Ice, Ice, Baby

25 Jan

Dun dun dun digg-a dun dun.
Happy Lollipop Tuesday!  If you’re still unclear about how awesome Tuesdays on thejackieblog are, check out my handy dandy new page on the top, titled “What’s Lollipop Tuesday?”  Welcome to the party.  Sit down.  Have a beer.
I have had the nagging desire to go ice skating since I first moved to the city to go to college.   Being the antisocial, anti-change, anti-courageous dumpling that I am, I’ve never been able to muster the mojo to go.  It’s been 5 years.
But hey – there’s nothing like the pressure of Freshly Pressed and some serious new traffic to turn on the heat.  So last night at 8pm, I waddled myself out onto a large, intimidating slab of ice.
I’m slightly alarmed at how easily the general public is allowed to strap on a pair of thin steel blades and go gallavanting on a manmade ice pond.  I feel as if some sort of training is in order.  Or a permit. 
At least a tutorial on how to put the skates on.  I consider myself to be a generally intuitive person.  Rental Ice Skates, however, are not intuitive.  To be frank, they’re more like medieval torture devices than ice skates.   Dave, concerned about my ability to ice skate when I can barely demonstrate balance with sneakers in the cereal aisle, decided it was best for my safety to make sure I was strapped in good and tight.  Something about ankle safety.  I couldn’t really tell you; I was focusing on my newly acquired vice grips and the lack of blood going to my toes.
Donning my bright blue slippers of death, I slowly inched toward the gladiator’s arena.
And I mean inched.  Like a one-legged penguin.
When I finally arrived to the ramp, I was glad to see that there were very few people partaking in the hidden joys of ice skating that particular evening.  What I wasn’t glad to see was that they all appeared to be Olympians.
People were skating in circles, backward, forward, in couples, legs in the air, speed skating… it was a jungle out there.  A big, scary, icy jungle of doom.  And I was right in the thick of it, waddling.
I started out slow.  Mostly because the majority of my brain power was replaying videos of Nancy Kerrigan in my head in beautiful tiny skater lady dresses and sparkly tights (and larger than average nostrils).   How could she…how could anyone be graceful in this getup? 
Dave was a champ.  He was the third wheel to my tricycle and he lovingly pretended that he didn’t know what he was doing because he knows how hard it is for me to suck so terribly at new things.  But when I pulled him every which way so that I weebled and wobbled but wouldn’t fall down, I got the nagging feeling that he was no beginner.
My suspicions proved true when, after I’d thrown in the towel, he took a few laps on his own, quickly, balanced, and even doing a tight little spinny thing to get to the carpeted ramp.
Damn actors.
I really did stick at it, and for that I can say I’m proud.  I started at a firm, slow waddle and holding onto Dave for dear life.  I finished unattached, at a decent speed, and slightly balanced.   I’d say I was a level 1 when I started and when I finished I was a solid level 3.
I’m so sorry about those darn Dungeons and Dragons references.   They just creep up on me.
For some reason I got it in my head that I couldn’t truly say that I had experienced ice skating unless I experienced falling.   But, scared to death to fall because I’m as fragile as Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas (sans sewing skills), I couldn’t just make it happen.  It had to happen naturally.
And it did.
I’ll be sporting a minor limp today at work, due to the massive and super awesome wipeout I had in the center of the rink. 
So it’s official: I can cross this one off my bucket list.  Five years of fear was conquered by one fairly daunting subscriber base.   Wow…Who knows what the pressure might drive me to do by week 52. 

7 Responses to “Ice, Ice, Baby”

  1. Zenalicious Mommy January 25, 2011 at 9:47 am #

    Rollerskating is a far better sport IMO. It hurts far less when you fall and you dont have to worry about a someone elses sharp blade lacerating your body while you struggle to get up. LOL.

    BRavo to you because I went ice skating a few years ago and thought I was doing swell (definitely moved into a level 4!) until a group of kids slammed into me. (there was a birthday party going on and no joke they were all using sign language so they were watching each other instead of watching ME).

    Can’t wait to see what next week brings…


    • Lori January 25, 2011 at 11:16 am #

      YES! about the lacerating. My roommate has a fear that she’s going to fall and someone’s ice skate is going to slice off her finger.


      • Jackie January 25, 2011 at 7:27 pm #

        I was thinking the entire time about how much less treacherous rollerskating is.

        Though I recall my local skating rink had its outer wall lined with shaggy carpet, which I gripped out of paralyzing fear my first few times there.


  2. Lori January 25, 2011 at 11:14 am #

    It’s amazing to me that we both grew up in Pennsylvania and managed to not ice skate until we were 24 years old (almost 25 for me!). I went for the first time in December, and it wasn’t nearly as scary as I expected, though your description of your experience would probably adequately describe my experience as well.


    • Jackie January 25, 2011 at 7:25 pm #

      I attribute it to my unwillingness to do anything outside my comfort zone. Which will hopefully be chipped away to the point of nonexistence by Jan. 2nd of next year.


  3. pegoleg January 25, 2011 at 5:45 pm #

    Your photo is very Dorothy-Meets-Blue-Man-Group. Just click your heels together and repeat, “There’s no place like the fifth circle of hell that is an ice-skating rink, there’s no place like..” (Suggested with all the bitterness of the life-long weak-ankled.)


    • Jackie January 25, 2011 at 7:24 pm #

      LOL you’re such a riot. I always love your comments.


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