Thursday, December 3, 2009

Ice Capades

I was finally getting over the realization that the drum set was kaput. It was time to move on, I was a sophisticated eight year old. I could handle it, plus secretly I was starting to get excited about the Ice Capades. After all, I did have hair that resembled Dorothy Hamels. It was quite odd I thought, that I resembled not only Donny Osmond, but a famous Olympic figure skater. Destiny..I was bound for greatness.
I put my dreams of roller skating onto the stage with Donny and Marie to rest. I was now going to become Dorothy Hamel's protege. After all, I had the hair (sorta) and frankly ice skating didn't look too hard. Same thing as roller skating without the wheels plus a blade on the bottom that could slit a throat. All I needed to do was put on some skates and run. Geez, I could already run. I had proved that when I needed to check my pulse. Remember, I was still at that point, I didn't get my new outward obsession of saying things three times until the 7th grade.
I would secretly practice my Bunny Hop Jumps, a beginner’s first jump, as I didn't yet have skates to practice on. I knew it was just a matter of time before I would receive my first pair of red glitter skates.. When Dorothy saw me sitting in the stands, she would be amazed at the resemblance and call me onto the rink. The crowd would stand, my parents and brother screaming, tears rolling down their faces. She would proudly present the skates in front of thousands of people. I Would Bunny Hop to the amazement of the crowd and the dorky Disney characters. Cheers and flowers would litter the rink, The Olympic Committee would call my parents and ask that they sign a waiver so I could travel all over the world with Dorothy.We were going to couple skate in all ice skating events. She would be doing the Quadruple, Salchow, and the Split Jumps. I would be Bunny Hopping in the center of the ring. Our pictures would be in every paper, we would be on live television. It was gong to be quite a ride.
My family finally arrived at the coliseum, took our seats and waited for the show to begin. I rehearsed the Bunny Hop in my mind until the lights dimmed and the show started.
Out came Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy (yawn)...I was there for my future to begin. Where was Dorothy??? Finally, there she was, the lights gleaming off her beautiful hair, her graceful moves, her beautiful outfit with sequins...She looked like a princess (though I preferred G.I. Joe). Still she was lovely.
Suddenly, I couldn't breathe. I mean literally I could not breathe. My hand flew to my carotid, my heart was still beating, but I thought my throat was closing shut. Was I having anaphyletic shock? Maybe it was the cotton candy. Maybe someone had put something in my coke. I tried to breathe, but I couldn't get enough air. Panic set in. What if I croaked in front of a million people? What if my parents decided to have "she missed the Ice Capades, and those tickets were damn expensive" written on my headstone?
I freaked. Suddenly I found myself running up the stairs toward the entrance feeling my carotid the whole way. My mother, father and brother were right behind me. I was as pale as a ghost. My father asked me what was wrong. "I can't breathe" I said. "Oh God Randy, call an ambulance" said my mother all the while wringing her hands.
It wasn't two minutes later that EMS arrived. They whipped out a paper bag and told me to breathe. I was sucking in and out and started to feel light headed. I was going down. I could see the light. "Breathe slowly" said the paramedic. "It seems like you are just hyperventilating". Slow breaths, slow, slow. All of the sudden the EMT removed a breath mint from his pocket. "Put this in your mouth and run around". (Where in the hell did they get their EMS training?? Sally Struther's television commercials. You can be a TV repair man or an EMT/PARAMEDIC)?
What do you know, even though I almost choked to death running with the mint in my mouth, I was starting to breathe better. After a quick check of my carotid, I knew I still had a pulse. The EMT handed me the paper bag just incase I had a relapse.
I overheard the paramedic telling my parents that I had hyperventilated probably due to the excitement of the Ice Capades. My parents were shaking their heads and casting worrisome glances at me. I'm sure they were really thinking that I was a freak, always checking my pulse and hyperventilating at the Ice Capades within the first 20 minutes.
They made a decision to take me home. As I sat in the backseat breathing into my bag, I realized that another dream was gone. If I could have just held on another five minutes, I'm sure Dorothy would have discovered me. But then again, who would want to tour with a girl that has to breathe in a bag while doing the Bunny Hop.

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