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Skating Ban a Wonderful Idea

Column by Bill Jackson

Opinion Editor

When a campus contains a large percentage of idiots and a large percentage of people with Rollerblades, it's inevitable that the two sub-populations are going to overlap. You're going to get Dorks on Skates.

In the view of Dorks on Skates, innocent pedestrians are not human beings, but obstacles. They'll buzz around you in the halls, ducking around you at the last second rather than going way around you, coming close enough to tell whether you shaved with a blade or an electric this morning.

Now they're going to whine because the Campus Police, acting on complaints, have banned the skates in MIT corridors. Hard to imagine why. I mean, most skaters can stop on a dime, as long as the dime has a diameter of 28 feet.

And the moderate argument that a ban on Rollerblades should be imposed only during certain hours is also fine, as long as those hours are 24 HOURS A DAY. The reasons for this are simple.

(1) Dorks on Skates come out at night.

(2) Dorks on Skates are just waiting for the ideal time when they can drag race down the Infinite Corridor at full speed, without looking. This time will inevitably coincide with the time when you're dragging your butt home from lab, late in the evening, turning a corner only to see two Dorks taking up the whole hall and coming at you at full speed.

(3) The skating motion is similar to that new Cheryl Ladd device I saw advertised on TV over Thanksgiving, and it was a really annoying commercial.

And don't give me the old "I need my skates to get to class on time" routine, because I've never seen a person on Rollerblades make it to a class on time. Maybe skaters don't think the rest of us notice when they glide into lecture halls with the grace of wild hippopotami, clunk up the stairs sideways, and try to get to a seat in the middle of the aisle, stumbling over all of us slowpokes who somehow arrive at lecture before they do.

Oh, I know, poor baby, you've got to get from one building to the next in ten minutes, and they're so far away! News flash: so do I, with my wheel-free $24.95 Chuck Taylor All-Star no-speed sneakers, and Chuck and I make it just fine.

So I hope that Campus Police officers can enforce the new ban. I think that they should be provided with dart guns to subdue any violators who attempt toescape. Perhaps the Assassin's Guild could make a game out of it. Just imagine: Chicks in Capes vs. Dorks on Skates.

I wonder if the administrative backing of the recent declaration means I can perform a "citizen's arrest," in the form of sticking out my foot when one of the Dorks goes by. The resulting spectacle of body parts encased in obnoxiously bright spandex flying through the air attached to helplessly spinning wheels would make my day. And I would just keep walking. After all, I don't want to be late for class.

Tech Opinion Editor Bill Jackson '93 plans to start riding his Big Wheel down the Infinite Corridor.