October 16, 2011
Draft day. A few days prior I'd gotten an email from Servin' Justice (Captain of the Crazy Eights home team) asking about my knee. I told her it was feeling better and that was that. Now on the big day, I was a nervous wreck. I'd made soooo many friends within the league already, and not only did it give me something to do, but it was getting me in shape really fast. But more importantly than my initial two goals...I was having fun. The last thing I wanted was for this to end!

After the Draft Day scrimmage with everyone in attendance (sans busted-up me), all of the Fresh Brews got in a line in the center of the Bruisery (our super-secret practice space). My nerves weren't getting much better when I suddenly heard...


After some cheering from the league members in attendance, I stepped forward. I was the first one called, and had no idea what would happen next. Surely they wouldn't call me up in front of everyone and say I wasn't drafted.......right?

"You're a...CRAZY EIGHT!!"

I was instantly swarmed by my new teammates; between cheers and the realization that I was, in fact drafted, my captain told me her email was because she really wanted me on the Eights, and to make sure I'd be ready to go in no time before she made her choice official. I received a goody bag of C8 (shorthand for Crazy Eights) swag, black and yellow-striped socks, pain relievers, nail polish, and other awesome nicknacks. After Johnnie Blockran became the second and final draftee to the Eights this season, we took a quick picture and began celebrating. All the while, I couldn't stop smiling.

*end memory sequence*

A long year has passed, and in one short month the new Fresh Brews will be drafted and my rookie season will officially reach its end. I've had so many awesome experiences so far, and things are only going to get better. I would recommend this to all of the lovely ladies out there that are looking for something to do, belong to, and find a beautiful family of women from all walks of life to be a part of. The best way I can put it is this - it's unique, it's fun, and it's home.

The 2011-2012 Crazy Eights
L to R Row 1 (back row): Pound Anya, Baberaham Lincoln, The Other White Meat, Fidela Castrate, Bexit Wound
Row 2: Betty Boobs, Claptrap, EmFatale, Wipeout Scout, Sharkira, SlameLa
Row 3: Johnnie Blockran, Latina Heat, Servin' Justice, 10Acoius-D
Row 4 (front row): Lady Pulverizer, Scooter, Sin n' Innocence
Not in picture: Magic Hate Ball, Zo-Tay
June 22, 2011
I was in the parking lot of a Taco Bell during my lunch break when I got the email. HOLY MAGIKARP I MADE THE FRESH BREWS!!!! I called/texted almost everyone on my phone the good news, and proceeded to squeal in delight the rest of the day. New friends, here I come!

July-September 2011
Ahh, my first practice. All of the Fresh Brews were filled with both excitement and fear, and we were loving it! Most of us had our derby names/numbers decided on, and I was no exception. My derby name, Claptrap, is both an epic little wheeled robot from the game Borderlands (so I could show my love of gaming), and a bit of a double entendre (for those that had no clue about the gaming reference). My number, V23, comes from the atomic symbol and number for Vanadium, the metal I worked with for my masters thesis.

Anyways, the practices were tough. We busted our butts, sweat up a storm or five, and gave 9001% (Vageta reference goes here) to get better. In September, I took a few falls that were really hurting my left knee. I thought it as nothing more than normal derby wear and tear, but one day I landed directly on that knee and I hurt. A lot. After a visit to the league's orthopedic doctor, I found out that I tore the PCL in my left knee. Worse...I was sidelined for 4-6 weeks! With draft day a month away, would any team want to draft someone that's injured?

To be continued!

It fascinates me that my first year of playing roller derby has come to an end. It didn't hit me until I got my league's monthly newsletter that talked about the new Fresh Brews (our name for the Rookies who haven't been drafted onto a home team) beginning their training...and when it did hit, it felt like a freight train! I spent the next hour or so reminiscing on the past year - all of the hard work, friendships, and torn ligaments - and how this amazing chapter in my life was because I had two tiny little problems...

*insert memory fade here*

June 1, 2011
I had moved from Illinois to Wisconsin a little over a year ago, and I was facing two issues. One, with my friends being in an hour drive away, I was getting bored. Two, I wanted to make more female friends. To clarify, I've always been the tomboy, the "one of the guys" girl. I had already made a few male friends...but I wanted to branch out for once.

I went to the local grocery store that day and saw a girl wearing a Brewcity Bruisers shirt. Reading the "Milwaukee's Rollergirls" subtext I got home and did some research online. Sure enough, the first tryout meeting for ladies interested in joining was only a few weeks away! I was a figure skater for eight years, and an inline freestyle skater during the summers, so I figured why not? Besides, I wouldn't be bored anymore, and considering I'd be surrounded by other women I was bound to make new friends! I bought some gear and waited for the tryouts!

June 19, 2011
Tryout day had come. After a few weeks of getting back in shape (yay sedimentary gaming!) and learning how to skate on roller skates (little did I know that neither ice nor inline skating directly translated to roller skating >_<), I was ready to give it my best. There were around 50 other ladies trying out for few spots, so saying I was nervous would be an understatement. I gave it my all, and all that was left to do was wait. I hate waiting........

To be continued!