Saturday, January 23, 2010


This was posted on Barbarian Librarian's Facebook page and I had to share...

Who knew that ninja skills and roller skates could be combined?  Awesome!  Though I can't help but think that they need quieter wheels to stay in true stealth mode.

Thursday, January 7, 2010


I am under the impression that if we cannot successfully execute a turn-stop, then derby life, as we know it, will abruptly come to an end.  Okay, well maybe we'll still be allowed to practice if we can't do this, but we will be shunned by polite society and we will be banned from team playing.  You could feel the ripples of panic wash over the turn-stop-challenged skaters at practice on Monday night when this edict was given.

The following video demonstrates three types of stops, the T-stop, the Plow, and the Turn-stop (or Tomahawk).   The lady clearly states that the turn-stop is an "advanced move" (1:22) and is "difficult to execute" (1:28).  I can do the plow stop and am very wobbly when it comes to the T-stop.  So I'm one for three, because the turn-stop reduces me to tears of frustration each time I attempt it.

I'll get it eventually.  I mean, I eventually got the crossing over thing after a loooong time.  Of course, I'm pretty sure that I still look like a doofus doing them and the WFTDA minimum skills requirements clearly state that one must not look like a doofus when doing crossovers (1.3.3).  In short, I am personally not in a complete panic about these turn-stops.  I haven't even passed the scrimmage assessments yet, so the chances of making a team at the end of the month were slim to none to begin with.  So, I'm just going to plod along as Slow N. Steady Sue and I'll get there...someday.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Coastal Trail and Belly Rash

I just washed off seven layers of sweat after a very, very long skate along the Coastal Trail from Sand City to Monterey.   Eight of us gathered at the Borders in Sand City this morning to gear up and skate what could have possibly been a twelve-mile roundtrip excursion.  This trail was great; there were exciting downhills, challenging uphills, gorgeous coastal views, and the weather was fantastic!

On those exciting downhill slopes, however, I tended to be a Nervous Nellie.  I wanted to go fast, but I feared plummeting to my death off the embankment and into the ocean.  To prevent the aforesaid death, I took a dive into the pavement on the first major downhill slope.  I just kept gathering speed despite my attempt at plowstopping all the way down and when the speed became too much, down I went.  I ended up skidding on my stomach along the pavement.  It was a pretty hard hit and it definitely knocked the wind out of me.  I now have a 1x2 inch patch of road rash on my stomach just below the belly button.

Soon after recovering from this bit of treachery, my forward progression was hampered by sand traps along the trail.  There are these fantastic golden sand dunes along one portion of the coast and they tend to meander....right onto the path.  There were a number of these patches along the pavement and  I quickly discovered that you cannot go through these sand traps with any sort of momentum and must either walk through them or get onto the roadway, which will thus cause little old ladies driving red cars to honk incessantly at you to get out of the road.

Otherwise the skate was pretty uneventful (in that there was no additional damage to my body).  We stopped for lunch in Cannery Row and skipped a big ol' uphill on the way back to the cars.  I ran into a coworker (Hi Phil!) who recognized me because I was wearing my Scarlett O'Feral track jacket.  The whole experience was a lot of fun and definitely worth another try!

     (This is the only picture that was taken with my camera. We stopped for a very pretty one with the marina in the background, but the kind photographer could not figure out my camera.  Oh well.  And that's me in the shark shirt.)