Roller Skating in the 80s!
skate, the hokey-pokey, Simon Says and
the amazing feeling of cruising around the skating rink backwards – that
was roller skating in the 80s. When the weather was bad or you needed a
cool escape from the summertime heat, the roller rink was the perfect
retreat. It offered good music, a fun activity, junk food a-plenty and
the promise of cute boys.
Dark and wondrous inside, even in the middle of the afternoon, the roller
rink was like
another world. These were the days when kids weren’t monitored as
closely by parents, and so mine just dropped me off there with a friend
or two where we were left to our own devices. It was all very innocent,
but it felt oh-so-grownup at the time.
I always coveted the skate bunnies that had their own skates. You knew
they hadn’t rented because theirs were white and often sported brightly
colored pom-poms on the toes. Meanwhile, I was left doing the best I
could with the rental-tan skates . . . sigh. My bunnyhood would have to
wait for other endeavors.
My roller-rink-as-social-hangout years overlapped both with my
parachute pants phase as well as the
popularity of Eddie Grant’s “Electric Avenue” and Billy Squire’s “The
Stroke.” These were good times with great music and suspect fashions.
My son was recently invited to a roller skating party. I went with him and
gave it a go – in a word, ouch. In case you’re wondering, roller skating
is NOT like riding a bike. You do actually forget how to do it, and the
falls that didn’t faze me at 10, hurt like hell now. No more backward
skating for me, and my days of hokey-pokeying while on skates are good