Friday, July 29, 2011


ME (to Roy): Check this out. (shows 2" long strip of rink rash on upper arm)
ROY: Who did that to you?
ME: The floor.

I don't know what it is, but lately I have been made of nothing but booty shorts and direction of game play minors.  It's crazy.  I got sent to the box yesterday for 4 minors, and ALL of them were direction of game play.  I just get all THEY ARE GOING SLOW BEHIND ME I MUST GET BACK THERE AND BREAK IT UP and I don't wait long enough to start going forward.   They need to change that rule. 

I've also had the problem of going to hit the jammer out of bounds and just succeed in knocking them forward.  That's annoying too.

(On Monday, during practice, a bunch of us were talking about our preferred side to knock jammers out to.  I am almost 100% "knock 'em to the outside", which I should probably work on.)

So time's running out on my procrastination of preparing the league's tax return for last year - it's due August 15.  My plan is to do it on Sunday.  AND THEN ALL MY RESPONSIBILITIES WILL BE OVER WAHOO.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

this was put up yesterday...

Your humble narrator and the league trophy

another week, another week

So for the third time in about as many days, I've had someone come up to me and tell me how great I look.

I really have no idea how I look.  I feel like I look the same in all my pictures, no matter whether they're from five years ago or ten minutes ago.  It doesn't help that no two stores size their clothes the same - I can wear a size 8 Old Navy skirt but have to squeeze into a size 12 dress from another place.  It's annoying.  (Then there's the thing where I can wear a size 8 Old Navy skirt but not size 10 Old Navy pants.  ANNOYING.)

Practice was last night, nice and super sweaty.  By the end, when we were doing 90 second sprints followed by 60 seconds of army crawls, I was going "JUST LEAVE ME, SARGE!  TELL MY MA I TRIED MY BEST!"   Adding to the fun was the fact that I didn't bring my water bottle and had to attack the drinking fountain every thirty seconds.

I'm contemplating getting new plates.  I'm still using the nylon ones that came with my skates.  I know next to nothing about them, though, so I sent an e-mail to the guy who helps out our league with stuff like this saying "you know me, you know how I skate, you know what I can and can't do, what sort of plates should I get?" We'll see what he says.

Monday, July 25, 2011

bout recap

I always go into bouts figuring we will lose.  I think it's so I'm not horrifically disappointed if it happens.  (That probably explains why I am so negative in general - if you always expect the worst to happen, you can never be disappointed.  Well, you *can*, but it's a different kind of disappointment.  ANYWAY...)

Our team got together the night before for food, bout-watching (we had the last game on DVD) and merch making (pins for our team).  Bout night will be a doubleheader; our team first, and then the A team playing.  One of the members of the team playing against our A team has an airborne peanut allergy; we contemplate eating lots of peanut butter before hand, to help the league, but do not.

BOUT DAY!  I still had some Sharpie markings on my jersey from the last bout, so I got some Shout Spray Stick, applied it and sent it through the wash.  Cut to twenty minutes later, when there are these BIZARRE BIG BROWN STAINS ON THE FRONT OF MY JERSEY. ("ohmyGodohmyGodohmyGodohmyGodohmyGodohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrapohcrap...")   Fortunately some Dr. Bronner's soap took them out and I am okay.

So we all show up in the 96 degree weather with like 86 degree dew point and crappy air conditioning.  WHEE!  Our captain (whom I shall call Captain Flashback, as she is a phys ed instructor* and I get flashbacks to junior high gym class during practices) planned for us to do an off-skates warmup a few hours beforehand.  I tried to weasel my way out of it ("I....I promised to help do set-up for the bout!") but eventually I acquiesced and did it.

So the other team shows up.  There's one skater who is, like, just a big pile of muscles in pink Spandex and roller skates.  Whee!

So it gets warmer, our bench chick rolls frozen water bottles on our necks and backs (which helped SO much).  One of my leaguemates on the A team gets proposed to by her boyfriend, in the middle of the track.  She says yes, everyone gets crazy happy. we go!

We're crazy and scattershot at first.  They take a quick lead.  We catch up.  They catch up.  We bust up walls.  They squeak past us.  They put up walls.  We squeak past them.  I get a Direction of Game Play minor.**  We have new guy in the league blowing the start of jam whistle; I tell him at one point he should probably put the whistle in his mouth between his "five seconds!" call out and the start of the jam.  The head ref mouths "thank you" to me.  We catch up.  Pile of Muscles in Spandex does not react to positional blocking well - it frustrates her. 

At the half, we're up by about twenty points.

We go out in front, to the (air conditioned bliss) box office.  It's not over yet; not by a long shot. I take my contact lens out and promptly lose it.  One of my teammates finds it; another teammate lends me contact lens solution.

Second half!  They catch up.  They lead.  We catch up.  They tie.  I bridge other players.  I knock other players out.  We yell at crappy calls made by the refs.  I apparently hold a jammer back, by myself, for about 3/4 of the track.***

60-60.  We get four points, 64-60.  They get four points.  64-64.

Back and forth, crazy craziness.  We put in a power lineup; our jammer and one blocker get sent to the box.  The jammer call was complete bullshit; we scream at the refs.  Their jammer cuts in front of multiple players, no one says boo, they rack up more points.

Everyone is going batshit insane.  We claw our way back.

LAST JAM.  WE ARE DOWN BY TWO POINTS.  It all comes down to this.  Everyone is freaking the fuck out.  Whistle blows, and we're off!  Fight fight fight jostle jostle jostle OUR JAMMER GETS LEAD JAM!  Jostle jostle jostle keep the other jammer back WHAT?!?!?!?!? THE OTHER JAMMER GOT A PENALTY?!?!?!?!??! SHE HAS TO GO TO THE BOX!?!?!?!?!?!?!? OMFGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG OUR JAMMER SKATES AND SKATES AND GETS MORE POINTS AND AS SOON AS THE PERIOD CLOCK RUNS OUT WE SCREAM AT HER TO CALL IT OFF, AND SHE DOES, AND....

I refuse to start cheering until the referees confer and tally points.

Head ref swings his arm around in a big circle.

89-85.  We win.

It's at this point I start crying.

*She was chosen as, like, Middle School Phys Ed Teacher of the Year for the state.  (If she teaches for two more years, she'll also be Maverick's PE teacher.)

**This has been happening to me a lot lately.  What happens is, the skaters behind me will be going really slow, and I skate backwards to break them up, but I end up still skating backwards when I run into them.  It's just a matter of not being patient enough for them to run into me.

***I was told this, afterwards.  I don't remember doing it.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

the helmet covers are done!

hooray hoorah!

It's supposed to be 98 degrees at 5pm.  I AM VERY GLAD WE ARE NOT SCRIMMAGING TONIGHT.  Our practice space is miserable enough when it's in the mid 70's.  (Bout night is also going to be horrible.  I've been directed to a pattern for a neck cooler thingy; I'd like to make a bunch before then but I don't know if I'll have time.)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


made it through practice in one piece, though my foot started hurting in a place it's never hurt before, YAY

I have one more pivot helmet cover to make and then I am done with them (at least the white on green.  I may make green on white to replace the old ones we have).

It's supposed to be 101 on Thursday but THANK GOD we do not have skating practice that night (we're having a league meeting).

Monday, July 18, 2011

I am tired, I am weary, I could sleep for a thousand years

Friday night I helped out at the County Fair for three hours, taking money from people in cars and buying their admission for them.

Saturday I spent nine frickin' hours at the local amusement park with the kid.

Sunday morning was league practice.  And jogging.  I fucking hate jogging.  I spent the entire time waaaaay behind everyone else, swearing until I eventually said "screw this" and I walked. 

Sunday afternoon was the home season picnic, which was fun.

Sunday evening I had to help out at the County Fair again.

I am soooooooooooooooooooooooo tired still.  And I have to go to practice tonight or I won't make attendance for Saturday's bout (oh, yeah, bout week wahoo).


Friday, July 15, 2011

yesterday was Thursday

so I was in a craptastic mood last night at scrimmage.  I tried to turn that in to pure, unbridled rage against the other team.  I think it actually just turned me into Bitter Sullen Kicktoria, which is less than useless.  I need to work on that.

(There was one jam, however, where our jammer needed to get through and I just turned into ARGH I AM GOING TO FUCK WITH YOU, BLOCKER ON THE OTHER TEAM!  AND NOW I AM GOING TO FUCK WITH YOU, OTHER BLOCKER ON THE OTHER TEAM!  GARRRRRRRRARRRRRRR!  I don't know if it helped her or not, but I felt better afterwards.)

Everyone loved the jammer covers.  I screwed up my serger Wednesday night - I totally fucked up rethreading it, which resulted in a broken needle AND deep gouges in BOTH knives, so I have to hope Roy can resharpen the knives otherwise I have to spend, like, $50 to get new ones.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

so I didn't say anything about it on the date

(because I was busy traveling to Cananananananada, but....)

July 9, 2011 marked the three-year anniversary of my first roller derby practice.

If, at the start of July 2008, you told me "three years from now you will be in the best shape of your adult life.  You will have a social life.  You will have friends.  You will have support.  And how will you get it? BY STRAPPING ON A PAIR OF ROLLER SKATES AND TRYING TO KNOCK OTHER PEOPLE DOWN", I never would have believed you in a million years.

Yet it's true. 

also -

Using conductive thread to make light-up clothing?


scrimmagey scrimmageness

that's tonight.  I like scrimmage night.  I just like playing roller derby.

I'm almost done with both white-on-green jammer helmet covers - I just need to sew the second star on the second cover.  I was going to start the pivot ones last night but I broke one of the needles on my serger while threading it, so I have to go buy more this afternoon.

Tomorrow night I'm helping out at the County Fair (league members are collecting tickets and representin').  Saturday I'm taking Maverick to the amusement park (we have season tickets and I've promised him we'd go as often as we could), Sunday we've got practice, then an end-of-home-season picnic, then I'm helping at the Fair again.  THIS SUMMER IS JUST JAM-PACKED WITH STUFF GOING ON OMFG.

(in which I do my best Ally Sheedy impression)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


I did not go to practice last night.  I was too tired and it was really hot and I did not want to leave the air conditioning and I wasn't really feeling that well.

Monday, July 11, 2011

so, Canada!

So we won, 200-something to 54, I think.  They let me jam.  What were they thinking?

I went to the box twice, both for four minors.  I got a *lot* of direction of game play minors, mostly because I would skate backwards to try and hit someone (they'd have a wall behind me that I needed to break up).

I had a few nice strong hits.  It's funny - we spend lots of time in practice working on hitting.  Hit with your hip, not your shoulder; crouch down low then pop up and back; etc., etc.  During a bout, my hitting style really is just I AM GOING TO SKATE RIGHT INTO YOU AT FULL SPEED. 

(I LOVE our new uniform shirts.  It's so nice not to have to scrub Sharpie off my arms in the shower.)

I also lost ANOTHER wheel.  And I'd made sure that the (brand new installed) nuts were tight before I went on. There are two possibilities that make sense, from the opinions I've gotten:

1. My axles are stripped and I need new trucks;
2. The wheels have a wider space between the bearings, so the nylon part of the lock nut doesn't connect so it doesn't stay stuck, and I should reverse the orientation of the nuts.  (This one would make sense because the trouble started happening when I got the new wheels, but when I put the nuts on it looked like they went on fully.)

I'll mess around with it at practice tonight and see how it goes.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

tiny moments of joy

at scrimmage night tonight.

1. We were playing A team against B team, and kinda going loosey-goosey with positions, which is how I ended up jamming.  Whistles blow, I'm off, I manage to get almost all the way through without falling or getting knocked way out of the way.  I wait, and wait, with two A team blockers in front of me, and then I see it - the blocker on the inside line is starting to wander away - and she's not looking my way!  Neither is the other blocker with her!  I quick jump through the hole and get called lead jammer.

Of course, the other jammer got through not too much later, and passed me, but I called it off and she didn't get any points.  Yay me!

2.  The second part of the practice, we did two A team lineups against each other, then two B team lineups against each other.  Captainness Awesome came to join us because we didn't have a full roster.  She came up to me and said "Captain?" and I had to say that no, I wasn't captain.  She smiled and said "I guess I just assumed you'd be it."  Which made me feel good.

Anyway, Saturday is Canada.  Whee!

adventures in serging!

so my order from Spandex World arrived yesterday (a day early, whee!) so I started making the official B team helmet covers (green covers with white stars and stripes). 

The pattern is very basic - two curved sides and then a panel in the middle.  (This is for the jammer cover.  The panel in the middle is too wide to be a pivot cover.)    The hardest part is pinning them together - a straight line pinned to a curve takes approximately eleventy billion pins.

Anyway, I got the first seam done, and it looked beautiful.  I go to do the second seam, stop paying attention for a second, and the fabric gets all bunched up under the needles.  On a serger, which also cuts the excess fabric as you go, that's fatal.

So, I had to start from scratch.  Phooey.

But I finished one helmet cover (except for the stars) and it looks awesome, if I do say so myself.  The seams are nice and flat, it covers the helmet well.  I will probably do the "stars on both sides of the cover so if it gets turned inside out you won't get penalized" thing.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

so, updatingness

Our Sunday practices, which once were 10-12:30, are now 9-11.  This sucks, even beyond the obvious that I now have to get up even earlier - the place we practice is now a good 20-25 minutes away (as opposed to the 10 minutes to where we normally practice) so I get all annoyed and QUEEN SMASH and all that.

Anyway.  It's BOUT WEEK WAHOO!  We're traveling to Canada, which will be hella mega fun.  I know exactly where my passport is so I won't be scrambling around at the last minute trying to find it. 

We didn't have practice on Monday ('cause we were busy what with the fireworks and the partying and the firebreathing) so the A team let us practice with them last night.  It was good; my wheels are absolutely FABOO on the wood floor.  Love, love, love.

One of my home teammates lent me her 187 kneepads, since I am in the market for new ones.  I tried them on at ECE but didn't like them; I thought they stuck out too much and would get in my way when I did crossovers.  Well, I was wrong, they'll be great.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

sometimes I wonder...

as people know who read this, I have a 10 year old son, Maverick (that's his derby name).  Sometimes I wonder what it's like for him, having a mother who plays roller derby, and how his life has been made different because of it.

When I was his age, and I'd go to parties held by friends of my mom's, they'd be pool parties, low-key get togethers.  One time we got invited to go on the lake on the boat of one of her friends; that was very cool and a high point happy memory in my childhood.

Last night, we went to a 4th of July party held by one of my leaguemates.  At one point I had to tell him that he could NOT try firebreathing like everyone else.

(and, for what it's worth, if he hadn't been around, I probably would've tried it.)

Friday, July 1, 2011


So about two weeks ago Coach Awesome gave us a homework assignment - to write about the first twenty seconds of a jam.  " How to line up. How to handle opponent's strategy. Our strategy. where to look etc."

I wrote a thousand-word essay with ten footnotes.

I'll have to post it when I get the chance.

oh dear, what have I signed myself up for?

in a fit of I-don't-know-what last night, I agreed to try and make helmet covers for our team.  We need them for our July 9 bout.  I placed an order with Spandex World for 3 day delivery, we'll see what happens.  Worst case scenario, we have green on white practice covers that we can use.

So scrimmage yesterday.  I put my new wheels on, making sure to tighten each bolt securely.  (Foreshadowing: A valid literary technique.)  The red Diamonds are OMFG WONDERFUL.  I did not skid, I did not slide.  YAY RED RADAR DIAMONDS!

So we scrimmaged.  Very first time in the lineup I get a major because I've forgotten to put my mouthguard in (WTF?).  So we go along, awesome walls, keeping the jammer back.  (We were playing against the A team, and in one jam we did not let their jammer get through an initial pass.  We were all FUCK YEAH after that.)

and suddenly I get a familiar lopsided feeling in my skate - I've lost a wheel.*

Everything stops, I get my wheel, bearing and nut, and put them all back on.

Two jams later, it happens AGAIN.  With a different wheel.

Methinks I need to change my nuts.  Fortunately I have a stockpile.

*I've lost wheels twice before - once during a practice, and once during a private attendance bout.  (That time it was a bit amusing, as it happened at a strategic point that definitely was to our advantage, so I contemplated getting "quick-release wheels" that could be deployed in situations like that.)