Page last updated Monday, December 18, 2000 03:09 PM -0800


Transcript based on "Roland Goes to School Video"

I wanted to ensure that as many people as possible were able to know exactly what Mike Roland does for Air Hockey and for the children of Monterey County.  Below, is a simple transcript of the video.  Enjoy!

- D. Gray

[Start Transcript]

Mike Roland enters an Olson Elementary School assembly meeting in Marina, California. There are parents, teachers and hundreds of students in attendance.  Roland is handed a microphone, and walks to the front of the assembly room, immediately below center stage.

Good morning, boys and girls -- teachers.

Students and teachers:
Good morning!

My name is Mike Roland. What I do is... Let me see a show of hands. How many people know what Air Hockey is?

[Almost everybody raises their hands as exuberant ohhhs fill the assembly auditorium]

[Unintelligible, and smiling] Fun game?

[The students respond positively, then settle after a few moments]

I've been involved with Air Hockey about 3 or 4 years now. And just until about a couple of years I started playing professionally, and Air Hockey at the professional level is a whole different ballgame from what you see... basically in the arcades around here.  It's not just a -- maybe a man and wife wanna play, or a sister and brother want to play, it's very technical very tactical, which involves a lot of skill.

Until a couple years ago, I stared not only playing, but promoting Air Hockey within Monterey County. We have Air Hockey at about five different levels. We have the adults, the ladies, the doubles, the open singles and the junior division. The junior division is everyone within the Monterey County boundaries of 8th grade and below. We've had this tournament for three years now. Only one person has been able to win it twice. He's in high-school now.

Just last month, we ran the tournament. And since it's 8th grade in below, you'd expect somebody in the 6th, 7th or 8th grade to win it.

...That didn't happen this year. Believe it or not, a 4th grader won it this year. And when he won it, he won it over two or three 8th graders.

[Small gasps and "whoa"s from a few students]

The tournament concluded [unintelligible] we had our Champion. That Champion comes from this school, this year. So without any further adieux, I'd like to present school year 2000-2001 Monterey County Junior Division Champion, Mohamed Ragab.

The assembly lights up with clapping [minimal discussion]

After a few moments, Mohamed emerges from within a large number of students located at the top of the stage and walks down steps to meet Roland.  At the same time, Roland walks to the audience's left-side of the stage, and like Santa Claus, reaches behind a Christmas tree and pulls out an enormous (3-4ft?) trophy.

At this, the assembly is filled with gasps, oohs and ahhs that last for an extremely long time. Some of the "ahhs" sound like students that obviously wish that they won that trophy. :)

Roland approaches Mohamed and hands him his prize. At first, the trophy appears to be larger then Mohamed himself. In reality, it almost is.  Photos are being taken of the two local celebrities.

[The crowd silences]

Like I said, he had to go through two 8th graders, one 7th grader, a 5th grader and another 4th grader in order to win this. So give him a hand!

[Large clapping again, for Mohamed]

Just for your information, this tournament is held at the Northridge Mall in Salinas at the beginning of every school year. So the next one won't be until next September. So, 8th grade and below -- who will still be in the 8th grade or below, I'd like to see you out there, okay?

Students and teachers, thank you for your time.

[Applause as Roland departs, just as Mohamed gets a hug from a woman near the front row -- presumably his mother]

[End Transcript]

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