Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. My last confession was in 1999, when I came to you admitting to the egregious act of having rollerbladed in the church parking lot directly in violation of the “No Rollerblading” sign posted thereupon. As penance, you forbade me from ever again strapping up a pair of RB Cruisers and taking to the streets like an adrenaline-crazed bat out of hell.

Indeed, the “No Rollerblading” sign was not simply the work of Mr. Moriarty the groundskeeper, but the Word of Our Lord. As you so wisely chastised me, inline skating brought me out of line with the Church’s teachings. God gave us ice skates, and He gave us roller skates, and commanded that they be kept separate.

Alas, temptation has got the best of me, for rollerblading is coming back in a major way!

It pains me to tell you this, Father. You have been good to our family over the years. Together we baptized both my children and laid my dear Mother to rest. Now, I wish to cleanse myself of the guilt I feel for defying both you and my lovely wife by dusting off the ol’ blades and gracefully gliding down the street, in full view of the neighbors and their children, three evenings a week for the past month.

I can’t believe how awesome it feels to be out there again, striding confidently up and down Pheasant Ridge Court, leaving my worries and cares and my tan Honda Pilot behind me in the driveway. Sure, I’ve lost a step or two, but I still have all the moves: the double thumbs-up, the one-skate wonder, the aye-aye captain, the corkscrew, and the dipsy-doo. The best part is, I still look super cool doing them! There’s not as much hair upstairs for the wind to blow through these days, but I still have my mesh muscle shirts, and—

Oh my God, I’m so sorry. Forgive me, Father, for I have derailed my own confession by talking about how awesome rollerblading is. Did you know it’s coming back in a big way?

Yes, you’re right. I should get back on track here. Basically, I swore never to rollerblade again, even though it’s awesome, and now I’m rollerblading again. This is all I remember. I am sorry for these and all my sins. Let’s move along to the penance, the contrition, and all that other shit so I can get out of here and go pound some pavement!

Oh, no. I did it again, didn’t I?

Father, I gotta be honest with you. I really need you to tell me it’s OK to rollerblade again, because it’s the only freedom I feel these days. I was doing great for two-plus decades. I got married and had two wonderful kids. My blades gathered dust in a forgotten corner of the garage, but I never could bring myself to destroy them. I left the door open to sin, and Satan walked right through it! Or should I say, he skated through it.

Last year I started noticing more and more people rollerblading in the city near my office. Then my neighbor Chad bought a pair, and he was like, “you should totally come crush some asphalt with me,” and my God the flesh was weak! Honestly, I can hardly believe these old girls still fit so well.

What’s that? No, I’m not wearing rollerblades right now. Why would you…

OK, you’re right. I rollerbladed here, but I swore it was going to be the last time. I was prepared to dispose of my blades, elbow pads, knee pads, and wrist guards as penance and put this all behind me. I just don’t know if I’m strong enough, given how much it’s totally coming back in a huge way.

Excuse me? What do you mean you’re wearing rollerblades right now? My God… bro, do you blade? This is a stunning reversal of church doctrine, but I’m totally here for it!

Yes, I agree. Ours is a God of mercy.

Let’s bust out of this stuffy-ass booth and rip shit up in the parking lot! The very same parking lot that brought me low all those years ago!

See if you can keep up! Whoa, nice dipsy-doo! You’re killin’ it, Padre!

Behold, the sisters emerging from the convent—on FUCKING BLADES!!!!

Up top, Mother Superior! Lookin’ good, ladies!

Inline skating, the prodigal son of wheeled outdoor recreation, has returned. I am awash in the soothing winds of God’s grace. Oh, blessed absolution, thy name is rollerblades!


And now a quick joke...

“May I have this dense?” the 350-pound groom asked his portly bride on the night of their wedding, which the two had decided would not be a scaled-back affair, but rather one of plump and circumference.