November 15, 2012

Jammin' Like Never Before

I have set a new goal for myself: jam. Having played in two bouts far and jammed in neither of them, I am starting to see the appeal. It looks like so much fun, graceful, creative, dynamic! I see the appeal, but I don't feel it. Right now, every time I jam I want to have a nervous breakdown. I want to throw up in the trash can. My legs get shaky and I skate like a little foal taking her first steps (on roller skates). I fell in turn three on nothing. No one near me, no one hit me, I was even lead jammer, but I skate-locked MYSELF trying to do crossovers. Jamming is the bane of my derby existence right now.

Two times a week I gather my gear, put on my booty shorts, and try and talk myself into loving jamming. I sit in my car, screaming out rap music to make myself feel like a bad ass that can jam like nobody's business. I imagine that I am happy to do it and that I am a fleet footed roller derby machine. Sometimes, this gets me through the practice. I just don't know how to make the switch between pretending to love jamming and actually loving jamming. What if I never do? What if every time I take the track I feel this way?

What if I always have to see that look of disappointment in my teammates eyes when I pass on the jammer panty jam after jam? I understand that this is a team sport, and they can make all the arguments in the world to me about how "it will make me a better blocker" and "we all have to do it" but at this point, I don't care. I have asked myself why I feel this way about it. I wonder if I am just not an attention seeking person, I don't want all eyes on me. But I am not sure how true that can be if I write a blog for all to see. I must admit that I think it's because I am afraid to suck.

Suga Smaxxx - My beautiful derby sister,
jamming like a pro!
It's good to have support like this.
I mentioned in a previous blog that if I wasn't naturally good at something, I have just quit. My teammates (god bless them) won't let me quit jamming. That isn't an option. And the result is that I have to really bad at this for (what feels like) an interminable amount of time. Right now, it looks like forever. While I am really excited for the Salt and Pepper bout this weekend I am borderline filled with dread about it also. Sitting in my kitchen, writing this post, my stomach has turned uneasy just from thinking about it. I wonder what my friends and family will think when I never make it out of the pack? What if I don't even make my initial pass and the other jammer gets my point over and over for two solid minutes because she knows I am not on a scoring pass and she can just keep going. What if I take a major penalty and have to sit in the box totally helpless to what is happening, just watching??

I have said it before and I will say it again for anyone who missed it. Roller derby is hard. It is physically taxing, emotionally draining, it takes up my time, my money, and my energy. But it has also given me so much. Because of derby I am happier, more confident, and self-assured. Because of derby I have a community, a hobby, and stronger sense of identity. So I guess I can sacrifice my pride, jam like the wind, and give my teammates two minutes of madness in another position.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

November 9, 2012

Have Skates, Will Travel

"You guys here for derby?" he asked.

"That's us."

"C'mon in.  You guys are in here."

He rolled up a large industrial door and pointed to the back of the building.  All we saw was the beautiful track.  

The Wasatch County Roller Girls are located in a large industrial area of Salt Lake City.  Train tracks ran right behind it ironically enough, and the minor league baseball stadium is only a few blocks away.  This area housed huge blocks of shipping companies, packaging companies, and factories that supply parts to the far corners of the world, and the Wasatch County Roller Girls play right in the middle of it.  They lease out a large empty building with a concrete floor and some bathrooms to play this great sport, and to them it's home.

We drove there earlier that morning thinking it would be a nice, quiet, Sunday morning scrimmage.  We had played a bout the night before that was both incredibly exciting and physically demanding.  The after-party had gone much later than any of us were expecting, and we all found ourselves running off of little sleep and already dreading our 8 hour drive home later that day.  A quiet, fun scrimmage was what all of us were looking for.

Of course, in true derby fashion, you never really get what you expect.  We all thought the aspect of Sunday morning would keep most fans away, and we would be playing against a team with some NSO's and a handful of  fans to watch us. 

Boy, were we wrong.

Despite the early Sunday morning aspect, and that the building was located far from anyone's home, as we poked our heads out of our dressing room we were shocked to find ourselves a midst over a hundred fans and a man dressed up like Sasquatch (well, in all honesty he could have been a real Sasquatch, I mean who's to say he wasn't?)  They had all scraped themselves out of bed to join us in our love of derby, and to cheer their favorite team in the whole world to a victory. 

The bout was deafening.  We constantly heard the Sasquatch-man leading cheers for Wasatch county and found ourselves having to scream at each other in order to hear anything.  Fans brought cowbells, noisemakers, and used their voices, hands, and feet to show us what kind of fans we were dealing with.  Out of all the teams we've played, these fans showed the most dedication and pizazz.

It was neck and neck for almost the entire bout, but eventually one team had to win, and it wasn't us.  Although we lost, I wasn't disappointed about the way we played.  We killed it, and it was one of the funnest bouts I've ever had the pleasure to participate in.  The truth is, anyone who plays derby understands that the passion for this sport is so much more than anyone could anticipate.  It takes over our brains, our free time, our wallets, and our hearts.  We've been blessed to play in a great space, but if we didn't have it we would still play.  We would play in an alleyway, a parking lot, an airport hanger, an empty space that during the day is used to package dog food, or a cement slab in the middle of nowhere.  We would play rain or shine, sleet or snow, and we would smile while doing it.  We would also get up at the crack of dawn to watch derby and cheer on our sisters.  I've never seen anyone more dedicated to a sport than a  roller derby girl.  I've never seen anyone so passionate and willing to learn that a derby girl.  I've never seen anyone hustle to sell tickets and merch like a derby girl.  

Some people watch roller derby and think, "oh that's a neat sport." I watch it and think, "I want to have that confidence in myself."  It really is a lifestyle, and it's the best one I've ever had to pleasure to experience.

-The Original Skankster

November 1, 2012

Safety For Sarah - End Domestic Violence

A derby sister has been living a real life nightmare this October. We were all rocked by the news that a fellow skater was shot in the head by her fiancee. I personally have never spoken to her, never met her, but my heart bleeds for her. JC Savior is a talented skater that has played roller derby with both the FoCo Girls Gone Derby and the Choice City Rebels. I can't say I was there for her before this happened, but I can commit to doing everything possible for her now.

One thing I will do is skate in her benefit bout Nov. 3, 7 pm at the Qdoba Event Center. All proceeds will benefit JC Savior/Sarah Harris. She will need a lot of things to recover and the strength and love provided by this community will go a long way. She will need our support emotionally and financially. Domestic violence is a crime that cannot be tolerated and we must stand together on this. Derby folk, non-derby folk, men, women, parents, and children can be victims of these crimes and everyone's safety is effected.

I have a non-derby friend who went through a situation a few years ago and I can still remember the fear. I remember being fearful for her well-being, for mine, and for her family's. The abuse built over time, escalating in severity. It happened over the course of years and started small. Making comments about her intelligence, her decision making capabilities, and the way she dressed. She was torn down by this person over and over and the woman that I had come to know was being re-built in the image of a person who wanted her to feel small and empty.

When things did end it took a long time for her to rediscover herself. She needed time to find out what SHE wanted and what SHE liked. The choices SHE would make when left to her own devices. It was simple things like the kind of music she will listen to alone. The kind of food she will buy at the grocery store. The movies that she likes to watch. When you spend your time living for someone else, sacrificing to make them happy, trying desperately to be the peacemaker, it uses a lot of energy and there might not be a lot left for taking care of yourself. Abuse isn't just physical, its emotional. Its a darkness that creeps into your head and heart and paralyzes you into thinking that every day that the abuse doesn't happen is a gift, but it isn't. It shouldn't happen any day. Not today, not tomorrow, not a year down the road.

Thinking of you Sarah! Every place we go
FoCo Micro Bruisers - 10/27/12
There are resources available to victims and their families here in Fort Collins and on the Front Range. Alternatives to Violence and Crossroads Safehouse can provide assistance with escaping an abusive situation and tools to help identify domestic violence and the different forms that abuse can take.

Learn more about what you can do to help identify and offer support to victims of domestic violence in your community. If you or a friend is in need of help call: 1.800.799.SAFE for access to help and resources.

For information on how you can help Sarah, see the Derby Sister Support, SafetyforSarah, or send cards, gifts, and other things to:

Sarah Harris
c/o VaVoom Aesthetics
2216 Hoffman Dr
Loveland, CO 80538

October 25, 2012

FoCo Girls Gone Undead

Saturday night, October 21, 2012 will go down in history as being one of the BEST.NIGHTS.EVER. It was one of  those magical nights were you laugh easily and naturally with everyone you see. Where the waitstaff can do no wrong (I actually said "I zombie promise you" to a server at Coopersmith's. Why this was accepted, I have no idea). Where the right music is being played on the jukebox and you always know all the words.

What precipitated this auspicious evening you ask? One of my favorite annual events on the Front Range, Old Town Zombie Fest. It raises money and awareness for Turning Point, an organization that is "dedicated to improving the lives of youth and their families" through a variety of programs and services. Each year, people put on their finest zombie attire and splatter fake blood artistically over anything that will stand still in order to stumble, drag, and pull their way all over Old Town Fort Collins for drink specials and goodies. This year was extra special for me because FoCo Girls Gone Derby was invited to lead the zombie parade. Yes. You read that right. LEAD THE ZOMBIE PARADE!

(from left to right)
Mollytov Maguire, Inner Demon,
KermudJen, Battle E. Portman
FoCo's skaters and refs came downtown on skates ready to rock some Thriller. Suzy Muffincrusher choreographed something beautiful for us, slightly modified because not all the moves translate well to roller skates. I learned that I want to be behind Battle E. Portman for choreographed dance numbers forthwith because she is awesome at remembering the steps. I guess her she chose her name-sake and Black and Blue Ball's Black Swan homage really well because that girl can DANCE. So we lead the parade of zombies through Old Town to Thriller and then played among the restless undead for the remaining portion of the evening.

I started off the wearing the FoCo teal and black. Torn, dirty, and dripping with blood, I donned my gear and skates in the square. We were a legion of zombies on a mission. Suzy and Battle E. were our Generals and I like to believe we "turned" a few people to our side. After the parade, I changed out of my roller skates in to the candy pink dress that I have worn for 3 years now and, like me, its just getting better with age. With this dress I wear knee high grey boots that get a fresh dousing in fake blood before I stomp all over town in them. I believe that this ritual means my things look more "authentic" and it makes two, count 'em TWO, zombie costumes alone this year. What an epic win. I love dressing up. For any reason.

Undead Roller Girls. Thanks Resident Rockstar Photography!!

Mr. Maguire and I were a testament to zombie love that night; he was the zombie hunter, I was the zombie. Predator and prey. We looked pretty sick. The part that made the evening so special for me was the bridging of my separate lives. The Lory/Molly line was totally blurred. I hung out with derby girls AND non-derby people all night. And who knew that the 2 groups would be so rad together, it was like peanut butter and jelly. Like Kid and Play. Like Bettie Page and bangs. 

Boyfriend + Friends + Derby = Happiness.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

October 18, 2012

Bouting is the BEST

Bouting is seriously the most fun you can have on 8 wheels. There is nothing that I can say that will capture what its like out there. Playing with a team that supports you, friends and family in the crowd cheering your name, seeing the jammer stuck in the wall YOU helped make. All are things that I can't find words to describe  My first bout was totally worth a whole year of my life.

Admittedly, I don't remember much because it was pretty crazy out there. I remember hearing shouts of "Molltyov" and "GOOOOOO 42!" because Mr. Maguire was nice and loud. I have flashes of the moments after the jammers were released watching them come at me and my line. I was shoved, pulled, hit, bruised, battered, knocked around, and otherwise jostled around for 60 minutes of play and it was everything I ever hoped it could be.

There is one moment that will stick out in my mind probably forever. I recall it very clearly and in slow motion. I was headed into corner 2 with my pack. I was a little behind the rest and I saw L.A.'s Finest out of the corner of my eye. I sat a little lower ready for the hit I KNEW was coming my way. L.A. did not disappoint. She laid me OUT. I went down. First to my knee, the to my hip, then I rolled into some fans. I looked up at them from the floor, laying in a "dead bug" position and they said "Well, hello" with a smile on their face. I loved being that person for them. I darn near took out some spectators and they were excited to see me! I got up from the floor as quickly as I could and met up with the pack in turn 3. I have no idea if points were scored, who the jammers were, or really anything but this beautiful moment I had with L.A.'s Finest and 3 FoCo Fans.

I am in love with roller derby. I went to the after party and couldn't stop grinning like a fool. I literally fell head over heels for it in that moment. In that hit. The bruise I have from it will fade but not my admiration for this brutal, physical, smart game. I am glad to have the sort of people who made their own shirts with my name in glitter paint and wear them out in public for me. Additionally, I won "Best Dress" and I wore my sash all night at the after party. I considered wearing it to work but that might have been overkill.

And the icing on the cake? My team won. It was a close game all the way through, but the ladies in black pulled out a win.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

October 11, 2012

Bout:30 - Getting my Game Face On

My significant other should probably get a medal for all the things I make him do for derby. Not only does it take up roughly 2-4 nights a week in addition to my non-derby social commitments, but I watch it on the internet, talk about it constantly, and spend bunches of money on it. He has changed my wheels and bushings, helped me clean my bearings, adjusted toe stops, and been on the receiving end of more derby fashion shows than anyone should be subjected to. I am remembering flashes of "Do these booty shorts look better with the skull fishnets and the moustache socks or the striped socks? Or maybe the skull socks... that might be too much skull and crossbones though... hmmm." Seriously. That isn't an inner monologue. That is a quote. I think the best thing he's done for me is completely re-schedule our vacation plans to fit around the Black and Blue Ball. When I came home in a panic because I might not have been able to play and talked AT him for a solid 30 minutes, he just said "Well, I guess I will see what I need to do to get the dates changed." and then did it. Just so I could skate.

This is the "lucky" fella.
Mr. Maguire - Zombie Hunter for Hire

Needless to say, he's pretty excited for my OFFICIAL debut in this Saturday's bout, the Black and Blue Ball. I can't believe its finally here. After a year of practices, bruises, sore muscles, late nights, anxiety, friendship, camaraderie, and most of all personal growth, I am finally going to put on the pads of a seasoned warrior. I will strap 8 wheels to my feet and try to keep my effing point as the jammer flies at me. No longer am I a derby poser. When I say "I play roller derby" I get to really mean it. No longer is it "I'm going to play roller derby" or "I am not on a team yet" its "I'M DOIN' THIS THANG!" and then really doing it. Dream come true? Abso-freaking-lutely. Don't ask me on Saturday though. At least not before the deed is done.

My captain, KermudJen, and a few team-mates took me shopping for my very first "boutfit" (don't worry, Mr. Maguire has had multiple fashion shows for this auspicious event alone). I booty-blocked in the ARC Thriftstore to see if the dress I tried on could make the cut. This trip taught me that I look AWESOME in a 1980's shoulder-padded hammer pant-suit onesie. Oh, and it was formal wear. Yup. That happened last weekend and Double Destruction has the cell phone picture to prove it. This shopping extravaganza was a much needed follow up to a practice that left me asking "What the heck was I thinking?! Pfft. I QUIT roller derby!"

Yup, I am a warrior. Like Xena
on skates.
Obviously, I am not quitting, cuz this derby business is RAD! It was only a moment of temporary insanity. This week's mantra is "Derby is hard. I can do this. I WILL do this. I am a warrior." It's hard to imagine a cooler pack of humans to be in a foxhole with than the ones I've got. This is a team sport and I definitely have felt the love this week on and off the track. I want to give a huge thank you to my boyfriend, friends, family, fans, and team-mates who have pushed me this far. I wouldn't be here without all of you. My game face just wouldn't be as fierce without the help of my people. Community baby, that's what its all about.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

October 4, 2012

Moving My Show off the Track

A few weeks ago I was able to test my derby skills off the track by going to a metal show with my significant other. For those of you who have never been to one of these shows, a rule of thumb might be: the mosh pit is violent. This is a place that I will avoid at all costs. If its closer to the bathroom than I would like, I hold it. If it lurches toward the bar, I guess I wasn't that thirsty... Anyway, the metal fans were not unlike roller derby fans and could be considered a little "off" by some conventional standards; they dress differently, have their own cliques but really they're like us, passionate about what they love. They just love it SO HARD you would not believe it!

The first whistle blows.

So there we were, three bands deep, at Summit Music Hall in Denver. The head-liner comes out on stage and they're the boyfriend's FAVORITE BAND of all time so he is really stoked. I am feeling a little leery of this crowd though. Fights have been breaking out all night and they're coming with greater frequency as the evening progresses. We have been to metal shows together in the past and there wasn't an issue but he's also never wanted to brave the pit either. You know, we're both getting old (and lame) and there isn't a "code of conduct" so there is a significantly more real possibility of getting hurt. They don't wear pads and helmets and there are no refs to tell them what was an illegal move. That is what makes me nervous.

The  second whistle releases the Jammer.

We've posted up right in front of a column somewhere behind the pit and were enjoying the show when all of the sudden, the edges of the pit lurch toward us. I back against the column and the borders swell and re-absorb the culprits as the show rages on. About a minute later, it happens again. Then again, as though the human tide was rolling in.

The pack is on the chase.

All the while, security comes rushing past us to plant themselves in crowd, hopefully to calm the restless fans, but to no avail. This is getting more and more disorderly and with the fear rising so does the excitement. Suddenly, a bloody faced man came tearing out of the pit, with security guards hanging on both arms like he's the hulk or something. The blood was literally dripping off his face like sweat. This metal version of the Hulk spun to try and shake loose the security "ants" and the lurched for the door as the slowly started to take him down.

Major penalty!

What was Mollytov Maguire doing that she had such a great view of all of these shenanigans? I was alternating between hiding behind the boyfriend, hiding behind the pole, and wanting to see more. And CrazyMetalFanHulk was a mere 2 feet from me at one point! I know, I am a total accident chaser when things like this happen. But, in my defense, I was using my derby skills to juke, get low, protect myself, and weave through the pack (pretending I was a Jammer). Who knew those were real life skills one would need to use? And who knew that I should have brought my gear to the show? I would have felt a lot better with a mouth-guard and helmet on in that place!

Final Score - Mollytov 1, CrazyMetalFanHulk 0
Rematch Scheduled: Hopefully Never

Moral of this week's blog post? Always be prepared... TO PLAY SOME DERBY! Yeah!

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

PS - Suga Smaxxx told me last week that I haven't mentioned her enormous influence on me as a skater yet. Too true lady, and to this accusation I choose to reply with haiku. Without further adieu, Suga, this one's for you!

Mollytov + Suga 4Eva!

Skating with Suga,
A spectacle to behold.
Both sweet and spicy!

October 1, 2012

You are cordially invited to attend
FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s 7th annual Black & Blue Ball
7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13
Rollerland, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins

Bust out your most outrageous prom attire, or that tacky bridesmaid’s dress you otherwise never would wear again, and join FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s home teams Saturday, Oct. 13, for the league’s 7th annual Black & Blue Ball. Doors open at 7, bout begins at 7:30, at Rollerland. This match-up of FoCo skaters in blue formalwear vs. those in black evening gowns has become FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s signature event. Get in on the fun by dressing up for a chance to win prizes at the bout.

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased through the Rollerland Skate Center ticket booth, from any FoCo derby skater or online at

September 27, 2012

A Real Housewife of Ft. Collins

I am a desperate housewife. I wear my robe when I walk to the end of the driveway to pick up the paper each morning. I BBQ with my neighbors and I try to keep my suburban landscaping tidy. I have five children ranging from pre-school to high school. My husband and I have been happily married for seventeen years. At first, I chose not to share these defining details of my life with my derby girls. It was my dirty little housewife secret.

When I joined FoCo Girls Gone Derby, my youngest daughter was only a year old and I needed the FRICK out of the house! (My derby friends without children would substitute a more colorful word for ‘FRICK’). I wanted an interesting sport that was for women only because I just don’t have an inner need to compete against men. And I wanted something that gave me a sense of adventure. I needed some space to be someone other than ‘Mom’. My plan worked perfectly. I may be the oldest person on the team (I’m self conscious enough that I’m not fully investigating that possibility) and likely older than the average derby girl by, oh, more than a decade? This summer at New West Fest, a woman stopped at our booth and when I tried to recruit her, she claimed she was too old. When I told her my real age (camouflaged by a tu-tu and ponytails) she claimed that she thought I was in my twenties! I almost kissed her. As flattering as that was, I needed her to know that playing roller derby isn’t age-specific; it’s only heart-specific. When derby girls are on the floor in full gear -- sweating like beasts, learning to fall, hit, and skate -- age and background have absolutely nothing to do with it.

We are one. We are FoCo.

We sweat and bleed together. We laugh and cheer each other. We are the buoy for each others’ lives. Everyone has things going on that are heavy or stressful, and we need that time away. I would be a rich woman if I had a nickel for every time I heard a derby girl say, “Thank goodness for derby.” I know I’m lucky that I don’t have to juggle a work schedule to make practices, and that my husband will take over for me on the nights I’m away from home. I used to feel guilty as I handed him a sippy-cup and picked up my gear bag, but not any more. I enjoy derby too much for any guilt.

At a recent bout I was helping a girl who was having a minor wardrobe malfunction. A friend who attended the bout teased me by saying, “You’re such a mom.” That perfectly innocent comment, even taken as a compliment, irritated me. Not here, buddy. Not here.

I am a desperate housewife.

But you can call me Starrmageddon.

September 20, 2012

Waiting for my Marching Orders

This is what I expected from the captains, but isn't what happened thankfully
Last week was my first scrimmage with the team and guess what? I made it through. I know they were taking it easy on me, but still. Apparently I didn't look like the terrified rabbit I felt like, so that was good news. But the first scrimmage is behind me and it was AWESOME.

For most of the scrimmage I wasn't really sure what I was supposed to be doing or where I should be, but I just stayed with my "buddy" (thanks Spice Cadet and Inner Demon!) as best I could and that was that. Once my legs stopped shaking, I was actually able to take a few hits, I did a little bit of booty blocking, and there was even a moment where I withheld being rode out for like 1/2 the track! No kidding, it was a victory for me.

It felt good to be out there. Confusing, but good. The shouting of my teammates and the other team, the whoosh of skates around me, flash of colors and glitter. It was like nothing I could ever compare it to. Right now, sitting in the comfort of my living room, scrimmage seems like a BRILLIANT idea. But I wonder if the nerves are going to be back? I am sure they will continue well past my first bout, but I have face them and continue forward. This week's mantra is "Be a good soldier and march forward without hesitation." A seize the day sort of thing, yes?

Now that I have officially scrimmaged, I am just waiting to be put on a home team and invited to join those lovely Punchy Brewsters and a home team.Can't wait! Derby is in my blood now and I have been waiting for another scrimmage since the last one. How could I have ever lived a life that didn't have this in it I wonder??

Derby Love
Mollytov Maguire

September 13, 2012

Keep Calm and Continue Skating

I hope that in a few months I can look back on my first scrimmage practice with the light-hearted reminiscence of a veteran. I will sit back with my team mates and begin stories with "Remember when..?". That will be nice. But right now I am hitting a panic button about it. I have been saying for weeks that I feel ready to scrimmage but now that it is time, now that other people think I am ready, I am really questioning it. Can I seriously do this? How ON EARTH am I going to absorb a hit from iOna Switchblade later tonight?

I have been working toward this for so long and now that I am staring it in the face, mere hours from the first time I hit the track to scrimmage, I am in a frenzy. Something I have been reminding myself of since the warm-fuzzy feelings of success, of progress, were so rudely replaced with self doubt this morning is that my trainers have done this before. They have done this with many dozens of ladies before me. They can see my skills in a big picture view that is currently eclipsed to me. Without further adieu, here is today's mantra: "Breathe Molly. Trust your trainers and trust your feet. They know what to do."

My feet aren't hard to convince. I can do crossovers and transitions, toe stop turn-arounds and weave throughs. But it's the mind I am worried about tonight. Can my eyes see the game? Can they find the Jammer in time? I know that is something I am only going to get better on, but that doesn't help me right now! Can I please just borrow from a skater who doesn't need to think about it for a few hours tonight? Slim Skatey, I beg you, please just loan me some of your speed! Krunchy, you're the head ref for FoCo, I need to know what you do about the rules ASAP!

Today, I am asking the arrogant jerk alter ego of mine named Mollytov Maguire why on earth she thought she could play roller derby. The answer she keeps giving me is "Because it's fun. Stop being a party pooper and live in the moment!" And you know what? She is right. This is going to be AWESOME and even if (when?) I suck a whole bunch tonight, at least I only have to have a first scrimmage this one time. After that, it's old news. But right now, it feels like the first day of school only I don't have my mom to dress me a make a lunch. I know I have been chosen for a reason and I am never going to grow into a more rewarding role if I don't do this. But growing sucks. What was it that I said about it being "about the journey, not the destination" or some hippie nonsense like that recently? Don't remind me. My better judgement isn't talking to me today.
THIS guy would tell me "It's about the journey, man!"
Derby love,
Mollytov Maguire

September 6, 2012

Love, Loss, and Roller Derby

I can pinpoint the moment that I became a full fledged derby girl in my own mind. I had a really crap summer, I lost my grandfather and my uncle within about a month of one another. It wasn't a surprise but that doesn't actually make it easier when something like that happens. My normal response to moments like that is to close all the blinds in my house, turn off my phone, and check out for days or weeks at a time. But this time it was different. This time I had derby.

This is how cozy my house looks
in cases like this, only there are
more empty jars of Nutella involved.
I did my usual "darkness + alone time cures all ills" business for the entire derby break (for new recruits this was 2 weeks) talking to no one, just waiting for Tuesday's practice with a combination of anxiety and excitement. Finally, the big day rolled around and I had been holding it together pretty well at work and with friends/family. I walked into practice, marched up to Double Destruction (our trainer that evening) and told her what was going on with me emotionally. I only had one request, I wanted to hate her more than my life for 2 hours and I needed to forget about everything outside of our practice. She complied. She kicked the crap out of me and it felt good. I remember taking all my gear off, laughing with the ladies, and then it hit me that I didn't actually think about the world off the track for two complete hours.

Before that practice, the only thing that made me come to some practices was the obscene amount of money I spent on gear and skates. Needless to say, my dedication was spotty. After that practice, I was a derby girl. I became an athlete. I found that losing myself on the track was more emotionally productive than and combination of talking to my friends and family, hiding in my house alone, or anything else I tried up to that point.

Richard Simmons knows how to
get happy in his work outs!
People have talked about how working out makes you feel better, happier or something. I learned from Elle Woods in the movie Legally Blonde that "Exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy" but this had never been the case for me. Exercise made me miserable. This was because of some undiagnosed health issues, but still, I always associated working out with pain and misery so it hasn't been my go-to response in times of emotional need until very recently. I am learning that my crutch doesn't have to be locking myself in the house with a brand new box of wine and every episode of Hoarders ever made. Yes, there can be some of that, BUT, what might also help is getting my butt on the track and knockin' some women around. This cataclysmic shift occurred for me on Tuesday, July 10, 2012 at about 10:45 PM.  It was a grand moment which put a smile on my face that hadn't made an appearance in weeks.

Derby love,
Mollytov Maguire

FoCo Girls Gone Derby Doubleheader
MicroBruisers vs.
Castle Rock ‘N’ Rollers Greatest Hits
Punchy Brewsters vs.
Boulder County Bombers
7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22
Qdoba Events Center, 218 Smokey Street,
Fort Collins

FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s nationally ranked travel team the MicroBruisers will face off against the Castle Rock ‘N’ Rollers Greatest Hits, while sister team the Punchy Brewsters trades hip checks with the Boulder County Bombers at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22, at the Qdoba Events Center, 218 Smokey Street in Fort Collins.

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased from any FoCo derby skater or online at

August 30, 2012

Ready, Set, When am I going to Bout Already!?

When I started this roller derby "thing" I had to overcome a few hangups both emotional and physical. One of them is that I will never know what it feels like to have the long, graceful legs of a dancer and I can barely Macarena without putting an eye out. I know this sport is competitive but right now I am only competing with myself. I want to be better, stronger, and faster of course but what does that mean and how will it look for me?

Because I am still in new recruit training, I rely heavily on my trainers to tell me where my areas of improvement are. One measure of development I can see on a regular basis is my peer group and it's difficult not to compare myself to them. Everyone from my "class" has either dropped out or started bouting already so if I use them as a yardstick I am not doing great, but I haven't quit yet. Can I call that a victory? I guess the only thing I can do for now that is remind myself that my process is my own and continue to move forward.

Goals are important for school, work, as well as self discovery and development but there are things to remember when setting them. I would love to have speed like Slim Skatey, stability like Purdey Dirty, and hits like Suzy Muffincrusher but they didn't get they way over night. If I want to skate like the women I admire I have to stop trying to be like them and start trying to be like me. There is an art to goal setting and it takes a lot of thoughtful effort and self examination. 

There are many methods for goal setting, but here are some questions I have found useful in figuring out how I am going to achieve my desired outcome. I ask myself "How am I going to know when I have met my goal?", "Is this something that I can achieve?", and "How long should it take me to meet this?". Regular dialog with my trainers and peers is going to provide me with the ongoing feedback that I require to answer those questions.

I KNOW want to be bouting by October and I am going to make that happen. To achieve this, I must be specific in what I am asking of myself.  Today, I make this contract with my future self:

I, Mollytov Maguire, do solemnly pledge to strengthen my body and mind in the following ways:
  1. Gain stronger rule knowledge
  2. Condition my body to have endurance to play in a whole bout
  3. Have better accuracy in my hits for both timing and placement
When the afformentioned goals have been met to the satisfaction of my future captains, I may be eligible to begin bouting.

Mollytov Maguire
"Roller Derby Phenom in the Making"
FoCo Girls Gone Derby
August 30, 2012

There. Consider it done.

When I do meet these goals, my trainers and I feel that I will be in a good position to be bouting in October.  This is doable. Right? Right. Because my goal is time-bound in it's definition, I know when I have to complete it. But hey, that is just a reminder to live my life better, isn't it? This goal is just one thing in a long line of stuff that is going to make me better for the long haul. This one goal is only the first stop of the journey, a layover really, but it isn't the destination. It's meant to be accomplished and left in the dust. Let's say October comes, I play in my first bout, and IT IS GLORIOUS. What then? I don't know yet... That is a bridge I will only be able to cross when I get to it.

Derby love,
Mollytov Maguire

August 23, 2012

This Aint My Grandma's Derby

Last year, I was at my cousin's baby shower when I told my Grandma Weezie I was doing roller derby. Because I have been known to crack a joke here and there, she laughed, patted my knee, and ate more lemon-poppy seed cake before she realized I wasn't joking. She looked at me and said "What? Really??... Oh." and while I understood that roller derby was rough, I couldn't get over her response. The baby shower was lovely, the cake was delicious. As I recall I ate more than a couple chocolate covered strawberries, drank pink lemonade, and steeped in wonder over my Grandma's reaction.

A few weeks later at Thanksgiving I told my Grandpa I was doing roller derby. This was the other side of my family and some of them hadn't heard the good news. Grandpa was giving me a hard time about not being married yet and in my annoyance with his prodding in that area I asked him if he thought I would meet at lot of men at the roller derby because I was going to start skating in it. I admit, I was hoping for the same reaction I received from Grandma but didn't get it. He seemed excited and said he couldn't wait to see me skate. He asked in rapid succession "Was I already on the team? Did I like it? Was it as violent as it looked 40 years ago? Was I going to shave my head?" What? No! I just wanted you to leave me alone about not being married...

This was getting confusing. Just strange responses to my news. Would they act like this if I had joined a volleyball league? Pretty sure they wouldn't... What was going on? My parents seemed fine with it, sure they rolled their eyes when I told them, but I was used to that. They do that pretty consistently with the things I say and do. My friends fell mostly into 2 categories: asking me either if I knew that those women HIT each other or telling me it was a brilliant idea. 

The lesson here is that there are a lot of preconceived notions about roller derby. People seem to know something, but what they think they know  can be way off base. Maybe they watched the San Francisco Bay Bombers and the Brooklyn Red Devils on TV in the 70's and saw that crazy, theatrical, heavily  choreographed production that was roller derby. Those people are going to look at you like you grew a third arm right in front of them or laugh hysterically and hand you a Luchadore's mask.

People who have seen modern derby usually have a different reaction and most of them think it is AWESOME. They know about the athleticism and the skill required or they may have heard about the after parties. There have been instances of these conversations where I felt like a roller derby queen and I can't wait to show them what I can do on the track.

In my last post, I talked about how the community of support your derby family can provide is so important, but you also have one outside of derby and they are instrumental. It feels good to know your family and friends are looking out for you and are proud. I am glad that I am going to be able to provide them with some good, old fashioned, roller skatin' fun. I can't wait for my first bout when I see them all in the crowd and don the ""Mollytov Maguire" jersey for the first time. I think they're going to be pretty impressed and if they're not, well, I know how to hit people now so I think that will take care if itself.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

August 16, 2012

Confessions of a New Girl

Hi everyone, my name is Mollytov Maguire and I am a new girl. ("Welcome Molly!") I am about to confess some of my derby struggles. I know they're not new, and I know that many women and men have faced and overcome them before I could even find the Pivot Line. But they're new to me, so please listen up.

Confession 1. Derby is hard

I don't know if you know that, but it is. This is the first time in my whole life I have worked hard for something. I am almost 30 years old and stuff that was hard, historically, I have quit. Until now. People have asked me why I keep going, through injury and self-doubt, to practice after practice where sometimes I have literally been beat down. The only answer I can give is that I want to BE a derby girl. I want to earn my fishnets and booty shorts. I want to see my family and friends wearing the name I chose on the back of their shirts. I want to know I completed something really difficult and I want to be my own role model for it. 

Confession 2. I have never been an athlete

I was a figure skater growing up, and don't get me wrong, I am NOT saying it isn't a sport, but I am saying that the lazy, half-assed, social hour way I did it made it not so sporty for me. This really piggy backs off Confession 1, but when you're really out of shape like I was/am, you will feel like you were in a car accident a few days a week for several months. When Texas Chainsaw Mascara hits you over and over (and over) for 2 hours that is just going to be a reality of your life. When Double Destruction says "30 more seconds!" one more time and you think you can't do it, the biggest surprise of your life will be that can. 

Confession 3. It's the little things that matter

I can remember some practices where I seriously considered walking out and the thing that kept me going was the community. When Missling Dixie shouted "You can do it! Faster Molly!" it became possible that I really could do it. Or when I hurt myself and, in my pain and delirium, thought I had ruined my knee, my peers took a knee for me. They clapped for me when I got up. They helped me limp off the track, and no one made me feel small for it. I have memories of that moment which still echo in my little derby heart and I know those ladies have my back. During a really hard practice it can be other things that make the difference; the sound my wheels make when I do an awesome snow plough, or the swiftness and grace I feel in my feet when I do crossovers, sometimes (and for me this is becoming a little more regular) a well placed and timed hit can mean victory on the night for me.

I used to tell people "I come from a scattered tribe" meaning my friends, the family that I chose, were no longer in the same state as me. They were in Wyoming and Massachusetts, Texas and California, but when I came to Derby, I had a new tribe. They are a vibrant, beautiful, multi-talented group of women and men who want to see me succeed. Um, excuse me? There are a whole bunch of women who want to get together and not talk about feelings, but we can hit each other and they're happy about it? Yes. Sign me up. Right now, and everyday after.

For those of you who are thinking about joining derby, I think you should do it. Your trainers will give you the tools you need to succeed but it's the community that you build here that will keep you active. It's hard, and you're going to want to quit sometimes, but it's worth it. There is a recruiting meeting Tuesday, Aug 21st at 8:30pm. Rollerland. Be there. I know I will.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

August 9, 2012

Lessons from RollerCon, Part 2

Tips for a RollerCon-er

This year was my second RollerCon experience, and although I felt prepared for it this year, I was wrong. I was completely unprepared and wished there was a check sheet with tips that I could print out. So, I decided to take it upon myself to make one after my second RollerCon.
  • Start saving. Now. You are going to spend way too much money, and it will never be enough.
  • Buy your pass on Black Friday; it’s the cheapest they will ever be.
  • Bring a rolling bag, but not one that’s big. It should be JUST large enough to fit your gear.
  • Bring or be prepared to buy a Fanny Pack. Useful and hip as shit in the derby world right now.
  • Get lots of tattoos and dye/cut your hair crazy. I have tattoos and an alternative haircut and still felt tame.
  • Chest tattoos are the new tramp stamp. Don’t get one of those.

Figure out what kind of planner you are.

  • There is a line for everything. Account for that if you’re a planner.
o If you are good at organization, don't like to party, and hate sleeping in;
You are crazy, but you'll be able to take lots of classes. Look at the schedule before you get to RollerCon and make a list/schedule.
o If you are like most people and like to sleep;
DO NOT make a schedule for yourself, you will only feel guilty when you don’t end up making it to classes. Instead, look at the schedule each morning when you get up and see what you feel like doing.
  • No matter what kind of planner you are, you MUST make time to watch the Vagine Regime vs. Caulksuckers bout. It’s the best bout of RollerCon!
  • If you find a class that you really want to take, DO IT! It may be offered multiple times but as RollerCon gets down to the last day people get tired and classes start to get canceled.
  • Don’t be afraid to admit you have a Derby Crush (it WILL happen)
  • Only bring shirts/tanks with your name and number on it. Also, bring a few shirts that say your league affiliation.
  • Only pack derby clothes. You won’t wear anything else. Ok, maybe ONE real outfit.
  • Bring a hoodie. It’s FREEZING indoors.
  • Show up a day early and/ or stay a day later. Gives you a chance to get settled/packed up without having to miss any action.
  • DO attend open scrimmages. They give you a chance to try out the new techniques you learned and play with or against some really great players.
  • Be prepared to take everything you are going to need all day with you when you leave your hotel room in the morning.
  • They hand out tickets for classes 2 hours early, get them then. Do not wait.
  • Lastly, have fun! Attend the parties, even if you want to get to bed early. RollerCon is about skating, but the parties are a great extra!!
Hopefully this helps you on your trip to RollerCon 2013!
Suga Smaxxx

August 8, 2012

Lessons from RollerCon

Derby Crushes- From Rollercon 2012
Derby Crush Definition (according to Suga Smaxx): A skater (usually from another league) that you look up to, want to be, are completely fascinated and/or enamored by. Not specifically romantic but could blossom to become so (if you swing that way). Check out a great article here.
Derby Crushes are an interesting beast. Sometimes they're on skaters you have known about for awhile or could be someone that you have never heard of. RollerCon is a catalyst for a Derby Crush like no other. You watch great skaters play, take classes from those people, and get to know them.

Last RollerCon, I left with one ground shaking, can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t live without crush:

Smarty Pants
She was 2011’s WFTDA Newbie of the Year although she has skated bank track for quite some time. Smarty Pants is in her second season with TXRD, but previously skated with TXRG (the league credited with the reincarnation of Roller Derby back in 2001, and featured in the movie Whip It) for 8 years. She’s a world renowned trainer and coach, and in her first season on the bank track Smarty and her team took 3rd place at the 2011 WFTDA Championships. Smarty is also a skater for the first ever Team USA. This crush is still cemented in my derby heart, but I will be leaving RollerCon 2012 with so many more. I love them all differently, but with the same fervour.

Jackie Daniels
Plays for Windy City Rollers All Stars, Team Vagine Regime, Team Chupacrabra Peligroso (formerly Team Awesome). Built like a Pit Bull (ALL MUSCLE), a great teacher and rocks white jean shorts like you wouldn’t believe.

Fifi Nomenom
Plays for Angel City, Team Vagine and almost every 3-4 level bout during RollerCon 2012. I didn’t know Fifi before RollerCon, but her sheer determination during one POWER JAM to get some huge dude's last point made my heart go pitter-patter. Fifi is also one of the only openly transgendered skaters on a WFTDA team.

And last, but not least….

Teflon Donna
Skates for the Philadelphia Liberty Belles and Team USA. My derby crush on Teflon Donna was definitely the most intense crush I got at RollerCon. I even gave her my “Hey, you’re my derby crush!” card that came in my welcome kit. Tef is a great teacher, amazing skater with extreme resilience and all around cool person (She took the “Crush” card well). She also had the most adorable poster plastered all over RollerCon. I forgot to get a picture with her, but I got one with the poster!

So, there you have it, the loves of my derby life! Sorry, Mary Poppin’ Caps (my derby wife- that’s a whole other topic). Don’t be afraid to let your derby love blossom!

Live, Love, Skate!
Suga Smaxxx

August 6, 2012


7:30 p.m. Saturday, August 18
Rollerland, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins

FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s home teams will skate down memory lane Saturday, Aug. 18, for a throwback bout as the league’s original home teams, the Deathrow Dolls and Chanel Cartel. Just when you thought you would never again see the teams’ trademark orange jumpsuit dresses and gold booty shorts, they are getting a reprieve from the recesses of the closet for this retro event. Doors open at 7, bout begins at 7:30, at Rollerland.

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased through the Rollerland Skate Center ticket booth, from any FoCo derby skater or online at or Purchases also can be processed by phone at 800-838-3006.

June 2, 2012

11 a.m. Sunday, June 10
The Kill Floor, 237 22nd Street, Greeley

Visiting roller derby team the Big Easy Rollergirls Allstars are down for a hangover bout against Fort Collins’ Micro Bruisers at 11 a.m. Sunday, June 10, following a Saturday night bout against another league. The New Orleans’ natives know as well as the Micro Bruisers that the best cure for a hangover – or a hard-fought roller derby competition – is the hair of the dog that bit you.

FoCo thanks the Slaughterhouse Derby Girls for graciously offering their track for use by FoCo’s travel team. Purchase tickets for $5 at the door of the Kill Floor, 237 22nd Street, Greeley.

May 6, 2012


FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s home teams will face off as Heroes vs. Villains on Saturday, May 19, at Rollerland. Doors open at 7, bout begins at 7:30, with FoCo’s junior derby team, the Spartan Babes, warming up the track at 7:15. These little ladies are the league’s prodigy skaters. Join us for an epic battle of good vs. evil – on skates. Fans are encouraged to come dressed as heroes or villains, and a prize will be awarded to the best-dressed do-gooder or fiend. A portion of the proceeds from this bout will go to Animal House, a Fort Collins nonprofit whose mission is to save animals from euthanasia. Donations for the shelter will be collected at the bout. Needed items include blankets, sheets, towels, paper towels, bleach, Nylabones and canned dog food. Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased through the Rollerland Skate Center ticket booth, from any FoCo derby skater or online at

April 8, 2012


7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 21
Rollerland, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins

FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s Punchy Brewsters will take on Denver’s Wreckin’ Roller Rebels on FoCo’s home turf at Rollerland Skate Center on Saturday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m. Doors open at 7. The Roller Rebels may be tough, but the Punchy Brewsters are feisty and ready to rumble. Come show support for your local skaters, and feel free to sport a sideways ponytail and slouch socks or any 80s high fashion.

A portion of the proceeds from this bout will go to Animal House, a Fort Collins nonprofit whose mission is to save animals from euthanasia. Read more about the organization by visiting their website at

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased through the Rollerland Skate Center ticket booth, from any FoCo derby skater or online at or Purchases also can be processed by phone at 800-838-3006.

FoCoGGD’s most recent bout, on March 24, pitted its two home teams against each other. The exciting back-and-forth bout came down to the final jam in which Raven Luna C scored the four points that tipped the scale in her team’s favor. Thanks to, you can watch the bout here:

FoCo’s A-string travel team, the FoCo Micro Bruisers, is gearing up for the Mayday Mayhem tournament hosted by the Slaughterhouse Derby Girls. See the Micro Bruisers in action May 5 and 6 at the Kill Floor, 237 22nd St., Greeley.

March 11, 2012

FoCo’S home teams: Barbies vs. G.I. Janes

7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 24
Rollerland, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins

There’s room for every type of woman in roller derby, from Barbies to G.I. Janes, and FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s home teams will be skating as exactly those personas in their season opening bout Saturday, March 24, at Rollerland. Break out your pink or camo green and cheer on your favorite local skaters. The bout will pay tribute to firefighters, police officers and members of the military. Junior derby teams the FoCo Spartan Babes and Greeley’s Butcher Babes will bout at halftime.

A portion of the proceeds from this bout will go to Animal House, a Fort Collins nonprofit whose mission is to save animals from euthanasia. Read more about the organization by visiting their website at

Tickets are $10 presale and $15 at the door. Students and members of the military receive a reduced rate of $10 with a valid ID. Ages 12 and under are admitted free. Tickets can be purchased through the Rollerland Skate Center ticket booth, from any FoCo derby skater or online at or Purchases also can be processed by phone at 800-838-3006.

FoCo Girls Gone Derby roller derby league is comprised of two home teams and two travel teams. FoCo’s A-string travel team, the FoCo Micro Bruisers, recently competed in the Wild West Showdown in Bremerton, Wash. By winning two bouts at this tournament – including one against No. 19-ranked Sin City of Las Vegas – FoCo jumped 16 points to its current ranking of 26 in the western region, according to W.F.T.D.A. (Women’s Flat Track Derby Association), the sport’s governing body. See the Micro Bruisers in action May 5 and 6 at the Mayday Mayhem tournament in Greeley.

January 25, 2012


7 p.m. Monday, February 6
Rollerland, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins

FoCo Girls Gone Derby will host its second annual Skate for a Cause Skate-a-thon 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 6, at Rollerland Skate Center, 324 S. Link Lane, Fort Collins. Fifteen percent of the event’s proceeds will benefit Boys and Girls Clubs of Larimer County. The remaining donations will go to FoCo Girls Gone Derby, a nonprofit organization supported entirely by its league members. Contributions are tax deductible.

Skate-a-thon participants include volunteers from Boys and Girls Clubs of Larimer County, FoCo Girls Gone Derby and FoCo’s Spartan Babes Junior Derby. Volunteer skaters are looking for sponsors, who can pledge a set amount or an amount per lap. The public is invited to watch or participate in the Skate-a-thon and the following open skate from 8 to 9 p.m. Admission is $3; skate rental is an additional $1.


7 p.m. Saturday, February 4
Qdoba Events Center, 218 Smokey Street, Fort Collins

FoCo Girls Gone Derby’s A-string travel team, the Micro Bruisers, are kicking off their season with a WFTDA-sanctioned bout against Greeley’s Slaughterhouse Derby Girls 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 4, at the Qdoba Events Center, 218 Smokey Street, Fort Collins. WFTDA, the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association, is roller derby’s governing body. Sanctioned bouts are used to determine WFTDA ranking. FoCo Girls Gone Derby is Fort Collins original roller derby league, dishing out hip checks since 2006.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased from any FoCo skater or online at or Tickets also will be available at the door.