November 08, 2002

This is what a gimp I am. I planned a night of roller skating with some pals for Saturday, November 9. I knew it was on a Saturday, and I said as much while working out the logistics. But my enthusiasm got the best of me, and these past few days I've been thinking that the 9th was a FRIDAY. I was psyched and raring to go, when suddenly, just now, I looked at the date on my desktop calendar, and it said 11/8/2002. WAAAH I WANNA GO NOW! But I deserve to wait another day.

The rink, hidden away in deepest Brooklyn, is the newly refurbished Empire Roller Skating Center. It either used to be called the Empire Rollerdrome or the Empire Roller Disco (I've heard both). In the '70s it was Studio 54 on wheels, and in the early '80s it was a venue for reggae soundclashes and hip-hop shows. I remember going there a couple times as a kid for birthday parties -- this would be the mid- to late '80s -- it was seedy and rundown, but it had its sleazy charms. I'm a little sad that it's no longer a fading disco, because I'm WAY into that sort of neglected-arcana shit now, but I hear the place is thriving, and I'm curious what types of people will show up for the after-hours skate session.

There's a lengthy interview here with the Empire's legendary DJ, Big Bob. The awning in the picture says "Empire Rollerdrome," by the way.