Has it really been that long? Is vacation almost over? I know there are some districts out there that get three weeks for winter break, but we go back on Monday. I haven’t even touched any of the piles I left behind in the classroom. In fact, since I took the day off that last Friday before break, I never did my annual Christmas clothes-gathering.

Since I ride my bike to school every day, and because I go so early when it’s usually cold, I always wear several layers of sweaters and thermals and whatnot. Also, if it’s raining, I have rain gear layers and boots and etc. So over the course of the year, I end up amassing quite a collection of sweaters and spare shirts and jackets and school pants. In fact, by Thanksgiving, if I don’t make a conscious effort, I end up with nothing to wear out on weekends, but jeans and t-shirts. So usually every year on the last-day-before-Christmas-break, I tow my bike trailer and load up all my laundry, along with whatever else I think I might need over the break, as well as that year’s candles and caramels and coffee mugs and snickerdoodles. The trailer is always full. But this year, I wasn’t there to do that, and I haven’t been back to the classroom yet — obviously we didn’t get out much this Christmas 😉 — so there are still piles of student work  (Giver projects turned in on that last day), AND piles of laundry waiting for me back at school.

So I haven’t really been thinking about school shtuff much lately. Other things have been going on.

Fer instance…

I was at a Christmas gathering — casual attire of course – – at a company my wife does some work with. As the woman who owns the company was talking to my wife, she kept staring back and forth at my wife, and then at me. She had a puzzled and surprised look on her face.

“This is your husband?”

“Ummm yes. I think so. Maybe.”

Her head swivels back to me.

“I’ve been following you for years…But not in a creepy way.”

“Uh huh.”

“No really. We have to talk, you and I. We have to talk.”

“Ok. I think.”

Here’s the deal. The woman with the orange hair and the design firm is also associated with the local chapter of…

Women’s Roller Derby.

Central Coast Roller Derby.

Rachel Welch

Old school: with jammers and blockers and theatrics and sporty nicknames like Lacey Thunderpants. They play a new variation on a flat track, rather than one with banked turns, but other than that, it’s like the old days of Rachel Welch in  Kansas City Bomber. Women’s roller derby is undergoing a revival.

“We want you to ref.”

It seems that the orange haired woman has seen me on my daily skate, and the league has a shortage of referee material, especially ones who can skate well. I also hear that the girls (they’re actually women, ranging from 18-45) like to argue and get in referee’s faces (all part of the show, and so forth), so they need refs who can give as good as they get. Hmmmm. Sounds like teaching junior high.

“Can I play?” I have wanted to play roller derby since I was 10. They used to alternate men’s and women’s bouts back in the day. God, I wanted to be a jammer.


“I see how it is. Do I have to wear quads?” The women are required to wear the old-school 2×2’s instead of inlines.

“No. Refs can use blades.”

So I’m studying up on my Women’s Flat Track Roller Derby  Official Rules, and I’ll connect with their head ref, and we’ll see how it goes. Their new season starts in a month. I’ll have to watch a few for a while. There are a lot more rules than I thought, and the game moves very fast. It’s not just looking cool and blowing the whistle and staging arguments.

Also, everyone has to have a roller derby nickname, even the refs. It’s supposed to be some sort of pun or play on words, and represent your roller derby persona. What should mine be?

(I’ll finish the playing God and bomb shelter story tomorrow.)