On Silly Ways to Get Into Skating
June 3, 2013 § 1 Comment
The recent topics on this blog have taken a serious tone, lacking the levity to enjoy what the site usually offers. Let’s lighten it up and explore a topic I haven’t touched on yet: how I got serious about skating.
I learned how to figure skate in 2003. My repertoire of skills then included skating forwards and backwards, forward and backward crossovers, and… that’s it. I never participated in a competition or passed any tests to get out of figure skating kindergarten. After about a year in, I quit until almost the very end of my undergraduate career.
Wait, What? You’re a Figure Skater?
Second semester of my senior year, I went to a Cal Figure Skating team fundraiser and skated with friends. I skated away thinking, “Hey, I totally have enough time to learn a ton of jumps and spins, skate in two competitions, and make it to Nationals…”
In Spring 2012, that’s what happened. I clumsily learned how to barrel down the ice and complete five jumps, two spins, and an elaborate pattern of maneuvers straight down the ice. I clumsily learned to like the aesthetics of a Boeing 737 and Denver International Airport, going back and forth to and from the Colorado airport three times in a semester. I clumsily skated to Monday Night Football and clumsily accepted the hardware that came with skating against no one at my level.
Cool, that’s how I became the collegiate figure skater that I am today, plus or minus a few pounds. The thought of getting back into skating actually occurred a year earlier than that on SF MUNI, my ride-or-die method of getting around town.
Wait, What? You Met Dana King?
The epiphany to become a figure skater could not have occurred at a more bizarre time. Bizarre as in on an underground train going 30+ mph for 1.5 minutes.
The balance. The mental toughness. The facial and emotional expressions necessary to give a gritty, successful performance on the ice. Sure, there are safer times and places to stumble upon your destiny of axels and Olympic appearances, but if it happens when you’re in a fully-packed, moving train car, you gotta do it.
Rather than someone pressing the button to stop the train, the ~300 commuters in the train car enjoyed the complimentary air conditioning, the distance away from the open door, and the driver’s punctuality with the schedule. I mean, seriously, why stupidly risk your life standing by the open door of a moving car, when you can stand safely at a distance judging those standing by the open door? But seriously though, WHAT IS THIS I DON’T EVEN, WON’T SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDREN? Here’s what now-retired and then-news anchor Dana King’s positive words on the scene. wait a minute, they’re not positive at all…
The consequences of having this figure skating epiphany at that time? A suspended driver for not locking that door, cameo appearances by Supervisor Scott Wiener and aspiring cameraperson Alexander Merenkov, and a delayed commute for those looking forward to getting down on Friday. Brutal.
- Supervisor’s gonna supervise. Scott Wiener still represents District 8 of San Francisco.
- Alexander Merenkov is still taking videos of Bay Area public transportation.
- I don’t know if the driver still drives for SF MUNI.
- Headphones d00d, hope you’re doing okay, bro.
- As for me? Skater’s gonna skate, have his edges down, and learn how to do axels. Still searching for that full-time job though. Go Bears and happy Monday!