Sunday, January 29, 2012
The Scientist and I recently attended an event that opened us up to an entirely unfamiliar world (cue Aladdin and Jasmine serenading each other on a magic carpet) of Seattle - Roller Derby.
Over the past several years, the Rat City Roller Girls have gained a huge following, elevating them to almost cult status in the roller derby world. Several of our friends have attended derby bouts; some even have season tickets to witness the excitement on a regular basis. But I still didn't know what to expect when I attended my first bout.
I read the rules ahead of time, so I had a pretty good idea what was going on when the clock started ticking. I also knew the sport can be pretty violent - hence the helmets, knee pads, elbow pads, and wrist guards. But I wasn't prepared for how much fun it would be to just watch these women skate.
I always loved rollerskating when I was growing up. I owned several pairs of skates, had multiple birthday parties at our local skating rink, and became a master of rollerblades in the early 90s. Skating isn't easy, so watching these women speed around the track while trying to avoid getting knocked down, elbowed in the gut, kicked in the face, or even run over was pretty impressive.
Another equally fun aspect to attending roller derby is the PEOPLE WATCHING. Oh my hell, it is an audience unlike any sporting event I've ever seen. The bleachers were filled with flannel, endless facial hair, and a sea of PBR tall boys. But there was also a wide age range and various other types of people in the stands.
Overall, it was a great time. A little long, perhaps (we actually left about halfway through and had been there for 2 hours), but really fun. I think it's wonderful that Seattle has a league like this which attracts such a large audience, and is a great event for those who may not be huge mainstream sports fans.
If you have a roller derby league in your area, I definitely recommend checking it out at least once in your life! You won't be disappointed.
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