Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Rollin' With It

This past Saturday night, Captain Killshot took the star from a pivot and, after a whip from a blocker, evaded the wall. She scored.

Pretty cool, huh?

I really have no idea what I just said.

After all, Saturday night was my first attempt at, yes, ladies and gentlemen, roller derby.   No, I wasn't in it.  I was just there.

Making a long story short, my girlfriend's dad has a co-worker who is a roller derby-ist? ....plays roller derby?....does roller derby? I don't even know the grammar here.

She's on a roller derby team. In fact, she's a Southern Belle.  

I'm not going to lie.  I have no idea how this game is really played.  I had to read a bit online for this blog to make sense.  Bullet points go something like this....

- Two 30-minute periods.

- Two teams of five skate on a oval track counter-clockwise.

- One person, called the jammer, is the only one that can score. The jammer has a star on their helmet.

- Pivots, marked with stripes on their helmets, can also become a jammer.  (I'm not clear on how that actually happens. It just does.)

-- The "other four skaters" block the opposition's jammer and block the opposition's blockers so "their" jammer can score points. They play defense and offense at the same time. Blocks can not involve hands, elbows, heads or feet and cannot come from behind.  (Sounds kinda like hockey to me.) The seven referees watch for cheap shots. 

-Jammers score by getting ahead of the pack and literally lapping everybody on the track.  

As a pretend photo guy, I really did not have a chance to follow the game. I found myself paying attention to photo ops.  I found the "pack" rather hard to photograph. Basically, just small crowds of people zippin' past with the occasional tumble, stumble, or spill.  Eh.  Notice, by the way, how the jammer (white helmet with the red star) is squeezing through the "goatherd" (another fancy term).  Pretty damned fancy skating.  Really.

I found it more exciting, from a photography standpoint, when the jammers cleared the herd and put it into gear.  No extra bodies in the way.  A somewhat pleasing blur in the background. 

I think this tighter crop works better.

 All that said, I think this is my best photo...

Isn't cool and art-sy how I completely mastered the blur in a low-light situation that photographers so often strive for?  (Actually, I just botched the camera settings. Shhhh....don't tell anybody.)

My photos aside, I know what you're saying - "People take that roller derby stuff seriously?"

Yes. Yes, they do.

I rest my case.

So my photography resume is expanding.  Landscapes, birds, fireworks, horse shows, parades, and, most recently, roller derby.   Granted, I suck at all of them, but I think I'm getting at least a wee-bit better.

Now if I can only remember to take the lens cap off......

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