jo skates

Skating in the key of life

False starts


Well, it’s been a quiet week here at the rink.

Wait, I sound like Garrison Keillor. I’ll have to start again.

Oh what a beautiful morning
Oh what a beautiful day
I’m having so much fun skating
Hey #@%!!! Get out of my way!

Oooh, not only bad word choice, but the meter was off in that last line. Okay, another try…

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a singles skater in possession of a good three turn must be in want of a partner.


You may have guessed that nothing much momentous happened this week. Well, that’s what I thought when I started writing this post. What could I write about that I haven’t said already? My off-ice exercises still feel challenging (especially lunges). I am still working on the same things on the ice. I suddenly realized that my skates need sharpening, but no great excitement there. It may be a couple of weeks before I can fit an appointment in.

But as I thought about it, I realized that it was a pretty awesome skating week.

  • To begin with, today I got a thumbs-up from a skating judge who was watching me do my perimeter stroking. Psyche!
  • There was yet another article in the New York Times on how learning a new sport may be good for the brain. Since I am re-learning how to skate, that should count!
  • I went over a variety of three turn exercises on my lesson (back outside forward inside; back inside forward outside) and figured out (well, okay, Ari told me) that if I put the three at the top of the circle it is much easier. And instead of just falling into despair, I actually did this. Behold the power of positive thinking! Behold the power of thinking, period.
  • My power pulls made that satisfying “ripping” sound today. Ahhh…
  • I am still figuring out the awesome power of my back dimples and intergluteal cleft.
  • My backwards progressives have gotten so much better since Laurie told me to draw my blades farther back behind me!
  • And I got a new exercise: forward outside, cross behind, inside mohawk, step to repeat on other side (a three step mohawk pattern with a cross behind).

Skating remains one of the best parts of the day. No matter how tired my muscles feel, my spirits soar.

Just because I’ve been playing this piece a lot, here’s a just plain gorgeous cello and piano version of Arvo Pärt’s “Spiegel im Spiegel” (“Mirror in the Mirror”). It may feel like infinite repetitions of those tonic triads, but what keeps you going are those constant little variations. Just like skating!



Author: Joskates

Don't see me on the ice? I may be in the classroom or at the theater, or hanging out with my family and friends.

2 thoughts on “False starts

  1. Congrats on a good skating week, Jo! That “ripping” sound on power pulls is so satisfying, isn’t it? 🙂


  2. It is so satisfying, Eva! So glad you can share the love! Hope Sectionals was fun.


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