Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I went through a season between 4th and 7th grade where I had few to no friends. In all honesty I can't remember minding all that much. Instead I just adapted games to play by myself. These ranged from Boxcar Children (er, Child) to Orphans (which included closing myself into my closet with the lights out and huddling myself around a Christmas candle). One time I even found an unhatched goose egg out our neighborhood pond and attempted to hatch it in that same orphanage (or, closet), so I could be like Anna Paquin in Fly Away Home (I wanted unconditional adoration... is that really so much to ask for?). When it didn't hatch after several weeks I angrily took it back to the pond and threw it against a tree then cried as the yolk ran down. All so dramatic.

My favorite solo-playing though was an activity I have since labeled "Figure Blading." My only real friend at the time was a lithe and graceful figure skater... all things that I was not. BUT I could tear up the driveway on a pair of rollerblades. Many afternoons you could find me outside on the driveway with Celine Dion, Amy Grant or Toni Braxton's "Unbreak My Heart," blasting through my small CD player (actually my little sister's. Sometimes I could coerce her to 'blade with me, but seeing as how she actually had a group of friends, that wasn't all that often). I would "choreograph" long routines to these melancholy tunes while singing at the top of my lungs. My tricks included gliding on one foot, hopping a short distance, and "spinning" in long, slow, languid circles. I had dreams that some famous agent would drive past our cul-de-sac and discover me beautifully and artistically figure blading about our slab of cement. Of course, that never happened, and the hours I spent on the driveway were all for naught, but in those moments I did feel gloriously graceful. Looking back, of course, I realize that my infatuation with such games could have been the very reasons I didn't have people banging down my door to hang out with me.

But, if figure blading is, in fact, your cup of tea, just come knock of my closet door and join me for a rousing round of orphans first.


Heather said...

Ha! You crack me up.

Coach KC said...

This is my first visit to your blog and I am now going to be a loyal reader! First, the name jumped out at me. But then, I read your figure blading post! My sister and I were also figure bladers. I was "Livin' on the Edge" by Aerosmith for my short program and a combo of two others for the long program. We had a brick patio in the backyard on which we performed our graceful routines. The boys behind us used to make fun over the fence, but we never let it ruin the Winter Olympic trials or medal performances that took place. Thanks for writing this post. I though we were the only ones who did this!

kels said...

hi. lar. ious. !!!!!!!!!! oh my gosh, i can't stop laughing. i was the exact same way as a kid... playing by myself and adapting games to one-player only. too funny!