Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Before and After Katrina

MSNBC shows very shocking pictures of areas hit by Katrina.
I want to plain our next mini-vacation to New Orleans. The Big Easy Rollergirls have a bout Sun November 18th. Maybe that would be a good time to see some derby, and help their economy with our excess spending money. And it sure couldn't hurt to get out of Houston!

Monday, August 27, 2007

Elle the Heroine

I am very luck to have met Chris Rien ( He illustrated most of the artwork for HRD this year. I found out he was in need of a drawing table, and I had an extra drafting table just gathering dust... so I gave him the table and he drew me as a futuristic badass derby heroine. It's awesome. Thank you Chris!!

I wonder if I can make this costume in time for halloween.

I'm going to have this printed and framed. It will remind me of all the fun times, and none of the hard times. Well, maybe it'll also remind me that I got through all the hard times.

We ate really good Belgian food this weekend (thank you Ivana), and watched a few movies that have been on our list (Thank You For Smoking, and Mansfield Park). Plus I watched so much Law and Order that I started double checking all the locks in the house. I should have just watched more movies.

September is going to be a crazy busy month, so I took this weekend off. I did as little as possible and it felt great. I've usually got ten projects going at once, and I like to stay busy. I thought it would be hard to not do anything, but once I put myself in lazy mode it felt like home.

I've got a list a mile long of things that need to be done... most of them Derby things. The way I'm feeling today though, maybe those derby things aren't as important as I think they are. Maybe they don't really need to be done at all. I'm sure I'll find out... someone will be yelling for something soon enough. Blah. We should skip Mondays altogether and get straight to Tuesdays.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

A McLovin kind of week

It's Thursday already. This week has flown by.

Last Thursday the weather was really bad... they let us all leave work a few hours early so that we wouldn't get stuck in a flood. I got home and laid down to take a nap around 5pm. I didn't wake up until 7 the next morning to go to work. That's about 14 hours of sleep.

Friday comes and I get off work at noon. I drive up to the north side to meet with a company that wants to hire me on the side to train their employees. I'm excited about this because to me it's easy money. I have a home office which has three computers networked together, and I use it to train people sometimes. So after the meeting a small group of us drive out to the Alamo Draft House and watch Superbad. It was super rad and for a minute I thought about changing my name to Elle McLovin.

We got home pretty early and I went to bed around 11. I didn't wake up until 2pm on Saturday. That's about 15 hours of sleep. Saturday was a lot of fun. Went shopping at the ghetto mall by my house... got lots of cute things. Met up with Dementia to hit the town and go dancing all night... but couldn't find a dance club to save our lives. Everywhere we went was empty. We realized we are very out of the loop in regard to 'going out places'. Ended up at that new bar, Boondocks, then Poison Girl. PG is always a good standby. We ate at La Topatia after 2am.

Sunday was Bout 6- August Assault. We played the Brawlers. We won the game, but they made us work for it. I scanned the stats sheet before leaving and we nickel and dimed them. 4 and 5 points jams were the typical. If they hadn't been so physical and really on their blocking game we would have been able to score more than four 8 to 10 point jams. Claudia Van Damage gave me one of the most fierce blocks ever. She nailed me. I can't wait to see it on the dvd. Good clean solid block. Someone else hit me and I slid into the Brawlers team bench and knocked my head on it! I was dazed for a second, but got up and back in the game with no problem.

My Bosses played a great game. Death only went to the penalty box ONCE, and it was for a team penalty that was accidental anyway. D'Master skated her first bout... and she rocked! What a great surprise to find that our greenest skater can block her but off!! I saw her get multiple blocker take outs, and at least one jammer take out. Very proud. Blasphany fell wrong and sprained her ankle... so that was bad, but at least she didn't break or tear anything. She's going to stay off of it for a little bit then be back in plenty of time to train for the Championship game. BloXX jammed like a super star, and Death was awesome, like usual. Flame was a great high scorer for us, as she usually is. And I think Holly and I did a good job of helping our team gain points each jam. Nawty as always was the best Blocker 3 ever! Each time I went up to jam (which was a lot more than we had previously scheduled... but it's cool... I can jump in like that) I checked to see who was my B3... and when it was her I would lose my nervousness and gain a little bit of confidence.

The only thing I'm not 100% proud of, and I don't fully understand what happened, but towards the end of the game people's tempers started to flare. I don't know why, and I didn't see what caused anything... and I'm sure the audience didn't know why, and were watching skaters throw tantrums and it wasn't sportsmanlike, or professional, or respectful at all. I still love my girls, and will give them the benefit of the doubt, and will forgive them... because shit happens out there, and sometimes we flip out. I didn't do it this bout, but who's to say I won't do it the next bout. I'll try not to, of course, but when our adrenaline is pumping, and we're that fired up and aggressive sometimes we say and do things that we don't mean.

I wish I could have watched the Sirens and Betties game more. Mistilla the Killa was on fire!! I think this was the best game I've ever seen her skate. All of the Siren jammers stepped it up. Dementia was top notch, as always... but Carmen and KK both were really impressive. Honestly I was very surprised by how both of them played... getting lead jammer, scoring those points quickly and calling off the jam... over and over and over. Now I know for sure that us Boss jammers are going to have to train hard just to keep up with the Siren jammers. The Championship bout in October is going to be awesome.

The after party at the GRAB bar was awesome! Lots of great music and drinks and friends. Chris has his car window broken and his radar detector stolen though.

I took off Monday to recoup from the game. I ended up spending over 5 hours finalizing the Governors Cup flyers, posters, and website artwork. I got them all sent to the printers and to the other leagues so they can use them.

Tuesday night was Art Night at Elle's. Chris and I had a Adobe Illustrator 101 class for Dementia and Sinister Sista. The more we teach them, the better I feel about handing over the art projects to them next year.

Wednesday we had league practice. Only 5 Bosses came to practice, but we got to work with all the New Perfume, so it was cool. We worked on endurance and did the snake drill three different ways. With so many skaters constantly skating I'm sure we skated over 200 laps, easily.

And now it's already Thursday again. No team practice tonight (yeah!!)... so I have no idea what to do with my free time! I'm sure I'll think of something though...

Photo by Kerry McClain

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Pod What?!

I am retiring from Roller Derby at the end of this season. (Yes Goldie BloXX... I know you are going to kick my butt when I quit). I am thinking about joining our volunteer announcer crew next year. The Colonel offered to let me practice getting on the mic with his podcast reviews of the games.

I sat in on my first podcast last night with him and Bill. We talked about what we expect to see at this Sunday's bout when the Brawlers and the Bosses play. At first they didn't want me to preview the bout I'm going to be in... but I think it went okay. I have mad respect for all the Brawlers. Heck, if it wasn't my team they were playing I'd be chearing for them to win too! Here is the podcast in all it's glory.

And since we didn't take any pictures, I'll post one of me from DeMentia's birthday party this weekend.

Lighting and Thunder and Storms, Oh my...

Last night there was a huge storm. The weather was fine before I went to bed, but at around 2:30 am the bottom fell out of the sky. And landed on my house. I usually sleep very well through storms. Something about the rain and thunder is soothing. But not last night. First my poor little dogs are terrified of lighting and thunder. They normally sleep in their room, but when it starts to storm they wake us up with their barking and insist on sleeping with us.

I’ve heard that you can tell how far away the lighting is by counting the seconds between the lighting and the thunder. Every second equals one mile away. At the peak of this storm there was NO time difference between the lighting and the thunder. I was almost as scared as Bella and Penny. I was still asleep, but slightly awake, and scared like a kid. I was glad the dogs wanted to sleep with me, because me soothing them helped calm me.
I meant to go unplug all the tv’s and computers. I was sure that the lighting was going to hit the roof and light our house on fire. But it was over quickly, and I fell deep asleep. I dreamt that my dogs were still afraid of the storm and that they were talking to me. It was weird and very realistic.

When I woke up there was no sign that the storm had even happened. The ground outside was wet, but there were no trees in the streets or anything. Then I get to work and ask my coworkers and none of them had a storm near their homes last night. Houston weather is very peculiar like that.

The storm reminded me about one of my best friends, Sana, who was afraid of storms. She is from Morocco, and they do not have thunderstorms there. Even in the US it does not lighting and thunder everywhere… Did you know that? I assumed that storms were normal and lighting and thunder a very typical weather condition for everywhere in the world. But nope. It’s depends on the region. All of the Southern Coastal states, from Texas eastwards all have thunderstorms. So when Sana moved here six years ago, and experienced her first thunderstorm she was not kidding when she was asking me if we should get a mattress and cover ourselves with it in the bathroom. She’s been through enough of them now to not be that scared, but it was very funny at the time.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Safe products

I am addicted to the Houston Chronicle's MamaDrama Blogs. One of the latest blogs is about Johnson & Johnson's Baby Wash, and how it is listed in for containing cancer causing petrochemicals.

"Laboratory tests released today revealed the presence of 1,4-Dioxane in products such as Hello Kitty Bubble Bath, Huggies Baby Wash, Johnson’s Baby Wash, Scooby-Doo Bubble Bath and Sesame Street Bubble Bath. The tests also found the carcinogen in Clairol Herbal Essences shampoo, Olay Complete Body Wash and many other personal care products.

1,4-Dioxane is a petroleum-derived contaminant considered a probable human carcinogen by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and a clear-cut animal carcinogen by the National Toxicology Program. It is also on California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known or suspected by the state to cause cancer or birth defects. Because it is a contaminant produced during manufacturing, the FDA does not require it to be listed as an ingredient on product labels."

I wonder what other products we use have bad stuff in them.

This site,, is really cool. You can type in the product and it will tell you the ingredients, and what issues those ingredients have and if they are linked to cancer or are toxic.

Through my readings I found this link: From what I can tell they sell eco friendly cleaning supplies, but it doesn't say if their products are safe or dangerous for us.

This stuff is all overwhelming. I like the skindeep site. There are a handful of products that I use all the time. I'm going to check them to see how bad they are, and maybe change products, but I'm not going to go crazy and stop using shampoo or detergent.

That reminds me... my pads are filthy and I need to wash them before the bout this weekend. They would be considered toxic right now.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

DNA Test, Sushi

Here is my personal report:
Animated Analyst
My personalDNA Report

That was a cool little test.

We ate sushi on Sunday, like normal, at Cafe Japon. They have 'sushi happy hour' all day on Sundays. It USED to be $1 per piece of sushi... but last Tuesday for some reason it went up to $1.25. All the prices went up. Small amounts, but when you're eating sushi at a dollar a piece it can add up very quickly. At least the Asahi and hot Saki stayed at $2 each. We are not happy about this sudden change.

Art Night at Elle's is tonight. We have so many projects going on, and no time to work on most of them. I wish I could take a week off of work and just spend 8 hours a day completely all the wonderfully great art ideas I've thought of for this year. But alas, the bills must be paid. So that we can afford that expensive sushi.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Moving, Painting, and Tryouts

We helped Ivana B Sedated move out of her old place and into her new one on Saturday. I don't know how we got it all in two trips with a suburban, but we did. I've never been that lucky... I have so much stuff I don't need but can't seem to part with that I have to rent one of those really big uhauls, and make a couple trips with it. And we both had one bedroom apartments! I'm going to force myself to spend some time tonight taking pictures of some of that stuff I need to get rid of and put it all up on CraigsList.

Sunday we had an early practice, then a meeting... I didn't get back to the house until noon. Chris had already put on one coat of paint with his sister the night before (staying up until 2am to do it!!). I met him with Ivana at his new office and we helped him put on a second coat. Half red walls and half grey walls. The grey went on with one coat. The red is at three coats and counting. I think he needs to buy some more before we can continue. It looks really good though. Great color combination. (Not that lime green with curry yellow isn't a great look also, Ben :P).

HRD try outs are this week. We love try outs... we get used to hanging out with the same faces all the time... it's nice to spice it up with some new perfume. Just for Phil from now on I won't be referring to our new girls as 'fresh meat', but instead will coin a new term of endearment, 'new perfume'... because they will each bring their own fabulous sweaty pads stink to the rink :)

I wish every single skater trying out the best of luck. Pay attention, follow the trainers' instructions, try not to be nervous and just have fun! We look forward to meeting you!