It began as a winter’s morning like so many before it. The air filled with a slight chill of the season; an overcast sky, threatening to break at the slightest touch and release its glory upon the city. I walked in hand with my father (the hero of my childhood), my brother (the villain of my childhood) and my aunt (the aunt of my childhood) at my side down to the park where they had an outdoor skating rink. My father who had grown up in the area playing hockey recreationally as a child, decided this was the place to bring his offspring to learn to tame the unruly ice. I was taken to the change room to have my skates put on me by my aunt and then we were off to the races.
Forced through a sea of people, I held my father’s hands as my brother was taken around by my aunt. I had almost fallen more than a few times, like the kid in the oversized purple snowsuit. It was horrendous looking with a large zipper down the front straight to the ankle. The skates had been wrapped around the base of the suit along with duck tape, to keep it from dragging along the ice. Onlookers startled, realized that inside the cavernous mass of material, was a child attempting to skate. Right...So my father got sick of me and handed me off to my aunt to sit on the sidelines for a while, so he could skate freely without the burden of a two year old holding him back from being human. I don’t remember much of what happened in between but I’m sure it was a lot like this:
After this was over, I was then taken for one last “skate” around the rink. All had gone well with no casualties, bruises, or other until that tragic moment when I fell. It was right near the door of the rink. I was almost free, but that was no matter to the 6’4” man who decided I was his next victim. Looking like a giant or in my case, two large masses given that I had a lazy eye, the man skated backwards like a brick wall coming towards me. My dad had started yelling for him to stop, but it was too little, too late. I had been run over. Like a turtle on its back being pelted by a Mack truck, I was flattened. There was a lot of commotion. People all around me as I was scooped up and taken back to the place I had started my icy journey, the change room. I was dizzy and bleeding from my head. My glasses had been split in two by his weight and probably his skates. I was picked up by my aunt, to whom I kept telling “I’m okay, I’m just dizzy”. I could hear my father’s voice outside hollering at the man who nearly ended my life with his large frame(s). I was taken out to my father and was handed to him (mostly because adults don’t want to hold someone else’s kid for long). My dad berated the guy with shouts of terrible profanity that I now use in my repertoire of filth. However, given that there may be PG onlookers, I’ll assume they were things like: “you sir, are not a gentleman”, “a plague on both your houses” and “I challenge you to a duel” etc.
My Father then insisted that the man apologize to me. My response was “its okay, you didn’t mean it”. My father’s response was a little more colourful than that. The made sobbed and handed my father $100.00 to help pay for the damages to my face and glasses. He was lucky there was an ABM at the edge of the rink at the time. My father accepted the money not for the purposes of fixing my glasses or my face, as those repair claims were handled through his benefits, but for good measure. I had suffered greatly through this ordeal, but after the plastic surgery I became renewed with hopes of one day showing the world that wearing glasses doesn’t have to be difficult. It can become easier with time.
Next: The Day the Basketball won.