heartbreak hotel

where do I begin?

CTRG Bout 6 flyer

Firstly thanks to Cen-Tex for finally being able to schedule me to ref, again. This was my first time reffing at the Frank Mayborn Civic Center, confused yet? last time I was scheduled I had car trouble en route. Then I was set to announce and I ended up having to work that weekend.

In any case, it had also been over a year since I’ve seen most of Alamo City Roller Girls. So when I finally geared up skated out and saw ACRG warming up and chatting with Pleasure to Beat you, my heart continued to break in half over and over hearing about LOAs, 9 month injuries and other league related details. I only recognized about 5 skaters. Whereas I had grown accustomed to showing up to the Rollercade in San Antonio and not recognizing one or two skaters.

So Snippy Snap, formerly a play on Eiffel tower and Evil (long story) is running around getting her ducks in a row. Something I admire about her in that she rolls with the punches to get the NSO paperwork in order. I had a sampling of NSO work, all positions at RollerCon last year, I appreciate all NSOs because all are stressful and important. more so the Head NSO, so I tip  my motorcycle helmet to you Kristi.

The Announcer who’s replaced me, Bad Dog I believe is his name, was really great. I feel like I might have to re-earn a chance to announce at Cen-Tex next season.

I must admit that although as a whole team zebra missed some calls, we can;t call it if we don’t see ALL of it, skaters didn’t lose their cool or argue calls they clearly didn’t agree with.

In all I’m glad for the opportunity to get to be on skates again, for two teams I admire and am treated like family.

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Wherefore Art Thou Romeo

This is probably one of the most misunderstood lines in literature. Do you know what ‘wherefore’ means? Without looking it up? If you guessed ‘why’ pat yourself on the back, if you KNEW it means ‘why’ then you were either in drama or had looked it up before, right? If you didn’t know, don’t worry. I myself learned about it in drama class. The meaning behind the question, “Why are you Romeo [Montague]?” is the family feud between the Monatagues and Capulets (Juliet) if he had any other name they could be happy and not have to hide their love.
The end.
But it wasn’t the end, and it led to the whole “if a rose by any other name would smell as sweet” bit. If a rose were called ‘blood stain’ it would still be as pretty and everything else we associate with a rose, but probably not the flowers of choice for Valentines Day.

Women's Flat Track Derby Association

Women’s Flat Track Derby Association

What does this have to do with derby? Well, what is in a name? First off most “leagues” are a nickname to what city (Big Easy, Alamo City), or what region of the country (Gold Coast, SoCal) they’re in. Other leagues are named after the city or state, (Houston, Arizona) or a play on the city name (Oly = Olympia, Naptown = Indianapolis). Then there are others whose names if I’m told how it relates to the city they’re from I still won’t get the word association or I might think it’s clever. But for the most part I’d have no clue where the league is from.
Frequently every league has in the second part of their name a variantion of: Rollergirl, roller girls, derby girls, rollers, vixens, dames, devils, roller derby, dolls, rebels, grrls, and so on. Few leagues make no mention of derby in their name such as, Mississippi Valley Mayhem, The Chicago Outfit. I’ve come across an article about making derby a legitimate major league sport, with a convincing argument for skaters to choose more family friendly derby name.
Now here’s my reason for this post. If most skaters, as in WFTDA and non WFTDA, don’t know most of the *league* names or locations. How then will ESPN present it?

Think of your favorite major league team. Whether it’s football, soccer, hockey, basketball or baseball. What’s the name of the *team*? What city are they in? finally what *league* do they fall under? MLB, NBA, NFL, MLS, NHL? This is my point, WFTDA is the governing body and league of roller derby. The member *leagues* should be called teams, which would go by a team name. Their city would be included with merch, during game announcements, commentator color to the point where the viewing fans will get it.
San Antonio Tejanas, Temple Sirens, New York City All Stars, Montreal New Skids on the Block, Baton Rouge Diables Rouges.  But what is in a name? I’m still going to officiate and announce where I’m needed, with various leagues in a 200 mile radius regardless of that they call themselves. Until the end of the bout, skaters are still just a color and number to me. This is just food for thought for anyone who might want to rethink how else to get ESPN to televise a sport worth international recognition as a major league sport.

Northside Fury @ Rocket City

so this bout I was planning on spectating. Had been out of town for nearly a month and not been in touch w/ my original home team, Northside Fury. Nor had I heard from Rocket City’s head ref as to what ref/NSO spots they may or may not need to fill.

But I showed up early anyway just to TS & catch up with skaters n officials. Sadly I only knew/recognized 3 Northside skaters (I need to visit them more often). Once hellos were outta the way I ended up on the NSO list for the penalty box, working with PB Queen Courtney Hate, not to b confused with PBJ ref/skater/trainer extraordinaire. Hard G took to teaching various NSO tasks prior to the bout and official wise it ran pretty smoothly.

Something else that’s noteworthy, at least from what I know, this was SK8-B8’s first bout as head ref. Which I’d say was ran pretty smoothly, aside from the nearly 3 min official timeout just before the end of the game. RCRG’s ref crew has come a long way from their early days in stripes.

The Rocket City roster was nearly full of Seasoned skaters. Either had played with RCRG for more than 3 bouts, or had played with other leagues. There were only about 4 skaters I hadn’t seen in a bout before.
Northside Furies, thats the plural of Fury as opposed to something else, had red waves o’pain, bashin brownie, ragin’ rican, bexter, flash, hello kidney & cyber bully. The rest of their roster (forgive me if I forgot anyone) were fresh meat. Northside genuinely surprised me, as the underdog I had pictured a bar being set and they exceeded it. With some finese practice and training I think they can get their new group of skaters up to the same level their league was at just a few short months ago.
All leagues have a little something I like about them so I can never say with certainty “THIS league is my favorite” but northside’s determination and dedication have a special place in my heart.