I went to the DC Rollergirls championship brawl on Saturday, after my fast and furious trip to Philly (concert review up soon).
I don't know much about roller derby, though Sacramento has a team, and though my interest was piqued, I've never made it to a bout. But in support of Judy and friends, I went to Virginia to check out the scene. We had track-side seats, which provided me with a good opportunity to learn exactly what was going on. Basically, a pack of women skate around the track while each team's scorer (called a jammer) attempts to make it through the pack first, then score points by knocking over women on the opposing team. I could explain it better, but it loses something in translation. What's more fun about derby is the artistry, as it were.
Since these are the DC Rollergirls, their team and derby names center on Capitol themes (DC DemonCats, Cherry Blossom Bombshells, Scare Force One and Secretaries of Hate). There was an extensive article on the league in the Washington Post a few weeks ago. Each team wears themed uniforms as well, and the Cherry Blossom Bombshells' are the cutest, a blend of femininity and feistiness that is what I imagine a team made of all the female ass-kicking characters from Mortal Kombat, Streetfighter and Tekken would look like. The best part of this particular derby crew is the names. Some of my favorites being Mason-Vixen, Guantanamo Babe, Condolezza Slice and Kimono Dragon.
I've experienced a surprising level of interest from unexpected places. It seems everyone wants to relive their roller-skating days and combine it with a way to blow off steam and get in shape.