BADLIFECHOICES

Oh my god. I am usually so super serious about reffing, so going out Friday night til 4am then driving to High Wycombe to ref a bout and a scrim was a BADLIFECHOICE.

Add to that that I decided to BREAK IN MY NEW SKATES… Oh my god. Everything hurts. I want to curl up and die. I also called a cut on a jammer by blowing my whistle, saying BLACK and then staring at her.

Today I did not make Metal Ed smile. *vomits*

I will never do this again.

Still. 28 bouts done now.

Yesterday I was alternate ref for the first bout and OPR for the second. For the first time in my derby reffing career I got to deal with a foul out… TWICE.

Both CCR skaters, both lovely. I do look like a mardy biatch in the photos though. Standing against a wall with my ref face on.

Second bout was CTB v SWS (with Matlovin and his rainbow unicorn mouthguard) and I had another first… Impressing Metal Ed.

SWS jammer skated off track to avoid a block whilst calling it. I saw it and signalled it to his jam ref (Rocky) who called it. Then the bench manager called an official review to question it.

I was 100% on the call, explained it, the call stuck. Metal Ed smiled. GOOD TIMES.

Watch it begin again

In 2007 I started playing roller derby with the Middlesbrough Milk Rollers. In 2009 I moved up to the Newcastle Roller Girls. At the end of 2012 I moved down to Birmingham. But it’s taken until now… over 9 months after moving… for me to realise that I should suck it up and join the third team of my derby career. Six years, three teams. I am a bit of a derby hussy it seems.

Got sage-like advice from a few people. Bacon, Boris and Shref. Then chatted about it with my Derby Dad (Sven) who, after making up bible quotes at me, said he would love me a little less but understood that I needed to leave. And so, with NO PACK (open) arms I ran full pelt towards the men who have taken me under their wing, picked on/pushed me non-stop and made me feel SO BLOODY WELCOME in the Midlands. My new surrogate daddies: Metal Ed, Travis-T and Ratty. 

Oh lads? Sven said if you don’t treat me right he will come at you “like a bag of cocks”. I do not want to know what that is like, so please don’t be douches. 

GO HOME AMSTERDAM, YOU’RE DRUNK

Christ on a bike that was a long slog. Had to arrive at the sports hall at 10am for a ref meeting – even though I wasn’t reffing until 6pm. Luckily I was on a squad with Dirty Harry who I met at the Euros and got on well with. We explored, had naps, watched some derby and talked about what we were going to do in 24 hours’ time when this madness was over.

My ref crew was under Major Madness. I’d already been warned about him pre-event. He decided to stay awake for the full 24 hours and ref the entire thing. He is German, wears kilts and lots of eye make up and says things like “your positioning in that jam was useless” that makes you want to cry and go home.

Thankfully – bout three, three hours into my shift and nine hours into the event, I made friends with Logan and Jasper on my crew and started to have a proper laugh. Honestly, up until this point I hated it and wanted to go home. After that I think I laughed the whole time. Weird.

Ok the flaws of a 24-hour scrimmage: You will be tired. You will need more food than you think you do. Skaters will go to sleep leaving NO ONE TO PLAY ROLLER DERBY. Tempers will fray.
Good things: You will make friends fast. Some of those friends will have RAINBOW MOUTHGUARDS WITH UNICORNS ON THEM. Showers have never felt so good. You have accomplished something that hasn’t been done before.

I reffed LOTS as OPR, twice as jam ref and twice as inside front. God is that all I did? It felt like a lot more. I saw a hideous back block in front of me at something like 3am and just stared at it whilst muttering to myself. That was shortly after a burst of energy with Logan where we sang Madonnna at each other. I think I had lost the plot at that point.

Got some feedback on my jam reffing – all things I knew anyway but hadn’t thought about doing – and was told that my jam reffing style is “fun to watch”. Er. Ok. Not sure that’s compliment but I’ll take it.

Spent the rest of the trip drinking absinthe and flirting with the bar man in the Bulldog. GOOD TIMES.

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All in a days’ work

So I’m here, in Amsterdam, waiting for my shift to start on the 24 hour scrimmage ref squad.

My crew head ref – Major Madness – has decided to ref the entire 24 hours as some horrendous endurance exercise. So I started a pool to bet on when he eventually vomits with tiredness and bows out.

My ability to nap will come in super useful. And my love of coffee.

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Sarf-end and new skates

Milton Keynes came up to play with the CCR B Team ladies. Then the CCR A Team took on The Crash Test Brummies. I did FIPR. Really starting to like that position.

Afterward I scooted off to Southend-on-Sea to visit Bacon and Phoenix. They have a LOT of skates. It got me thinking about how my Antiks knack after an hour or so… They never really fit, but it wasn’t a problem as a skater doing a single bout… But reffing tournaments they are just ruining my toes.

Went for a nine mile skate along the seafront on the Sunday and then reffed the Seaside Sirens practice. Feet were wrecked.

En route home on Monday I decided to swing by Skate Attack in London and treated myself to some Reidell 126 with Sure Grip avenger plate (in white… Naturally). I am in love.

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