And here’s my latest from the Stanford Alumni blog…
Does anyone else remember “couples skate” at the roller skating rink? The lights would dim. That kid in the corner would stop “shooting the duck”. The disco ball would fall from the ceiling and, suddenly, the early chords of Bryan Adams’ “Heaven” would begin. That or Chicago’s “Glory of Love”…and for one brief moment you’d think that the really cute guy with the pulled up Izod collar and the pegged acid wash jeans was actually skating in your direction, until he put his toe forward to brake and exited from the carpeted rink to go buy a hot dog from the concession.
Well, for those of you who do remember, please pause for a moment of reflection. For I, too, remember. And my memory was jogged this morning in my continual quest to organize my closet…when I came upon my journal of poems from the seventh grade. And there, in between one entitled “Summer is Over” and one aptly named “Winter Formal Blues”, I came across “Skating Rink” and, now, I share it with you…please forgive the awkward rhymes. I was just beginning…
by Katie Mauro (age 12)
The people around me all stand in a trance
As the music rolls on, they wait for their chance
Girls on one side, boys on another
Too embarrassed to even talk to each other
The skate with a boy is the ultimate goal
But no boy wants to take on that “ask the girl” role
The slow song is playing, the lights they are down
The wheels on the roller skates goes round and round
The only people skating are couples from the past
Skating together, making it last
The song will not end now for quite a while
So I’ll just stand here with my painted on smile
And hope for a dream before it is gone
To take someone’s hand while we skate on and on.
And there you have it. Teen angst at its finest. And I can still remember the smell of the boiling hot dogs and the squirtable nacho cheese and the elevated booth for the DJ (who, of course, had a killer mustache) and how magical it all seemed. And despite the lack of a partner for couples skate, life does go on…and the roller skate wheels do indeed go round and round.