Next Generation Speedster


No matter how long you’ve know somebody or how close you may believe yourselves to be, there are always some things about each other that you may not realize.  Beliefs, idiosyncrasies, fears.  Any number of surprises waiting to be discovered.  Over the past year many of us were faced with the reality of good friends, even family in some cases, that we were much farther apart from politically than ever before imagined.

My wife recently learned something new about me.  Not really a secret, nothing intentionally kept from her, but a skill that she had never seen me demonstrate in all of our years together.  She found out that I’m a kick ass roller skater.

Some of you are probably laughing right now, and I understand that. This beer belly doesn’t exactly scream athleticism and most days my gait is closer to Fred Sanford than Scott Hamilton.

It may also be that you are too young to understand, coming of age in an era that gave you a wider variety of things to do on a Friday night or Saturday afternoon.  If that’s the case, you probably didn’t understand the Fred Sanford reference.  You probably don’t know what it means to “shoot the duck” or ever bruised a tailbone showing off to Van Halen’s “Jump.”  Your first taste of romance probably wasn’t holding a sweaty hand while couple’s skating to Journey or REO Speedwagon.

If you did, then you understand how cool this makes me.  How impressive that after a twenty five year hiatus I was able to lace ’em up and not completely embarrass myself, only falling down once during the three times we’ve gone these past two weeks and not severely injuring myself.

Alaina’s first attempt at following me down this road to awesomeness wasn’t overly successful but I didn’t push her to continue trying as much as I may have another day.  As much as I sympathized with the parent’s trying to hold a winter birthday party on Super Bowl Sunday and appreciated that it was held several hours before kickoff, I deemed the risk of an afternoon in Emergency Care too great.  Everybody seemed content with cake and the video game options available at the facility so I let it go.


Secret Skill
not quite ready to borrow my keys


She, however, was not.  With yet another birthday party looming at the same place the following weekend, I wasn’t at all surprised that only a few hours later she was asking if we would be able to go back and practice before then.  For my local readers, Tri-State Speedway in Dudley, Mass has a rink that is much slower than the one in Plainfield, as well as a go kart track, bumper cars, mini golf and a large soft play obstacle course.  As an added bonus, there is a sports bar attached. It was the perfect place to refine her skills.


An Unknown Skill
the face of determination


The practice paid off, as it usually does.  She still wasn’t comfortable hitting the hardwood without assistance, but the kid was doing some serious cruising and had to be coerced off the track when it was time for pizza.  Once again, she made this dad proud.


getting the hang of it


There aren’t any more skating parties in the near future, but she’s asking to go back.  It’s a great way to get some exercise during these last few cold months and one of our jobs as parents is to pass along our knowledge and skills.  Its also more fun than I should probably admit whipping around and reliving my youth.  I just need these blisters to heal first.



40 thoughts on “Next Generation Speedster”

  1. Brings back memories of my son learning to skate at a local rink, where birthday parties were popular. In those days, roller blades were the rage. On the other hand, I broke my leg roller skating when I was 10 and never mustered the courage to get back on skates, ever again. My skating was outdoors, in the Bronx, and I tripped on a sidewalk crack. Not cool at all.

    1. sounds painful. I never had the nerve to try on roller blades. Maybe its because I never Ice Skated, but they just look hard.

  2. I spent countless hours at a roller skating rink. It’s sad there isn’t one open anymore in my area. I too having a winter birthday had many parties at the rink (unless it snowed too much that day and needed to be canceled 😉

    1. The party place is only open a few days a week, but I was pretty happy to find somewhere else within a half hour drive. We had fun

  3. We must be in the same age group. I have similar memories of roller skating. However, unlike you, I wasn’t very good.
    Good for Alaina for striving to improve.

  4. She gets it from her Daddy! Too cute!

    Back in my day, (God, did I just say that?) I was pretty good on skates too. Is it wrong to force my son to have his next bday party at a skating rink? Hmmm.

  5. Next up…father-daughter roller derby! Or not. She looks fantastic! Though I don’t remember getting to have a little roller bar when learning to skate. Kids have it so lucky these days! Thanks for joining us at the #happynowlinkup!

  6. I used to love rollerskating when I was younger. I’d probably be pants now. I have no co-ordination or balance! Thanks for linking up to #ThatFridayLinky

    1. I’m not sure anyone is cool enough to say “slamming beats” but my wife laughs at a lot of my phrases, so I’m not going to judge

  7. Oh gosh, roller skating to REO Speedwagon took me right back! I grew up in the USA but live in England now and they just don’t seem to have roller skating places here. I would love to go roller skating again! #familyfun

  8. Wow, I’m impressed with your roller blading skills. I never really got to grips with wheels but I did go ice-skating (don’t know why I considered blades were safer lol)
    I hope you keep going with your daughter. It’s great to find an activity you can enjoy together.

  9. I used to love roller-skating as a child. I’d love to give it another go now. In my head I’m still as awesome as I was back then but I bet the reality is a whole lot different 😂😂😂. There is a roller derby club just down the road and I’m so tempted to join but I’m hesitant in case I can’t skate anymore ha.

  10. I used to LOVE rollerskating as a child. I haven’t done it in years but I would absolutely love to. Although I doubt I’d be any good at it now. Good on your little one for giving it ago, it can be quite scary. It is definitely nice for daddy and daughter to have an activity together so I hope you keep it up. Thanks for joining us at #familyfun xx

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