Saturday, July 17, 2010

Week 21 Speed F-ing Demon!

Ok so that means speed demon on my standards, which means I was able to keep up with the pack and even stay ahead sometimes. But fuck yeah!!!!

So a couple of weeks ago Gary had us "loosen up" in practice which apparently means do the cha cha.

I don't actually do the cha cha all that well so I did the meringue. What I found was the quick shifting of weight from foot to foot made me go surprisingly faster.

I pondered this finding over a few days and today put my musings into action. I did the same shifty stepping and fucking cruised!

After an hour or so of practice I was running through the turns too. Hell yeah, I'm a fucking speed demon and I'm pretty proud of it.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Week 20 Derby wives and men

I had a baby 4 years ago. Then another one 2 years after that. I had a great job, but the pay was not enough to cover childcare when the second one came along. So I happily stayed home.

Staying home for some people can come natural, and I definitely settled into domestic bliss with little complaint. But the bits that are lost when you no longer maintain a constant relationship with the outside world can be disheartening.

I'm not a park mom. I don't take the kids in the stroller on walks. I don't go to the zoo and I'm not the kind of mom to get together with other moms and swap recipes. I drink coffee on the couch and watch cartoons.

This is totally fine with me. But by reducing my social life from work and family, to just family it changed my relationship with my husband. He became my adult world. The only one who really spoke english. He could help me with the kids and give me a break from the chaos. I went from somewhat independent and worldly to scared and shortsighted.

I longed for the moment he came home, I hung on his every word. When he wanted to go out at night to play poker I would be sad and obstinate. I hated that I was stuck at home and after only an hour or two of relief he would leave again. The weekends were the same, he would fish and again I would stay home, resentful of his life outside of home.

He was living a normal life while my horizons shrank smaller and smaller. This may sound kind of lame, but I don't think it's such an unusual story. The first year or two of childhood is very demanding. I had two kids so I had to sink into my small version of parenthood for three and half years.

Once my daughter turned 18 months things changed. I wasn't so exhausted. They didn't hang on me constantly, they didn't even notice me as much. My time, chained to the house, was over and my life was going to begin again.

Enter derby. Now I go out a few nights a week. Every other weekend or so I have social outings or games to go to. I have made friends with an unusual and surprisingly cool group of people. I have a normal life again. But my time locked away had done it's damage.

My husband had grown used to years of me hanging on his every word. He had been the center of my world and now my world had grown out away from him. Had I not stayed home for so long, or had continued normal social interactions during early parenthood, this may not have been a problem. But I didn't, that wasn't me. Now he has become the derby widow and derby has become my new wife.

The concept of the derby wife is all about supporting each other. Helping each other through the rough bits, being there. I have to wonder how many derby wives provide the support that you wish could come from your significant other. My husband wants to be supportive, and he tries. But it's hard to be completely OK with your wife's new mistress who consumes her thoughts and time, when you used to be number one.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Week 19 Some reality

Yeah I'm still on the lose some weight track.

You see I had some babies and got like super fucking fat. The whole please try to gain some weight card was sorely overused.

I got an 80 extra, and I've kicked 35, but I am really looking forward to having my old body back. Even just having my old face back. With the extra pounds I look like my grandmother, and I'm not digging it.

Anyways the suckage about dieting is that you eat significantly less, and have significantly less energy. So today at practice, day 2 of diet, I could barely keep skating. I thought I was going to puke like every 5 minutes. It sucked, but whatever.

There aren't that many practices this week so it's cool. I planned to start the diet during a slow week so I wouldn't suck ass every time. But la la la, in a few days I should be used to it and back to a somewhat fighting self.

This whole getting in shape thing is a bitch!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Week 19 Making friends

Well there are certainly a lot of people who join derby to make friends in addition to all the wonderful things that come with skating. I am one of those people.

I have two children and a husband so technically my "socializing needs" box is checked, but it's nice to have more friends. Over this experience I've actually met a lot of really nice people and even reconnected with a few old friends.

I used to always make friends through work and that can be problematic. If you are too social sometimes your less-than-professional quirks can come back to haunt you. Also someone who seems to be a friend at work may only be socializing because they enjoy it more than doing their job.

Enter roller derby.

When I was younger it was easy to get hot and heavy with a few people, blow my social wad and feel the drunk nights remorse. But being older and not actually requiring a social scene, being married with children you have a built in social life, I can actually enjoy the process of slowly getting to know people.

At this point I've hung out one on one and in groups with quite a few of the derby people and am little surprised at how much I really like them.

It's nice having some new friends.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Week 18 Making the transition

So we've been skating as a flat track league. This makes sense as we have no banked track and the other leagues around here are all flat track. And it's likely there will always be some residual flat track action so that we can competently bout with the flat track leagues from time to time.

In terms of players flat track to banked is not hugely different. Yes the physical aspect is, but the penalties are similar with minor differences involving swimming and whatnot.

What is significantly different is how the game is run. For some people they may not like it as much. There is no crazy outside pack ref careening through, constantly on the edge of wild hitting women and the crowd a few feet away.

Also in banked track there is much more space for the inside team to move in. Granted banked has a lot more going on in the infield, but the amount of skating space is much larger and there is less of the congo line effect with the refs. This makes the super hairball tight skating "slightly" less of an issue.

This is cool for those of us still working on our skills. While we will always need to work towards improving our skills, there are less obstacles in our way to get there! I think what are my favorite changes are the differences that will come to the ref/nso group.

When I met the reffing groups in San Diego, I was struck by the cohesion and camaraderie of the groups. The ref positions are so much more integrated that the tightness of the individuals was almost palpable. They had their shit together and it showed.

Right now our two groups, and they are definitely two groups, are fairly aloof. This is going change, even before we go banked track. I've always liked both groups and all the positions but I am looking forward to us being a cohesive unit that works and plays together.

The changes going to banked track are going to shake things up and mostly in a really cool way.