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.

Didn't purify myself in the waters of Lake Minnetonka though.

Didn’t purify myself in the waters of Lake Minnetonka though.

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…”

BREAKING NEWS: We made Nationals.

BREAKING NEWS: We made 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.

Competition, blouses.

Competition, blouses.

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.

Yeah, the door isn't supposed to do that...

Yeah, the door isn’t supposed to do that… but do you?

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.

S00per smart.

S00per smart.

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.

Way to go, guys.

Way to go, guys.

Postmortem

  • 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.

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!

thefigureskatinglawyer

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§ One Response to On Silly Ways to Get Into Skating

  • Jack Curtis says:

    Hmnn… Ice is slippery for all and addictive for some; mastering the Axel is likely akin to always wearing long-sleeved shirts, even in hot weather re another sort of addiction..

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