Whether you’re a veteran skater or yet to play your first bout, here’s proof that a derby bout is just like Christmas.
Firstly, it’s the preparation. It starts months before the actual occasion. People are booking spots, contacting various people and planning ahead all in the name of having the perfect event. As it begins to draw nearer, the anticipation builds until you can almost taste it. There are signs all over town and everyone is talking about it. “Are you ready?” “What do you have left to do?” “I can’t WAIT!” “I just need it to get here so I can stop thinking about it so much!”
Then you go out and buy special stuff in preparation for the special day. Tape? New tights? Fresh socks? Bigger eyelashes?! Brighter make-up?! Extra sparkly bits!!
And you can barely sleep the night before, dreaming of what the next day might bring.
Finally, you wake up to the DAY OF! Too excited to eat, you consume mostly nuts and sweetened carbs and worry about drinking too much and needing to pee (ok, that last part might be just derby and not so much Christmas). In a haze of anxiety and excitement you make your way to where the action happens and before you know it you’re in the midst of it. It’s loud and exciting. The lights are bright and people were watching to see how you’ll tear into those things in front of you. You get tired, but adrenaline sees you through and it’s over before you know it. Afterward you collapse onto a bench, grateful for your blessings (like a functioning vertebrae) and hug those around you in thanks and appreciation, sharing sweat (again, maybe just derby, depending on how you do Christmas), maybe tears and lots of laughs.
Now it’s time to celebrate, eat and drink! It went by far too fast and although you’ve got pictures, memories and stories to tell, you wish you could go back and slow it down and do it again and this time, just enjoy every minute (whilst kicking some serious booty).
Whatever your pre-game routine, take some time this busy season to reflect on a year of derby-awesomeness (be it personally, for the league, the region or the sport) and ask the mythical derby diety for more of the same in 2013!
photo: Kevin Molyneaux