2020 – Collections: Skates & Plates

(ignore May 01, 2017 publish date – this was published on July 23, 2020)




In the late 50s, there was a girl in my class at Holy Trinity School in Hackensack who was a great roller skater………..maybe professional – I don’t remember. I also don’t recall if she was the reason a bunch of us started going to the Hackensack Roller Rink or not. If she was, thank you, Carol.

Those tickets were a little before my time (my parents were still in high school back then).


I didn’t have much trouble staying on my feet/wheels and became pretty fast, but really couldn’t do much else. The only move I had was that if I was rolling, I could turn around and continue rolling, but not propel myself once I was going backward.

Not much to work with, but I had fun.

It turns out that I got my “talent” from my mother, who was an avid skater in her teens, had her own skates (another “Carol”!) and metal skate box (probably covered with stickers from the various rinks she skated in). I think this was her local rink:


I seem to remember skating in at least 3 local rinks; Hackensack, Paramus and Montvale (I think). Unfortunately, the incident I recall the most did not have good results.

(I know I have a Paramus decal around somewhere, but, until I find it, this 1940 Paramus Rink ticket will have to do. BTW – “Route 2” is “Route 17” and check out the men’s dress code:)


On to the incident: Mom drove us to church on Sunday and for a while, we also took a neighbor girl whose parents asked if we could do that for them. I was around 11 or 12 and had a crush on this girl, but could never act on it…………until Mother’s Day came around.

Mom was thrilled that I wanted to take her to the Paramus Rink for Mother’s Day and “oh-by-the-way, cute neighbor girl in the car, would you like to come with us?”


OMIGOD……..that was surprisingly easy. NOW what do I do?


The afternoon went fairly awkwardly and then turned disastrous. I don’t know how I did this, but I fell flat on my back…………HARD………and had the wind completely knocked out of me. I couldn’t breathe, I was gasping for air as people – including Little Miss Cutie – gathered around. At one point, tears started streaming out of my eyes.

I eventually recovered, but HOW FREAKING EMBARRASSING! And that was the end of that with the-girl-almost-next-door.


A couple of decades later, I was living with someone who was always looking for new and interesting ways for us to get some exercise. Skating popped into my head and she was intrigued (and a bit surprised when I told her I was fairly good at it).

We bought ourselves some skates, but the local rinks had vanished years ago, so where to go?


Somehow, we wound up on a track around something (a football field?) at her old high school. Now that doesn’t sound like it would be a solid enough surface for roller skating, so I’m obviously forgetting some detail, but whatever it was, it was sufficient for our needs……………….once.


Proof of actual use:


We never skated again. That was somewhere around 1980 and 40 years later, I still have my once-used roller skates.


Twenty years after last use, I made a small collection of roller skating memorabilia. Twenty MORE years later, here’s what I haven’t posted so far (the Casino Arena one is from Asbury Park):


PLATES (as in “license……”)

This is a pretty small collection and when added to the above SKATES one it’s only a total of 21 images.

Enjoy the brevity while you can………….the next one should be a monster.



Can’t get any more sample-like than this:



Three iterations of the old car historic sample plates:


Speaking of historic, this is the actual plate that was attached to my rear end in the hospital on the day I was born (I can’t believe I actually found THIS plate on eBay):



I’m guessing this was on hand in the hospital in case a twin popped out after me:



And then we have the closer. This license plate spoke volumes about our previous governor:


If you’re not sure who that was, these two guys will fill you in. Crank up the volume and enjoy!

Note: YouTube (or SOMEBODY) appears to have removed the original NBC video. What’s left are bits and pieces from news broadcasts. This one seems to be the most complete one (go to full screen when it starts):




and on THAT note………………………………………



(“Flates”? “Skates”? “Plates”?  What’s next – “Dates & Mates”?)




One Comment

  1. Vanessa Hay July 23, 2020

    These are so cool! I particularly love the Bob-O-Link one with the female skater ❤️

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *