My team, Sin Cal Derby Vixens, was mostly made up of girls just learning the basics. Many of us barely knew how to skate. We had a few veterans and more experienced members, but the most dedicated of the crew was the founder, Mexi Q Shin Her, Haute Donna, Donna’s husband and the coach for the Vixens, Master Half-Asser, and our team captain, Bonny.
Most of us knew very little about roller derby, but we loved skating, and we really believed we could make this team-rebuild happen. Donna and Kassie (Mexi Q Shin Her) held a team meeting and we voted members into official positions. Donna became the Financial Secretary, Bonny the Captain, NotBecky became Co-Captain. I was put into the position of Interleague Liaison, or basically the PR person.
We skated in the Christmas Parade, which was an interesting experience. I was crazy and didn’t wear knee pads, and I took my dog who ran along beside me wearing a reindeer costume. My son rode in the back of one of the trucks and hung out with the other children, nieces, and nephews of the skaters.
Many of us had a tough time on the very very bumpy road, and I was soaked in sweat by the end, but it was a great time despite the insanity. I got to know my fellow team mates a little better and bonded by helping each other out.
After the parade, we ran a number of successful fundraisers. We needed funds for our rent, for loaner gear, for cones, jerseys, duct tape (a roller girl can never have too much duct tape), and many other operating expenses. It was a volunteer run organization, but we needed funds to invest in the team and grow it.
I created graphics, took photos, and came up with fundraiser ideas. I even created a website for the team at SinCalDerbyVixens.Wordpress.com.
My dedication to the team, to learning to skate, and all there was to learn about roller derby had grown exponentially since that first practice where I was talked into giving it a try.
I rekindled friendships and formed new friendships with other women, something I’d never been great at. Through this sport, the difficulty, the sweat, the trial and error, the comradery, something just clicked. I was part of something I loved, that made me feel good and that I wanted to share with others.