Thursday, June 26, 2008

June 14, 2008: Season Two Championship, Cosmonaughties 58, Wicked Pissahs 69

So it seems like it was ten thousand years ago, but in fact it was only a couple of weeks ago that the Cosmonaughties faced off against the Wicked Pissahs in the season championships. Mr. Hits did his usual awesome job of recapping the bout:

"Meet the new champs. Same as the old champs. In the business of Boston roller derby, nobody does it better than the Wicked Pissahs, and this revered squad has now added a second championship trophy to their mantle. Saturday, June 14 marked the Boston Derby Dames’ Season Two championship bout, and the favored Pissahs dodged an upset and capped off their perfect season by beating the Cosmonaughties in an epic nailbiter. To the casual observer, the lack of back-breaking collisions may have proved surprising, but for superfans like Papa Fevah, it was glorious derby from both sides: lots of controlled skating and mid-stream adjustments, and a complete unwillingness to quit. The Cosmos, this year’s playoff Cinderella story, worked their magic again and almost engineered an unlikely win. The bout’s outcome remained in question even in the final few minutes, but the Pissahs were a team of destiny this season, and they ultimately locked it down to finish with a 69-58 victory."
Read more here.
(update: photos can be found here)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

East Coast Extravaganza 2008

Photos from top: Boston B Party, Sugar Hits gets a whip from Triple Deck-Her against Houston, Sarah Doom attempts to pull her way through the Rocky Mountain Pack with Shellby Shattered's shirt (successfully, I believe).

I can't even believe how much derby I just witnessed. I cannot even deal with how much stuff I just saw and want to write about, which means I probably never will, so just a quick summary:

Boston Massacre v Rocky Mountain Roller Girls (111-93). Boo!
Boston Massacre v Houston Roller Derby (114-38). Yay!
Boston B Party v Steel City Demons Steel Hurtin (not sure, but it was definitely a Boo!)
And if anyone else has any more photos, videos, updates, etc. please send them along!

Friday, June 20, 2008

East Coast Derby Extravaganza!!

Even though I can't skate this weekend, I did decide to make the trek over to Philly for the East Coast Derby Extravaganza. Boston Massacre is playing in 2 WFTDA bouts and Boston B-Party is playing in a challenge bout, so I will be sure to cheer them on. I was also scheduled (before the injury) to be in two challenge bouts -- Geeks vs. Beauty Queens and Jews vs. Goys. Although I won't be skating, several other Boston Derby Dames will be in these scrimmages, so I will definitely be cheering from the sidelines. I wasn't sure I was going to go because I thought I would just be too depressed that I wasn't skating; but as the weekend draws near I find that I am more and more excited. It will be so amazing to see so many different leagues all together in one place! I will be sure to take lots of pictures and will hopefully have some interesting blog posts when I return. If you see me hanging out, feel free to say hello. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

PCL Injuries in Roller Derby

Molly Python, in the process of tearing her PCL.
Photo by L.J. McAllister, posted on the Jet City Rollergirls Flickr site.
Having a PCL tear has been an interesting experience as a patient because it is apparently not a very common injury. My original doctor had never seen one before and was pretty pleased with himself for diagnosing it correctly (later confirmed by the MRI). He's still talking about it. The orthopedist I was referred to gave me a little pamphlet entitled "You and your knee injury" or something similar, where the only line in it about the PCL is that it is injured much less frequently than the ACL. Not too helpful. He only gave it to me for the drawing in it that showed where the PCL was located. When I went to my physical therapist, he called in his student to check it out because she wasn't likely to get another chance anytime soon. Which I find fascinating because it seems to be fairly common in roller derby.

Apparently people tear their PCLs mostly from being in car accidents (when they're shins hit the dashboard) or playing football (when they are tackled from the front while planting their feet). How common it is in the general populace is not really known, but studies of National Football League (NFL) pre-draft physical examinations showed 2% incidence of PCL injuries where the football player didn't even know he had ever torn his PCL. PCL injuries which were known about, operated on, or combined with other ligament injuries ranged from 3.5-20%. That seems fairly high to me, but we're talking about professional-level football players, so it doesn't seem ridiculous.

What about roller derby? WFTDA conducted an injury survey last year whose results are available on the WFTDASafetySquad Yahoo Group. Here's a bunch of disclaimers: This is in no way a scientific study. Responding was voluntary. I have only skimmed the surface of these results and could easily have made mistakes. That being said, I think there are some interesting trends to be found:
  • Out of 1070 respondents, 574 (~54%) reported an injury that kept them from participation on one or more occasions.
  • Of those 574, 262 (~46%) report a knee injury (more than any other type of injury by far)
  • Of those 262, 36 (~14%) specifically mention the PCL in their description of their injury. This does not count all the people (20) who said they had injured their knee ligaments but were not specific as to which ligaments, or the many others who said they had injured their knee in some unspecified manner.
that's a pretty high percentage.

Can we do anything to prevent them? I'll save that for another post.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Answers on demand from the WFTDA Rules Committee

Are you confused by 3.0? Have a question about the rules and want the official answer? Well, you're in luck! The WFTDA Rules Committee has come out with a web page just for you! Answers on demand straight from the horse's mouth. I think this is a fabulous example of an organization using the internet in a simple but highly effective way to reach out to its members. There are only 3 questions up there now, but hopefully more will come. I know you have questions. Come on. You know you want to. What happens if the jammer panty falls off the jammer and then a dog runs onto the track and scoots away with it? What happens if a referee falls onto the track and takes out a jammer? Is it legal to wear an earpiece so your coach can give you advice while you're jamming? I'm not sure. Let's find out!

WFTDA Rules: Questions, Clarifications & Answers

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Boston Derby Dames Season Two Championship Preview Podcast

Mr. Hits is my new favorite person. Not only does he do bout recaps, but now he is doing bout previews -- on a podcast no less! Check it out here. Oh yeah, and come to the bout! It's going to be a-mazing!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

This isn't skating, this is roller derby! -- knee injury update

So, I saw the orthopedist on Thursday. He said that I had definitely torn my PCL, probably a complete tear, but that nothing else was injured (Yay!). He estimated a recovery period of 6-8 weeks (Boo!). He says he sees this kind of injury a lot in football players and car accident victims! Generally from a hard blow to the shin (which is definitely what happened to me). I probably won't need surgery (Yay!). Apparently the PCL ligament will probably not heal itself but most people compensate for a torn PCL by strengthening the surrounding muscles and never need surgery. I asked, what about skating? He said, that should be fine. To which my husband said, wait a minute -- she's not talking about skating, she's talking about roller derby! Unfazed, the doctor cited a study of knee injuries in college football players who have been scouted and are thought likely to be drafted by the NFL. Apparently a lot of them are found to have had PCL injuries which they either didn't know about or never told anyone about. Which means that even with the PCL injury they were still able to compete at a very high level with little or no problems. Which was exactly the right thing to say to my husband. So.... that's the news from Mayhemlandia. Let's see if I can shorten that recovery time a bit!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Flames shooting up every time someone gets knocked on their ass!

One of the things I love about roller derby is the creativity it seems to produce in people. One has only to look at a list of roller derby names or see a photo album of skater and ref uniforms to realize we are one creative bunch! Check out this article in Make Magazine on wireless motion sensing in roller derby. Not sure it would work very well to actually keep track of hits, but the author envisions something much more fantastic --
"If the skaters wore motion sensors, I figured, you could make things react to the action. Sound effects on every hit! A synchronized soundtrack! Flames shooting up every time a player gets knocked out of bounds! The possibilities are endless."
I like the way he thinks! Check it out here or go buy Volume 14 at your local bookstore.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

BDD Season Two Championship Bout -- June 14th

Saturday, June 14, 2008
Shriners Auditorium, Wilmington
Doors at 5pm, bouts start at 6pm
Tickets are $14 in advance, $16 at the door

Live music by Campaign for Real Time
After party with DJ Boo Boo Danger
Don't miss the Digital Automagic Audience Participatory Photo Booth in the Fez Room

It's a re-match of Season One's championship bout, with the Cosmonaughties once again taking on the Wicked Pissahs for the BDD crown.

Last year the Pissahs kicked their game into high gear midway through the season and after one tie (against the Cosmos) and one loss (to the Nutcrackers), they turned it around to beat the Nuts in the playoffs and skate past the Cosmos in the championships.

This year the Cosmos are the ones entering the championship bout with a shaky season record: only one win, a well-timed victory over the Nuts in the playoffs. Will they bounce back from a 1-2 season to hand the Pissahs their first loss of the year, or will the tough-girl townies take the trophy twice in a row, with an undefeated season to boot?

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

"Lick my Skates" anytime you want!

Speaking of the CCTV documentary, if you really enjoyed the soundtrack song, it is now available to download for free from the CCTV website:

"Lick My Skates" (theme from The Dames)

  • Length: 1:28 minutes (1.68 MB)
  • Format: Stereo 44kHz 160Kbps (CBR)

The theme song from CCTV's Project Documentary production, The Dames.

"Lick My Skates" was written by Eli Kao
Performers are-
Eli, guitar, additional instruments
Shaun Clarke, bass
Justin Vassallo, drums
Galaktika Cheer Squad (Therese, Larisa, Lina, Lizzie and Bob), vocals

This track is free to distribute with following restrictions- Attribution required, no commercial use allowed. Direct link HERE.

The Dames is a short documentary that profiles the Boston Derby Dames, Boston's first and only women's flat track roller derby league.

too much kicking puppies apparently

Tragedy strikes again in Mayhemlandia as our erstwhile hero (that's me) is once again plagued by the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. I tore my PCL at practice last Wednesday and will definitely be off skates for awhile. I mean really, doesn't that just seem a little too ridiculous? I've been skating for almost exactly a year now and I have 1) broken my arm 2) torn my MCL 3) gotten pneumonia, 4) fractured a rib, and 5) torn my PCL. What's up with that? I gotta find out who's sticking needles into a doll of me. I have an appointment tomorrow with the orthopedist, so hopefully will know more soon.

Second (and third and fourth) chance to see "The Dames"

If you missed CCTV's screening of "The Dames" in Feb or if you saw it and want to make your unenlightened friends come with you this time, now's your chance! There will be three more screenings. Admission is free. I highly recommend it!

Thursday June 5th, 8:00pm, Middlesex Lounge. (315 Mass Ave in Cambridge)

Wednesday June 18th, 6:30 + 8:00pm, Enormous room. (567 Mass Ave. in Central Square.) It is on the Red Line Central Square T stop. Right upstairs from the train. The only sign is a red elephant. Look for Central Kitchen and climb on top of it. Wow. Now is your chance to hang out somewhere so hip that you need to know a secret sign to find it! How can you say no?