This pic was taken after the Derby City bout in Louisville (which we won, more on that later).
As you can see, the tattoo is PINK! And you can take a look at Dill's chicken!

This way, if I ever get lost and wander over to another derby league, they know where to send me back!


Donnie at Metamorphosis did the ink! It's hard to tell, but it's this awesome bright pink color! I love it!

He also tricked Dill into redoing his chicken finger. I say tricked, because Dill was just there to watch me get done. Then Donnie said he wanted to touch up a couple spots on the chicken. It took a bit to get Dill in the chair, since a tattoo on the side of your finger HURTS! Once he got Dill in for it, he went ahead and redid the entire thing! Poor Dill. He would be cracking a joke, stop for a minute when Donnie hit a tender spot, then start up again.

Speaking of hurting, my tattoo is on the side of my hip. I thought that would be a nice, easy place to get tattooed. I have a pretty high pain tolerance for ink. My arm was fine, except when it got close to the armpit. That was tender. Shoulder was nothing. Neck wouldn't have been too bad, it was just sitting in the chair for over four hours with my head dropped forward that hurt. My foot... okay. That one I will totally admit hurt pretty darn bad! But my hip... I figured nice fleshy area, I kept away from my hipbone.. shouldn't be a big deal right? Yea... it hurt. Apparently that is a nice and sensitive spot! It wasn't the worst ever, but it caught me off guard!
Hip checks at practice the next day were pretty fun too ;)

I truly believe that you are never to old to learn something new! For instance, yesterday, I learned that you should not try to make a hard boiled egg in the microwave!
Since it's close to a bout, my diet consists of lots of protein, no sugar, and I try to avoid white flour. So I eat lots and lots of veggie patties, fruit, and... eggs!
I was having a crazy craving for hard boiled eggs yesterday at lunch. I decided that I should try and MICROWAVE ONE! Yea, not my shining moment here! So I stuck an egg in a bowl, put in the microwave, hit 5 minutes (I know! I know!) and walked back into the office to work on the schedule. Dill was at his desk behind me, and all of a sudden we both heard "BAM! CRASH! CLANG" and saw a measuring cup go flying onto the floor of the kitchen! WTF???
Right. So what I learned.
If you try to make a hard boiled egg in the microwave, and it cooks for too long, the door to the microwave will fly open, the egg will explode everywhere, and anything that was in the path of the door will go flying onto the floor. Also, you will be cleaning up egg for at least an hour.
I need one of these: https://www.buyegggenie.com/Default.aspx?MID=535494

I could totally be in the infomercial too! You know how they give someone a task to do the "old" way. Like opening a ziploc bag! "Why struggle to open those hard to open ziploc bags! Introducing the bag genie! For 3 easy payments of $19.95 you can end the struggle of trying to pull and pry your food out of the bag"!
I would make the perfect idiot sighing and blowing my hair out of my face as I cleaned exploded egg off the wall!

Ever feel like some days, no one gets your sense of humor? See my coffee shop is not the uptight corporate coffee kind of place. We all get along, and while we work really, really hard, we all have a good sense of humor and goof off a lot too.
One of my employees, stuck a little sign right above the visa/mastercard sign that says,

Now, Dill and I thought this was pretty damn funny. For the most part, other people, if they even notice it, think it's pretty funny. But then I've had the odd ones...
A couple months ago, this woman came in, and I swear, the second sentence out of her mouth was, "I'm from San Fransisco". Which wouldn't sound odd, except it was in response to, "What can I get for you today"?
While I'm making her drink, she spies the beaver pelt sign. Then the conversation turns into something like this:

Customer:"What the heck? You guys used to accept beaver pelt"?
Me: "What? Oh, no, that's a joke"
Customer: "That's FUR"!!!!
Me: "Yea, I know. It's just a joke"
Customer: "Man, I knew I was in backwoods Indiana, but this is crazy".
Me: "No, not that backwoods. It's just a joke. One of our employees put it up there as a joke. Like, instead of we don't accept out of state checks. We don't accept beaver pelt".
Customer: "How long ago did you stop doing it"?
Me: "Is this like, a hidden camera show"?
Customer: "What"?
Me: "Here's you drink, have a great day"!

I know, that's just one oddball right? Except for the past two weeks it keeps happening! Not that extreme, but a lot of, "I don't get it", and "what's pelt"?

Maybe it's good that we all work together, since we're the only ones that find each other funny!

I'm in the new issue of FiveonFive magazine!
There is a quick Q&A and I whipped up a beginner wristband knitting pattern!



If you get a copy of the mag and look close, you can see my orange mac with the robot sticker in the background! (Well, it was supposed to be my mac. Yet somehow, I find myself typing away on a $400 Gateway laptop with a flickering screen while Dill plays with Garage Band...)
The pattern is painfully easy. Being a knitter is like being a drug dealer. You give the first one away, and make it fun. Then they come back for more. Pretty soon you have them sucked into fair isle, and hand spun, and soon, and $20 skeins of sock yarn! Bwahahaha! Hey, if my house is overflowing with yarn, it's a problem. If EVERYONE has a house full of yarn, it's trendy!

Last Friday (my birthday!!!!) Naptown Roller Girls were going to be honored with a Cultural Vision Award from Nuvo. Which meant I would get to wear a fancy dress. Which meant I had to FIND a fancy dress.
All well and good, but, that week I had been working open to close every single night, due to two of my employees being on vacation and one employee driving a dog to Florida so it would not be a homeless dog. Add in derby practice, and it leaves little time for shopping!
So Thursday night, I had a plan. We got out of work at 8:30, headed to the mall, which closes at 9:00. At 8:50, I went running into a store, hoping against hope that I could find the perfect dress in 10 minutes flat! A quick scan showed me nothing with promise, until I spied a rack on the back wall. There it was. Linen, sleeveless, cut to be flattering to a derby girl, (ie, looked good for a gal with a smaller waist and big thighs and ass), it was PERFECT!
And it was almost $50. Whatever, I had 3 minutes left to buy it. Ran to the counter, salesgirl flips it over and we realized the zipper was broken! NOOOO! She offered the dress to me for $13 since it had the broken zipper.
Okay, I am crafty. I can knit, I can crochet, I can wet felt, dye yarn, make pillows... but can I fix a zipper? No. I can't. I took the dress anyway, keeping my fingers crossed that I could find a way to make it work.
When I got home, and showed Dill the dress, he calmly sat down on the couch, dress in his lap, grabbed some pliers and Voila! Perfect dress, perfect zipper, and all for $13! Whoohoo!

The dress!

Honestly, I did not know what to expect from this awards thing. Okay, brutal honesty... I thought it would be kind of hokey! I just didn't "get" it I guess. Until I went, and I sat through the videos, and the speeches, and... wow. I was tearing up at the fact that we were being recognized with all of these incredible people. People that really strive to make a difference in their community, who want to make Indiana a great place to live! Yes, I know that we belong in those ranks. I know that that NRG donates hours and hours to charity, that we are a group of women who started from skating in a church parking lot, to skating in front of thousands. I might be aware of what we do, but to stand up and be recognized by all these other great people... it was an incredible feeling. I left feeling slightly breathless, and in awe of what this truly represented for us, with a much greater respect for some of the things that happen in Indy around me.

We trotted over to a pub after wards, to celebrate with beer and cake. (It was my birthday, I get cake on my birthday)! Dill also celebrated with Scotch eggs, thanks to Katya Lookin. They are his new favorite food. If you've never heard of them, they are eggs, hard boiled, wrapped in sausage, then deep fried. I believe you receive a free pace maker with every dozen. It was nice to hang out with my girls, hear some crazy single after party hook up stories ( I will not divulge who, but I will say one of the girls needs to stay single, so we can live vicariously through her dating shenanigans), and just HANG OUT! No sweaty pads, no quick conversations in between Russian Twists, no trying to send each other into a concrete wall, just some nice hang out time, celebrating with my favorite group of girls on the planet.

Pics! You all know the drill about clicking on the images by now right???

SJ on screen for our award.



A group of us after the awards!




Dill eats a scotch egg.




Hanging out at the pub.


Our very own merch wrangler extraordinaire, the lovely Farrah Foxhit, did this awesome derby cross stitch pattern!



Check it out on her etsy site!

Listening to this thing... wow. It was an exciting bout!!!

http://www.wibc.com/podcasts

1. You know there are security cameras, and you still attempt to steal.
2. You steal something that will be easily missed.
3. See number 1.

Drama, drama, drama Saturday night at the shop! We worked a split shift that day, due to all the fun events going on in both the morning and the evening. When we came in for our evening shift, our employee counted out her tips, and thought she had a five missing. She said she was almost positive she had some ones and at least two fives, but now she only had one five.
So Dan fired up the computer, pulled up one of the security cameras and watched. He and I had our suspicions of who it might be, when she started going through who had been in after she got the second five. See, there is this guy, we'll call K. He works in the strip, and he always acts... fishy. He'll poke his head around the corner, look in the big window, and if Dan and I are both working, he won't come in. If it's just me, me and the girls, or just the girls, he'll come in. He always seemed kind of twitchy and strange, but the girls always assured us of how nice he was to them.
Sure enough, when our employee was busy in the back, we saw K, very professionally, nip his hand in and pull out a five dollar bill from her tip jar!
Dan gave her $5 from the drawer, and sent her home. She was pissed, because a) this guy acted like her friend and b) this girl is so nice. If he had told her he needed the money, down on his luck, whatever, she probably would have just given it to him!
Anyway, Dan took the computer to the shop in the strip where K. works, and asked to talk to him. He was told he had left moments ago, so Dan said,
"Call him, tell him to turn around, come back, bring back the money he stole and I won't call the cops".
They freaked out, called him, and he of course denied it. Dan pulled up the vid, and showed it to the manager on duty, who told him, "K, I'm watching you on video take this money"!
The manager is a single mother, and she started getting pissed, because she has been suspecting K. of stealing money out of her purse for some time. Dan told him that he had one hour to bring the money back, or we would call the cops.
One hour passes, Dan has them call him again, and he swears that he is only 15 minutes away. Another half hour, and Dan just calls the non-emergency number for our county.
God bless those cops, for not rolling their eyes and stomping out when we told them the amount that was taken! After talking to the manager next door, the cop said he would talk to him when he got there.
ANOTHER hour passes, and the cop, during this time, looked up K's arrest history. He called us from his unmarked car, and said after looking at that, he was just going to arrest him.
Now, our bet was that K, not wanting to face Dan, would wait until after we closed to come back in. Not knowing we had a group meeting, and were staying open late anyway. Sure enough, about 30 minutes after we are normally gone for the night, K started to pull in, saw the cop, and took off! Cop peeled out, two other cops gave chase, and caught him quickly, then took him to jail.

Okay. I really, really did not want to have someone arrested for five freaking bucks! But at the same time, I'm going to guess that if we scroll through these security videos tonight, we're going to see that he had been doing that to us for a long time! Plus, it's his own damn fault for stealing from us, then trying to run, AND for having the crazy long rap sheet that the cop said he had. Then throw in the fact that we gave him plenty of time to make it right. All he had to do was come back, talk to Dan, and give back them money. He would have been told that he couldn't come in any more, and that would have been that.
So I'm trying not to feel bad, or silly, for having someone arrested for $5.

Right, if you have not read the first 2 parts of Cyclone Wars, click HERE for part 1, and HERE for part 2.
For those of you that don't want to bother with the recap:
Grudge match. We won. It ruled. Overall, it was great derby. Now to drinks.

This blog may get long. If all you're interested in is how Octopus Kitty went to live with Neil Gaiman, and you have no interest at all in the roller derby after party debauchery, (really???)well.. tough crap. I ramble.

After parties with derby girls always tend to be crazy. After parties with my girls when we've just won a bout that was 3 years in the making? Really, really crazy!

Along for the ride was Weird Octopus Kitty (squid, whatever)Thing From Coraline-MINI! I had made a tiny version, with the intent of sending it to Mr. Neil Gaiman. I also decided that it would be good luck to drag him along to the bout... which meant along for the after party as well. So Mr. Neil Gaiman, I'm very sorry. Octopus Kitty Thing saw more than it's young eye should ever have seen...
Here is how it started:
***and as always, clicking on a picture will make it bigger!!!

Mini Kitty hung with me pre-bout. (Face in tree? What face in the tree)? We got ready, then I entrusted it to Dill and Brownie, since I didn't want to keep track of it AND my skates, pads, uniforms, etc.
Whenever Dill and Brownie are entrusted to something, one thing tends to happen. WEIRD SHIT.
Observe:

If you did not go to the bout, or read the recaps, this might make no sense to you. So let me explain. The Kamikaze chicken apparently joined the Dark Side for our Star Wars themed bout. Our brave announcers, who were of course with the Rebel Alliance, battled him fiercely before the start of the first bout.
See? Simple really...

Mini Kitty chills at the announcers booth.



Kit gave Mini Kitty some snuggles from her wheelchair after the win!


Josephine Bone Apart says bye to Mini Kitty.


Mini Kitty promotes drinking. Fair warning.



See?



Mini Kitty and the boys at the after party. Chris, in the middle, had the best sign ever in derby. See Part II


Sin Lizzie lets Mini Kitty hang out on her pimp cane. (wheelchairs, canes, this is how you know there are derby girls in the house)! Her fiance Brian is pretending that he does not know us.


Copping a feel on Nay.



Next, we exposed Mini Kitty to some questionable behavior. Here's the thing. We have a hitting coach. We've nicknamed him Hot Ryan, because when he first came into the practice space, we acted like we always act when a guy comes into the practice space. Like we're in a freaking women in prison movie. It's ridiculous! The most demure roller girl turns into a whooping, hollering, butt slapping crazy person when a guy enters our secret lair.
Hot Ryan, after enduring this for several weeks, tried to encourage us to hit harder in bouts, by promising a lap dance to the girls with the best hits.
Oh Hot Ryan, did you not think that we would take you up on this? He got his friends involved, and Mini Kitty was there to witness it all!



Hot Ryan's friend was REALLY into it! Haha! NRG security guys gone wild!



We finished off the night with a group photo and we all say "Bye" to Mini Kitty!



So now Weird Cyclops Octopus Kitty Thing From Coraline is going to leave for his new home with Neil Gaiman. Along with some Naptown Swag! I had to head over Neil Gaimans website and check out the FAQ to see what goes into sending a package to Neil Gaiman. Little did I know, there is not only a special address, there are special rules, posted by the Fabulous Lorraine, about what not to send your favorite author.

Top Ten Things Never to Send Your Favorite Writer

10. Food
Unless you are a proper Food Company, what you send will not arrive in anything like the condition you sent it out in. Writers, or anyone else for that matter, tend to become rather dubious upon viewing the crumpled remains of what once was no doubt (or a lot of doubt) cookies. Also, somewhere deep in our darkest recess of our past, all of us remember our Mother's Don't Take Candy From Strangers , I mean, sure, it's a million to one odds, that this is the final crazed fan who has coated the little goodies with arsenic, but hey, who wants to take chances?

Right, so I had absolutely no intention, whatsoever, of sending Mr. Neil Gaiman food. I didn't. But how could I be sure that food wouldn't make it into the package? Better safe than sorry right? Imagine my embarrassment if those chocolate chip cookies I baked, or those yummy mangoes made it into the box somehow? Stranger things can happen right? Just to be safe, I ate them all.
It was for my favorite authors protection after all...


Send wine. Or scotch. Single Malt. Old Single Malt.

Heh. Liquor does not last in our house. Plus, Dill has spidey-sense when it comes to liquor LEAVING the house. The sound of a bottle being packed in a box will wake that man frome the deadest sleep. So I can't send booze. Sorry. I will however, take a drink in your honor. I might just grab a bottle and blog. That always leads to good decisions about what to post! Right?

9. Paw-paws.
Yes, I know, they are food. Well they might be food, I don't know. I do know they don't ship. Even Fed-ex. People have tried. There are reasons we don't have them in the North. For all I know, they are local to a three mile square field down South somewhere, available only to folk singers and local residents with a 1/2 mile radius of said field. I repeat, they don't ship.
Now mangoes do ship. Via Fed Ex. If you want something very badly from your favorite writer, a half dozen mangoes to his or her assistant will often move that request right to the top of the list. Trust me.

But..but..no! Curse my over attention to detail! Why did I eat the mangoes??? WHY????


8. Invitations for things happening next month
Now, writers tend to be busy, based on my experience. Unless you are signing yourself HRH Elizabeth R. or including the words "Beach house " "Maui" and "business class airfare", next month is probably not going to work. Writers write. It doesn't matter how great your Convention is, they need to plan for it. In advance. It takes writers a very long time to write a book (no, I don't know why, it just DOES). If you are reading their Blog and find out they are in town for a signing next week, dinner is also not going to work. Especially if you have never met, nice idea, but sorry. They don't even want to see their friends when on signing tours. ( Actually the friends know all about writers on tour and tend to flee that weekend.)

Invitations coming in from Brazil are the exception to this. Brazilians only tend to send out invites for next month. Nothing deters them. They will set up an art show based on the writer's work, have an entire convention based on your writer's books, a conference and country wide media complete with signings, declare it a national holiday in the town, and get the mayor lined up to present the keys to the city making it permanently "The Poor Writer" Day from here on out AND this will all be scheduled Next Month. In one notable instance, Next Week.

I would never presume to invite Mr. Gaiman to anything. But should he ever be in Indiana with a Naptown bout going on, he is more than invited. Of course... I do believe this win might just put us in the running for regionals in Minnesota...


7. Handwritten Letters.
Ok, we have a little lee-way here. Say it is a simple card saying, in nice, neat readable handwriting, "Darn your last book was great!" this is most likely ok. If you want your writer to read your letter it has to be readable. Yes, I know, one would think this was a no-brainer, but you'd be surprised at how many people take a lot of liberties with the word Legible. Typewritten is so much easier to read. You might even go all out and include your address at the top, along with a SASE.

Which brings us to another little point....

I used to write everything by hand, until I got a laptop. Laptops ruined my penmanship, and my spelling. So no handwritten letter. I'm way too lazy for that now. I won't even print this blog off and include it in the package, as that would involve a trip to the store for a new ink cartridge. I'll just email a link. This rule appeals to my lazy nature.

6. Letters more than ten pages long.
Whatever you have to say should not take that long. It might well be important, and if you have to, you have to. But consider keeping it short. Ten pages of your latest novel idea, film idea, dream you had last night, or just a newsy note bringing your writer up to date on your life is more than they want to know and they will not be with you much past page four. (All right, I lied, make that page two.)

Or rather the writer's assistant will not be with you that long. If your writer is very popular they get a LOT of mail. They can't read all of it, tho in their defense I must say they do try. You might consider something truly sneaky and start your letter "Hello, Oh great and wonderful Writer's Assistant, just bought your latest cd (www.folkunderground.com) and ye gads! It is great!" Don't know why, but those sorts of letters do tend to get more attention paid to them.*

* Assistants are smart. Very smart. Make sure you actually buy the thing.

Hmmm.... This blog may well end up ten pages long...What about if I say.. "Hey there people that read my blog! Go buy the wonderful writers assistants new cd! Right now! Here is linky!" That's far better than me just purchasing one myself correct? Extra brownie points maybe?


5. Letters written on black paper with a silver pen.
Silver pen on black paper is not nearly as cool as you think it is.

No. No it is not. In fact... borderline emo. Sorry. That is not to say that I did not, at one point, write half a journal with that combination, thinking it was cool. But I also used to think that I had AWESOME fashion sense. I was wrong on both counts, as my high school yearbook can attest.

4. Your latest novel
Writers write. And they read. They have a backlog of reading bigger than most home libraries. They don't have time to read your novel/short story film idea. They don't have time to read the things they want to. It is also never a good idea to send them letters saying "Boy, I can't believe you used my idea I sent you last year in your latest novel/short story/film." They didn't. Again, trust me. They didn't.

Send your stories to agents, editors, magazines , family, and friends. They want them, and in some cases are paid to want them. In some cases they may even pay you for them.


Um... I didn't write a novel. But I did send a copy of Knockdown Knits. No reading really necessary (but it is funny stuff). However feel free to look at the pretty pictures! Or knit the patterns! You never know when you need a knit sling, or a big bag with a skull on it!

4. Things with blood on them.
'Nuff said. I don't care what they write, they don't want it.


Okay. Ew. Really? REALLY? People do this? REALLY? Please tell me this was just included in the rules for humor! Ew.

3. Anything you want back.
I am not talking about the odd book here, to be signed and sent back, particularly if you have written the assistant first explaining the situation (remember how we start those letters?) and sent the book with SASE (and mangoes). Most writers are happy to oblige. Even assistants don't mind, happy to help. I am talking about personal things you want back. Your one of a kind portfolio filled with the only copies of original art. The ten micro-cassettes-with-player you have recorded your dream journal on for the last year. Actually, any journal of any kind. This goes along with the only copy of your latest poems, the master copy of your cd or any family heirlooms.

Writers dread the sort of letter that starts out "I have sent you this, but please send it back when you are done". For some reason anything of the sort immediately sends the item off into some sort of alternate cosmic 5th dimension, and it will, I guarantee, never be seen again, no matter what good intentions the writer may have.


I do not want any of this back. Especially if the shirts are worn on a really hot day during a sweaty workout, sealed in a ziploc bag for safe keeping, stored at the bottom of a drawer for a few months. Please. Seriously. Keep it.


2. This is more of a Good Idea/ Bad Idea list of things you might send
Some Good Ideas: Small things, trinkets, cool jewelry, tiny statues, small things that squeak (not living), one of a kind toys, weird barbie Dolls dressed as the Endless (Sorry, I don't know why, but I have always liked those) cool old books, reference books , blank books for writing, cd's , black socks (don't care who they are, they'll need them) mittens (unless they live in Paw-paw country) wind up Sushi, muppet puppets of said writer, Day of the Dead things, fountain pens and perhaps some truly useful items like Sharpie Pens and post it notes . The better the writer the less pens and paper they are going to have around.
Some Bad Ideas: Art larger than 3 x 5 feet (I am being generous here), photo albums with more than 50 photos of one signing , things that squeak (living), anything fragile (it will get broken), live animals of any kind, anything weighing over 50 pounds, pictures of you and the writer blown up to poster size that your friend took at a signing, your ENTIRE collection of his/her work to be signed, anything you recorded while on drugs, open liqueur bottles with hand done labels in a foreign language, and anything you have to preface with "I found this in a graveyard...." (or your freezer).
Ok, I know what you are wondering. Yes, we have. All of them.

Okay, while I will not send any of those bad things (damn, and that random packet of blood I found in the graveyard was just itching to get sent)... that list is badass.

1. Sand
It gets Everywhere. Can I repeat that ? It Gets EVERYWHERE. I cannot tell you the amount of times I have sat sadly in my just-this-day-cleaned office, looking at my sand-covered desk, which now resembles something very like a Zen garden gone bad. This may be a fairly one-writer-specific problem, but if you listen to one thing I have said here, Do not send Sand. Ever. You can't pack it so it stays in whatever container you have deemed appropriate. Send the container, include a note saying "Fill this with Sand". I will do it for you, no mangoes, no cd buying, I'll nip outside and get you some of the best sand going. Just don't try and send it yourself.

I know what I am talking about here. Trust me.

Lorraine

Alright, for those of you that know me, or read my blog, you know that we have a lot of "special" animals. Sassy Burrito who eats EVERYTHING, and Hillbilly the psychotic soul stealing diabetic cat, in particular.
If I even THOUGHT of bringing sand into my home, to send in this package, Lenore, the cute little kitty, would knock it off the highest perch, Vega the limber kitty would roll in it, Ernie the Super Puppy would chase Vega the limber kitty through the sand, tracking it everywhere, Hillbilly the psychotic soul stealing diabetic cat would then shit in the sand, bite anyone who came near him to clean it up, then Sassy Burrito would eat it. And somehow, someway, Starkey the horse and Flippy the llama would get involved in the shenanigans. I don't know how, they just would.


So nope, I will not be sending any sand.

Instead, I am sending the miniature version of the Coraline toy,(who has seen way too much for one so young) a girls medium black Naptown Roller Girls shirt, a mens large black Naptown Roller Girls shirt, a Naptown Roller Girls Calender, which, though the year is half over(I procrastinate, just a bit sometimes), has some AMAZING, gorgeous photos,a copy of Knockdown Knits should anyone be interested in knitting, or roller derby, some kitty toys for Lorraine, who does awesome work for some awesome kitties, and a vial of my blood. Okay, sorry, I just can't get over that one. Ew...
Right, over it. But that is what I'm sending. And a link to this blog entry, so Mr. Neil Gaiman can see what we did to the Weird Octopus Kitty Thing from Coraline before it was sent to him.

Again, sorry.

When we hit the track for the second half, it was like a different team came out of that locker room. Everything was a blur for the first few minutes, so my details are a bit sketchy.
I do know that we chipped away 15 points before the Ft. Wayne Bomb Squad put another point on the board. There were no blow out jams, it was a hard fought battle, that we started gaining on bit by bit. Shadi Layne had the most enthusiastic jam of the night. She barreled her way through the pack, and while she didn't put any points on the board, it felt like the turning point for that second half. The energy, enthusiasm, and downright POWER she put into that jam got the crowd on their feet, screaming her name so loud it drowned out the music!
I went in for the second part of the second half, and stayed in until the end. Our pack was tight, and it was a total battle to the end. Hits were coming in extremely hard from both teams, and the refs were calling tight as hell!

Regardless, we tied up the game and even started to even climb ahead. About three jams from the end, the thing you never want to happen, regardless of who you're playing, happened. Touretta fell down, curled up in a ball, and Pushycat, the jammer for Ft. Wayne, tripped over her skate. According to a couple friends who were sitting right in suicide when it happened, she flew up in the air, and came crashing down on her knee. Game play halted, and everyone got completely quiet. It's amazing how a couple thousand screaming fans can scream for blood one second, and the next get completely quiet and show respect for a hurt player. EMT's rushed over, and got her on her feet and off the track.
We lined back up for the next jam, but the Ft. Wayne coach was extremely upset that one of his girls was hurt. He felt that Touretta needed to get called for a foul, claiming she tripped Pushycat. The refs disagreed, and when the coach wouldn't stop yelling, at the refs and Touretta, the head ref ejected him. We've had a coach ejected before, so I know how bad it sucks when it happens. He was upset his girl was hurt, and called what he thought he saw. The refs all saw something different. He might have even gotten away with the yelling, but our head ref for the night was Rev Riot. We brought him in for the bout, knowing how freaking good he is. Good, but very, very scary. He is the most strict, most "by the book" ref I have ever skated under. While I've been known to mouth off at a ref or two in my time, I would never, ever mouth off to this guy. He scares the living crap out of me! That's a good thing though! I shouldn't be mouthing off to a ref, and I want the ref I skate under to have apparently tattooed the rules on the backs of their eyelids. (which I bet $5 this guy did, he was really incredible). We could tell from the get go how good he was going to be. During our equipment check, he was more thorough than any other ref I've seen.
So teams out their looking for a good impartial head ref for you bout? Rev. Riot. Just don't pull any crap on him unless you feel like taking a seat in the penalty box for a while!
After that little drama, with just a few minutes left on the clock to go, we had our lead, but it wasn't a big one. When the final jam came up, we were just 13 points ahead! That is not a lot of points in derby! Almost all of our jammers were close to fouling out, so CK took a turn at the jam line. I can not for the life of me remember who Ft. Wayne put up, but she was good, and fast. With some of our girls in penalty, we knew that this could go south for us very quickly. I did NOT want to lose this game in the final 2 minutes!
Ft. Wayne immediately held CK, while we let their jammer slip through. She came around again for her second pass, we held her briefly, and she was through again. Inside my head it was this constant "SHITSHITSHITSHITSHIT" mantra. Then CK saved the day for us. When the Ft. Wayne jammer came around again, CK got right in front of her, and put her brakes on, forcing the Ft. Wayne jammer to slam into CK's back, pushing CK out of position, and putting a major on the Ft. Wayne Jammer. Tom Klubens caught the moment their jammer, I think, realized what had happened when she went to the box.



At that point, no matter what happened, we had won the game... but I didn't realize that! All I knew, since things had happened so fast, was that Ft. Wayne had scored points before getting in the box. So when the final whistle blew, and we skated around the track, and the Belles were streaming onto the ref lane to slap our hands and hug us, I was asking over and over, "did we win? Did they get too many points"? Katya assured me that we had, in fact, just won the game!
I have never felt so elated after a victory before! We smacked hands with Ft. Wayne, and spent a very long time cheering, screaming, and crying with team mates and fans.







Final score was 78-70. Whoohoo!

Apparently, during out bout, Tornado Sirens were going off. So immediately after we won, someone put the weather up on the scoreboard screen! Total craziness!

Here's some bout pictures until I get time to do Part III!













*photos by Tom Klubens, Marc Lebryk, and NRG [U]FC

Oh and this pic I took at practice. Four days after the bout, and this is what Sweet C's leg looks like!



The pic does not do justice to the nasty that is her damn leg right now!

Saturday, May 30th marked the rematch of Ft. Wayne Bomb Squad vs. Naptown Roller Girls Tornado Sirens. It was also to be the first match up between the Ft. Wayne B team, "SWAT" and our Warning Belles. This is the bout we've been anxious about all year. All season long, no matter what team we were facing, Ft. Wayne was in the back of our minds. It's not because they beat us. Hell, North Star Roller Girls have beaten us TWICE, and I wouldn't give a second thought to stepping on the track with them again! There's no automatic rivalry when you lose a derby match. Obviously you want to play that team again, and win the second time around, but you can still be cool off the track. It's tough to explain why the rivalry is there with Ft. Wayne.
In our first season, we went up against them for our second game. They came in more experienced than us, and determined to be known as "Indiana Roller Derby" over us, the upstart Indianapolis league. Ft. Wayne was our first reality check. Our only other game, against the Nashville Roller girls, had been a fairly easy victory for us. We got a lead early on and held onto it! They didn't come to the after party, but at the time, we just didn't think much of it.
Personally, I thought that roller derby was going to be a "beat each other up on the track, smiles and hugs off the track". Ft. Wayne was the wake up call that it's just not always going to work out that way! Sure, I'd say with the majority of teams that we've played, it is. Win or lose, most teams hang out at the after party, and bad blood is pushed aside for the most part. But Ft. Wayne was there to dominate us, and from the second they walked in the Fairgrounds doors, there was tension. It's carried on over the years too. I don't know why it started, or what the root cause is, but it has not eased over the years.
Which is why this year, the thought of a rematch has had us all tense. We didn't want to lose AGAIN, and face the gloating, our own sense of defeat... it was the stuff of nightmares for the months leading up to the bout.
This bout would also introduce new blood to the mix. Ft. Wayne has a B team, SWAT, and we of course, have the Warning Belles this year. I was so nervous for the Belles! I didn't want to have them go through the same thing we went through. I wanted them to win, be their charming, nice selves at the after party, and hopefully receive the same from SWAT.

The weeks before the bout, we purchased Wii Active. I have since become obsessed with it! So every single day, before practice, after practice, and in between practices, I could be found working out on the Active. Throw in some serious running, and I was kicking my own butt pretty hard. Thursday I promised myself that I would just do one last heavy impact workout, and use Friday to rest. Well, Friday afternoon I was bouncing with nervous energy, so I went for a run. Then decided that the Active was calling me, and I should do some boxing. And since I was there, why not try out some squats with calf raises, kick backs, high knees, side squats, bicep curls, shoulder presses, etc. About the time I noticed my calves were starting to cramp up, I had been at it for almost 2 hours! Whoops! Scalding hot shower followed, hoping to undo some of the damage I had just done. Dill was nice enough to rub out my calves before I went to sleep, hoping that my muscles would just be nice and limber Saturday morning.
Of course, that wasn't the way it worked out. The body will only take so much before it gets sore, and cramped, and achy. Saturday morning when I rolled out of bed I almost fell down, my legs were so dang sore. I went into work, just to get all the baking done and make sure everything was going as smoothly as possible. I ran home and took another hot shower to try and loosen my legs up. I figured that even if they were sore, once we warmed up to skate my muscles would get nice and loose. I would just have to pay for my idiocy a little bit extra on Sunday and Monday!
Fin and Cleaver picked me up about 11 and we headed to the fairgrounds to eat lunch and get ready for the bout. We did a joint Belles/Sirens practice, which was a first for all of us! It was unusual to have that many girls on the track at one time!
As we started getting ready, I had a huge dilemma. I've mentioned it before, but I get very superstitious when it comes to bouts. I had my "lucky skirt" ready to go, but after watching the last bout video, I was extremely unhappy with how much it rode up my butt! I had practiced in my favorite work out shorts. They're black, 70's style shorts, and I love them. But I've never bouted in them before! They're not lucky! Did I want to tempt fate?
I decided I definitely did. I would rather bout in unlucky shorts than be worried about my bum showing all night!
The other thing that was hard to get used to was the fact that the doors were opening so early! People started streaming in around 5pm, and while the Belles were in the locker room getting ready, for the first time ever, I was out mingling with fans before the bout! It was a very strange experience, and a bit out of my comfort one. I can come across as rude on bout day, simply because I retreat into my own head, running through plays, visualizing the game that I want, and listening to my lucky playlist.
This time was different. Not only were fans in the building, but being a Star Wars themed bout, there were also Storm Troopers, Darth Vader, Chewbacca... how could I stay serious and bout ready, when I could hug Chewy and get my picture taken with Darth Vader? So I ran around like an idiot begging photographers to take my picture with our various "entertainers".


I have no idea why Jack Sparrow was there when it was a Star Wars themed bout, but who cares? It's Jack Sparrow! This guy was great too! He pulled it off really well!



CHEWIE!!!!



Nay shows no fear of the Sandpeople!



Finally! Proof that refs are part of the dark side!



He whistled when we kissed him! It was great, I never saw who had the remote!

After our goofing around, we settled in to watch the first half of the Belles bout. I was all nerves, wondering how they would do against SWAT and hoping that they would secure the win by the end of the first half, so that we could get ready for our bout without having to wonder about them!
Luckily, it was obvious within ten minutes of the first whistle that we could breathe easy. The Belles were working as an amazing unit. Jammers zipping through the pack, (for real, between this bout and last bout Racer Xtacy must have had a rocket installed in her butt) blockers opening holes, and a whole lotta newbie badassery in Ima Hurtchu. I would watch any team that girl skates on. She is going to be an amazing force by next season! (hopefully on my team next time)!
We got ready and warmed up while the Belles sealed the deal on their victory. I was so relived that they won, but couldn't spend a second to bask in it. My mind was quickly turning to game mode.
After we warmed up, the game stared off with a bang. Both teams scoring only a few points each, it stayed very, very tight. I went in about the 5th jam as a pivot/blocker. We were working very well as a unit, and each time shut down their jammer while our jammer managed to eek just a few points on the board at a time. There were no 20+ point jams in this bout. It stayed tight and close. Sweet C set the mood by hitting a girl so hard her skate came off!
*Sweet C is scary to skate against sometimes.

*Trying to put her skate back on
I went out, and something started happening. Our very small lead started slipping away, bit by bit. Ft. Wayne was very successfully running the same play against us that we had seen from the North Star Roller Girls. They would wrap around the outside of the pack, forcing all of our blockers inside, while whipping their jammer around the outside. From the side lines we could see it happen every single time. Point after point got away from us, until it was half time, and we were 19 points down.
Anyone who has ever seen NRG play might know these two fun facts:
1) We have NEVER, EVER come back from a half time deficit.
2) We have never beaten at team who has beaten us before.

So you can just imagine what we were going through when we hit that locker room! In my head I just kept repeating, "This CAN'T be happening"! I was refusing to believe that all of our hard work the past year would end in defeat against the Bomb Squad! We riled ourselves up in the locker room. Right as we got ready to go back out, I looked at Ace and said, "Hey Ace, we've never come back from a deficit in the half before. Tonight will be the first time won't it". She looked at me and said, "Hell yes it will"!
We knew the play they were using against us, and we came back ready to counteract it. I could see the look on some of our fans faces. The half smile, little nods of "good job girls, at lease you've played well"! Like they KNEW that we were already defeated. I knew that all of us were going to prove them wrong.

Okay, this has been a long ass post. Parts 2, and at least 3 will follow.

Anything except what I will blog when I have time!
Basic synopsis, won the bout, in the closest, craziest game I have played in 3 seasons of derby! NRG security performed a strip tease for our amazing blockers. Murray came in from New Zealand, attended his first derby, and got an enthusiastic greeting from Cleaver! I got hugged by Jack Sparrow, Chewbacca, and Darth Vader all in one night! Dill and I spent Sunday working, installing new counters, and loading the trailer for our stint on Fox 59 Monday morning.
Sassy Burrito ate 2 new things in one day, a personal best for her. She has decided that expensive stinky post bout derby pads are a wonderful thing.

More on all of this, as soon as I get caught up on the 200 unread messages, the sock that needs finishing, the caterings that need finalizing, the pictures that need editing, etc. etc.
Hopefully tomorrow. But with the way today is going... who knows?

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