookie and I battled our way through.

Cookie was much more comfortable than I was.  I wanted nothing more than to be on the sidelines with Petunia.  I could not make my skates go the right way, and I was deathly terrified that every single person on the rink would cut in front of me causing me to flip head over heels.  My uncomfort level was through the roof and now I was trapped...all the while, Jambo kept doing circles around me.

I was in the Novice Circle and the Ring of Death was moving faster and faster.  It seemed to me as though eternity had passed, but in all actuality it had only been about nine minutes and I had only completed four laps.

Cutting my losses, I made a valiant attempt to dart across the entire rink and get back on land...and back to my shoes.  Every stride across the floor made time stand still, and the Chariots of Fire theme rang  through my ears.

Finally, I made it to my destination, right next to Petunia.  Jambo, Holly, and Cookie continued to skate merrily along, and frankly, I xana-don't plan to skate again.

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