Tuesday, October 11, 2011


The International Roller Derby scene is growing at a lightning pace and I've been quite fascinated by the International Derby scene over the past year. As a result I will be offering profiles of foreign leagues and skaters in addition to my usual ramblings. I've looked around and personally I haven't seen ANY other blogs that focus on the International scene and so it is my hope that I can draw some American interest in this incredible Roller Derby phenomenon. The language barrier does hamper my gathering of info on foreign leagues but ya know...I do what I can. Of course there will continue to be some posts on the American Derby scene and an occasional foray into Banked Track stuff too. Cuz...ya know...Banked Track KICKS ASS.

With the first ever upcoming World Cup of Roller Derby coming soon to Toronto, Canada there needs to be focus on the International game SOMEWHERE...so why not here?? I also intend to post profiles on every international team that will be attending the World Cup! And look for an article on the Columbian Roller Derby scene. Roller Derby in Columbia is undergoing tremendous growth with teams in Medellin and Bogota. Best thing to come outta Columbia since Shakira!!

It's gonna be awesome! And yes yes...I know I've been absent for well over a year and a half. I've had a lot of crazy shit thats happened over that year and a half and perhaps at some point I'll go deeper into all that. But for now just grab a brewski and kick back. Maybe throw on some Ramones. This should be a fun ride.

*****Picture above features Roller Derby Costa Rica!! Cool!! 8)


Monday, March 22, 2010

My Roller Derby Tee Shirt Collection...yet another obsession.

Yeah...Derby tees...got more than a few and can never have enough. And whats cool is that sometimes when I get a tee in the mail I also get some other cool stuff too. Ya know...stickers, buttons, bottle openers, key fobs, postcards, schedules, flyers. I freakin' LOVE it!! Bring it on!! And now it seems that Dallas Derby Devils...henceforth known only as the Devils..are sendin' me a DDD tee with "Biker Dave" on the back. WOW *blush* Im feelin' the love here lately. Nice. Thanks to Brenda from DDD for that one!

And I also wanna shout out to the great London Rollergirls!! Love that squad. Lisa arranged for a tee to be sent from across the pond for my BDay but it didnt get here until last week. And what a great surprise to find so many fun Derby-things. Button, stickers (gave a few away to a couple of REAL excited Rollergirls...hahaha), a combination fob/bottle opener (!!), a postcard schedule and an awesome Roll Britannia patch. When I build up enuff patches I think I might get a denim vest and have em all sewn on. Thanx LONDON... You skaters are awesome!!

And a 'lil shout out to Bakersfield Rollergirls too! I got a tee from them and when they shipped it I got stickers and buttons too. Ya know I just cant get enuff Derby-things. Which got me to thinkin'.

I think that after I've built up enuff of those said Derby-things wouldnt it be cool to have a Modern Roller Derby Museum?? Seriously! Skaters could donate uni's, skates or whatever and everything could go into the Museum for all the Derby fans to see. And the Museum would start, historically speaking, with the Austin-born brand of "modern" Roller Derby (with respect and due given to Ann Calvello of course). Because really, Derby is a true sport in its modern incarnation and eventually deserves a Museum of its own. Something apart from the Old School Derby. I could see it happening. There could be a records/posters/photos/flyers room...jerseys and skates of notable Rollergirls..all the WFTDA Champs pics line one wall...hmmmm. Yeah...I like the sounda that. And there could be a seperate section for Banked-Track stuff too. It would be epic!!

For those who would like to see my Roller Derby tee collection just click on that facebook dealie to your right and check out the album!

Friday, March 19, 2010

The Sioux Falls v Naptown Preview!

Before I even start can I go on a 'lil rant right quick?? NO BLACK TEE'S!!?? Come on SFRD!! I need a BLACK SFRD tee! Okay...got that offa my chest so lets just move on shall we?? Those aforementioned Fightin' Sioux are coming to Naptown to bout tomorrow nite!! Damn...Im such a slacker...puttin' up my bout preview the DAY BEFORE the bout. Ridiculous. Oh well. The Sioux have a WFTDA record of 3-5 and when I saw them at the last Fall Brawl I was mightily impressed with them. They looked like a disciplined, fit, quick team with very good chemistry. I got to chat with Lilly Kill Kill at the Tournament and I remember being struck by how tight-knit this team is. I mean, remember, they DO hail from the "Best Lil DERBY City in America"!! The Sioux won against apparent arch-nemesis Omaha x2 but have also LOST to Omaha x2. And then there was that strange, nearly surreal bout against Naptown. Was that bout in a pole barn with pigeons flying around while a dog barking contest ensued next door??! Really??! Uh huh. And so NRG went down to SFRD. Ouch. At any rate SF have been VERY respectable in all their bouts with the one exception being a -139 point showing against the Minnies. That one was for growth n experience so all is well. Can I admit something?? I really respect this team. They have some good sponsers and are building a following in a metro area pool of only 232,000 people. And it should also be mentioned here that Sioux Falls was voted the 93rd angriest city out of 100 by Mens Health magazine...and what anger this city actually DOES possess resides within this talented Derby team!! And hey...SF is Colts TE Dallas Clarks hometown so thats pretty damn cool. 8)

Its pretty awesome that the Sioux have 29 skaters on their roster at this point. Who's gonna show up on the bout roster?? I havent a clue. I do hope that the modelesque Lilly shows tho...she's cool. Hopefully the league Co-Founders, Queen Elizabitch and PainMaker, show too cuz I would like too meet and chat. Now at this point ya all gotta be thinkin' "Whats with this freakin' SFRD lovefest??". I know...I know. But ya know what?? I truly believe that bout against the Sioux was an abberation. Look, our Rollergirls may have been a bit rattled by the venue...the loooong trip or whatever. But with the play I've seen thus far this season I would bet the mortgage on Naptown in this one. And remember...I dont predict Naptown bouts. Oops. I just did.
Oh and btw...that gorgeous Rollergirl pictured above is Lilly Kill Kill. She's awesome as a pivot, blocker OR jammer. Damn I hope she shows for this one.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Memphis v Naptown Bout Preview !!

Yeah yeah...its been awhile Rollerheads...too long a while. But its time to get Derby Crazy again and I'm really looking forward to this Saturdays Memphis v NRG bout. Memphis hail from the crowded 17 team South Central Region and they've been a WFTDA member since Halloween 2008. They are currently ranked by FTS at #28 and have a 2009/10 record of 6-4. Their 2 in-state rivals are Hard Knox and Nashville. The Memphis squad was born 4 yrs ago almost to the day. Theyve had a few impressive victories over such teams as the Killbillies, H Knox, the Greenies and Dixie. When faced w upper level, established teams theyve proven to be gamers but still not quite up to the skill level of the ATL and Nash. At this point getting into the S Central Regionals has to be the goal and they do have a solid defense.

The 2 Jammers of concern to the Nap skaters are 'Lil Cinner and Irene Business. If NRG contains those 2 Jammers and can consistently provide support for their wealth of Jammers then I do think that the Red n Black will win this bout. Lets face it...Jammer depth has NOT been a problem for Zaptown this season thus far (even with the loss of Ace *weep!*) and theres no reason to believe that scoring points is gonna be a major concern. There's also the fact that NRG have been going up against major league teams for a season longer than Memphis' Angels of Death and Nap's level of competition seems a bit tuffer than the Angels. The one glaring bout that stands out for me in the Angels history took place at last years Southern Fried Smackdown Tournament. Memphis went 1-3 and got taken out to the 'ole proverbial woodshed by Tampa Bay. The Southern Angels went down to the Bay by 124 points!! (229-105). I have to admit I was a bit taken aback by that score but on the other hand T Bay ARE an under-rated, over-looked team. Tampa is tuffer than most Derbyholics know. Still... -124?? Against the Bay?? Hmmmmm.

The solid S Angels defense is anchored by Blocker Cat Claus. The Jammers I expect we'll see are the aforementioned Cinner and Irene, Smokin, Jill Em All and the talented up n comer Rolls Royce. The last bout for Memphis took place a few weeks ago on Jan 23rd against NWA where they emerged victorious over the Killbillies by 44 points.

With our beloved Naptown girls currently ranked #23 by FTS this undefeated season has REALLY moved NRG up in the rankings and things have looked fantastic thus far. At this point missing the North Central Regionals would be an unmitigated DISASTER !! Lets hope that doesnt happen...

With the somewhat top-heavy S Central Region being dominated by the Original Muthas and the Warriors the Memphis squad has their work cut out for them but they've proven to be a competitive team with some fairly intimidating Blockers providing consistent defense. This should be a very entertaining bout and a serious test for the Southern Angels.

The likely Roster for Memphis:

1 on 1 Instant Karmen
9 to 5 Irene Business
8HER Black n Blue
23 Chica Bandita
24 Li'l Cinner
74 Bad Juju
79 Cat Claus
213 Ragin' Caucasian
9mm Demi Automatic
911 Brooken Bones
1134 Bloody Elle
1975 La Sucia
28 Tenacious B
821 Lena Deadtrick
*BTW...thats Jammer Rolls Royce in the pic above. See you Napheads this Saturday !!

Monday, January 11, 2010

"Why I Haven't Written Anything in a While"...or "The Last Days of my Father"

My Dad went downhill so quickly it seems now. A year ago he had chemo for cancer and that was the first serious health issue I can ever remember him having. He just never ever got that ill or went under the knife. I myself am quite fortunate in that. Yeah...got the appendix, tonsils AND wisdom teeth still...never had a surgery or broken a bone. We seemed so invulnerable. But invulnerability is an illusion of course...the armor rusts. And after the chemo Pops immune system went weak and all kinds of sleeping ailments awoke and attacked. The biggest issue was the failure of his lungs due to pulmonary disease. His lungs were quitting on him and he had signed all the "do not resuscitate" paperwork (and Mom too). In his last days he was very open and sometimes raw in what he had to say. And he said plenty to me. Thats between my Dad and me but I can tell you that he really didnt want to go. In the end he passed away in a morphine aided sleep and went peacefully. And we all were deeply saddened. I took it particularly hard. Pops and me have an "interesting" history but I knew that the guy loved us all. That was clear. He was a tough guy but full of humor too. I'm really gonna miss him...alot.

I remember the very last time I went out with Dad. It was a somewhat haunting experience looking back now but I'm glad I had the chance to have it. I was gonna go to the Off Track Betting joint downtown to play the ponies...a hobby of mine that I've picked up. Its fun and I usually do fairly well. At any rate I had no plans on taking Pop with me but something told me to give him a call and see if he wanted me to swing by and pick him up. He said "Sure...come on by". I picked him up and it was kind of a production what with all the medical gear he had to drag with him. Cane, oxygen, tank. So I had him sit in the backseat in the Jag and it was easier getting him in and outta the car that way. Dad had never ridden in the ole Jaguar XJ6. He LOVED the ride and kept commenting on how great the Jag was and how much liked the interior. Hey...whats not to like?? Its a classic. At any rate we had mixed luck at the OTB but had a great time anyway. My Dad liked to gamble but hadnt played the ponies all that much. He really enjoyed himself and kept telling me what a good time he had at the OTB. When we went to leave we went up the elevator and got off on the 7th floor of the parking garage. There was a very very slight incline to reach the car from the elevator and without thinking too much I walked slowly to the car. Then I realized Dad wasnt behind me...and I looked back and he was stopped and gasping for air...perched on his cane. It struck me how bad his lungs really gotten...I guess I hadnt seen him all that much recently. He looked at me, frustrated with his fight for air, and said "This is a fuckin' bitch". That moment haunted me for weeks and still its a moment that replays in my head over and over like a skipping record. He made his way to the car as I helped and we took off for home. In an awkward moment I said "Hey Dad...u were going downhill when we went TO the escalator, but coming back you were going uphill". Sorta trying to ease his irritation at his declining condition.

And so all this leads me to the reason for this post. Roller Derby has been a great passion of mine and I adore this great sport. I really do. And yet these last few months I have become uninspired, drained and lacking focus. Add to that the fact that for a few months I ws just "outta the loop". But ya know what?? Im fuckin' BACK. And I'm feeling the passion returning. I'm becoming that Derby obsessed maniac that you've come to know and expect!

One of the last things my Dad said before he passed away was "When I get to Heaven I'm gonna have a beer and shoot some pool". I'm pretty sure they allow that Pop.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

WFTDA Nationals Day 2 - Quick Picks!

Well...looks like the favorites did all that was necessary to win yesterday and frankly only one bout was ever in question...Beans v Madolls. Friday was about utter dominance from teams that have been red hot since Regionals a few months back. And of course I had to be a wise guy and pick at least one upset just to make things interesting and the Mile Highs made sure that I paid for my transgression. They were unquestioningly better than the Warriors yesterday, thats for damn sure. At any rate, with my sucky work schedule looming I'm gonna hafta hit n run again so lets get to it:

(FTS Rankings)

1. #10 the Beans v #5 the Original Muthas

As impressive as Bean City's win was yesterday in a serious battle with the Madolls its gonna be an uphill struggle today as they go up against those O.M.'s from TX. I just cant pick against TX in this bout because in the end the Muthas just seem too poised...too much on a mission...to be stopped in their tracks by Boston. Nope. Cant see it. The Originals win in a bout that should be interesting early. But in the 2nd half TX will pull away and continue their quest to regain the Throne of Derby.

2. #19 the Rockstars v #4 the Cheesesteaks

Hmmmmm. Its time for the 'ole heart vs head scenario. As you probably know my heart is with Frida and the Rockstars but I REALLY like this Philly team who have become one of my favorite Derby teams over the last 2 years. And howzabout that Killer Rocks team that dominated H-Town from the outset Friday?? There are so many skaters in this bout that are among my personal faves so this is a tuff pick for me. When you consider the fact that...hey...I'm full on rooting for those Rocky girls wellll....this is difficult. But heres the thing...Liberty will be the strongest team that the Rocks have faced this season. Hell, maybe the tuffest team that they have EVER faced. This will be a serious test for them and then theres the fact that the Cheesesteaks are gonna have a home track advantage with fans aplenty screaming and cheering them on. The smart money will, of course, be on Philly here. How could it NOT be?? But you have to also consider the unreal journey that the Killer Rocks have been on since Regionals...yes, they are on a mission from the Derby Goddess herself and sure seem to have her blessing! This is gonna be real interesting. Heart...the Rocks. Head...Liberty City. So put yer money on Philly but just dont be upset if those amazing Rollergirls from Rocky pull off the upset of the Tournament. For the brave among you...sneak in a lil upset pick here. For me. GO ROCKSTARS

3. #3 Mile Highs v #2 the Crushers

This should be a fairly competitive closely contested bout but ya have to realise that WCR is coming in fresh and rested and ready to crush. Last nite the Milers proved once again why they are among the elite in Derby with everything working for them against KC. But this Crushers team is a far cry from KC. Yeah...Windy will emerge victorious here. Sorry Denver.

4. #6 Holy Oly v #1 the Mighty Gothic Queens of Utter Destruction and Mayhem

This may be a better bout than the Goth faithful may realise. At least thats my opinion. Oly has had a remarkable season and would certainly shock the Derby World with a victory here...but uuuuhhh...aint gonna happen. And there were times in the Regionals when Oly's lack of big prime time bout experience showed. And then theres the question of bench depth. Oly has a nice bench but not Goth nice. I said yesterday that the Mighty Goths wouldnt lose Friday or Saturday and I realise thats no big stretch but the Goths are gonna be BIG TIME today. They are on a serious mission people and no Holy Oly is gonna stand in their way. This may get ugly in the 2nd half as the Goths simply wear down Oly. Pick the Gothic Queens. Dont be silly.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

WFTDA Nationals Day 1 - Quick Picks

Finally the Nationals are here and I have scant time to write as much as I would like but I am gonna make some "quick picks" for Day One's WFTDA bouts. After all, I know some of you need to win some games and take that happy trip to the payout window. And so without further ado...the picks:

(FTS Rankings used)

1. #10 the Beans v #13 the Madolls

Considering how surprisingly well that the Madolls have played this year it wouldnt be a shock to see an upset here. But my cashish is on the skaters of Bean City. They just seem to be a notch above Madison and I'm going with the favorite here.

2. #20 H- Town v #21 the Killer Rocks

Its interesting to consider that going into this bout HOU is ranked by WFTDA at #17 and the Rockstars are at #7. Regardless of the rankings gulf theres NO WAY that the Rockstars go down in their first bout outta the gate. No way. And yes I'm playing favorites...cuz you know thats how I roll. GO KILLER ROCKS!!

3. #5 Mile Highs v #9 Warriors

For my money it seems that the KC skaters have overachieved somewhat this year but having said that I just have a feeling about them. I HAVE to pick an underdog somewhere and although I may get stung I'm gonna pick those Warriors here. Please dont hate on me Milers...you have an excellent team and you could easily prove me wrong but I have to play this hunch tho...cuz picking all favorites is lame.

4, #8 Deeeetroit v #1 the Goths

Uh huh...suuuuure. Like I'm gonna pick against the Mighty Gothic Destruction Machine of Derby. Not gonna happen people. Not Friday...and not Saturday either. Heads up Rollerheads...that narrow defeat a few months back to the Liberty City squad has the Mighty Gothic Queens in a damn serious mood. And they are READY to defend their Derby Crown this weekend. Very very ready.

Its gonna be a great Tournament and I wish that there were some way that I could have been there in Cheesesteak City. I would have damn sure bought shots of Jaeger all around for those Rocky Mtn Rollergirls...proud of them! Go get 'em Frida!