Sunday, August 30, 2009

Loving me some Fresh Meat!

If you have been under a rock and haven't heard we have had two tryouts this season. One in May, which spawned six new skating members in our league, Brianna, Casey, Erin, Kim, Manuela and Tanya. These girls have done their time and proved to be dedicated members of SCDG. I think they are finally no longer in the status of Fresh Meat anymore and are allowed to acquire a derby name for themselves. The only name I have heard so far is from Kim, who will now be known as Barbarian Librarian. There is another new player in our league, Elaina, now known as Nurse Rackula, who joined the league late last year. She came on as a ghostrider, suffered an injury, stuck around with the league and is now at player status. The second tryout this year was on July 19th, none of us could have predicted the turn out at Scotts Valley that morning. We had an idea that we would see more potentials then our last tryout but when 28 women showed up that morning, we were all blown away. Of the 28, 27 joined up with the league, with a small handful becoming Damaged Deck Hands (our volunteer non-skating members) while they work on their skating skills. For fear of forgetting to include someone, I won't list out all their names but you will be able to check all of them out soon on our website in the Fresh Meat section.

Our newest Fresh Meat are showing a lot of potential. They all have a lot of heart and fresh energy that the league definitely needs to help with all of the work involved with running this type of business. We are breathing a little easier now that we know we can pass on some of our duties to fresh blood. It's going to be marvelous next year to be able to truly field two travel teams, the Boardwalk Bombshells and the Harbor Hellcats, which is really going to up the competition within our league, making us that much better.

I especially love that we can partake all this knowledge we have acquired, skills and strategy we have taught ourselves and give it to these upcoming derby players. They will have an advantage that we didn't quite have because we have had to learn things the hard way, figuring it out at each practice and bout. Within time it will be more of an even playing field and then we will continue to all teach each other through the experience we gain at bouts. Until then, I will do what I can to teach these new freshies the way of derby, not only the game but how to communicate and work together in this community. It's important to be humble, to respect each other and to support even the weakest league member. I hope I can impart this knowledge on our newest members and have them thrive and become kick ass derby bitches.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Where does the time go?

We all know it gets sucked up into a vortex and next thing you know you turn around and you realize it's almost Fall. I have not blogged since March, that means it's been almost five months and a lot has happened in that time. I realize that I haven't even wrote a blog since we transitioned from the Santa Cruz Rollergirls to the Santa Cruz Derby Girls, that's just shameful. We all know the change was big and painful at times but the league has made so many great strides and is now better and stronger after it. Most of my time has been sucked up on skating, committee work, "real" work, my family, and my other big project - The Santa Cruz Derby Girls new website, which can be found at I am so proud of this website and want to thank my brother for bringing my vision to life and handing me over the keys to keep it updated. Thankfully my fellow leaguemates and fellow derby bloggers have been doing a good job keeping the information coming. As for me, I've played in seven bouts, coached one, and worked one since my last post. Here's a break down of those bouts:

April 4th - Beach Flat Betties vs. The Lost Girls

After our change to the Santa Cruz Derby Girls we had our first official home bout at the Civic against The Lost Girls. Because we do not have enough league players to fill the two teams properly, the Fistful of Dollies help fill in the rosters. The Betties obtained Foxee Firestorm and Pippi Hardsocking. It was a hard night of derby, having to play against our league mates. I had a great time jamming and being close with my fellow Betties. Final Score - Beach Flat Betties 130, The Lost Girls 101.

April 18th - All-Stars vs. Sonoma County Wine Country Homewreckers @ Sonoma

We got our asses handed to us on the track. But I will say we rocked the shit out of the After Party...karaoke, v-tag, cops at the motel, it was gooooood times. We learned a lot and came home humbled by the Sonoma girls. We really understood the importance of practicing on a full-sized WFTDA track to learn how to move differently. We met Adrian Valenzuela who took some awesome photos that night and some other amazing ones at our bouts since. Check out his website here. Final Score - All-Stars 56, Sonoma 167.

May 16th - Harbor Hellcats vs. Brentwood Brawlin' Bettys

I did not play in this game, I got the honor of coaching with my fellow teammate Lulu Lockjaw. The Harbor Hellcats our B Travel Team debuted at the Santa Cruz Civic on this night and played their hearts out and had a glorious win. I haven't really coached since my days of coaching high school girls water polo, it was so much fun and I really have such a love for coaching. I look forward to doing it in the years when my body will no longer allow me to take the brutality of derby. Final Score - Harbor Hellcats 171, Brawlin' Bettys 98.

May 30th - Beach Flat Betties vs. Tahoe Derby Dames @ Tahoe

I got to play with my home team the Beach Flat Betties once again but this time in Tahoe and had an absolutely marvelous time. We didn't have enough Betties to fill our roster and some of our Betties were injured and sick, so we had to fill the roster with some non-betties. The team included Allda Rage, Angelina Rollie, Anny Upyours, Cleopatra Catastrophe, Eden Yourheartout, Foxee Firestorm, Kicken Red Vixen, Lulu Lockjaw, Pigeon, Pixie Painful, Raven Von Kaos, and Shamrock N. Roller. The Tahoe Derby Dames are a new league and their track is outdoors in the redwoods, it was really cool! The weather was being a little unpredictable on the way up, thunder and lightning storms. When we arrived at the venue, we had to cover the track because it started to sprinkle a bit and the track could not get wet. Finally, the weather cooperated and it ended up being a beautiful night. The hardest thing about this bout was being away from my son for the night and him

not having a place where he felt at home. His dad had to work and my parents were out of town so he had to make a trip to his uncle's house and have his first sleepover there. Late night sad phone calls made the trip a little rough but the derby was fun and you can't beat the view. And I got to share a room with one of our very own derby families, thanks for letting me crash CinZilla, HueRefner and Hana Slamtana! Final Score - Beach Flat Betties 151, Tahoe Derby Dames 72.

(Above Photo - Raven Von Kaos, Anny Upyours, and I driving to the venue. Left Photo - Tahoe's location in the redwoods, we are getting ready, notice the plastic on the ground, that's what the track was covered with.)

June 13th - Boardwalk Bombshells vs. Silicon Valley Roller Girls Dot.Kamikazes @
San Jose Skate

This was actually the first game that the former All-Stars skated as the newly named Boardwalk Bombshells. We went in with a lot of anticipation and it turned out probably being the most disappointing game of the season. We really wanted to win this one being that SVRG is our nearest rival league. Don't get me wrong, we love all of these girls and have a strong bond with them, but we all wanted this one bad. We came up short, our jammers were having a hard time that night and our blocking was just a little off. SVRG came away with a win. I think what I enjoyed most was watching how Pia Mess adjusted herself every jam she was in based on how many people were in, who was blocking, who was jamming. She made a good shark and taught me a few things I definitely am going to start incorporating. We are all looking forward to another shot at it next year in October, on our turf. Final Score - Bombshells 100, Dot.Kamikazes 131.

(Above Photo - Me hitting the jammer, Terribelle Demise - photo by Nocklebeast. Left Photo - Lulu, Foxee, Pippi, and I are talking between a time-out - photo by Adrian Valenzuela.)

June 27th - Boardwalk Bombshells vs. Jet City's Pink Pistols

It was so great being back at the Civic after more than two months of not playing there and even longer playing together with my fellow "All-Stars" now Bombshells at our home venue. This was a night to remember as the Santa Cruz Derby Girls were honored with the "Key to the City" by Mayor Cynthia Matthews, she also declared June 27th Santa Cruz Derby Girls Day. Absolutely AMAZING! We accomplished so much from when the league started, the transition and to this day. We also continued having our celebrity whistle blowers at the bout, first half Cynthia Matthews, second half Steve
Wozniak. The Pink Pistols, a home team for Jet City, traveled down from Washington to take us on. This game was wonderful, it was challenging, fun, and I really felt like I had stepped up my game and was feeling my groove. The team played so well and made so many great improvements from our last bout; it really revived me after some hard bouts. Although we didn't officially win the game, our team felt more bonded and ready for our next challenge. Final Score Bombshells - 124, Pink Pistols - 128.

(Above Left Photo - Mildred Fierce helping Mayor Cynthia Matthews (Sybil Servant #2009) hold up her honorary Santa Cruz Derby Girls jersey - photo by Kelco. Above Right Photo - Me flying after being tripped by the Pink Pistol on the ground. It really shows how fast we are going. Photo by Nocklebeast - THANK YOU!)

July 11th - Boardwalk Bombshells vs. Derby Revolution of Bakersfield

What a night! This game was wonderful, I had such a great time and our team was on fire. We were all like one fluid moving entity and we felt like we could do no wrong. It was a great night of derby starting out with our whistle blower WBC Boxing Champion Carina "La Reina" Moreno (The rad thing is she came out to tryouts the following Sunday!) I couldn't be more proud of my team than I was that night. I personally felt like I had improved my game in just two weeks and it felt great. To end the night, I was honored when I got to Jam in the final jam of the night, so fun! The Bakersfield

girls were hard hitters, amazing athletes with great attitudes. Final Score - Bombshells 133, Bakersfield 69.

(Above photo - Me hitting Tonka Toy while Brawley does a great job holding her back. Left photo - Me jamming and just squeaking past Dred Blocker. Photos by Kelly Castro, check out all his derby photos here.)

August 15th - Boardwalk Bombshells vs. Port City Roller Girls @ Stockton

I hate playing in the heat, it's so hard for me, I know this is a weakness of mine that I have been trying to overcome. The Port City game was rough, it was a very physical game, constantly changing and we had to adapt to the heat, the floor and the strategies they used. It was a game I walked away from knowing that we as a team learned so much and we have brought these lessons back to our league to improve on. Winning is wonderful but as we know it's not everything and a loss is always good because of what you learn within yourself, your team and the game of derby. We lost by one point, one measly point. Final Score - Bombshells 86, Port City 87.

August 22nd - Harbor Hellcats vs. Silicon Valley Roller Girls KillaBytes

The most recent game that we had at the Santa Cruz Civic was the first match-up between our Harbor Hellcats and Silicon Valley's KillaBytes. The game was a great one, both teams evenly matched with some strong A Team players being featured on the KillaBytes due to an illness and injury by two of their B Team players the day of the bout. The night started off with the first jam whistle being blown by the owner of the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk Mr. Charles Canfield. And at half-time, the Santa Cruz Derby Groms, the Sugar Skulls and Bumper Scars had their debut bout for all the fans. It was a surge of happy emotions watching these future derby girls have their time out on the track, such a great sight. Just think of the skills these girls will have when they are old enough to play with the big girls. Thanks to junior derby the sport of roller derby is going to be an entirely different game in five to ten years. Great job to all the coaches and of course to Kiki Clash, director of the Santa Cruz Derby Groms. The second half of the game continued to be a nail biter as the teams continued to trade points. By the end Silicon Valley moved ahead and took home a win. I got to finally work at a bout since I started with this league, I sold merch outside and in the stands, collected money for the Bombshells for our upcoming San Diego trip, schmoozed with the Sponsors and got to watch our Hellcats put up a great fight. Final Score - Hellcats 108, KillaBytes 122. Look for an entire post just about the Santa Cruz Derby Groms in the near future, they deserve it!

(Top Left Photo - Charles Canfield and Timothy Jordan. Top Right Photo - Santa Cruz Derby Groms doing their version of the Stomp - "Who's going to bring the fun and games? Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz!" - Photos by Kelco. Left Photo - Me selling merch at the game - Photo by Russell Reno.)

That sums up all nine games, a pretty rad five months if you ask me and that doesn't even touch on the other events we have been involved in, like the Pride Parade, Down N' Derby Party, and two tryouts. The Santa Cruz Derby Girls have grown exponentially over the last four months and have added about 40 new league members. Our league is kicking ass and taking names. So what's up next?

The Boardwalk Bombshells are making their way down to San Diego to take on the San Diego Derby Dolls - Diego Rollers. If you don't know, the players of our league pay for almost everything, our dues, our uniforms, our travel. Some of these expenses are offset by the league but most everything is out-of-pocket. To help us travel down to San Diego we are holding a concert at the Blue Lagoon to raise some money. Come on down and have a good time!

Our next bout will be September 12th at the Civic against Tuscon Roller Derby. They are sending one of their home teams called the Iron Curtain to play us. Sure to be an exciting game, I am stoked and can't wait!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Turning 29.

By Friday morning, I will have entered my last year of my twenties. One more year and I move into the realm of no longer being able to say I'm twenty-something. Although I hear your thirties are much better, I must say I'm already dreading turning another year older. August, my son, gets thrilled at the thought of birthdays and he absolutely cannot wait for mine to come and go so that we can celebrate his. He knows that once mine is over it means his will be next; he will be turning four on April 11th. It's my intention to throw him a big birthday with all our friends and family. I am looking forward to giving him a wonderful day and watching him enjoy having all the attention on him.

Thursday, tomorrow, will be our first practice back after our win against the Sirens of the L.A. Derby Dolls. It's team practice night and it's time for the Betties to regroup and get focused on our upcoming bout against one of our home teams, The Lost Girls on April 4th. I am excited for practice tomorrow, celebrating my birthday with my league, playing with the Betties and getting to eat yummy cupcakes made by Roxy Scarmichael.

Here's to another birthday *CHEERS*. Ladies, put one down for me this Friday.

*Photo Credit: Kelly Castro

Another SCRG Blogger...really?

I have been thinking many months about starting a blog about my experiences playing roller derby. I have admired Raven Von Kaos and how she was the first one to blog about our league. Her blog Raven n Rollin is a joy to read, it's not always about derby, some times just random stories of what's going on in her life. I think it's wonderful the attention she was able to bring to the league through blogging. I love how she was also taking the time to feature different roller girls from our league. I hope she finds the time to resume this aspect of her blog.

So tonight, I was checking out Killer Vee's blog, Northern California Derby, and making a comment about her featuring our YouTube site there and I saw a good friend of the league Nocklebeast following her blog. I love this guy. He is a devoted photographer who has taken it upon himself to be present at every one of our home bouts taking photos. He gives attention to all aspects of the game and you can see how each game his photos improve more and more. While adding him as a friend, I came across the fact that he was following a blog called Lulu Lockjaw...The Real Deal. I had no idea that Lulu had even started a blog. I immediately clicked over and started reading and loving it.

These two women, leaguemates and just badass derby girls have inspired me to move forward with starting my blog tonight. I love and adore them not only for the way they play the sport but who they are as people. I hope to continue to be inspired by them in life and in derby. I had a moment of, "Do we really need another blogger for SCRG?" My initial reaction was, "No," but the more I thought about it, it became clear to me that it was needed. Every girl sees derby in her own way on the track and off. She brings a different outside experience to it, thus creating a unique league. The connections I have with my friends and family and the values I was raised with are in my own way different than everyone else's. I bring this to the league every day be it at practice, at bouts, at get-togethers, on the forum, on the phone, wherever derby crosses our lives, and trust me it's everywhere. I love that all of us women, with different lives, stories, troubles, loves, what have you come together for one common purpose, derby. I would not be who I am today without everything that has occurred in my life, good and bad, but I sure as hell would not be the woman I am today without derby. Santa Cruz Rollergirls is not just another roller derby league, it's a passion and the women who have created what it is today have given me an experience I will never forget.