January 9, 2012 § Leave a Comment
By Katherine Proctor
They’re doing the limbo, because they’re in a roller rink, because Valerie’s retiring and she’s kind of confused about what exactly is supposed to happen at a retirement party, because she’s three hundred and fifty, so she requested that 1) it be at a roller rink and 2) that buffalo wings be served. People are pretty psyched about the buffalo wings, but not so much about the roller rink because, though most of them are not three hundred and fifty, they still consider themselves to be above the average age and the average intellect of the average roller rink patron. Plus, though they’re not sharing this with the others, they all take secret pleasure in the fact that if they were roller rink proprietors they could come up with a significantly more creative name than “Rollerland.” They’re all laughing on the inside at Valerie, because not only did she elect to conclude eight thousand years of service in a venue most frequently utilized for second grade birthday parties, but she elected to do so in a venue called “Rollerland.”
But Valerie’s loving it. Her wrinkles are clogged with buffalo sauce and she’s sitting in a chair on the side of the rink, wearing roller skates but not using them because if she uses them it is very likely that she’ll break a hip or a knee or some other important joint or really any other important bone, because the woman is three hundred and fucking fifty. She’s clapping her hands and grinning chicken meat and watching as everyone else condescendingly stumbles by on skates. They take turns sliding, smirks on their faces, beneath the limbo pole. They’re all happy they’re terrible at this, because it’s proof that they don’t spend time in roller rinks. But they all secretly want to be the least terrible of everyone, to show that though they don’t spend time in roller rinks they have a natural aptitude for roller skating. A demonstration of such aptitude will show that they are even good at activities that are beneath them and that if they wanted to, they could work at it a bit and become quite excellent roller skaters, slipping effortlessly beneath the limbo pole and winking at Valerie as they emerge safely on the other side. The chicken suit holding the pole will clap a dirty wing-hand on their shoulders.
They’re all striving for this, for flawed but effortless and promising yet casual skill. And Valerie is striving for thirty more buffalo wings, because she’s three hundred and fifty and she does what she wants.