It’s one of those play mysteries. If I told you to strap some uncomfortable boots with sharp blades on the underside to your feet, and then go and cross a large expanse of very slippery terrain, you’d probably complain that I was try to bully you. And yet that’s exactly what people do when they go ice skating.
I’m pretty certain this is one of those types of play where it wouldn’t be half as much fun if it were safe and easy. I’ve skated quite a lot before, and every time I still feel terrified when I first step out onto the rink, feeling my feet so easily about to skid away from under me. I go slowly at first, clinging to the side.
Then I gradually, surely, speed up. Did I mention the obstacles laid out on the ice, in the form of many other human beings all also slipping around at various speeds, many of whom are young and look like they’d break easily? Despite this I’m whizzing around, dodging in and out between them, admiring those skating backwards or (show-off) doing jumps.
There’s a bit of my competitive side at play too. I want to go faster, than myself, sure, but also other people. I need to remind myself that those getting in the way aren’t to be castigated, they’re just having fun.
It’s an outside rink and one that’s seasonal. Perhaps that’s part of the magic – that I only do this play rarely and forget a little how to do it. It retains its mystery.
Roller-skating and ice-skating are two different things – I found that out the hard way – Todd Bridges
Ease of play: 3/10
Resemblance to play: 7/10
Potential frequency of play: Low-to-Medium