Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Lockers, darn lockers.

On Saturday I took my son to a kid's birthday party at the local skating rink.

(Yeah, that statement deserves it's own paragraph. If you've ever been to a birthday party for a 6 year old at a crowded skating rink, you might be able to qualify for sainthood.)

As I've shared with you before, I can't skate. Not in any form that remotely resembles gracefully, anyway. So this time - this time - I was smart and didn't strap a pair of skates onto my clumsy feet. Instead, I sent my son out there all alone (Ha!) to brave the roller derby of 6 year olds. No, actually, I got him some starter skates - the kind that don't roll very well - and he stayed upright the majority of the time.

What was horrific about the event were the lockers. You know, the kind where you insert 2 quarters and then remove the little key? Well, I inserted 2 quarters, and it didn't give me the key. So I read the instructions again. And tried again. No key, again. Now, if you're paying attention, you know that I ended up putting a darn dollar's worth of quarters in the darn locker, and it has given me nothing. Not even a thank you.

So it was off to the nearest employee for me. And the nearest employees happened to be the foreign couple who were manning the skate rental counter. I shrieked something about the locker and 4 quarters and no key, to which they replied, "No, no, you only supposed put in 2 quarters, not 4." (Did I mention they were foreign, and not very good with English? No? Well, they were.) I told them in a very calm manner (okay, not so calm I guess, I was stressed) that I started with 2 quarters, and then tried again because I thought I did something wrong. Then the lady proceeded to roll her eyes at me and told me to go to the window and get my money back. What window, I asked. After rolling her eyes a second time and doing a little huff of impatience, she went to the window herself and got my money back. Then she led me directly to another locker and said, "This is good. That over there is no good. Do not try again." And I had to reign in my temper. I mean, I know that I was stupid enough to try the bad locker twice, but did she think I would get my money back and then go back to the very same locker? (I don't know, maybe I seemed that stupid. After all, I was the lady who was worked up into a frenzy over a locker in a skating rink.)

By this time I was ready to call my husband and tell him to come rescue me. And I may or may not have even dialed his phone number and let it ring once before I hung up and got enough courage to go it alone. But I did go it alone. And I did brave the mothers who all knew each other, but not me. And I also braved the hot little party room that contained over twenty 6 year olds on roller skates all hopped up on soda and cake. And I also braved the inflatable slide and obstacle course they had in the middle of the skating rink. And I also braved the very rude lady who accused my child of cutting in line when she was standing with her small child in the wrong darn line. But what scarred me most of all were the lockers. The money stealing lockers.


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