I'm going to do that post with addresses soon.
But first, a splosion of nifty.
1) Someone on my flist had linked do this. I've had the browser window open ever since. I forget who. It's Tchaikovsky's Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, an abridged version, played entirely on Specialized bicycle parts. No really.
It actually is.
2) Practice today. I actually started to do honest-to-god, for-real crossovers, which was pretty awesome, but what's more, I could actually feel what they're supposed to feel like when you do them right, so that's cool.
After practice we went to my team captain (Squeeee!!! My team!)'s house to watch bout DVDs. Sweetpea had a DVD of the Gotham Girls vs. her former team, the Mad Rollin Dolls
(motto: Hurt in a Skirt), of Madison WI, at an invitational in Tucson AZ last February.
It was absolutely fascinating to watch, because now we've done enough to see what's going on.
Most astonishing thing:
The Gotham Girls.... Their style was all big hits, aggressive blocking, tons of flair, individual histrionics, and all kinds of filthy dirty dirty play. It was really popular with the crowd, and made for a great DVD-- they were hitting, they were pushing, they were shrieking, they were attitude on eight wheels.
But that kind of thing tires you out.
So there are the girls in their red shirts, showboating around the track and catapulting girls out into the stands.
And there were the sedate blue jumpers of the Mad Rollin Dolls, remaining in their pack formation, making a wall so the GG's jammer couldn't get through, whipping their own jammer through, passing the star to the pivot in a sneaky and highly-planned move-- they were good
, and they hit more than they got hit. Their hits were all sly, minimal hits-- just nudging a girl out of bounds so she couldn't block the jammer, or hitting one girl so she stumbled into another. That kind of thing. And that's not to say they didn't get some good hits in-- one Gotham Girl ended up actually crashing into the announcer's table, and another caught air and landed backwards; a third ended up crotch-first in the camera. But they hit with purpose, whereas the Gotham Girls did a lot of showmanship hitting, including one jam where their jammer
seemed more interested in checking people than in actually getting through the pack and scoring a point or two.
The final score was the Mad Rollin Dolls 91 to the Gotham Girls 42. The GGs had nearly 70 penalties, to the MRDs' approximately 40. One jam, there were only two GGs on the track, because every single other one of their players was in the penalty box. (Meanwhile the MRDs had a full complement of five. That jam was a blowout.)
So yes. Being the home team of a big media market means you get sponsorships and money, but it doesn't mean you're any good
Then we watched a DVD of ourselves!! I hadn't realized-- I mean, I knew that on Thursday Hazel had brought her camera, but I hadn't realized she'd actually gotten any footage. It was absolutely hilarious in places, because she'd been participating in the jams when we started scrimmaging, so the camera was left on a stationary pedestal. Which means it could see us as we came around the first bend of the track, but not the other.
So two major collisions/falls/pileups occurred off-camera.
The first one was pretty funny-- the pack goes by, Mia Mauler as a jammer skating hard up behind them. Then, off-camera, Hazel is the back blocker for the opposing team and tries to hit her. Mia shrugs her off like she's nothing, and Hazel becomes airborne and lands outside of the track. [This is how Mia operates. Afterward she asked, "Did I hit somebody?" in complete sincerity. Yes, this is my team captain.] So as far as the camera can tell: Pack goes by, jammer following, and then, THUD. "Ooh!" Mia comes back into view, then the pack comes into view, then Hazel, limping, comes into view. Later in the same jam as they pass the camera, Mia comes up on Hazel again, and Hazel gathers herself as if to hit her, then makes much of mis-judging the range and passing behind her instead. For which none of us can blame her.
The second one was absolutely paralyzingly funny: Mexicali Bruise was skating as a jammer, and as they rounded the corner out of the camera's view, her skate caught one of the cones delimiting the edge of the track, and she lost control and hit the wall hard, full-speed, face-first.
So, on the DVD, the pack goes by, the jammers following closely. There's a moment of just rollerskate noises, then a scuffle, then a loud WHAM!, a brief shocked silence, and a babble of voices going "Oooh!". Then there's another moment of silence, and a feeble voice comes in: "I'm-- okay!"
Then the pack comes back into view, skating a little slower, and then Mexicali comes into view skating like hell after them.
I want to post the video on our website, but really only the WHAM! ... "I'm okay!" part. It was SO funny, we rewound five times to watch it again.
Mexicali was there, on the couch next to me. "You sounded kinda feeble with that okay," Hazel says.
"I was laughing too hard," Mexi answers.
Which, in itself, neatly sums up a certain something about roller derby, but I couldn't tell you what, not in words.