WORCESTER – Many people have gone to SkyLite Roller Skating Center, but few have seen it through the eyes of one of Worcester’s Bravest. Todd Dickington has been a Roller Guard for 20 years now, starting when he was merely a Junior Guard, skating and gliding across the floor with elegance and force.
“It all began when I was 16,” Todd remembered. “I had come in first place three races in a row, and I just knew something special was about to happen. Morq, the most senior guard at that time called me over and offered me the opportunity to train to be one of the best. I wish I could tell you about the training, but that stuff is classified. All I can say is those white guard skates do not come without a price, a price paid in blood.”
Part dancer, part bouncer and part sexual mystique the roller guards of Skylite form a piece of Worcester’s hierarchy that many don’t ever get to see. “Yeah, I’ve been to some pretty cool parties,” Dickington said. “…most of them at Skylite, while I was working. But I was at them all.”
Not all of it was fun and games, a lot of the work is tough and dangerous, especially during the mid 90s.
“Don’t get me started about when roller blades came into play, that was a scary time for us guards. Often those “bad boyz”, that is what we call roller bladers, skate too fast and too hard for their own good, which is why we would tape their brakes and make them pay a dollar. I stick to my four wheel model — its safe, reliable and I can do that thing where I go backwards and cross my legs.”
The thing Dickington will remember most is the babes. “I can’t tell you how many times I looked at the DJ and told him to spin some BackStreet Boys for a Girls Ask Guys Couple Skate and then hit the floor and skate with all the ladies.”
Dickington is very happy with his 20 years in the service so far and hopes for 20 more.
Dickington said, “Who knows, by then we could be using rocket skates… I know, I’m just a silly dreamer.”