She’s the creator, the spirit, and the solution. We have something amazing that no other league has…and that’s a magic pony!!
AB: How cool and obvious that March would be magic pony month!
mp: I appreciate the electronic high five.
AB: Way back in 2010, you instigated the creation of Red Rock ‘N Roller Derby. Is it all you thought it would be?
mp: I’m not sure I really knew what it would become. I just knew it would be awesome, that it would be a fun sport to play. It’s so much more than a sport, of course, and to see how it empowers and changes people is the probably the thing I didn’t predict, and what I love best about roller derby. It’s exciting to me to watch people take initiative on their committees and teams, and keep building our league past anywhere I ever envisioned.
AB: In our 2013 season, you skated with the Moonshine Maidens and were a part-time announcer. What are your plans for this season?
mp: I’ll skate with the Maidens, maybe announce a time or two.
AB: What is your favourite part of roller derby?
mp: I love to see women who’ve never played a sport, never been on a team, never considered themselves athletes, become these fierce, bold, confident bad a$$ skaters. I love to see women and men brave refereeing, one of the hardest jobs in any sport, never mind in a sport so young the rules change every year. Everyone has to be so adaptable, the rules change, the strategies change, and coaches and announcers have to be ready to change with it. It’s so amazing we have people in our league that say, yeah, sure, I’ll take that on! And I love there’s a role, and a derby name, for anyone who wants to be part of the sport. NSOs, photographers, first responders, they are all part of the growth of the league, and that’s very cool.
AB: Your alter ego is really cool; can you explain your name and number to everyone?
mp: When there’s a problem to be solved and someone suggests some crazy, random idea to fix it, you might say, “yeah sure, why don’t we just wish for a magic pony?!”. My definition of a magic pony is “an improbable solution to an insurmountable problem”. I’m a problem solver, I love crazy solutions and I really don’t think any problem is insurmountable if we use collaboration and build good relationships. And, as a mediator, it’s my job to help people shift so they can be open to problem solving – I think of those shifts as “180′s”.
AB: You have been on our Board of Directors since the beginning of time. Since our AGM last week, are you excited to work with new board members?
mp: I love how many people are willing to step up and help build our league. I like change as much as I like foundation. We have a bit of both on our new board, and that’s going to work out perfectly.
AB: How does your professional life transfer to your roller derby life? (Cuz it really does!)
mp: It’s all about relationship building. Good relationships simply equals good solutions. It’s the key to moving forward positively in any endeavour. I’ve played lots of sports in which my professional background wasn’t as necessary, but the fact that it is, is completely connected to the fact that roller derby isn’t just a sport, it’s a community, and a culture. People are passionate about what we’re doing and that bodes well for the future of our sport in PEI.
AB: What has been your most memorable roller derby moment?
mp: Watching people take on roles they probably wouldn’t have thought themselves capable of in their pre-derby lives, and hearing people describe themselves as super-heroes.
AB: Who’s your roller derby inspiration?
mp: Lady G is an inspiration in her commitment to our league. She loves this sport and all the crazy people who play it. It’s hard managing the building of a sport people are so passionate about and she is a thoroughly dedicated volunteer and ambassador who sticks with it even when times are tough and most would give up.
AB: What are you most looking forward to in our 3rd season?
mp: I’m most looking forward to just playing a third season. I remember a few months before our first season, after 18 months of practicing, thinking “Am I really doing this? I am being foolish? Will I injure myself and screw up my 44 year old body?” I decided I had to justify 18 months of posting pictures of myself in my underwear all over Facebook, and decided I’d skate one season and then see how I felt. After the first bout, I realized I was being an idiot, and I’d skate for as long as I can.
**Thanks for the sweet photo Elle Blythe. Check out magic pony’s page here.