Saturday, August 20, 2005

Just Skatin'

I tried to get out of skating today since it is day #4 of my new exercise routine and I am darned tired.  The skies looked really threatening since it had rained hard all night (thank heaven!) So I said to Dave, “I don’t think I should skate today since the streets are still a little wet”. He said “ That shouldn’t stop you.” Oh.

So I went.

It was cool, very damp and pretty quiet since it is Saturday. Like a school girl of six I elected to cross the big street and skate along the pond to a different area of the neighborhood. I get bored looking at the same scenery everyday. The pond offers lots of stimulation since I get to practice the new Olympic sport, the Goose Poop Slalom. Due to the recent rains the course was in very good condition and I didn’t pick up any unwanted debris.

 

I meet the occasional jogger, and smile and nod, then meet them again on the way back as I usually go around the block to extend my skate on the flatter pavements. I zoom by the jogger and let the wind carry my sweat droplets in their direction. After all they are younger and much fitter than I, so I take advantage and enjoy this bit of revenge acknowledgement of their youth. I am glad to be gliding and not have my breasts endure the Robin in Spring bobbing. No sports bra on earth can contain them at the pace of a jogger, I don’t care what  you say.

 

Speaking of sports bras, this is a good time to bring up the subject of how I reduce my self-esteem. I wear said bra and having the sun at my back, I watch my shadow as I skate. The flab around my middle shifts from left to right as I glide and never seems to disappear. Grrr. Then I glance at my reflection in the car windows as I pass, and that is also not a pretty sight. I am determined to skate upright, ribcage at 180º to the pavement and an imaginary wire pulling my head upright. This is simple if the street is flat, but on hills I look like Mrs. Neanderthal on her way to work.

 

Today I was hailed by a lady driving a Poop Patrol truck. (is a theme developing here?). She has clients in the neighborhood and has seen me skate several times. It seems she has a question to ask me, so I undo my mp3 earplugs and put Frank Sinatra on hold and roll around her until I stop and catch my balance.

 

“I’ve seen you skating and I wanted to ask…(here it comes, the inevitable question) How do you stop?” I take a breath, ready to be the Rollerblade Authority, the Pontificator on Ball Bearings, the Know It All Hot Shot that I have become in my later years and…I’ve got nuthin’. I gotta admit I still haven’t learned how to stop. I tell her weakly that I turn right at corners hugging the curb and then if I want to go left, I skate around until I am heading in the right direction. I admit my age and bravely boast that this is my second year and I still haven’t fallen, but every time I say that I tempt fate.

 

She tells me that she skates too, or did, and even bought a cable that works like a bicycle break. $100 and she tried it once.

We are in the same boat. Fear of using the skate brake that is on the back of the skate. Sure I’ve seen 8 year olds do it, those reckless kids with no knee pads or helmets. Still I can’t bring myself to rely on that wedge to stop me without  toppling me overboard.  

Maybe tomorrow I’ll work on stopping. Wait. That has a familiar ring to it.

O yeah. I usually say that in reference to cocktails at 5.

 

10 comments:

  1. Bring your heels together and you'll turn round, thus reducing your speed and coming to a stop albeit you are facing in the opposite direction. Or if you arn't going at the speed of light turn your foot in and push away from yourself. Be careful with this one as get it wrong and you could a) land on your rump and b) even worse sprain your ankle! Just trying to be helpful but not wanting you to damage yourself! Practise in a quiet corner!

    ReplyDelete
  2. You are so brave. The thought of skating and falling is enough for me. I am not graceful enough to keep off my "arse." Worse would be to land with wrists extended thereby ending knitting or sewing. Then it would be awful living with me... even for me.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Day 4 of the exercise program... doing the same exercise? If this was day 4 of skating in a row... your body needs to rest. At most 2 days of skating, then a day cross training (weight training or yoga), with 2 full days of rest thrown in.

    When we almost moved to the Netherlands, I was going to take up skating over riding a bike again... but the move fell through.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I admire your tenacious spirit Mrs. Mel.

    ReplyDelete
  5. You are so funny. I am still laughing out loud. I have bladed for 12 years and still do not know how to stop. It's way to complicated and I am way to old (as you are too!!) to learn. Trees are a good brake and I just give myself a half mile to coast to a halt. I could have written what you wrote, it is so me. I only blade in Florida because the paths are so smooth and I am a chicken. Every now and then an iguana runs by the path and gives me a mile heart attack. When that happens, I wish I could stop on demand.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Try the T stop. Put your less dominant skate foot behind the other one, perpendicularly so that the inside part of your skate/foot/wheels is dragging. That's the easiest way to stop.

    I'm so impressed by your new exercise regimen.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous9:32 PM

    Excellent, love it! » » »

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous12:16 AM

    That's a great story. Waiting for more. »

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous3:32 PM

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Hello,
So nice of you to drop by. I love your comments, and if you would really like a reply, please email me at fibermania at g mail dot com