Jammer reffing done. Learnt my lesson from Tattoo Freeze and kept some lip balm on hand.

It went pretty well. One jammer wasn’t happy with the two cutting calls I gave, but the crew agreed with them and I was 100% so not a problem. Really enjoyed doing it with Metal Ed and getting some feedback whilst skating. Felt a lot more comfortable in this position than before and apart from aching feet I had a really good time.

For the first time I took the coach with CCR. Wasn’t psyched about it but pretty much just slept the entire time. My experience of coach trips is a pretty negative one, but this one was good.

Yesterday I refereed an international mens’ game between Team England and Team Wales, held in Birmingham (convenient). I was asked by a member of the crowd afterward if we’re more lenient with the men because they seem to get away with more. I think that sums up how the bout looked… Well. Definitely the second half.

Reffing with Metal Ed and Rocky as JRs, Shref as FIPR, Tre Cruel and Chaz Tizer as fellow OPRs and Fu as HR – it was a bloody good crew. The teams were polite to each other but fought hard.

Awesome to watch and ref – weird to stand for the national anthem before a bout. Looking forward to the World Cup now.

Today I’m on a coach headed to Hereford to ref CCR. No rest for the wicked.

Testing testing

At about 01:00 this morning an email came in to tell me that I could take an exam if I wanted to. It’s part of that WFTDA clinic I went to. In Guildford. A MILLENNIUM AGO.

You have to pass it for Level 1 certification or you can use it as an eval to go towards Level 2.

It starts with the info “you are welcome to avail yourself of any resource you wish to help you pass the test”. So naturally I tried to avoid looking at the rules. I had to check the wording on two things and still got 45/50 (a pass). But if I had to check the wording on something described as an “easy” exam and still only passed by five… that doesn’t bode well for the Hella Hard. My excitement is dwindling and being replaced by GRIPPING FEAR.

 

On Saturday I set off on the long journey (42mins) from my house to the hotel Cherry Fury was staying in in Telford. With plans to discuss rules, ref cert and do nails. I got there to find she and all the other officials were at the pub. I love refs.

Sunday was Tattoo Freeze and for reasons I didn’t understand until about 01:00 on the morning, I was down to jammer ref. The thought made me feel sick. A UKRDA tournament (well, four games in one day) with an audience… and I’m doing a position I have only done once.

Finally got to pick Cherry’s brains about ref cert (have decided to opt for Level 2 with the option to be granted Level 1 if I don’t meet the criteria) and found out that being put as jammer ref was part of a GRAND PLAN. The ref crew had some really seasoned refs on the outside – giving the fresher refs on the inside all the support they needed to try out the new positions they were put in. Good to know. Nice to be helped to develop. Oh and I can also get evals for this.

It went pretty well. I couldn’t physically breathe for the first three or four jams and forgot to drop off points for one of them, but after that it all kinda fell into place. I messed up a couple of times (didn’t see my jammer leaving the box as I was trying to get someone to get off track, and also carried on calling lead after a star pass… what a doyle).

Got some feedback from Ed and Cherry. Needed to hold up the points longer (advised to keep my hand up until the 5 second warning for the next jam is given) and also told to get in a better position for breaking out of the pack… found it hard to get around other refs in this respect. Something new for me. Will work on that. Got some praise for quick calls and nice hand signals though, so not all bad.

The moment I stopped reffing I felt like I had been hit by a car. The stress had caused me to tense up and stop blinking. That’s not even a joke. My contacts were dry. Hideous. Also cracked my lips sending my jammer off with such a dry mouth. Jammer reffing is a dehydrating job. I went home and had a bath and an early night, pleased that I did the best job I could have done. Well proud 🙂

Ref Cert. Come on then

It’s taken over a year of “having a laugh” with this officiating lark to decide that actually, I will take it seriously and apply myself.

I’m not saying that refs who don’t go for cert aren’t taking it seriously. Everyone has their own path. But like Big Smack said when I mentioned that I was thinking of it “It’s so you. To be the best at what you’re doing.” And so my journey to be recognised begins.

I’ve asked Metal Ed to run the Hella Hard ref test soon and Mat has agreed to practice scenarios with me to help. Cherry Fury has said to aim for 30 for my first go, and to be proud of that grade. I’m super excited about it.

Tattoo Freeze take 2

Looks like 2014 is about all the reffings. I am now allowed to say that my first tournament of 2014 will be in eleven days. I’m reffing the Tattoo Freeze in Telford.

This tournament last year was my first ever one. I was so bloody scared and was convinced Cherry picked me for it because she had told me to go stay at hers and the dates clashed. This year I’m no where near as paranoid… I’m sure I’ve been picked because she’s worried about getting concussion again and she knows I’m the only person who will sit for seven hours in A&E with her. Ha. Kidding.