Team(s): Black Widows, Sea Sirens
Number: 61 - My birth year!
How did you choose your derby name? I wanted to use something that incorporated my name and honor the wonderful cats I work with, so Karmavore came pretty naturally.
When did you start playing roller derby? I skated with Lava City Roller Dolls briefly starting in 2007. After living in Tampa for a year or so, I decided to give TRD a try in April 2015.
Tell us about your rookie year, how you found roller derby and how you learned how to play? My first go round was because of a co worker that skated. I've always loved roller skating and watching derby, so why not? Having recently moved to Tampa, I was looking for a way to get exercise and meet people outside of my work. I figured started derby again would be a great way to do both! My previous league did not have fresh meat program really in place, we just got thrown in with everyone. I learned to skate, but also was missing many basic skills. The TRD Quad Killer program really helped me hone in on those missing skills.
Do you have a spirit animal? The Bobcat. Small and doesn't look like much of a threat, but in reality are extremely fierce and strong predators that can take down prey six times their size. I'd like to think I'm more of a threat than I look. :-)
Worst derby injury? Knock on wood......I've been very fortunate. Either that or my "no pain, no brain" when adrenaline is flowing is going to catch up with me and I'm going to discover a bunch of old ones I never knew I had. Probably the worst was when I was skating in Oregon. Someone tripped me and I flew through the air and landed on my stomach. One of my knee pads slipped and my patella came right down on the plastic edge of the pad. That took me out of practice for a couple weeks.
What have been your favorite skate brands/products? I love my new Luigino skates, and my Hello Kitty duct tape!
What did you think about as you laced up your skates? Do I need to pee first? Are there any wrinkles in my socks? Let's do this!
Do you have a favorite motivational quote? I have two - "Before you can be great, you have to be good. Before you can be good, you have to be bad. Before you can be bad, you have to try." and "Whether you think you can or you can't, you're right."
Do you have a pre-derby/sports background? Growing up, I was probably the most non-athletic person in school. I was that kid who the teams fought over who had to take me. In 1996, I began endurance horse racing. this is horse races in increments of 25, 50, 75 and 100 miles. My horse and I made it to the national championships. It taught me to be strong, tough, observant (as it was my responsibility to take care of my horse and make sure she finished the race sound and healthy) and never to quit. Even though there were a couple races that I just wanted to get off the horse, sit down and cry. It helped give me the strength and resilience I have today.
What are some of your greatest on-the-track accomplishments? Winning two MVP Jammer awards, getting drafted to the Sea Sirens this year.
Off-the-track derby accomplishments? Getting to help bring Big Cat Rescue as a Partner in Charity with the league.
Who are your derby heroes? Anyone who laces up their skates, really. I do however need to give a shout out to my buddy Raemi Poitras, aka Screamin' Meanie, one of my very first friends in roller derby. Close to my age, she's a single mom, grandma, business owner, came back to skating after a car accident, then a broken leg. She is an amazing jammer for the Lava City Roller Dolls A team, and was named Oregon MVP all stars for the 2012 season!
What is your day job? I'm the Assistant Manager at Big Cat Rescue. I have trouble referring to it has a job, as that word seems to have a lot of negative connotations. It's not just my work, it's my passion! I'm one of those truly lucky people who get paid to do what I love.
Has it contributed to your roller derby experience? If so, how? Most definitely! Big Cat Rescue was chosen to be the league's Partner in Charity, so my two passions get to come together. Awesome!
Has roller derby affected the way you live your outside life? Yes. It's great exercise so I'm in much better shape. I'm pretty introverted, so it forces me to be social.
Tell us about your favorite derby moments: Bringing my team up from behind in the final jam of our Rookie Rumble, anytime I'm jamming and get through a wall of Tantrums.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about joining roller derby? Do it. Don't worry about your age, don't worry about your body type, and don't worry about your athletic ability. Just do it. Derby is for anyone willing to work for it. Oh, and no.....you don't need to retire at age 40, or 50 for that matter. Retirement? Pfffft! What's that?!