Booty Boot Camp.

After much hyperventilating and insane running around to complete a gazillion last minute things; it was finally time to leave for the boot camp. Rocket the WonderCivic was loaded full of fellow derby girls and crammed full of gear, suitcases, snacks and music and we were off. And even pretty much on time.

There were the usual pitstops in podunk towns for bathroom breaks; and one memorable stop at a small town bar (the only place open at 11:30pm which had a bathroom) where we were treated to an astounding -- and I'll let you interpret that as you will -- rendition of Johnny Cash's "Fulsom Prison Blues" which had us giggling well past the next town on the map. The miles added up and we talked (loudly) and laughed (madly) and sang (badly) the whole way to The 'Peg. We arrived in stellar fashion at about 1am and after first attempting to check in at the wrong hotel (there was Two along the same long stretch of road in the city, we stopped at the first one...) we finally laid our heads down.
Well, we could have, but we had to paint our names and numbers on our scrimmage shirts. Sleep could come later.

2am and the last shirt was hanging to dry, leaving us a precious 5 hours of shut-eye before it was up and off to the Military Rec Center where the bootcamp was to be held.
There are some girls I don't look forward to "running into" on the track. Girl in Blue is one of them. What she lacks in skill is more than made up for in sheer size. Man in Black was one of the conditioning coaches.
This is a pic of me with my roomies from our league. L-R: Curly Mae, Crash Override, Knotty Knox and ME!
I am usually pretty vain about pics that I post... but frankly had to get over it, cause there's not a single one from the weekend of me that passes muster. Here I am five hours into the day, not a shred of makeup on and had passed the point of Sweaty and Vile a good two hours earlier. Hope you all still love me. :)

I've done some tough workouts in my life; I've weathered hour after hour of Krav training, pushed through an afternoon of testing for my ranking... and I have to say that this bootcamp kicked my butt something fierce. Kicked us all. We started out with an hour of plyometric drills. Frog jumps, Power skips, one-leg squats, jump squats, star jumps... basically 60 minutes of every variation of pain that could be visited upon one's lower body. Enough that we all had the dreaded "Rubber Leg Syndrome" for the rest of the day. Which is usually bad enough... but we still had six hours of skating and derby drills to get through. And, as you can imagine... skating on rubber legs? Not real fun. At all. But, we all learned a ton. Coach P. is a real, live derby legend, he literally "wrote the rules". One of the founding members of WFTDA and a truly great guy to boot. He loves and lives this sport and it showed. He had a great way of explaining skills, breaking stuff down and just generally getting across to us what we needed to do, and how to it better. And, he made us wish we were better. Cause we are frankly rank beginners (would it sound bad if I said, "Especially the other League"???) and a lot of his expertise was wasted on us at the moment.

Eventually, we hit our last hour of training and lugged our gear back to the hotel where hot showers and pizza got us through to the after party.

I'm learning more about derby culture and the After Party is one of those things that is legendary to the point of being tradition in Derby. Some things you may expect to see at a derby after party? Live music, strange contests, 50/50 tickets bought by the "Butt, Boob or Leg" length, pillow fights, giant pyramids of empty beer cans... the list goes on.

This particular after party was held at a little hole in the wall pub, not lacking charm entirely, but a little bit rough around the edges. Maybe I was just tired. OK, I was super tired and super hurtin. In fact, this is me... almost falling asleep despite the din of noise and crush of people.
Problem was, I was on the pillowfight roster. I needed help. One RockStar energy drink to the rescue, and things were looking better.
Which was really good, cause the pillow fights were nasty. Nasty, nasty fun.

I was second on the board, slotted to fight a 'Peg girl. I was warned she would be feisty, but didn't know what to expect. We're just standing there trading blows, right? That's what the first round fighters did. I've never seen a pillow fight before. And here is where I will let the pictures do the talking. (I'm in the grey tank.)

Yeah, you saw that right. That sh&# got taken DOWN to the FLOOR, people! I reversed the takedown and we ended up totally up in each other's binness which apparently makes the crowd a little loud and rowdy. Unfortunately I lost the fight when I lost grip on my pillow during the scuffle. (Another rule I wasn't aware of, else I would've been holding tight to that thing, I tell you. I didn't flash my back fat to the whole bar of derby fans to walk away without winning. True that.) I will humbly say that I dominated that ground game, but I will give Little Miss 'Peg props cause she was mad feisty and wily. But, I will not be so naive next bout. Game on!

Next up were The Magnificent Sevens. Don't ask me why they were called that, there were only five of them. I don't really know how to classify their style... maybe Rockabilly Bluegrass might come close. They were surprisingly good and I really enjoyed their first set.

But the tiredness was hitting us all pretty hard. It was 2am and we pretty much all just looked around the table at the weary eyes and said, We're outta here.

I don't know what all other derby goodness we missed, but I'm sure I'll see it again somewhere else, some other time.
(Coach Pauly with a few of my derby girls; Gates of Hell, Bunny Slugga and D Ablo.)

The next morning we overslept and rushed to make check-out before heading to a much looked-forward to destination. An old school roller rink, complete with disco ball and DJ. We skated. We fell. OK, well, I fell. I was tired, OK? It was a humbling experience all around. We danced to "YMCA", played Pick A Wall (I was one measly round from winning the coveted concession token) and generally tried to work out some of the stiffest, sorest, tiredest muscles before we crammed all back in the vehicle for another 5+ hours to get back home.

And with that, my first Roller Derby Boot Camp came to an end and I am now left trying to recover some crazy sore legs and backside; nothing left but to look forward to the next one.

The girls in our league found out that our names won't clear the roster for a few months, so in the meantime, we've just decided to go ahead and NameUp. Hopefully everything works out and I won't have to change anything.

So, for now? Kitty Killswitch is In Da House!


I Am Really Just a Big Kid Pretending To Be An Adult.

That annoying squealing noise you've been hearing all day? That one that makes you want to scrape out your eardrum with a toothpick?


Yep. I've been revving at 5000 today. Way too excited for my first derby road trip EVAH.

The Fun Train(tm) starts tomorrow at 5:30pm. I'll bring back lots of pics and hopefully some good derby bruises to show off how HARD CORE I am. *snicker*

"You're not hardcore (No, you're not hardcore)
Unless you live hardcore (Unless you live hardcore)
But the legend of the rent was way hardcore!"

Just a little Jack Black for you, there.

Anyone want to pour me a drink? I think I may need one.

Settle. Down. *sigh*

See you all on the flip side.


Spank You Very Much.

If I was that kind of blogger, this could be a post about last night... *wink* But instead, it's going to be a post about something else not nearly so interesting. But perhaps easier to stomach, cause really, who actually ever really wants to get all up in the KnowingOfTheFlutterLoveLife? Yeah, didn't think so...

So, today I was working at the hotel, doing my little Front Desk Routine. Normally, I'm working by myself but today I was brought on as Le Assistant a la Manager. (that's Lackey to do General Crap Work for the non-French among us. Wait, that's likely all of us. Sweet. I hate translating.) And as such, was given various and sundry odd jobs around the office. Some phoning, some filing, some bookwork, some more filing. OK, so, really... gobs and gobs of filing. As a former library employee (and I will KILL you if you call me a Librarian... just saying) I rock the alphabetical filing. I also am pretty dang good at numerical filing. This is a talent, people... let no one tell you otherwise.

Is it clear, yet that I'm not sure where I'm going with this? Give it a minute.

Let's just say that it was the filing that almost got my manager sucker-punched.

Cause here we are, two people working in this insanely small and stuffy office. Fan is running and there's barely room to move in the one corner where his desk is and the filing cabinets are mere inches behind his chair. And I'm scooching and trying to generally be inobtrusive while I try to get at this one particular file. Very frustrating. But, I think if I just move over an inch or two, I can get the drawer open far enough and maybe get at it without bumping into his chair. I scooch a bit more and...


I jump. The voice in my head screams "Holy Sheepdip!!" and I question for a split second whether or not my manager just spanked my rear and what the appropriate response is to such a freaky occurence.

A moment later my brain reengages and I have the presence of mind to glance behind me and see that I've just managed to back my booty right up into the waiting blades of the room fan. It's sittting there behind me, spinning away happily without. a. front. safety. grill.

Cause that's the kind of classy place I work in, people. Some places charge good money for that kind of excitement. Here? It's all free, baby.

Which sorta makes it a bit like last night. Only without the filing.


"Who's Your Ack-Tore?" and Answers To Other Questions You Never Thought To Ask.

OK, I am left with no choice but to bust out the Totally and Utterly Random Post up in here. Hang on for the ride.

I did the math for the weekend coming up. 12 girls + 5 hours on the road + 8 hours of derby drills and spills + 2 hours of scrimmage + "X" hours of cabaret/pillowfights/general mayhem + 2 hours of fun skating at an old school roller rink the next day + 5 hours back home = Class 1 Road Trip. :) Can't wait! I'll take some pics of the carnage, I'm sure.

Things are crazy icy around Fluttercity today. I witnessed so many close calls on the road today and can't believe that people aren't more careful (So says the girl who ran through a red light at 10pm on Friday night...oops.) The funniest thing is seeing the really little kids trying to walk on it. Cause they all have that invincible feeling that you get when your hand is safely holding onto a parent and they just let their legs FLY. Crazy cute.

I had a super great weekend... went for what was supposed to be a birthday supper for a derby girlfriend and we ended up getting hooked up with free passes to a concert by This little Canadian group, which was super fun and all kinds of loud. The next night found me getting my karaoke on at another birthday party, which is always good therapy for the inner rockstar. I love birthdays!

You can all mark your calendars today as the Day That Flutterby Starts Her Rise to Hollywood Stardom. Or something like that. Fluttercity actually has a burgeoning Film and TV industry and today I was asked to send pics to a casting agent for a TV show. It's just one episode and technically is an "extra" bit part, I believe... but I still think it's cool, if only to experience a day or two on set and make some mad money. Mostly, it's just a chance to meet some of the "playas" and maybe get some connections for some other work down the road.

The Kid has lost two more teeth, one of which he pulled out himself. Which seriously about made me fall over in shock, cause just a month or two ago I had to be all TrickyToothPullingMom with him and fake him out just to get at the two teeth that had been languishin in Wiggly World for weeks beforehand. My boy is growing up. And, curiously, he has subsequently decided that he should eat salad now. Salad. It doesn't get more random than that, people.


Rad To The Power Of Sick.

Long boring hours at the front desk beg for some relief from the monotony and today I found myself alternately laughing until my spleen hurt and being captivated by some of the most poetic lyrics I've heard in a long time. His name is Matt Nathanson and he's got the wildest schtick; some crazy funny bits and a great satirical humor added to this mad connection with his audience.

I will warn you that his vocabulary during his bits is pretty Colorful, so choose carefully where you watch this.

Conversely, his song lyrics are incredibly insightful and beautiful; poignant turns of phrase and an amazing esthetic that will leave you just a little stunned in the wake of it all.

If you lived and loved through the Jon Bon Jovi era of rock n roll, you can't help but enjoy this. Totally cracked me up.

Just a couple examples of some great songwriting and performance. Enjoy.


Spring? Is That You?

I'm not sure what the weatherman would say about this; he may, indeed, have other stories to tell us of one more snowfall or a dip back into the deepfreeze temps.

I really don't care.

Cause as far as I'm concerned? Spring is here. I know this cause the Official Flutterby Spring Dectector never fails.

I just bought fresh strawberries, cheap. Not the ones that are eleventy hundred dollars for a pack of six moldering berries. But a big clamshell, measured in pounds, for the price of a coffee. Well, a coffee at Starbucks, but still.

And they are beautiful and red and juicy and you Know I will be trying my best to make them all mine!

Spring, I love you. Never, ever leave me, again.


Now I've Really Gone and Done It.

There are rare moments of inspiration in which I hit hard upon something big, something impressive and grand. And sometimes, on occasion, those moments hit back.

Like this morning.

I’ve been searching for some time to create an opportunity for the Princess to be involved in some sort of athletic endeavour. She really is not one for team sports and the pressure to perform that comes with it. The few times we’ve enrolled her in a league have not gone particularly well and we’ve long since dropped the topic. Still, I think it’s important for her to be active and enjoy the pursuit of something physical -- perhaps even be able to develop a passion and interest for something that will not only keep her fit and healthy but also be a source of confidence and accomplishment that she can enjoy and grow through for many years.

And here’s where things get Good and also Bad in one fell swoop, all starting with a quick morning glance through the weekend flyers while I munched my Kashi.

Step #1 -- Flutterby spots flyer for the annual “I Love Fluttercity 5K run”

Step#2 -- Flutterby thinks what a natural the Princess is at running, always placing in the top three in her age at Track events at school. What long legs she has! What easy grace! How she enjoyed those races and was proud of herself for placing well! YES!

Step #3 -- Flutterby notices the date of the race is just two weeks after Mother’s Day and thinks, “What better way to celebrate than to run with the Princess?“ whilst imagining heart-warming scenes of crossing the finish line together and donning our matching race T-shirts while we clink our Gatorades in celebration.

Step #4 -- Flutterby quickly references the FluttercitySportGuide and finds a children’s training camp which fits right in before the race.

Step #5 -- Flutterby pitches the idea to a bright-eyed Princess who jumps at the chance. Flutterby mentally scores grand and glorious Mommy Points and feels rather pleased with herself.

Step #6 -- Flutterby rests in the knowledge that she is a spectacular Mom who is in tune with her little Princess’ skills and talents and desires and…

Step #7 -- Flutterby gasps and sputters and basically chokes on her own tongue as she realizes she just signed herself up for a 5K race and she has never, ever ran a race in her life.


It appears that I’m going to take one for the team, here.

Now, I realize that 5K isn’t exactly the Eco-Challenge. I know that many people -- even many of YOU readers -- have run far longer distances. And run them regularly. For some of you 5K is just a warm-up I’m sure.

But, regrettably, I am not one of you. Nor have I ever been.

It’s not that I’m not fit. I’m just not really built for distance. In a field of horses, I am the cheetah. Throw me sprint intervals. Make me work till I puke and barely recover and then make me do it again and again. Everything about me is built for the short-term balls-to-the-wall, hellish burst of energy and the quick recovery. I have a very respectable VO2max. I have a killer instinct for pushing hard beyond what I think I can do -- for a short period of time.

What I don’t have is the ability to just… Jog. Step after plodding step. For minute after minute, lap after lap. It’s boring. It’s uncomfortable. My feet hurt and my breathing gets all uncoordinated. And for some reason I always hit that point where my killer cheetah instinct becomes a docile, sleepy puppy that just wants to find some shady tree to curl up under and sniff at warm grassy smells while it closes it’s eyes, just for a minute.

So, yeah… this is going to be a challenge. Honestly, it’s a challenge I’ve been talking about taking on for a bit over a year, now. Maybe it’s good that I’ve taken this leap with the Princess. We have plenty of time to prep and really, I think it will be fun to go out running with her the odd evening -- maybe this will become “our thing”, who knows?

Regardless, it will be a memorable Mother’s Day gift from my little girl. One that I hope will stay with us for many years, a memory to look back on with at least a smile, if not a high five. And with any luck, it may just be the thing the Princess needs to put some wings under her in one area that she is blessed with some natural talent.

And that will make it all worthwhile.


Things I Don't Understand But Am Fascinated By.

Really. If I hadn't seen it, no WAY would I believe it. 3.5 lbs of dog food? One flush?

It may be powered by toxic sludge or unicorn fur. I don't care. I want it. Even though the Kid is long past his creative flushing days. Even though I have no Real need for Quattro technology.

It entertains me.


Next Stop Derby-ville

Almost eight weeks ago I laced up my first pair of derby quad skates and boarded the derby train. They were shiny and new and I loved them.

They aren’t looking so new anymore. I’ve had to start taping my toes and cinch straps because they were getting gouged and burned by the sport court and other girls’ skates. They are lovingly scarred and a good bit worn already and I think I love them even more. I’ve logged close to 100 hours on them.

They may smell just a little bit funky. But I love my Pirate Skull hockey tape.

Last night marked the very last hour that they were ever worn by Derby Fresh Meat. Cause today I got the email I was waiting for. --my Fresh Meat days are done. On Thursday I receive my team placing and position.


All of us Fresh Meat worked our butts off for this, and, whether or not everyone made the cut, I’m so proud of every one of us. We are gonna be a force to be reckoned with, given a little bit of time and seasoning. We are a hot mess of Crazy Tough and I can’t wait to see how things gel once we start practicing as a team and testing out the track in some bouts. There’s a couple travel dates on the agenda this summer and our own Derby version of the Labour Day Classic that we’ll be hosting in the fall… I can hardly believe that people will be buying tickets and coming to watch us (...Me! *ACK!*) compete. Just thinking about skating out onto the track with the girls... music pounding and the announcer shouting our derby names as we burn that first lap around the track... goosebumps.

I’ve got my derby name submitted to the international roster, and when I finally get the OK, I’ll have to give my persona an official introduction here in the blogosphere. Stay tuned!

The other day I came across this gem of a video from ESPN, a bit of a feature on derby and what it’s all about. Enjoy.


I Don't Know How To Put This, But I'm Kind Of a Big Deal...

The past few days have been a whirlwind of activity. I attended my first sales meeting with my new employer -- a Fluttercity building contractor. Received a crazy amount of information in the form of three 3-inch binders; hundreds of home plans, standard specs, land inventory, contracts and agreements, etc.

And, I now have my own hard hat. It's white. It's hard. It sits atop my head in an odd, hard-hattish manner that I have yet to get used to. Which is to say that it makes my head look about four inches taller than it should normally look. Very flattering, I can tell you. You doubt?

I've also added some tech-ey things, namely a laptop and a calculator that does metric conversions for me. Cause I'm not good with math like that and our home plans are in imperial measurements and land inventory is in metric. Why? I may never know. But, it would seem prudent to know whether a certain-sized house is OK to place on a certain-sized lot. You know, so as not to break municipal laws and what not.

What can I say? I aim to please.

Yesterday, I toured the site of our new showhome and learned a bit of the lingo. Most of which I was actually familiar with, I guess. But it was still a neat experience and I learned a lot. It's currently being plumbed so there was lots of structural stuff to see and learn about. "Structural stuff" is obviously not an official term. But it's all I got at the moment and don't want to bore everyone with a review of footings and engineered beams and web trusses and steel support beams and floating concrete slabs. All of which I find fascinating but probably will make everyone else yawn and click to another site.

And this is all very cool to me. I've been able to sit in a showhome with my sales partner (really, "trainer") for the past two nights and on Saturday I go it on my own. Hopefully, if this nice weather hangs in here, I might actually even have some lookey-loos come by.

But, by far the coolest thing is that, today? Today I'm picking up a Builder's key. Which means I'll have access to over 60 homesites in Fluttercity. As in, I can drive along and see one of Our homes and grab my trusty little hard hat and saunter on in like I own the place.

Which makes me kind of a big deal. :D
Well, at least I'm four inches taller with my hard hat on.



It seems that lately the only thing constant in my life is change. I suppose it's just a phase, and soon things will settle into normalcy; the staid, steady plodding of life.

But, for the moment I feel like I'm riding some pretty crazy waves round this little life of mine.
And while the adrenaline rush is always fun, there are moments I feel pretty seasick.

In two days, I officially start a new job. Correction -- a second job. It is an actual career move, a job that will show well on my resume (sad, outdated, pathetic piece of paper that it is) and perhaps even help out my bank account in time. But, it's a straight commission job and as such, I'm going to be chained to the front desk job for a while longer, yet. I'm training night audit in a few weeks as it may be the only hours I have left to make some money in... and can I just tell you how much I LURVE the idea of staying up all night?

Granted, there are a few things that I will unquestionably stay up all night for and most of them can't be mentioned here. But, seriously? Sitting in a deathly quiet office under flourescent lighting doing books in the dead of night is not one of them. Not even close.

With any luck... I'll be lucky. And maybe my resume, bank account and my nocturnal sleep patterns will all come out the winner.

One can only hope.