How did you find out about roller derby?
One of my friends told me about the Bay Area team in 2006, and I knew roller derby was the perfect sport for me.
What kind of skating skills or athletic abilities did you have before starting derby?
I ice figure skated from ages 2-12 but quit because I preferred to either dart through crowds and see how many people I could make fall during public sessions or hurl my body down the ice like a snowmobile rather than practice layback spins and split jumps. Aside from swimming on my high school swim team for a couple of years and a short stint in gymnastics, the athletic highlights of my early and late teens included trying to skate on my brother’s homemade backyard skate ramp in my roller skates and hiding under the bleachers during the mile run in P.E. After high school, however, I rediscovered the joy of sweating. I began long distance inline skating, bought a pair of figure skates, and started running and cycling.
How did you derive your derby name?
Not much to it. During game play, I imagine Bozo the Clown’s face on my opponents. Who wouldn’t want to slam into Bozo the Clown? But outside of game play, I’m pretty much clownishly awkward. It’s goofy and makes me laugh to hear, “Bozo, on the outside,” during paceline drills or, “Hey Bozo, how was your weekend?”
What is your primary position?
I play all positions.
What do you contribute most to the team?
That’s a tricky question. I’d like to think that I am always striving to work well with my teammates and push myself to perform better than I think I’m capable of, but definitely, I contribute goof, laughter, and joy.
What has been your greatest experience on the rink?
The greatest experiences I’ve had in roller derby have been developing bonds with all of my teammates while we participate in a sport we all have so much passion for and getting into the best physical condition I’ve ever been in.
What was your worst injury, and how did you earn it?
I broke my arm jamming in the KillaBytes versus Tahoe away bout in July, 2010. Their track was super slippery, smooth concrete, and right after I made my second pass as lead jammer, I was given a surprise hit from a blocker who was out of play. I completely lost traction, spun around, and landed with my arm behind me. I didn’t know my arm was broken until I tried to call off the jam, and I couldn’t lift my left arm. I broke my distal radius completely off, and the bone had to be manually reduced (pushed back into place) in the ER. I was very lucky, because the bone maintained positioning, and I didn’t require surgery to install pins. I was off skates for 3 months (but shhh, I skated with a pillow over my arm for several weeks) and was unable to bout for 4 months.
Who are your biggest fans?
My husband and children
Who do you like to partner up with on the track? Which teammates do you work well with?
I like to partner up with everyone. Not only do I get to enjoy hanging out with everyone individually, but the more I partner up with my teammates, the more I learn about their styles and the better we work together.
What are you looking forward to the most this season?
I’m looking forward to having fun with my teammates while we work to achieve our individual, team, and league goals.
What do you contribute to SVRG *off* the track?
I am the “Attendance Specialist,” which involves keeping track of skater, coach, and referee attendance, and I calculate bout and scrimmage eligibility. I spend a lot of time working with Google spreadsheets. I also recently took over management of the blog, along with Brigid Fitch.
How do you spend the non-derby part of your life? What other hobbies and interests do you have?
I’m a stay-at-home mom to a 5-year-old girl and a 7-year-old boy. Prior to having children, I worked as a K-8 public school teacher and in the computer industry. When I’m not skating, I work on updating my 100-year-old house, read, hang out with my pets, create and edit digital music and graphics, goof around with my husband and friends, camp, get lost in my skates or on my bike, and train for and participate in triathlons.
What’s the one piece of advice you would give women interested in playing roller derby?
Spend time in your skates outside of practice. The more you skate, the more comfortable you’ll be when you’re skating with a league. Get ready to make some great memories.