Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Not so great teammates you don't want to be

I've been in derby for a long time; I'm finally comfortable saying that. Derby is funny in a way;
Things that make us go HMMMM!
people can be quite snobby about your "veteran status" at times. When do you become a legit vet? It's always a question, and I think I finally feel comfortable in saying I've been here a while, and get off of my lawn, you damned kids. I kid, I kid. But seriously, I've been around the track a few times and I have seen people piss off their league mates, and not even realize they're doing something annoying. Sometimes you will do some of these things, and sometimes you'll be pissed at the league member who acts like this. Just remember, when you join a team, you can't be in it for yourself anymore. People are counting on you.

The martyr- Oh yes, derby will suck your life dry if you let it. Between practices, cross training, volunteer duties, travel and board positions, it can steal away time and energy from daily living. We all feel the tug of war derby forces us into. But, the martyr thinks he or she is suffering waaaaaaaay worse than everyone else in the league. "I'm doing sooooo muuuuuuuch worrrrrrrrrrrk!" Yes, everyone is doing a lot of work; for the skaters by the skaters is a curse and a blessing, but trust me when I say EVERYONE feels like they're doing a lot of work. We don't see everyone's day to day struggles, so sometimes we forget that we aren't the center of the work horse universe. Everyone has his or her struggles figuring out the successful ratio between derby and real life; sometimes you can handle it, and sometimes you have to give real life a little more time and effort. Just be aware when those trying times come, and they will, that you have to communicate to your league and let them know what your situation is. Getting overwhelmed and being pissed about it doesn't help anyone.

The Person who wants feedback, but only positive feedback- This could be you or me at times. We all want to hear what we're doing well, and it's hard to hear what we're not doing well. Derby skaters say they want feedback, until they receive less than glowing feedback. You have to take the good with the bad to figure out what your strengths and weaknesses are. If your coach observes a trend with your skating, and it is something that is hampering your ability to play derby, wouldn't you want to know? I'd want to know!

The Tardiest- Everyone is late once in a while to practice; it happens. Traffic is crazy, or your car breaks down, or you have to work late. Life happens, and most leagues have contingency plans for the occasional tardy skater, but if you're someone who comes to every practice late because  of choice, I guarantee people notice. They also notice when you dawdle putting your gear on. I don't understand how some vets can take longer than newbies to throw on their gear! Some leagues give half credit for attendance if skaters are too late, but our league has taken the stance that each skater is an adult and if they choose to be late or slow to gear up, they miss out on warm up time and drills.

The Rules don't apply to me person- Does your league have requirements for membership? To play in a game, do you have to make your volunteer hours, attendance and other obligations? Some players don't think the rules apply to them; maybe they're very talented, or they feel entitled, but whatever it is, it's a an attitude that impacts the entire league. Guess what, the rules apply to everyone equally, otherwise this little endeavor called roller derby isn't going to work.

The Ghost- The ghost is a league member who is there one minute and gone the next without any warning or communication. Ghosts don't answer or check emails, and don't let anyone know what is going on! Will she be at practice? Has she quit? Who knows? If you need to take time away from derby, just let your league know. Communication is so powerful, and people won't think you're pissed off with the league, because you've let people know what your plans are.

The Clueless- The clueless reads his or her email about as often as the ghost does. The clueless never reads the league news letter, doesn't know when meetings are, and never gets into the league documents you send out for votes and whatnot. "I didn't know we had to bring sneakers!" Of course you didn't, clueless, you don't read email. I know that league emails get overwhelming, especially if people keep replying to all, but you need to keep up with emails since that is how most people communicate nowadays. Some leagues use Facebook for their communication needs; whatever works! But that means you have to buy into whatever your league uses, and actually read it.

The Inappropriate Facebooker- This is the league member who emails her captains saying that she can't make it to practice because she's sick, and then posts selfies of the bar she's at. Whoops. Look, if you're going to miss practice, be honest about it. Most of us have Facebook, and you know your league mates are your friends on Facebook, so are you being passive aggressive or just completely self centered? Just be honest. It's ok to take a break from derby once in a while; just don't lie about it.

Hopefully you haven't done these things, but if you have, then maybe it's the time to reevaluate your behavior...if you want to be a good teammate. If not, well, keep on doing the same things.

6 comments:

  1. Great topic. Let's not forget the player who screams at the top of their lungs at every mistake on the track, but can't be bothered to condense that to some thoughtful, constructive criticism. People need feedback after the chaos. Take the time and care to discuss strategies for improvement and your meltdown will have meaning! :)

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    1. I have written a couple of blogs about heinous behavior. :)

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  2. What about the"I'm better than all of you and this practice bored me" person. So discouraging.

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    1. I think I may have covered that one in a previous post.

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  3. And the skater who's wants to make their problem everyone else's proble. Or they think everyone is against them.

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    1. They brought their monkeys to practice.

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