A long time ago in an ice rink far, far away…
A Padawan skater schooled in the ways of
polyurethane roll, is being lured toward the razor’s edge
of the steel single blade…
I feel as helpless as Obi-Wan Kenobi watching security holograms in the aftermath of the Jedi Temple massacre. Speedy Weezy, my son, was the one who would bring balance to my inline skating career, rising to become a greater inline skater than I could ever hope to be. But now, with the influence of a very cunning and patient coach (a Dark Lord of the Olympic Ice Oval) and non-stop U.S. Speedskating coverage, Speedy Weezy wants to understand the ways of the Cold Side of the Blade.
After a less than stellar first attempt at ice a few months ago, I was surprised when Speedy told me he wanted to give it a go on the frozen oval again. But I understood. We’d been really wrapped up in what Shani, Apolo and Chad were achieving in Vancouver, so knowing there’s no Gold-On-A-Rope at the end of the inline track, I figured it’d be good to allow this indulgence. Anyway, the ice program here in Fort Collins is very well supported by the city, the coach is world-class, and the facility is excellent, clean & safe. If he’s going to get into something, this is something he can potentially take somewhere.
Being that this was only his second time on ice speed skates, probably the 4th time ever actually skating on ice, I’ll admit that a father’s pride started to swell. The kid has a natural ability I just don’t have.
The coach made it a point to tell me how well Speedy is handling his edges. I was really impressed when it came time for balancing on one skate and maneuvering around the cones. He did it with relative ease, considering it was his first time trying it.
I’ve got to admit, the kid was making it look so easy, I was re-considering ice. But I’ve got to stop myself because I really want him to find “his sport” without me being “the old man” who’s always gloaming along. I guess if it worked out that ice is his thing, that would be pretty cool.
I’ll give him this too, he’s brave. Last time we tried this, he took a spill that would have ended my career really quickly. But this guy’s got guts. I admire him for getting out there and facing his fear of falling. He fell a couple of times during the practice, but he got right back up with that victorious “I’m alright!” reserved for sports heroes like him – the guys that get out there and give it their all, fall down 7 times, get up 8.
At the end of the day, I’m just happy Speedy is going deeper into sports because he wants too. As his parents, we’re not pushing we’re only consulting. Whatever he wants to try that’s OK. But you know I’ll be standing on the sideline using Jedi mind tricks to make him believe inline is ultimately the side to be on.
In racing news…We’re off to Wichita today for the Wichita Speed Skating 2010 Classic. This is Speedy’s first meet, and we’re really excited to be going. It’ll be a 9 hour trip in a rented Prius, but with the recent accelerator enhancements Toyota has admitted to, we should get there pretty quickly.
With any luck, we’ll be broadcasting live on FirstLoser TV! Provided there’s wireless connectivity at Roller City, we’ll be on the air. Announcements will be made via Twitter and Facebook if it works. No Ross & Chelsea color commentary, but a streaming feed to let you peer into the action. Keep your fingers crossed…
2/23/10 Training: Last practice before Wichita. This was the largest Rink Rabbit class we’ve had to date, and we were even short 4 regulars. I need to talk to the head coach, this thing is getting too big! The kids are in great shape – this is going to be a fun meet!
2/24/10 Training: Wasn’t able to get a workout in today. Call it a day off.
2/25/10 Training: 12 smooth miles on the trail in Loveland at lunch. I miss my buddy John, who’s gone off to Mt. Shasta. That aside, had a great skate, the weather was perfect.