Thursday, September 29, 2011

Derby Don'ts

A couple of things I picked up during practice last night...

Don't forget to eat for the most of the day and then go to derby practice.  Especially on a night when you are doing an endless jammer drill followed by nearly an hour and a half of scrimmaging.  A breakfast bar and sushi simply will not suffice.  A calorie deficit for the day means your legs will be in pain before you even get to warm-ups.  And the burn does not go away for the entire practice.  You may feel like you are going to die right there on the track, and then, people will just skate around your cold, dead body.  And you may get a major for tripping if they fall over your corpse.  Hard to get to the penalty box when you are dead.   

Don't take it personally when another girl pushes you out of bounds and then uses excessive force to knock you to the ground when you are already off the track (where you bruise your backside for the nine hundredth time).  You should see the bruise.  This baby is quite a derby injury trophy, and I would totally post pictures if they didn't involve crack.  Crack is whack.  I still wonder what the refs were doing when this was happening and why she did not get a penalty.  A major penalty.  And I still think it was unnecessary roughness which I am not a fan of.  Hold girls off, but don't kill them.  And I may or may not have yelled all the way back to my bench about the whole incident being a problem.  Not that I was bitter or anything.

Don't look away when the bench manager is handing out helmet panties.  It's the same dynamic as avoiding eye contact with the teacher when you don't know the answer.  If you look away, inevitably, you will be handed the panty.  And then you will have to pivot when you completely suck at being the pivot. And then you will get the ever-loving snot unexpectedly knocked out of you by John Wayne Stacy.  When she hit me, I heard something crack.  I still haven't figured out what it was, but, needless to say, EVERYTHING hurts today.  E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G.  Well, everything except my feet.  My feet were unscathed.

In the same vein, do not let your captain see you try to pass the star panty (worn by the jammer) off to someone else on your team.  She *might* decide that she needs to keep a closer eye on you, and who wants that, right? And then she might tell you that you are not going to get out of jamming. Even if you tell her that you have no legs that night.  However, when you jam miserably after telling her that you have no legs that night, she will let you off the hook and not ask you to jam anymore.  It's kinda like when you break a dish while doing the dishes, and your mom tells you she will finish up for you.

Don't session skate.  This means you need to remember to skate low and in your derby posture.  I think I may have been "session skating" last night.  I spent an awful lot of time on my butt.  Either that or the other team could tell I was exhausted and not having my best night and decided to pick on me.  Or maybe a little bit of both.

Don't talk to a ref about what your penalty was in the middle of a jam.  I can call victory here because this one wasn't me.  However, it was a good reminder of what I should not do. 

Don't skate past your own penalty box and get in the box for the other team.  Again, not me, but a good reminder.  This lengthens the amount of time your team has to skate without you. 

When you are jamming do not grab on to your teammate without yelling out to her who you are.  She will not skate you through the pack like you want her to if you don't communicate with her.  But, because she is Rosie and has obvious derby super powers, I think she should be able to read my mind.  :)   Rosie Rocks!

Do not threaten a derby wife relationship.  Last night I got a burning spank to my already bruised backside for helping out someone else's derby wife. The skater I was helping was injured, and I was taking off her skates and socks so that she could avoid being in further pain. I got called a home wrecker, and my butt really smarted. For quite a few minutes. And then the derby wife apologized for besmirching my name. I haven't talked about "derby wives" on here yet, but there is such a thing.  Some of them even have derby weddings.  It sounds strange and even a little salacious, but really a derby wife is the girl who always has your back even when you are wrong.  Really, it's basically a derby BFF.  At this point in my derby life, I have decided to not seek out a derby wife.  I may just be a perpetual derby bachelorette.  I'm not sure I'm cut out for derby marriage.  I may just play the field.  Maybe I'm just a big derby flirt and not willing to put all my eggs in one derby girl's basket.  And maybe I just haven't met the "one" yet.  Mr. Incredible is getting very uncomfortable reading this if he is reading it, so I will stop talking about this derby peculiarity now. 

Don't let a bad practice hold you back.  In two weeks when you have a fantastic practice, no one will remember that you skated like Bambi last night unless you remind them.  

Don't remind them! 


  1. Ouch! Kind-of glad I am not feeling your pain today. Sounds like a rough night.

  2. Reckless, I meant to catch you after practice and apologize you for hitting you after you were already out of bounds. I was really off my game last night and didn't realize I had already pushed you out of bounds and was out of bounds myself. When you fell down and I saw the look on your face, I realized what I had done and I felt terrible because it was uncalled for and like you said unnecessary. I should have definitely gotten a penalty, and trust me I knew it too. I hope your backside heals up quickly and thank you for this post. I think posts like this are really helpful to all our skaters who read through them and learn from what other people notice during practice. I love you and I would never intentionally or maliciously endanger you. I am sorry for my poor skating last night.

    Derby love,

  3. Babs,

    Like I said, I have to learn that it's not personal. Sometimes the adrenaline of that moment makes us lose our heads. And your skating was not poor. You couldn't have knocked me down just a few months ago, and you definitely won that contact battle last night. You are a real Cinderella story, and we are all proud of you. But, I'm glad to know you don't have it in for me. I would be scared...very scared! And please know this post (as many of them are) is very tongue-in-cheek. I purposely did not put your name in the post because it's the type of thing that has happened to us all at one time or another. Apology not needed. And now I'm going to go crawl back into my little hole... Derby love back at you, Reckless

  4. So I guess you have the choice of a derby wife AND a church wife...or two? You're pretty popular amongst the crowds. ; )

  5. PandaMom, Forty-one. Don't you love how I've honed in on that. It's good to have choices... haha.

  6. My hit on you last night was merely a love tap! Big derby love to you, my friend!