Life was simple when I worked at Skate Junction. The day I turned 16, 29 years ago to the day, I applied for the job. For my birthday my fiends and I went skating, and the "help wanted" sign caught my eye. I had previously applied for a job as a library page that I was denied.

If I wasn't able to ride my moped to work, I took my mother's mustang, or when desperate times called for measures, I rode my brother's 250cc motorcycle. I couldn't get it out of 2nd gear though and drove very slowly sticking to the edge of the right lane.

This was my very first job, and the job of the century. My first assignment was cashier in the snack bar. After that I moved up to front office cashier, then became a floor guard and eventually was allowed to run the sound booth finding hot, 70's tunes to spin for the skaters. They only let me work the sound booth when the rockin' hot d.j. was ill or out of town which wasn't very often.

My favorite night to work was Sunday. This night was set aside for adults only. You could only enter the skating rink if you were over the age of 18, so for a 16 year old girl, pining for a handsome boy, this evening was the very best. I wore a button on my corduroy vest which read, "Boyfriend wanted: Applications now being accepted." No one ever applied.

I drank free Slush Puppies, ate gobs of salted pretzels and gigantic pickles, learned how to skate backwards faster than any girl within a 20 mile radius, and got a discount on my first pair of skates. I designed fliers for the rink, hosted parties for small children in the birthday room, cleaned skates, and received a paycheck every other week. Life was simple.

Life is still simple at times, but mostly it is different. I love where I am. I just wish the world was where it was. Simpler.

Some days I would love to slip on my skates and go round and round the roller rink without a care in the world. Some days, I'd love to drink Slush Puppies until brain freeze got the best of me, but I have traded my skates for a Suburban and the Slush Puppies for hot coffee, and I am thrilled. This is the best place to be.


Sarah Markley said…
So awesome. I always thought the girls who could skate really well and skate backward with their boyfriends were the coolest! The cleaning skates thing doesn't sound so fun, though.
Linda said…
This is good enough to be published. You should submit it. The button cracks me up.
Erin said…
Oh, I want a job at the Skate Junction...
Denise said…
happy birthday (i know i'm late- computerless).
you should- skate! kidless and with cheesecake.

34 years old and guess what i got for my last b-day.. rollerskates! not blades, but skates, sometimes you just gotta live a little like your a kid.