Sunday, December 18, 2011

knowing my place

It's been a couple of months since I've actually played roller derby. I've been learning the reffin' and all game and scrimmage opportunities have been given over to figuring out if I'm a giraffe or a zebra.

Photo by Richard Lowes.

I am both.

Last night, though, I got to play. Reffing, I'm sorry to say, does not improve physical game play skills. It does help with understanding the pack and how it moves and the game overall. I felt yesterday that I knew what was going on quite well. But having the ability to do anything about it was another matter entirely.

Photo by Richard Lowes.

I also know quite a bit more about legal game play and the tendency to shout out infractions is already well established. Colour, number, penalty - I called it mid-jam. I did not say, 'tweet!' Though I might of if the penalty-maker didn't take my moment of distraction while I brooded over the essential unfairness of it all to knock the wind out of me.

Reminder: be a player or be a ref. You can not be both at the same time.

And it's true. All of our refs in our league are also players. I've seen them on countless occasions trying to be both and what usually happens is that someone gets knocked down. Jammers who stop skating so they can signal to the jam ref, shouting at the pack refs, declaring, loudly, "Pack is front!" or, worse, rhetorically asking, "Where the pack? No where! That's right, there is NO pack! Call this shit already!" instead of, ohIdon'tknow, trying to reform the fucking pack.

So, yes, that was me last night. Briefly. I'd like to say that momentarily losing the ability to breath is enough of a wake up call that I shall not try to ref while playing. At least that's my intention.

Of course, I probably would of taken that hit no matter what I was thinking at the time. Last night I travelled down to Calgary to play against the Hellions, CRDA's all-star team, as part of their try out process. They are a group of women with some badass skills and it's completely unsurprising how they can dominate little ol' me.

Another fun thing was I got to meet CRDA's Dazzler.  I love meeting derby bloggers.  I always get this little thrill, sort of like meeting someone famous.  Of course, us writers are usually famous in our own minds, so I think my thrill is justified.

Thanks Calgary for a great scrimmage and your fabulous people! 


  1. I have to say that I'm totally like that with other derby bloggers too!! A friend of mine invited me to come NSO a CRDA tournament this summer and I was like, "Oh my God, I could meet Unchained Malady!! *squeeeee*" It was terribly juvenile of me.

  2. Omg, there is way more interesting people to met than me! If you are coming in April, though, chances are pretty good I'll be around, playing or something. My league is just up the road too and we're sorta awesome to come visit too. If you see me, please come say hi! Then we can *squeeeee* together.