I was almost five years into an abusive relationship, and at best, I was bereft of both self-esteem and hope. The good news is that a month and a half later, I finally got up enough courage to leave. At the time, I thought it was a temporary measure to help him realize that what he was doing was wrong. But it turned into a journey of recovery and self-discovery that I’m still taking today. None of it has been easy, but a lot of that journey has been aided by playing hockey…
Homies, I’d like to learn to shoot stuff. Targets, mostly. Maybe with guns, maybe with arrows — honestly, I’m flexible, and I don’t have any solid goals for these skills — it just looks like fun and seems like a good thing to know how to do (in case, you know, zombies). But I have no idea where to start.
So you want to play roller derby? First of all, congrats on officially making one of your better life choices! Aside from being a fun and challenging way to get exercise and explore your athletic side, roller derby has some astoundingly fantastic side-effects including increased confidence, immediate and massive expansion of your social circle, and the opportunity to exert physical violence in legal and, in fact, highly encouraged capacity. So with all that said, is it really possible to go from zero skating experience to roller derby bad-ass? Speaking from my own extensive experience as well as from years of teaching others, my answer is an unequivocal HELLS YEAH! Here are a few key things you can do to get prepped and ready to embark on your new and exciting life as a roller derby kicker of the ass.
Over on Offbeat Bride, we featured a Harry Potter bridal shower where they played Quidditch Beer Pong. I asked Rachel how to play, and she gave me all the magical details. Grab your butter beer, ping pong balls, and your wands, and let’s play!
If I had to pick a religion, it’d be sports. And if I had to pick a method of worship? It’d be aggressive softball playing. It fills my spiritual cup in a very serious way. It’s no accident I met the love of my life on the softball field. And it’s no accident that I’m still playing in my second trimester, side by side with that same man. If my heart were a puppy, this would be her dog park.
I started running reluctantly. I’m a doctor, and everyday I tell people to exercise. After giving people this advice for a month or two, and completely neglecting to engage in any physical activity myself, I started to feel guilty and hypocritical. I made the decision to start running. Both before and after I starting running, people would ask me if I’m a runner. I would smile uncertainly and ponder how to respond. Were they asking because of my body type? Was there something they recognized in my energy that identified me as a runner? Did my two mile runs make me a runner? To me, this barely counted for anything, although I knew that I felt better about myself and my life when I ran.
I’m beginning to have an understanding of what my father felt when he came home after working all day, grabbed our baseball mitts, and stepped into my room to ask if I wanted to play catch. He would usually find me on the floor of my room, in the midst of a galactic battle between good and evil, Empire and Rebellion. Now that I’m a father, I find myself with two young daughters who have the same view of their father as their grandfather once held.
It’s been a difficult year for the sport of cycling: the news about Lance Armstrong’s doping scandal was nearly unavoidable for months. A lengthy investigation, a weepy appearance on Oprah, an admission that his multiple Tour de France victories were all tainted by doping. But the 100th Tour de France cycling race began Saturday June 29th, 2013 and all the bad press about Lance doesn’t dampen my enthusiasm for the Tour one bit.