Nerd Girl Inc: My Favorite Sport

Monday, October 11, 2010

Roller derby is my football.
I attended my first bout last weekend on Saturday - two NYC teams (Manhattan Mayhem and Brooklyn Bombers) against two outsiders (Suburbia and Providence Pigeons). New York cleaned it up with some amazing wins - Brooklyn creamed the Pigeons and Manhattan pulled a close win in the second period against Suburbia.
But, other than the winning and the NY pride, I just felt giddy and pumped up to be there. Strong women on skates knocking each other over and scoringh points? Male cheerleaders in boat costumes? "Bout-fits?" Sign me up!
Although the sport I played in high school was tennis, I neer really watched many matches on TV or outside of the team. It was inaccessible to me - high prices, no talking or cheering during points, and tiny white skirts were all I saw in televised tennis (until, of course, the Williams sisters walked out). My only involvement in that game was actually playing it.
But derby invokes some hidden sports fan in me. I cheer loudly and watch intently. I buy the team drink cozy (pictured above) and develop girl crushes on players like Raggedy Animal. It excites me a different way than any other sport.
My intimacy with derby started - funnily enough - after listening to a Stuff Mom Never Told You podcast and ballooned into a full-blown lust. I bought some expensive skates during the summer and... immediately got frustrated with how hard it was to relearn those skills from childhood. But going to that bout cemented my desire to play. Maybe not now, maybe in a few years time, but eventually I'll be out on the track with those ladies I admire, ready to beat up some other team.

Want to learn about roller derby beyond my furious love for it? Here is a site that explains the rules and the history of the game: How Roller Derby Works. If you’re interested in watching a match – which are called “bouts” in derby lingo – you can head over to Derby News Network. And, if you’re interested in getting involved with an NYC team, Gotham Girls is the collection of NYC teams that have positions available for trying out, training, volunteering or refereeing. Check them out at the Gotham Girls website.

P.S. I'm trying out subject sections for this blog so I can keep track of what I'm posting/have interesting things to say. Hope it's not too awkward...

Read more Nerd Girl Inc. posts and check out the related series, Caught My Eye.