Friday, January 13, 2012

The Great and Terrible Fandom!

The roar of the crowd, the simultaneous "oooohs!" when a skater gets taken out, roller derby wouldn't be roller derby without the fans.  Skaters wouldn't get to bout or get a taste of the limelight that we all crave once in a while.  Fans support us, pump us up, and make getting killer bruises less painful; I've played in many venues and have seen various kinds of fans.  Some of are fun, some are crazy, and some are the reason I skate under an assumed name, but I know as derby folk we appreciate each and every one of them!

#1  The Proud Parents/Family/Significant Other Fan  These fans are our lifeblood; they show up through thick and thin.  They have shirts with some variant of the skater's name on them, and sometimes they bring awesome signage.  Proud family members cheer the loudest, stay for the whole bout and will defend an action we take on the track to the death!

#2  Skaters from Other Leagues  Face it, derby girls love to watch derby; if we could, we'd stream it 24/7 all throughout each room of the house.  When we get to any opportunity to watch live derby, we jump on it!  Proudly wearing our own team's jerseys, derby girls represent!

Ok, So we act out a little bit at other games.

#3  The New Fans  New fans are always near and dear to my heart.  They stumble onto a game because a co-worker dragged them there, or they heard about this new fangled thing called "roller derby" and they've decided to be adventurous.  New fans spend the first game of a double header reading the program in hopes of figuring out the game; they ask questions like "What just happened?" or "What's a pivot?"  Please keep an eye out for these fans and help answer their questions; if their confusion is cleared up, these new fans might become super fans and start recruiting more people to come to the next bout!

#4  The Costumed Fans  Some fans love to take advantage of the freedom derby bouts offer to wear some pretty outlandish outfits.  At one of our home bouts, there was a group of ladies who decided that they were going to dress up like "derby girls."  They made me smile because they were having so much fun.  If wearing a feathered boa and "tough riveted accessories" is going to make the experience even more fun, then who am I to judge?

These fans include the Red Hat ladies too!

#5  The Big Hits Fan  This fan is coming to the bouts to see one thing and one thing only....BIG HITS!  They hate slow derby and despise the one knee starts.  It is guaranteed that if there is a slow start to a jam, they will be the first to chant "SKATE SKATE SKATE!"  Often times, this fan is a roller derby girl visiting from another league.

#6  The Creepy Fan  Everyone knows of a creepy fan; sometimes they have binoculars and stalk you from afar, or they stand as close as they can to the track screaming your name.  At times it's difficult to tell the creepy fan from an avid fan, which is why my name will always be Elektra Q-tion while I'm skating!

#7  The Kids  Nothing makes a skater feel more like a super hero than when a little girl comes up to her after the bout and asks for an autograph.  Usually they have a big ol' white shirt on and they want you to sign it.  AW!  I hope everyone gets to experience the thrill of being a little girl's inspiration!

I always tell their parents to get them skates!

#8  The Turn About Fan  These fans are awesome because they arrive at roller derby in a unique fashion.  What usually happens with these fans is their boyfriends or husbands bring them to derby because they think it's going to be some sexy fun to watch (and it is) but the girlfriends or wives start really liking the sport and become super fans.  Now THEY'RE dragging their boyfriends and husbands to each and every bout.   Turn about is fair play, gentleman!

You know it's true.


  1. Super cool... I love your blogs :)


  2. Yea! I still want to feature you in one.

  3. Yea! I still want to feature you in one.

  4. Awesome! as always:-) See you tomorrow!!!!

  5. That little blonde derby fan kid, yeah, thats exactly what my kid looks like!
    And, yes she is in the local junior derby league.

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. You forgot about the "long time derby fan". This fan predates WFTDA. When the Seltzer's & Griffith's were running the show up until 2000.