I’ve written here before about roller derby and how awesome I think it is. I’ve written how it’s become a much bigger part of my life than I ever imagined and how there is a sisterhood that runs deep and is very profound. We spend hours and hours of our life every week dedicated to derby. We don’t mind because we love derby and we love the people in derby. They’ve become friends who are more like family. They are the people we spend most of our time with and have come to depend on and value. Joining a roller derby league is not just playing a sport. These women are so damn dedicated and work hard every single day; we practice a minimum of twice a week, we volunteer our time to the league and to other charities, we will set up, clean, and tear down before and after bouts, sell tickets, as well as promote our teams and the league. We don’t get paid. We pay to have the privilege of doing all of this. We may not get news coverage by local sports media, fame, or notoriety. We do all of it for the love of the game and for the sense of belonging that comes from being part of something that is important.
In our patriarchal world that doesn’t encourage women to express themselves this way, roller derby is a tool for change. Derby girls are free to be serious athletes and sexy at the same time. We don’t subscribe to “societies” version of what size, shape, and demeanor we should have–we look and dress how we like and if that means ripped fishnets and hot pants–we bring it! I’m constantly impressed with the level of self-esteem my league mates possess and how different that is from most of the rest of us; non-derby women have a lot to gain and a lot to learn by watching skaters. I’m proud to be part of the Twin City Derby Girls. We work hard, are dedicated and focused, spending a tremendous amount of time and energy on this part of our lives. Derby Rules!