A HARD Day’s Night

Yeah, I ripped off a song title.  Sue me.

As you may have heard because I mentioned it a few times, yesterday was my first home bout with my team, the Harrisburg Area Roller Derby, aka HARD.  We were up against the Bux-Mont Roller Derby Dolls from Hatfield, PA, which is a community north of King of Prussia and about a two hour drive from us.  We’ve been looking forward to this bout for a while–okay, I’ve been looking forward to this bout, because this is my first home game, and home is where the HARD is, right?

This was also the first game we played with our sister team, the York City Derby Dames out of York, PA, which is about thirty minutes south of us.  Four members of their team came up to join in the fun:  Klutch, Ruby Wrecker, Pair O’Docs, and Devour, and when the time comes we’ll likely head south–or wherever–and do the same with them.

I arrived before 4:30 and helped with track setup, assisting in laying down the outer line for the track.  After that I was over to my little raised platform near the scoring/NSO (Non Skating Officials) tables so I could film the bout.  Yes, once more I was getting video for tonight’s bout review; yeah, I’m a hard worker; yeah, I don’t have a girlfriend.  What does that tell you?

I also took photos, so kick back and enjoy.

First, here’s a panorama of the rink:

 

The two white lines to the left are the pivot line (closest) and the jammer line (furthest).  The blue line beyond the outer white line is the outer area where the refs skate.  From my position you notice I saw the start of each jam coming right at me.  Also, yeah:  the rink looks like it hasn’t moved out of the 1970s.  Which is okay because that’s when I did most of my skating.  I know, I made a funny.

While I was waiting for things to start I went around and got photos of team members:  some getting ready for battle, some doing things like working the merchandise table, and others done with their jobs and waiting for the game to start.

Ms. Smackman

 

Tenacious T

 

Anita Blades on the left

 

Nelson Slamdela (left) and team captain Redrum Doll (right).

 

Rivers Cowgirl

 

(left to right), Wyld Kat, and Fresh Meat Laura and Resi.

 

Fresh Meat Erica (left) and Bismashual (right).

 

Devour (left), Dirty Girl Scout (right), Coach Ida Hit That with Tenacious T photobombing (center).

 

Preparing to pace line practice.

 

Take off practice.

 

Preparing for introductions.

 

I shot a lot of video for the game, but I’m not releasing it as we do bout review tonight and I’m keeping it on the low.  And I filmed our introduction because this is how it happens at nearly every game:

 

We didn’t win:  we actually lost by a great deal.  And we lost Redrum Doll for the next month:  she went down during the game with what appeared to be a sprain but it turned out she had torn ligaments in her ankle from a month before, something I learned today.  But by next game we should have a new place on the roster and another coming back, and Red should be ready for our next home game in October.

Even so, she managed to get Best Blocker for our side, with Klutch getting Best Jammer, while Poptart was Best Blocker and Julia Bullya Best Jammer for Bux-Mont.  And even though we lost, we had a good time as did the other team.

Best Blockers and Jammers as picked by the other teams.

 

Both teams together.

There you have it:  how I spent my Sunday afternoon and evening–and early morning, because as I started as I didn’t finish getting all the pictures and video up to my computer and the Internet until almost one in the morning.  But hey:  that’s how I am–

As you can see, I’m pretty green at this. 🙂

Imagining Living in the Unreal

It’s been a strange sort of day.  I woke up ready to go and I’ve been in that mode ever since.  It’s a strange feeling as I haven’t had a lot of get up and go for a few months–could that be due to practice?  Not really:  I was feeling like that long before I strapped on some skates and became my own hero.  I’m sure it was due to something else.

Yesterday I spent time thinking about Kerry’s future, but not like long-term stuff; you know, more like what’s coming in the next few months.  It’s not like I haven’t thought about it before, but now that a few changes are coming into his life, I’ve had to refine that view a bit.  Before I started on the current novel everything was painted, more or less, in broad stokes.  Now the time has come to fill in some of the outlines and maybe turn a couple of mistakes into birds.

This goes for Annie, too.  As we saw way back in the beginning of this novel she’s breaking out of her “Ice Queen” shell and even venturing away from her home.  She spent time with Alex and even traveled to Cardiff to see Kerry, look around his parent’s house, and check out his room.  (She also said his bed would be a good place to conceive kids, but she was just clowning him.  Maybe.)  She’s growing as a person and a young woman, and given how these kids talk and act, it’s likely she’s already got a good grasp of her sexuality and is working with her soul mate on his.

It’s safe to say that in the next month or so there will be a few surprises tossed out here for everyone to see.  This is what happens when you dig into the lives of your fictional characters and look for the little nuggets that make up their personality and their experiences.  In the last few weeks I’ve actually had a lot more fun digging into areas I didn’t know existed so that I could bring a few new elements into this story.  It not only helped that I wanted to change things up a bit, but it’s actually helped set up things better for the future.

A future that is continuing to change.  Except for a few things, that is.

There was a time when I figured Kerry being dumped by his parent for the Yule holidays might be one of the worst things in the world for him.  Now…  I’m not so certain.  What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, so this could be one of those things that keeps Kerry strong.  As for Annie–well, she has her own strength.  Which we’ll get to see on display soon.

Act One is nearly over:  one last chapter and I can move on to the act where all hell breaks loose.  I don’t want to say I’m gonna have fun torturing my kids–

But you know I will.

Activism on the Sly

Last night was not a night of writing.  I mean, I did write, but it was only another three hundred and fifty words because by the time I arrived home I was tired.

No, I was out with people I know who work for Planned Parenthood and we were doing the political thing.

I’ve maybe mentioned before that I know a few people who work for Planned Parenthood.  One of them I meet during our time campaigning in 2016–while they did some help on the Clinton Campaign they were mostly working to election a new state senator–and we became social friends.  I’ve let her know that when it comes to PP (which is how I’ll spell it out from here) I’ll help out where I can, and I’ve attended a couple of their functions since then.

I was invited to late night’s event a few days before and I RSVPed right away.  I was sent a link to where we would meet and was asked to keep the location private because lunatics out there might decide to crash the party in the worst way.  I will say it wasn’t in Harrisburg, but that’s all the information you’re getting.  (I will mention now that I did not take any pictures while there, nor will I mention people by name.  I’m keeping this all on the low.)

If you follow what’s going on in D.C. you know defunding PP is a priority among certain conservative white guys who’ve never had a period in their lives.  Of course I’ve never had a period, either, but some women don’t.  Regardless, I stand behind all women who need health care and PP fills the position of providing health care for hundreds of thousands of women, including pap smears, breast exams, pregnancy testing, and STD screening and treatment.  Also, last year PP began running pilot programs to provide Hormone Replacement Therapy for trans women and men, which is something I could use should I need that service.

And yes, they do offer abortions.  I know it’s a touchy subject with a lot of people, but my feelings are such:  if you don’t need one, don’t get one.  If you don’t want others getting them, piss off and find a hobby to file your time.  Being a person who finds herself in a position where people I don’t know suddenly feel as if they have a voice when it comes to whether or not I should exist, it’s easy to say if you have no intention of getting an abortion, then shush, you.  It’s none of your business.  (And yes, I’ve always felt that way.)

We discussed what sort of steps we need to take to help PP through these dark times and I’m certain I’ll find myself helping out somewhere to help out the organization.  Because I do feel they are an important health provider for untold numbers of women and they are under assault by know-nothing idiots.  Does that seem like harsh language?  Yep.  And I mean every word.

Of late I’ve had to back away from a lot of the political stuff I was doing simply because it was becoming overwhelming.  But when it comes to helping Planned Parenthood–I’ll be there to help whenever it’s possible.

Because you know I love to wear pink…

Sentinel of the Extra Hours

Today I’m taking the opportunity to take a title from the legendary Harlan Ellison short story and warp it around so it fits into something I can place in my blog.  Why?  Perhaps it’s my only chance to be as a tenth as that literary maniac, though I fear even that attempt will fall short.  So just be me, yeah?  Yeah.

My nights are filled with a lot of things this week.  Practice two nights, one of which I didn’t have to attend, but I feel like a slacker if I don’t.  Last night was bout review and I was there with my computer as I was the person who filmed and put together the playlists of the footage of the last two games.  It was a lot of fun and a chance to hang out with the team–and it ran a little longer than I expected.  I thought I’d be home by nine:  it was about ten-thirty when I hit the door.  And since we’d been outside for a good part of this I needed a shower to get the sweat off–

And then I got to writing.

Only…  By eleven I was nodding off.  I mean that in a literal sense:  I sat at the computer with my Dragon up and running and the headset on, and my head was falling forward as I fought to stay awake.  I manged exactly 350 words before shutting it all down and heading off to bed.

After three and a half years in The Burg I’m finally getting something of a social life and as we know, when you are out being sociable, something has to suffer.  My sleep has suffered a bit–mostly because a few nights a week I’m getting four hours of sleep–but my writing has gone right into the tank.  I’m behind on my novel and my recaps, which means I’ll be playing a lot of catch up this weekend.  Maybe I’m averaging two thousand words a week on the novel, and that’s if I get in a lot of quality time on the weekend.

In the next couple of weeks this should straighten out a bit and I’ll find myself with a much better schedule, but the truth is–I don’t think so.  I’m attending an event after work tonight and the chances are I won’t be home until after nine-thirty or ten.  Hey, at least I can get in about five hundred words tonight before crashing and burning.

The writing biz would be a lot better if I didn’t have a day job, but that’s not the case.  There is one possible solution to this mater and I believe I’m gonna have to try that again and see what happened.  After all, it once worked for me well, so I don’t see why I wouldn’t now.

Being social:  it’s a blessing in many ways, but it’s also a curse.  You want to get out and do things, but in doing so you gotta put something to the side.  Either that, or you find a way to free up some of those extra hours you’re hanging on to and put them to good use.

I can’t hold all those hours back, can I?

Starting the Second Half

Of the year, that is.  Enjoy!