8 different topics in 542 words


Illustration by ilker from stock.xchng.com.

I read Derby Girls live post a few days ago and it further solidified the opinion that what the women have created must be honored and continued.  She talked about her life, her divorce, and how Derby women were (and) are her support group and her closest friends and how they take care of each other and of course, her.

I know of no aspect of male bonding that approaches what women have brought to Roller Derby.  Often you say, it is not a game, but a way of life that you hate, you love, but can’t do without.  She is worried that the emergence and growth of the men’s game will be considered the “real game” by others.  And she may have a point.  But as a lover of pure Roller Derby, I can’t imagine seeing the game played any better than what it has evolved to in recent matches I have seen.  Can they coexist, can men and women skate together?

Topic 2.  The people who attended our games in the 60’s and 70’s were a preponderance of middle class.  The average working guy, his wife and often the kids.  At the various Derby Girls games that I have attended it seems to me that this sport has become the perfect date night game of those who might go to jazz club,  rock concerts, etc.  Am I being snobbish?  It obviously is a game that men and women can enjoy together without the massive feeling of testosterone and beer.  There definitely are also families and workers, but this is the difference I feel from our crowds.

Will there be crowds in the future?  Not if the beating down of the earning power of everyone continues.  Henry Ford taught America a number of good things (I do not include his white supremacy or anti Semitism).  When he paid his workers the amazing sum of $5 a day in the early 1900’s, he created a new class of buyers for his cars.  If the rich keep getting rich, and the others get poorer, who will buy the products the rich are making?

From a strictly economic sense we mustn’t destroy our buyers (and Roller Derby and concert fans)  ability to afford a decent living with other benefits.  I grew up in the 40’s and 50’s when we knew our kids would do better than we did….ouch.

Topic 3.  Charlie, Kim, Gosselins, housewives, survivors, Snookie, etc.  I don’t give a shit.  I know it is cheap programming for cash-strapped networks, but I get the same results by sitting for an hour at Wal-Mart.  I end up just watching the News, history, and PBS and Geographic channels.  America is dumb enough, please stop.

Topic 4.  Please don’t say sir to me……I may look older but I am right there with you.   My name is Jerry, not geriatric.

Topic 5.  I think less of you if you send me games to play on Facebook.

Topic 6.  Don’t hate someone because of their religion or beliefs.   Just hate them because you don’t like them.

Topic 7.  The lead jammer should actually be the one who is in the lead at any time.

Topic 8.  I am looking forward to fun at Rollercon and my seminar with Val Capone.  bring thick notebook.

8 comments on “8 different topics in 542 words

  1. Love this: “My name is Jerry, not geriatric.”

    And this: “Don’t hate someone because of their religion or beliefs. Just hate them because you don’t like them.”

    You are a wise man, Jerry!

  2. Jerry, I can think of many things men have ormdo that have created bonding that matches what derby does for the ladies, with one crucial difference. For many of these ladies this really is the first positive bonding experience of this type they have had with other women. I can’t imagine going 25, 30, or 40 years of my life without the kind of bonding experience I have had in my life. Going that long without it and then finding something that they see as their thing, is part of why it’s so intense.

    There will still be crowds because the prices are not that extravagant. While the EXPANSION of derby has it’s limits, the existence seems to have a good enough foothold that even if 50 fold today, there are plenty of leagues around to do business.

    The dumbing down of America can’t be stopped. It’s been going there headfirst for years. We seek the titillating, the dramatic, the sudden gratification. The indulgence of the trivial over the valuable.

  3. on the topic of men’s derby… i oddly enough was thinking about this on my drive home. while i’m a supporter of men playing i realized i am not a supporter of a seperate men only derby entity. i feel that what was so freakin awesome about the original roller derby was that it was and still is the ONLY sport where men and women played in the same leagues, with the same rules and on the same teams. that is a true statement of equality. i am all for playing alongside men but the growth of a men’s only movement kinda takes away from the empowerment of women playing alongside and being just as awesome and entertaining as the male skaters.

    • I recently talked to a member of the Mass Maelstrom this past April about the issue, and he says that the “separation” is “necessary to prevent warm and cold flashes from happening in today’s game.” I had to “yes him to death”, but deep inside I still long for a revival of such an ancient, yet revolutionary concept of MEN AND WOMEN taking their turns for the team like my parents and grandparents used to watch. A third generation fan can still dream, right ???

  4. I dont know if men’s derby could surpass women’s derby in Canada, we can barely scrounge enough guys to fill a roster… If I had a nickle for everytime I heard “Roller derby is a girl’s sport” (Which I find to be patently absurd, ludicrous, asinine, ad naseum)

    PS I am with you 40000% on topic 3

  5. Pingback: 8 different topics in 542 words | Jerry Seltzer

  6. that’s how the lead jammer works in MADE and USARS. I have played in coed leagues since 2007 and it’s worked great! Both my wife and I skate banked track for Love City in Philly.

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