Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Abuse me, baby

Today, against my better judgement, I returned to roller derby practice.

I have a confession to make.

As much as I love roller derby (and oh, roller derby, how I love you) it is kicking my ass. On Sunday, I got completely hammered. And not in a good way - no alcohol was involved. During Sunday's practice, I went down so hard, and so often, that by the 4th time I just weakly held up one hand and made the "OK" sign when they asked if I was all right. The derby girls, who have seen their share of crash landings and ass whoopings, made a collective "GASP" when I went flying/careening/sliding along the pavement on my left side. It was not cool, it was not graceful, it was not pretty. There were murmers from the assembled crowd of "ouch" and "oh MAN" and "that's gotta hurt" as I lay very very still on the pavement and listened to my skate wheels still spinning somewhere over my left shoulder.

Eventually I got up. I did. I got up, and I even skated some more. And by this afternoon I was able to sit down without wincing and moaning - which is a MARKED IMPROVEMENT.

So of course, I got my gear on and went right to practice.

About an hour in, I was practicing some new technique when - once again - I went flying. And once again, landed hard on my left hand and skidded along on my left side. When I came to a stop, my left arm was waaaaaay over there, at a funny angle. And once again, I was breathless and cursing Drew Barrymore and her damned "Whip It" for getting me into this mess. Bitch. (No, really, I adore her. But still. It's all her fault.)

I made it through the rest of the practice, though I sullenly refused to do the 75 pushups because I literally couldn't put any weight on my hand or shoulder without wanting to vomit and simultaneously falling facefirst on the concrete.

I had spent just about enough time bonding with concrete for one day, thankyouverymuch.

On my way home, I had to stop for lunch stuff for the kids. So of course, I went to my beloved Whole Foods. And as I perused the meat cases, looking all gross and holding my left arm close to my side, carefully not using it because I was afraid it might just Fall Off, two of the butchers came up behind the counter. They were big guys, local, joking to each other in pidgin as they cleaned up for the night.
"Can we get you anything?" they asked.
"No, I think I'm all set, I'll come back tomorrow."
"OK. Hey, can we ask you a question?"
"Sure." I said, thinking "oh shit, where is this going...."
"Do you skate that derby thing - the roller derby?"
"Yeah" I said, feeling kind of embarrassed because honestly, I do less skating and more sliding around on my ass but whatever. Details.
"Yah !" said one. "I TOLD YOU" said the other. "Awesome" they both said. "Those socks gave you away" one explained. And they had all kinds of questions. About practice, and our track, and who we played against. I answered as best I could, and made sure to clarify that I was the new girl, and really not a member of the actual team yet. "You must be a pretty tough girl, though, to skate with the team." one of the butchers said. "No, really, I'm not." I assured him. "I get my ass handed to me every time I go to practice." "Nah," he said "I can tell. Only a brave girl would get out there and take the hits like that."

And I have to admit.......I smiled.

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