Am I getting my message across?

I’m not even sure what my message is, and I have had over 80 blogs to present it.

Maybe there isn’t any.

I started writing these little essays in June 2010, before going to Rollercon.  At the last Rollercon I had attended (2008, what a great shirt they had!), I was surprised at really how few of the women (and men) knew anything about the history of the sport and assumed it was just a few years old.  Well, that is true for the modern Roller Derby, but not for the game itself with its 75-year history.

And I really think that putting out the stories as I remember them, and throwing in other aspects of my life, has stirred up some pride in a number of the players.  In some cases, I have been misinterpreted:  when I wrote so glowingly about the early days and the time that I promoted the sport, some felt I was saying that was the only game I cared about; not true, I have criticized some of the aspects of modern Roller Derby, but if you read through the blogs, you will see that mainly I describe what I see and how I feel.

Image created from works by gerard79 and Artem Chernyshevych from

I like the fact that many of the small towns and small leagues suddenly realize they are part of the world’s fastest growing woman’s sport, and now for men also.  They are part of the tens of thousands participating in 27 countries throughout the globe in over 773 leagues, and they are bringing that to the media for more attention.  There are now more TV commercials, inclusion in series, features in magazines than ever before, and some major worldwide events are occurring this year which only reflect the power of the game.

I think most out there realize that the original game was created on  August 13, 1935, that Leo Seltzer invented it, that there should be no number 1 on any uniform (if you don’t know why, ask someone you know), and it always had men and women competing.

And on  April 5th, which would have been Leo’s 108th birthday, a mention on the WFTDA Facebook page (over 31,500 like that page!),  of  Leo’s birthday brought forth over 350 ‘likes’.

You are all part of the birthright, the history and the growth.  Be proud of the game from the first appearance to now and to the future.  And by the way, I am thinking of taking all I have presented, adding to it and making a book, thanks to the 43,000 of you that have read my blogs.

Do you have any idea what it means to me to be the person who can represent all 75 years of the sport and all aspects and get such wonderful feedback from everyone (well, almost everyone) I come in contact with?

Help expand the path ahead.

6 comments on “Am I getting my message across?

  1. Jerry I will buy that book! And thank you for mentioning that quite a few folks don’t/didn’t know the history of derby. I think it is so important that anyone involved knows the full history of the sport. It belongs to all of us, this wonderful American Sport, thanks to your father and thanks to you for keeping it alive and giving us all this wealth of knowledge! It’s an honor to many of us that you are so approachable and free with the history you have lived. I hope you see 75 more years at least 🙂

  2. Jerry,

    I can summarize the message in your writing for you: You are proud of your father and his invention, you are proud of your history with Roller Derby, you are proud of the women and men who are now redefining the sport, you are proud of all your efforts as a promoter, and you have had one hell of a ride through this crazy life.

    And our message to you: we are so proud to have you in our corner!

    Everything else is white noise

    • Magnolia, I am marrying Val at Rollercon, how about you too…..I think I am entitled to a lot of smart Roller derby wives. thank you so much.

      • After this week I’ve had, this post really brightened my day. Alas, I will not be at Rollercon this year. Perhaps we can make other arrangements another time.


        Ms. Magnolia ThunderThighs

  3. I am soooo happy and lucky to be playing this game. I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog and love love the history of this sport! thank YOU!!!!!!

  4. Jerry, I will buy the book (signed, I hope) but please make sure that Roller Derby is only a part of it…it should be a fleshed out autobiography of your life’s ups and downs, good stuff and bad stuff. I have been lucky enough to have known you for 50 years before I even knew what Roller Derby was, and as I have told you before, I have learned a lot from you (thank you again.) In fact I just realized that I used to watch Roller Derby as a kid on KTVU 2, but didn’t know of your involvement in it until I started working at BASS!!!

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