Boogie Nights in a while now. It’s one of my favorite movies of all time, and not just because you get to see Mark Wahlberg’s wee-wee. This movie made me fall in love with Julianne Moore, and of course Heather Graham as Roller Girl.
Thinking about that movie made me start to reminisce about the old days, when a 12 year old-Slyde and his posse would hang out on Friday nights at a local skating rink called Hot Skates.
You have to remember that this was around 1980, when roller skating in the U.S.A. was all the rage. Every Friday night, one of our dads would drive us to Hot Skates and drop us off around 5pm, and we’d stay until 10. I remember feeling very “grown-up” there, because the place was basically a tween version of a singles bar.
Besides, what the Hell ELSE was I supposed to do with my Friday nights? Play with my mood rings and pet rocks?
Anyway, I have some great memories of my Friday night Hot Skates trips. Here are a few of ‘em…
- I danced my first dance with a girl there. Her name was Amy Kennedy, and when the announcer called for a “couples skate”, she grabbed my hand. She was a girl who lived on my block and she was a few years older than me. I DO believe that the lovely Amy, and that dance, was the impetus for my obsession with cougars. RAWWWR!
- I remember having to take all sorts of shit from my friends one night because I wanted to leave early because I wanted to be sure I was home in time to find out Who Shot J.R. In hindsight, the shit I took for WEEKS afterwards was probably pretty well-deserved.
- Hot Skates was also the location of my first public humiliation. One night, I skated into the bathroom to make some wee-wee. When I came out a few minutes later, I didn’t see any of my friends around, so I jetted onto the rink and started skating. As I rounded one part, I saw a group of boys all staring at me and yelling. As I got closer, much to my horror they were all screaming that I was a “fairy”, “homo”, “queer”… you get the picture. EVERY damn time I skated past these guys, they would rip into me, and everyone around them was laughing. For the life of me, I could NOT figure out what I did to these guys.
Anyway, the song ended, and the announcer called out, “Ok, that ends the ‘Ladies Only’ Skate!”
I pretty much wanted to crawl up and die.
Anyway, as I was skating down memory lane earlier, I decided to do some googling about my old hang-out. I had heard that it was, unbelievably, still up and running so finding their website wasn’t TOO much of a surprise, but I was truly giggling when I found their old local TV commercial from 1984.
Alas, i cant embed the video... clicky HERE!
Check out those clothes! I can’t laugh TOO hard, since that’s pretty much how I dressed when I was there. No, not the girls outfits, you sickos! I meant the ambiguously feminine-looking guys. Not much better, I suppose.
Anyway, this morning that commercial YANKED me by the scruff of my neck, right out of my cubicle and body-slammed me back to the early-80’s, a time when I was young, innocent, and apparently exploring my homosexuality.