Modern Living: Eight-Wheel Drive

On a Saturday night, the giant, orange brick building at Des Plaines, Ill., sounds like an axle factory on overtime. In fact, though its name is the Axle, the place is a roller rink, one of hundreds of new skating palaces that are riding a revival of the sport reminiscent of its Gay Nineties' heyday.

Not since the early '40s has roller skating enjoyed such a boom: an estimated 18 million teen-agers and young adults have discovered the delights of eight-wheel drive. Schools across the country are scheduling skating classes and turning gymnasiums into makeshift...

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