People Still Roller Skate and other Saturday Revelations

McKenna had a birthday party today for a classmate at her nursery school, and the party was at a roller rink. After overcoming our surprise that a roller rink still existed in suburban America in 2014, we discovered that it was only about a mile from our house. I think I would have been less surprised to find Harry Potter’s secret train platform 9 3/4 than I was to find that roller rink stashed behind the Waffle House on Hull Street.

Entering the rink – named Skate Away – was like being transported back in time to 1989. It was an old-school skating rink, complete with disco balls and stuff.

Somewhere up there is the sign to notify skaters when couples skate has begun.

Somewhere up there is the sign to notify skaters when couples skate has begun.

At least as surprising as finding a skating rink were the following discoveries, made at the skating rink:

  • Someone remade and remixed “Who Let the Dogs Out,” filling a void in the lives of all of us.
  • There are people in Virginia who still own roller blades and use them. And I’m not counting the people who haven’t bothered to purge twenty-year-old roller blades that have served as a hangout for spiders in a garage since before the turn of the century. The roller blades users I’m referring to were people who had clearly been using roller blades in the last year – it was like seeing someone who knew how to load a Revolutionary War-era musket.


  • Young children skate at about the same rate as a fast-moving glacier, meaning that the party was nearly over in the time it took kids to circumnavigate the rink once. I have sped up the video below 7,000,000,000 times to enable you to see movement from the skaters.

Photo Sep 27, 9 31 14 PM

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