Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Guest Blogger: "Testing" by Eva of EvaBakes

Hi everyone! My name is Eva, and I blog over at Eva Bakes (www.evabakes.blogspot.com). I’m also a figure skater and have a weekly feature called Skating Fridays where I talk about my figure skating adventures. Babbette asked me to guest post for her today, so I’ll attempt to bring you the same wit and charisma that she normally does with her anecdotes.  Today’s topic: Testing. Ready? Here we go!

Maybe you’ve tried testing, and maybe you haven’t. Either way, testing is one of those nerve-wracking situations where the fate of your figure skating career is left to the judges on the panel. A skater practices for countless hours on end, only to have ~10 minutes to convince the parka-wearing judges that you are worthy of moving on to the next level.

On test day, you start getting ready about 2 hours ahead of time. You put on your testing dress, and then proceed with your hair and makeup. Pack extra tights, laces, bobby pins, hair spray, and anything else that can break or tear before your test. You’re ready to head to the rink, when all of a sudden:

Once you get to the rink, you realize that the test session is running 30 minutes behind. Now you have an extra half hour to kill. Must. Calm. Nerves. So you drink some caffeine to stay awake and then realize, yet again:

After you visit the restroom, it’s finally your turn to take the ice for your 5-minute warmup. However, you can barely move because it’s colder than Antarctica. Regardless, you have to break the icicles off your nose and convince everyone that you are warm and comfortable.
The announcer calls your name to step onto the ice, and you march over to the judges’ table to introduce yourself. Once you reach the judges’ area, you realize that one of the judges is known as the Toughest Judge Ever.
Dang. You have to bring your A-game today. Toughest Judge Ever is not going to cut you any slack.  You skate over to your starting position and your legs are like Jell-O. You channel your inner Gracie Gold and put on a show.

After you’re done with your test, you head back to see your coach, who is standing by the boards. You anxiously await to see if the judges want you to reskate any element.  After you receive the “all clear” signal from the main judge, you head to the bench and take off your skates.

And now you wait for your testing papers. After what seems like an eternity, the test chair comes by with a stack of papers for you and your coach. You immediately flip through each paper to see if you passed.

If you’re lucky, you get passing grades from all judges. If not, you’re all:

Then you and your coach review each of the judges’ comments on your test. You want to see where your strengths and weaknesses are so you can improve. However, you can’t read one of the judges’ remarks. It looks like it’s written in Farsi, which you aren’t fluent in yet. For all you know, the judge wrote this:

After the test is done, you head home and either breathe a sigh of relief or fume away with anger. You desperately need a drink. At least the test is done.

Now here’s the million dollar question: you crazy enough to do it again?


  1. I'm glad I'm not the only one who always needs to take excessive trips to the loo on test days :)

  2. Yeah, it's extra convenient when you have to peel off that skating dress in an unheated restroom.

  3. You missed the bit where the judge says something like "your backwards skating looks very hesitant" and your coach says "yes, I've been telling her this for ages" and you think "have you f***"...you haven't even bothered to turn up to my lesson for the past 6 weeks and you haven't seem my routine for at least 3 months"...(bitter? moi?)

  4. This is such a perfect representation, well done Eva!