Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Wait, what? I passed?

This may be a long one. I'll wait while you go get a drink and use the bathroom.

OK, ready?

Minimum skills assessment was Saturday. Before the test, we had an intermediate practice, where we worked on the things that were going to be on the test. I did pretty well on everything until we got to positional blocking (which we STDDs call "booty blocking," because that's what it is -- blocking someone with footwork and getting your booty on her).

I was paired with another intermediate skater, and I was having trouble even blocking her. So what chance did I have to block bout pool skaters, which is what I knew I was going to have to do on the actual test? I went to Brick, and although I didn't intend to (I never intend to), I started crying a bit while talking to her. I asked her if it would be rude of me to leave after practice, and not stay for the test.

Brick told me I could do what I wanted. (That sounds like she was cold about it, and she was not. She just kind of let me know that "rude" wasn't really an issue, and that I should do what I wanted to do.)

I went outside and cried a little more. And came back in and finished the drill, and cried some more. So, anyone who says there's no crying in roller derby has never met me. I don't do it on purpose. I just am so emotionally invested in this ... and it comes out as tears.

Anyway, St. Nick (who has really kind of been like a big sis to me ever since I started) helped me calm down. I decided to stay for the test, because if I didn't, I'd always wonder what would've happened. Also, I really love all the girls I was testing with, and I wanted to support them.

The test went well. I felt pretty good about the way I did all of the skills -- I even felt like I had probably done a passable crossover. Then we got to the booty blocking. I didn't do too well my first attempt. They sent me out a second time, and I did better. I was hopeful.

At the end, Bones pulled a few of us aside to re-do certain skills (stuff they knew we could do, but we hadn't quite nailed during the test). She asked me to re-do my one-footed jumps. I really got my hopes up at that point, because if that was all I had failed? I was golden. I re-did the jumps. No problem.

And then. They called several of us over to re-do booty blocking. Shit.

I went out to block Adrienne (Natural DisASSter). I tripped her. I may have fallen. I definitely did worse than my second attempt during the test. Dammit. That was it, I thought.

On Sunday, Brick emailed out the results. She sent a general note saying she was doing it, and that she couldn't do it all in one sitting, so we should not freak out if other people got their results and we didn't have ours yet. Fair enough.

The results started trickling in, and girls were posting on Facebook. I didn't have an email from Brick. An hour or so went by after the last girl had posted "I passed!" No email for me. Shit. Brick must be taking a dinner break after sending out the positives, and later I was going to get a "sorry, you didn't pass." I just knew it.

Dinner (nachos) and trying to concentrate on "The Amazing Race." I set my phone to make a sound when I got email, so I wouldn't be constantly looking at it.

About halfway through the show, the phone beeped. I picked it up. Email from Brick. OK, here we go, I thought. At least I knew I had passed the crossover, so there was that ...

I open the email. And the first thing I read is, "On behalf of the entire training committee, congratulations on passing your minimum skills."

I ... passed? Really? I had to read that sentence at least three or four more times. I passed!!!! By a pretty narrow margin, and I have a lot of work to do, but I passed!!!

So ... I'm in the bout pool now! Holy crap!!!

On Monday morning, when I woke up, I had a moment where I thought, "Did that really happen?" And it did! (I often dream about derby and dreaming that I passed min skills has happened before. Of course I wake up and know it was just a dream. I'm not crazy. Well, not that crazy.)

Last night was my first practice as a bout pool member. I'm pretty sure I'm the slowest in the bout pool. But I didn't make an ass of myself, so yay.

Tomorrow night is my first official scrimmage. Yikes! And, yay!!

Hey, to everyone who encouraged me and listened to me whine and cheered me on: thanks.


  1. Congratulations, Miranda! I'm so thrilled to read this. I know you've been working so hard for awhile now, and I can't imagine how thrilled you are!

    Also, I LOVE that photo of you. :) (I normally read this through LiveJournal feeds so I haven't seen it before.)


  2. CONGRATS! Scrimmaging is so fun, but it's also when you start getting those lovely derby injuries :) I'm about to go out and buy some shin guards!

  3. CONGRATS! That is freakin awesome! YAHHHOOOOOO!!!!

  4. Congratulation, Miranda! I have my assessment on April 13. Wish me luck.

    What's that tattoo going to be? You'll survive. It's not too painful if you get it on a fleshy part...

    Reckless Housewife #867-5309 (a fellow 40 year old derby girl)

  5. Congrats! Based on your previous post though, don't you need to be picking out a tattoo? ;-)

  6. I've been lurking for a while and I'm about a week late (and heading to my last pre-bout practice before a doubleheader this weekend!) but as someone who also had to take her assessment multiple times, and is still one of the slowest skaters... super congrats!! I'm really proud of you for sticking through. Scrimmaging is so fun, but so painful. :D

  7. Thanks, everyone!! Dayglow ... yeah, I am one of the slowest skaters in the bout pool, but I can consistently do 25 in 5. I hope that's good enough ... I'm kind of paranoid they are going to say, "Wait, you're too slow" and un-pass me, y'know? :-)

  8. Omigoodness! I haven't been keeping up with your blog lately. Sorry. BUT CONGRATS! I think I kind of knew this since I see your posts on the roller girl group, but I'm super glad to know you passed.

    Also, I cry a lot too, so you're not alone.

    Yay! Now I gotta pass! ;)
    -Rita Maneata