Holy smokes! I’m actually doing this


hought as the new Derby Season approaches that instead of my musings it would be a good time to feature a few words here and there with the real stars of the game – the players.

The same questions were asked of the players and their responses have been generous to say the least. These two have responded first so here they are. Coincidentally they were both attendees at the Toronto Roller Derby / Blood and Thunder Bootcamp at The Hangar at Downsview Park in Toronto in December last year as well as having played on the same visitors team once upon a time.

So starting with Smother Nature


mother Nature is the freshest injection of talent into the Riot Squad of Rideau Valley after ably representing her league and wearing the C along with number 10 75 at the GTAR Fresh and Furious doubleheader in May of 2010, rolling with the Rollergettes against her future Riot Squad in Ottawa and part of a squad of RVRG and Derby Debutantes that drove down to Vermont to bout against Green Mountain Derby Dames.

Is there always a moment for a player in Derby when she realizes “holy smokes! I’m actually doing this!” or “I’m in Derby!”?


I had

plenty of moments.

  • a particular practice getting an awesome whip and eating the wall.
  • nov 14, 2009, passing my mins.
  • camp with coach pauly
  • feb 09 bout with another league against my own
  • sibling rivalry bout, where i bouted against the first team i ever saw, ♥ slaughter daughters
  • travelling to vermont to bout
  • when i was voted on my team Riot Squad
  • being at blood & thunder with i think 28 of my leaguemates for four days
  • meeting Smarty Pants *gush* and being coached and educated
  • each and everytime i have a major connection with a leaguemate
  • and it will be epic should i find myself on the track at beast.
  • These moments constantly have me thinking’ is this even real? is this happening? this is the friggin’ most amazing thing!



    Smother Nature (centre in pink between two black) doing what she does best


    What do you love about Derby? or what do you love the most about Derby?


    i love about derby is that it saved me. i was an isolated hermit. a couch potato. i had three kids and my husband is my bff for like 23 years. i saw a bout and loved every second. i thought i was demented when i thought i could do it. an outstanding league accepted me from the fab fresh meat crew, to the veterans. these women are so encouraging and supportive. patient and tolerant. it’s a perfect venue for aggression in a socially accepted way. i found myself in a group of amazing hardcore women, and it had me thinking…. maybe i’m amazing in my own way:)

    The whole thing is amazing from practices to committees to everything that goes into bouts, and the volunteers and fan support.
    see?…. it’s so rad, that’s why i often question if any of this is really happening.

    Post game victory at Fresh and the Furious with Smother Nature wearing the C


    Bruise Berry Pie is a big hitter and player with an enigmatic skating style and one of the newest inductees into Smoke City Betties after being part of GTA Derby Debutantes and representing that team in bouts including opponents such as Slaughter Daughters, Thames Fatales and E-Ville Dead along with a victory against Death Track Dolls at Beast of the East 2010. As well she was on Vagine Regime at Clam Slam and later skated with Smother Nature down in Vermont.

    Is there always a moment for a player in Derby when she realizes “holy smokes! I’m actually doing this!” or “I’m in Derby!”?


    a half hour before every bout I have that “uh oh” moment. The “why would any sane person do this to themselves?” moment that I’m sure every derby skater can relate to. But somehow every time, I give myself a pep talk, remind myself that this is what I do for fun, and any and all nervousness slips away.

    What should people know about Derby?


    off, it’s not the 70’s anymore and I don’t punch people, or clothesline, or hit people with folding chairs. Those are the first questions I always get asked. Unfortunately, I also don’t skate on a banked track (although I’d give my right arm for one, I could still play derby with one arm, right?) Mostly though I want everyone to know that derby skaters work their butts off, training anywhere from 2-5 times a week, but we’re also having as much fun playing as the fans do watching.


    Bruise @ E-Ville Dead
    Bruise vs. E-Ville Dead

    What do you love about Derby? or what do you love the most about Derby?

    I love

    skating and I love hitting, but mostly I love how it all just keeps getting better. Being able to do things I couldn’t do yesterday. Seeing girls who could barely skate one day, kicking ass the next. It’s the evolution, how much better all the bouts have gotten, from the old Dust Devils to Rocky v. Oly. Watching this sport grow and progress, it’s something to strive for, and I do everyday.


    If you would like to send your answers along with any photos of you in Derby you are definitely more than welcome. Send email to Say hello

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