Tuesday, March 20, 2018


(written for a Mythology project, to modernize a classic Greek myth; by D.)
The young, beautiful skating champion; she was the reigning X-Games gold-medal in-line skater. Atalanta was orphaned at an early age and raised on hidden beaches by a group of rag-tag skaters and surfers. They roamed the country, city to city, living off of the winnings from competitions. They were the best of the best, but Atalanta was their ace-in-the-hole. She was always being underestimated, because of her maiden looks and feminine physique. Many a young aggressive male competitor paled in comparison; she overwhelmed them with her skills and daring. 

Many young competitors requested the chance to court young Atalanta, but she was devoted to gold medals and blue waves; she thought nothing of romance. Summer after summer, she defeated the other skaters in the grand Cali. games. She always had her sight on top scores in the tournament. She was always aiming for that fabulous cash prize and the coveted endorsement deal with Red Boar Energy Drinks. This was the goal that so many an extreme athlete hunted for.  … that, and the hand of fair Atalanta.

Many years later, she finally gave into peer pressure and agreed that she would marry whichever young, courageous would-be champion could best her in a street-skating race. Challenger after challenger did she triumphantly defeat. Their hearts and their bodies were broken and bruised, as she blew by them, grinding their hopes as well as the walls and rails. The disappointed young lads always tried to play down the devastation of their defeat, but when Atalanta removed her helmet and flipped her sun-kissed locks in the breeze, they kicked themselves for missing the chance to court the Cali queen of skate.
Finally there came a heroic skater who used his wits as well as his wheels. His name was Mel, and he knew all about Atalanta’s fascination with the latest, shiniest new golden Apple I-products. He went and fetched all the golden Apple phones he could afford, from the Mall of Hesperides.  He came ready to steal first place, and Atalanta’s hand. 

They both crouched down at the starting line, ready to launch. Mel felt the desire to take one last hopeful glance at fair Atalanta, before the signal, but he kept his all his focus on the task at hand. The trigger was pulled on the starting pistol, and they were off! Down Hamilton Drive, they flew, weaving through traffic, and dodging the pedestians who looked on with anticipation. Atalanta was out-stripping Mel, as they took the right turn onto the footbridge over the Calydonian River. Mel removed the first golden Apple gadget from his pocket and threw it towards the river;  the glittering golden device dazzled in the sunlight and Atalanta leaped onto the siderails of the bridge, snatching the Apple phone out of mid-air and saving it from it’s fizzling doom down below. Atalanta had to barely go off course, to catch it. She caught back up to Mel in no time. 

Resolved to gain some slack between him and Atalanta, he threw the next golden Apple product far to his right, over the food cart which was stationed park-adjacent. Atalanta veered to her right. She used a Smart Car, which was parked in her path, as a ramp, catching such wicked airtime as she cleared the top of the umbrella attached to the cart which smelled of savory, salted pretzels and hot dogs. The Apple phone bounced once off of a balloon which was being held by a small child, and Atalanta caught it on the rebound before it could shatter on the cement. But the lady champion had lost little momentum; soon she was again at Mel’s heels, but he had one more golden Apple up his sleeve.
As they passed the fountain of Venus, just outside Olympia Park, he tossed the last golden Apple – a shimmering, but fragile I-Pad towards the beautiful spring; a spring depicting the goddess of love emerging from the crystal waters. In order to save the golden device from a watery death, Atalanta had to leap onto the edge of the fountain. She lost her balance for just a second and dipped one of her skates briefly into the shallow pool. It caused her wheels on that skate to loose their smooth rotation. She put every last bit of strength into racing for the finish, but was hindered just enough to give Mel a large enough lead; he crossed the finish line just two seconds before the lady champion. He was elated and out of breath. Even for all his distractions, he narrowly beat Atalanta. He was in awe of her prowess, and she in his daring and wits; she succumbed to her promise and ended up marrying Mel. They skated off into the immortal sunset.

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