That’s a profound statement … one that recently came to me. I know, most of you have probably already come to this crossroad but as I sat at work the other day performing mind numbing tasks and thinking about the end of my season as it approaches and the awesomeness of the Champs coming up this hit me like 40 mph blocker missing her mark and instead giving it to me on the outside … .
But yes … Derby don’t care. And if we could spread that simple message to the rest of the word imagine how awesome things would be?
Let me explain …
It doesn’t matter if your an awesome skater or just learning, Derby Don’t Care. It doesn’t matter your body size, your age, your sexual preference Man, woman or child because Derby Don’t Care. It doesn’t matter if you have the best equipment or barely scrapping by to pay dues, Derby Don’t Care! You can be a player, an NSO, a Referee or a fan and Derby will still not care! You could be in derby for years or just starting out, in the biggest league or just putting one together. You could be WFTDA, USAR, MADE, OSDA, MRDA, banked or flat and Derby will still not care!!
So what does Derby care about??
Derby cares that you give your all. Derby wants you to give that 110% until you fall from exhaustion and then pick yourself back up and give some more. Derby wants dedication and passion. Derby wants the newbies to learn all they can and the vets to never stop learning. Derby wants you to scream your head off when your favorite player does something amazing, it wants you to stand in awe when the impossible happens and it wants you to rally behind each and EVERY person that takes the track whether they strap 8 wheels to their feet or not. It wants you to love with all the feels you can spare.
And in return it will give sooo much back. It will build up your body that it once tore down and make it something new and amazing. It will give you confidence where once before there was only uncertainty. It will give you an amazing collection of sisters and brothers that you will come to call your family. It will give you purpose at a time when many don’t seem to have one. It will do all of this and more.
So if we could only translate that to life and spread the word then some pretty amazing things could happen. Life don’t care about anything. It only wants you to give it your all, and it will reward you for it.
Yeah… and if they are striped I’m done!
I mean Seriously!!
I want to be a part of a really good organized Star Wars Themed bout this coming season. I mean Jedi and Sith and chicks like this
I want the 501st there (mostly so I can chat them up about how I need to talk to about making some Captain Rex armor for me). I want cool posters
I want some fun shenanigans … . I mean this really needs to happen in my career … . Just some good old fashioned geek fun! There needs to be a Vader so he can force choke the refs … .
And these … these need to happen.
If I didn’t love my Antiks soooo much these would be happening!!
But I don’t want a half assed Star Wars theme bout with a few guys standing around in their bath robes …
I wonder if you can ref in trooper armor??
That would be sooo me but Clone Armor … . hehehe.
Let your geek flag fly my friends!!!
Yeah … . done that a time or two … .
Yup … most times it’s just inside jokes … get it … Inside Jokes … cause we’re inside … the track … .
I’m gonna go skate over here … .
Ummm … I’ve been reffing … lol
Yeah, I’ve been gone for a while. Lots been going on. My dry spell of reffing hit a monsoon. Lots happening in the personal life that I had to take care of. So I’ve been busy. And I’m not the kind of person to just come on here and spew crap out at everyone. If I don’t have anything important to say (at least to me) or witty or informational then I’m not going to clog up your feed …
But I do have some news … .would you like to hear it??
Lonely Strips isn’t so lonely anymore … .
WoooHoooo! That’s right, I’ve joined a league. Its the one I’ve been dropping into practices most of the year. After I got compliments lately about my reffing and how its jumped a level from where I was at even at the beginning of the year I realized that it was all do to this awesome ref crew!! So after a few meetings and getting down to brass tacks I signed the paper work and became an official official of that league!!
I’m so happy … It’s a bit of a drive for me considering I have my former league 5 minutes around the corner but it is definitely worth it. I will have better learning and more opportunities there than I would have before. And something else that I never had before … . respect.
Now I know the statement above is not true … I mean who in their right (or left) minds cheer for the refs. But that’s what this feels like. Let me explain.
I worked a bout a couple weeks ago. It was a B-Team of my former league vs another team of about equal level. I found out refs were needed for this away bout desperately so I contacted the HR there and got a spot. Jammer Ref was my assigned position for this bout (surprise surprise). So the bout goes on and I do my role to the best of my abilities. Actually I felt pretty damn good about my performance that night. There was some issues during the bout in regards to officiating but those issues were not directed at me. After the bout I ran into the one coach from my former league … of course I ran into this person, they were part of the carpool down for this bout I was in … LOL.
Anyways the coach looks ad me and says, “Dammit [Ref], why the hell did you have to be so good tonight!?!”
"I’m sorry, what?" I said dumbfounded.
"The rest of the refs were mediocre to sucky at best which normally isn’t a problem if you all suck equally but there you are, calling every single penalty that crossed your field of vision … . the other refs weren’t even on the same page as you"
"Umm … thanks????" I said trying to contain a very large smile.
The coach goes on to tell me that they are really impressed with what I have been doing lately. That all of a sudden I’ve stepped my game up. That I am making much better calls (even against their team) I am more sure and confident in my calls and I have a different presence about me. The change from where they saw me last year till now is noticeable
I laugh it off but this was just the beginning. I’ve been recently told that a few people that I really respect … . respect me. I’m not trying to toot a horn or anything here but it’s friggin awesome when all of your hard work is actually being noticed and commented on. As an official I know I need to earn the respect of other and my peers. I never really expected it but always hoped that one day I would be looked at as a good ref. and this just kind of made my day.
I owe a LOT of this though to the league I have been practicing with. They are a higher level league so I have been exposed to situations and jams that I would have never been exposed to at my old league. They (skaters and officials alike) expect a certain level out of their officials and I have tried my best to rise to that level. There are still may things to learn and I know that every moment I am not always at that level. But they have been very supportive and at the same time critical of me. Its the environment that I’ve needed to grow as an official.
.Exactly … . now what?? I have a meeting soon with my former league. I know some officials want me there. I know some skaters want me there. And then I have some people close to me telling me I shouldn’t go back there. That this higher level league is what is best for me. They’ll take me in, I know that. And I know I will get opportunities like no other there. But I am also a loyal SOB and I feel that my former league deserves better than what they have. How can I just abandon them? This is the conundrum I am in …
But it does feel like I have some people cheering for me now …
Oh yeah … by the way … I was at the ECDX Officials Clinic this past June … and I attended ECDX … who knows, you may have talked to me!
SO I know I haven’t posted recently … been a lot going on. A lot in the personal life, drama in the derby life, and I’ve just been feeling blah about the whole thing.
While in my self imposed exile I am loving traveling to other leagues and getting a fresh perspective every time I go (which by the way, if I ever get back into a league that is going to be a serious suggestion … get out of your own little tiny rink world and practice somewhere else once a month). My problem right now is the lack of camaraderie.
Not that I ever really had that … well in the beginning I did … Anyways …
It sucks that I don’t have the crew/ref that’s got my back, that can support and help each other out. That’s what I’m lacking right now
Granted I have a lot of reffing friends, some that I can contact in a pinch and I know they’ll be there. I have ref friends in many different leagues that are always happy to see me and we can talk on endlessly about stuff … but I don’t have that “Come one over for pizza and a movie before the bout” kind of connection. That’s probably what I am craving the most right now. Its also what sucks the most because I also feel disconnected from the people i love in this sport.
Well … that and the endless driving really sucks too