OHHHH BOY…this one takes me back!
You know how there are some things that happen ‘live’ and even if there was only 100 or so people in the room, somehow 500 people witnessed it? This is one of those stories.
So I don’t know if this still goes down (or if they’re still open), but when I was coming up, during the summers in Wyandotte, Skateland would be the ‘Club 101’ for the kiddies. This was just one of those random Saturday nights at Skateland.
I see this kid walk in. We’ll call him ‘Little Man’. Oversized glasses, Saints starter jacket. Highwater jeans but the Nikes were clean.
He was actually a pretty good skater. Not that any of the brothers were going to ‘show out’ like they were figure skaters now, but this brother had clearly been skating before. Could backward skate comfortably and all that. The wannabe tough guys were talking bad about him, but he didn’t pay them any mind.
He was a quiet kid though, definitely on the shy side with the ladies. Got off the rink when they did the Limbo and the Couples skate and all that. But there was a quiet confidence about him though. This cat got on the Ninja Turtle arcade game as Leonardo, with two Crips and a Blood (Skateland was an agreed truce zone), and like Leonardo, he was telling the other three what to do. That’s not even the real story though.
So at the end of the night, after the ‘last Skate’, we’d all take off our skates, get back on the rink, and just dance. It was great. Now, to take a look at Little Man, you’d never assume he was ANY kind of dancer, even to be a good skater.
Little Man went to the rink, and some of the wannabe tough guys got started again. But they didn’t see Little Man get cool with the REAL gangsters earlier. When the hoods ran out of quarters, it was Leonardo who finished off Shredder! Anyway, the gangsters said ‘Give Little Man some space’ and that was that. The floor cleared.
Here’s the other thing the wannabes didn’t know, even the real hoods didn’t know: Little Man had been recording Video Soul for WEEKS! Soon as he got home from school, he’d put on the tape and start memorizing all of Hammer’s moves. We didn’t know what we had coming!
So when this song came on, to say Little Man blew us all away with how tight his moves were, man that’s an understatement! At least for one night, Skateland had a new hero.
(trying not to smile…)
OK YOU’RE RIGHT!!!! LITTLE MAN WAS ME, BABY!!!!!