Friday, November 13, 2009

The Calm Before the Derby Storm

Thursday morning I excitedly started packing my suitcase to prepare for the drive to Philadelphia to watch the WFTDA National Tournament. Then I remembered that my police ankle monitor would immediately notify my parole officer. So instead, images and observations on this weekend's quest for the Hydra Trophy will be brought to you by a referee and derby lover from Baton Rouge Louisiana's Red Stick Roller Derby. Ladies and Gentlemen, put your hands together for Crotch Rock-It. Take it away, Crotch!

If the saying is true that “roller derby saved my soul,” then today I’m making a pilgrimage to the Mecca of derby, the WFTDA Nationals tournament. This weekend I get to watch the 12 most badass groups of wheeled women on earth beat the hell out of each other for fame, glory, and love of the sport. God, I love roller derby.

There has been much speculation about who’s gonna take home the Hydra trophy this year, so I’ll throw in my $0.02. If I were a betting man, I’d have to go with Philly for two reasons. One, they are the host team and will be enjoying the home crowd advantage. Two, at Eastern Regionals they did what some thought was impossible by flinging a stone square into the temple of the Goliath of the sport, Gotham . If they can maintain the momentum gathered at Regionals, Philly will be a tough team to take down.

But, my heart lies with my South Central sisters, Houston and Texas . Houston admittedly has a tough row to hoe, taking on the West upstarts Rocky Mountain , and then facing Philly should they manage to survive their first bout. Texas , on the other hand, has a much better shot at winning it all. They are the Virgin Mary of the sport, having birthed the current incarnation of flat track derby way back at the beginning of the decade. (Am I going to hell for all of these non-PC religious references?) They are clearly at the top of their game right now and would love to take home the trophy named after one of their founding members. Go TXRG!

Anyway, it's 1:00am Thursday night right now, and I've finally landed in Philly. Me and my better half Hazmat are sitting in a taxi headed to the hotel next to the convention center so we can crash and be ready for tomorrow. Goodnight!

Crotch Rockit
Red Stick Roller Derby

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