OK. So here’s how it went down, *snicker* (you’ll get it later) the Monkey’s school had a roller skating party for the 4th & 5th graders this last Friday night. She was sooo excited! She looked so cute when we went in, getting her skates and lacing them up…and sitting on the bench for ten minutes. What? Come on! I informed her that if she was planning on skating she needed to get going as the party was only 2 hours long and we would be leaving 1/2 hour early as she had slumber party guests arriving shortly after 8:00. She was so nervous, she just kept “scooting” around the outer perimeter by the snack bar. Now this kid knows how to skate, her Dad took her skating nearly every weekend for a while. What’s the big deal? Then it hit me…a boy. Not just any boy. The monkey likes Boy A, Boy A likes the Monkey, as a friend, they pal around quite a bit in school. Now I explained to her that when you are a 10 year old boy, girls are nothing more than friends, barely. If you are really brave and can take the unending ridicule of your peers, you MIGHT if you absolutely had to, hold a girl’s hand, while no one was looking, for about 30 seconds. And that’s as it should be. We’ll come back to this story later.
Parents came to this event. Parents were encouraged to go skating with their children and join in the fun. Who was the ONLY parent to grab a pair of skates and lace ’em up? You guessed it. I love roller skating, and really it IS like riding a bike, you don’t forget. I kept looking at all the mom’s and dad’s standing over by the coat rack yawning, chatting, reading, sleeping. What a bunch of old farts! The Monkey thought it was way cool that I went skating (I like earning “cool mom” points) and I got to meet some of the girls she hangs out with at school this way, which is something I have wanted to do for a while now. Well, I was doing great, the crossover, the Mohawk turn, it all came back, along with memories of my first time on skates…remember that one Aunt Brenda? I kept thinking, “I am doing great! This is easy, I’m not even wobbly.” Well then they announced they were going to do limbo. I can do limbo. I know my own limitations so I figured I would do a couple turns and quit. That’s when it happened. I was in line.standing.completely.motionless. and I fell…hard, right on my tail bone. Holy Moly! It knocked the wind right out of me. I sat there thinking, “If you don’t get up right now, they are going to need a stretcher to get your big butt off this floor.” So I got up, did my pass under the limbo, did one more and then sat down. I skated for the rest of the night without incident, but man is my butt sore…you think you have enough padding back there.
Whilst I was sitting out I noticed several things, I am a people watcher, it’s what I do. On any given Friday night at any given roller rink in America you will find these things:
The new skater: this is the kid that got dragged here by his parents and/or friends against his will and is trying to make the best of it, while not becoming a permanent grease spot on the rink floor. This child will come home black and blue, if not with a cast.
The wall crawler: you know the one, the barnacle that slowly makes their way around the rink, clinging to the wall for dear life the entire way around. It’s actually kind of funny because if you are sitting at a table, they suddenly “disappear” when their skates go out from under them.
The trick skater: They occupy the center of the ring. Skating in circles for 2 hours is so beneath them. Here they are doing all kinds of wild and scary acrobatics. Some that are scary on their own, let alone with 8 wheels stuck to your feet. Cool nonetheless, you can’t help but watch them.
The I-come-here-every-Friday-night-so-I’m-so-good-that-it’s-boring skater: this is the kid who is here each week for All Skate, they are fluid, relaxed, and usually busy looking bored while they skate, looking at their nails or the floor, or whatever. “Oh this is so easy it’s just bo-ring.” *sigh*
Then there is…COUPLE’S SKATE. Oh no! Will Johnny skate with me? Johnny likes her way better. I hope so-and-so doesn’t ask me, that would be totally embarrassing. What if no one asks me at all? Ugh, what if I have to skate with my little sister?
This brings us back to the Monkey’s Dilemma in the beginning. We have, at the tender ago of 10 *ahem* a “like triangle”. There is: The Monkey, Boy A who is a cute sandy blond soccer player, and Boy B who lives across the street from us and who pals around with Monkey after school. All night long I watch Boy A glide around the rink and all the girls smile and whisper. I hear things like, “Boy A asked Girl D to couple’s skate.” “I heard Boy A asked Girl C.” Then there is the Monkey who wants to couple’s skate with Boy A…meanwhile, unbeknown to her, Boy B is watching her throughout the evening, as she skates by she says, “Hey” or waves, but doesn’t really notice him. This is the part where I am wearing the “knowing” smile because I see the misery that is about to play out. Boy A has asked someone other than the Monkey, Boy B gives up trying and asks Girl D to skate with him. Monkey has no idea who, if anyone, is going to couple’s skate with her…(insert dramatic soap opera music). What do we do? How will it all end?
Mom steps in and says, “Sorry kiddo, we can’t stay for couple’s skate, you have a slumber party waiting at home.” I’m mom, and even though I lost many cool mom points for this one, it’s ok, I’d rather be deficient in the cool mom arena than to take home a Monkey who’s heart broken because she didn’t get asked to couple’s skate. She’ll have plenty of time for those heart aches when she’s older.