I don’t have a lot of regrets in life. There aren’t a lot of things about which I find myself thinking, “Wow, I would have loved to do that. If only I weren’t so old!”
Mostly I don’t feel the least bit old and there’s not a lot I don’t do for reasons of age.
I’ve told people on this blog that age is a silly excuse not to race. I wrote: “Don’t be ridiculous. It’s like saying that sex is for the young. We’ve only got one kick at the can, one try at this life, and if something would have been fun when you were young, it’s probably still fun now. (Like sex.)”
But I do have a few regrets. I’ve noted here that team sports, in particular rugby, is a a bit of a regret.
And here’s something I would do if I were 20 years younger but that I won’t do now: Roller Derby.
I’d love to be Slamantha! (Do you have a derby name picked out? What is it?)
Last night I went and watched The Forest City Derby Girls.
At the end of the night it was Thames Fatales vs Luscious Lunch Ladies 218-119 for the Lunchies and Forest City Derby Girls Timber Rollers vs Tri-City Roller Girls Plan B 222 to 181 for the Timber Rollers.
They played at the agriplex where just hours earlier I’d been playing indoor soccer. As much as I enjoy indoor soccer, it sort of pales in comparison.
I love the speed, the grace, the power of the derby girls. The sheer physicality of it, the contact, looks fun. I also like the look. All ink and bright colours and even skeleton tights. (I want some!) Roller derby and prom dress rugby have a shared aesthetic appeal.
When I was riding track at the Forest City Velodrome some of the derby girls tried to recruit me (they practiced in the infield later in the evening). They recognized my fitness and my fearlessness but I didn’t bite. I’ve got the cardio fitness and some martial arts skills that would do me well in derby, I think, but a)I don’t roller skate (major obstacle!) and b)I’m scared.
My fears? Well, injury is the main one and that would ruin everything else I love. I take longer to heal these days and feel hard done by by enforced periods of inactivity. My twelve weeks of training lost due to stress fractures hurt and these days it takes longer to regain fitness lost. So my “fittest by fifty” campaign won’t include roller derby…
In the meantime, I love to go and watch. You should come too. The schedule is here, http://www.forestcityderbygirls.com/schedule.
I think I’ll just satisfy my derby urges aesthetically. Maybe it’s time for snazzy skeleton tights and a new tattoo.