So February 2010 I joined the Tilted Thunder Rail Birds referee group.
My long time dear friend Brick Howitzer convinced me to do it. I said what the hell and joined.
I had never really skated. (There were a few skate parties in grade school. I never got off the wall) But I bought a pair of skates and learned to roll in the hallway, the driveway and at the local tennis court.
Fast forward to 1 year and 1 month later.
Skate Tool, our skate trainer, comes up to me at scrimmage tonight and says you're going to jam ref at the next bout. I saw "hell no I'm not". He persists and I persist for a few minutes.
The scrimmage starts with the first quarter and me as Head Ref, which at this point I am getting the hang of. Quarter change and Skate Tool and Hateful both give me the "yes you are" and there I go to line up with the jammers.
So first jam I get lead, but I don't call it out. When the jammer called it off I just watched until someone else whistled the jam over. Ooops! I did count the points though.
Next jam same deal, but I call lead. Points, no call off, no penalties? What the hell is going on? Who is my jammer. Am I lead? A lot of missed shit. Thankfully points was not one of them.
Everyone helped me. They gave me tips, encouragement, reminders. I was so happy with how nice and supportive everyone was. I really couldn't have asked for a better intro in to skate reffing much less jam reffing.
You see I've done non skating stuff, and non skating Head reffing which calls penalties, but standing still. I've practiced skating and penalty drills. I've done OPR a few times on flat track, but I've really never done the whole real deal on banked. Tonight I did.
Each jam I did something right. Then did something wrong. But it wasn't the meltdown I thought it would be. It was fun. Like really fun. Like when Hateful asked if I wanted to go back to HR I said no way!
This is what I've been working towards for over a year and tonight it happened. I'm so happy that I nearly cried.