October Rollergirls of the Month
Enpsychopedia: Where are you originally from?
Electric Boogaloo: Huntsville, AL
Acute Angel: I grew up in Tulsa, OK, went to school in Salem, OR, and spent the majority of my adult life in Austin, TX.
ep: How did you first get involved in roller derby?
Boogie: My derby wife, Ebbin Flow (skater for Dixie Derby Girls), invited me to join and I fell in love at the first practice.
Acute: A group of friends went to a bank track roller derby bout in Austin and by the end of the night I knew this was my sport: athleticism! agressiveness! boyshorts! knee socks! My good friend and I found that the Texas Rollergirls had a recreational league (on flat track) and joined later that month.
ep: What is your pre-derby sports/skating background?
Boogie: I played softball for 12 years and soccer for 8. I didn't have a clue how to skate when I started.
Acute: My family was into soccer--my three brothers and I all played since age 5. When I moved to Austin, slide tacking was against the rules for our co-ed league. That physicality was a big part of my game in soccer, and that's one of the things that attracted me to roller derby.
ep: How did you pick your derby name?
Boogie: I love cheesy movies and musicals. My name comes from one of the best 80's movies ever made: Breakin' 2-Electric Boogaloo.
Acute: My soccer teammate Julie and I joined Texas Rollergirls Rec League together and had a brainstorming naming party. I was a middle school math teacher at the time and wanted a name that was math-y but also appropriate for adolescents (one suggestion was "Tap That Abacus").
ep: What’s the hardest part of being a rollergirl?
Boogie: Remembering that it is just a game. Winning is great, but I try to learn something from the losses as well.
Acute: The hardest thing for me is how little we actually get to play the sport for which we practice so much! I was used to playing soccer games every weekend, and getting to officially bout once a month or less has made it hard to stay motivated.
ep: How has your involvement in roller derby affected the way you live the rest of your life?
Boogie: I'm more conscious of what I put in my body and how my actions today could possibly affect my game in a week.
Acute: Derby has given me more confidence.
ep: How do you find a balance between your derby life and your “real” life?
Boogie: Derby definitely bleeds over into "real" life. It’s not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle change.
Acute: Derby actually helps me find that balance. When I first moved to Nashville to begin my PhD program, I wasn't sure if I could fit derby into my busy schedule. At first I took a few months off derby, but having played team sports my whole life I struggled to work out and stay fit on my own. I found that playing roller derby gives me more balance by providing me with both physical activity and social interaction.
ep: Do you have a pre-bout ritual?
Boogie: The only consistent ritual I have is to sit and visualize all the good things that I'm going to accomplish. I focus on myself succeeding and then visualize my team doing the same.
Acute: I never grew out of loving to play dress up and my pre-bout ritual involves picking out my boutfit and after-party outfit. My general rule is: the more sequins, the better. I love that we are athletes who train hard, but I also love that derby provides me with an outlet for my silliness and enjoyment of dressing up.
ep: What things do you do outside of practice to stay healthy?
ep: What advice do you have for girls who want to join roller derby?
Boogie: DO IT!
Acute: Give it a try! I had no idea how to skate when I began and love what derby has done in my life. Once you begin, try to find the women with positive attitudes--it's a difficult sport to pick up and it helps to be surrounded by those with positivity.