When did you join roller derby and how did you first learn about it?
In 2009 a girl I had known from school contacted me because she thought she saw me in one of the league photos; she went on to tell me that her friend plays and asked if I knew her. I looked at the photos and decided I needed to be there. (The girl she thought I was turned out to be Super Nova! I think she maybe had long red hair at some point, and so did I back then.) It was love at first tumbly-wumbly pace line. I couldn’t comprehend why every woman in the city wasn’t doing this, and where it had been all my life.
Had you played other sports previously?
I played softball growing up, but I wasn’t really into team sports. I became active during the military by personal weight training and running.
How did you come up with your derby name?
While in the Air Force, I was stationed in Germany for 3 years and fell in love with German culture. “Das Boot” is a German movie depicting the – inconveniences – of war. It’s an excellent movie, and the USAF has a pivotal role in the outcome. The name is twofold: Das Boot was also the name of an old boot store on Elmwood, and I love wearing my boots! “Knockin'” was suggested later by former Saucie, Pummelina, as a double entendre for violence and sexy time.
Tell me about your time in the Air Force.
I was an artist and I wanted to go to art school. At some point in my junior year of high school, I realized that art school wasn’t necessarily within my grasp but I had this drive to experience the world. I also really wanted to learn to fly planes at that point in my life. I thought the Air Force was the answer. I did my four years of active duty as an intelligence analyst. In my time there, I visited 14 countries – including Saudi Arabia.
How do you train outside of the rink?
My routines change frequently as I adapt to life changes. This past year, it’s been all bike riding – mountain biking and BMX racing. Formerly, I was a jogger and participated in personal circuit training, with some subtle martial arts mixed in.
What’s your favorite thing about being a skater/member of QCRG?
The people, of course! My prior constant moving did not allow me to build long-term friendships, especially with women. I work primarily with dudes, and have in all my previous jobs. I had no network for adult female friendships. QCRG fills a lot of needs in my life – community, exercise, general buffoonery.
How do you feel your participation has affected your life?
This is an interesting question. Was there life before roller derby? I’m sure life was pretty damn lame before the derbs. In fact, I’m pretty sure it IS my life – with some other stuff mixed in.
How has your role on the Alley Kats changed over the years?
My role has changed radically. The first two years, I wasn’t allowed much bouting time, but I attended every practice humanly possible. I went into my third year feeling under-experienced, and I was very worried. Suddenly, the majority of my team became injured and I played almost every jam of every bout. I finally felt as though all of my practice had paid off. The next year, I was the team captain.
What is your goal for derby for the next year?
I wanted to be the best derby player I could ever be. I joined the Furies and I was ecstatic.
My laborious job, with early hours and lengthy commutes, coupled with late skating hours, started to run me into exhaustion and frustration. The woes of leadership weighed heavy on me. I was taking it too seriously. I took a step back to redefine my own needs. I’m bringing back the fun this year. FUN OR DIE.