Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I Beat the Stomach...Again

I finally did it...for the second time in my entire life, I jammed. I beat The Stomach.

For anyone who doesn't know what being a jammer entails (like Bone Senior, who doesn't know why her trunk-less Scion doesn't have a safety-release latch on the back door. Here's a hint, sister: if you get stuck in the "trunk" of your Scion, there's no need to kick out the tail lights, just climb over the back seats.) The easiest way to explain the role of the jammer is that she's the only one on the team who can score points, by passing members of the opposite team. Which means that while the blockers (me) can sometimes mosey along in a pack, the jammer is skating as fast as she can to get back around the track and through the pack as many times as possible.

So, blocker = big butt (sometimes moseying) in your face; jammer = skate like hell, get through the pack, get back around the track, get through the pack again, all while getting knocked down by blockers. Rinse and repeat for two minutes. Then apply oxygen mask.

I think it goes without saying that I don't jam. I avoid it like the plague, which makes me feel like crap when we're short on skaters and the same three girls are jamming over and over, and they desperately look around for someone, anyone to volunteer to jam...and I totally avoid eye contact with them, I skate away from them when they're trying to hand off the jammer panty, and I flat out jump out of the way if they throw the panty anywhere near me. Then things get really uncomfortable, because I stand there, trying to pretend that the panty isn't draped across my foot, or under my skate, and everyone stares at me expectantly, and I just wait until someone braver than me picks it up and has the guts to jam.

But two months ago when I made the commitment to work harder, I set a goal to at least try jamming. And in those two months, there have been countless opportunities for me to try, but I was still too scared. I told myself I was still too slow, I still don't have the stamina, my arms are still too flabby; but really, I didn't want to get out there and let everyone down. I'd made up my mind that I just wasn't cut out to be a jammer. Even though just about every skater on the team has done it, I decided that I have a wide butt for a reason, and blocking was all I would use it for.

Because I had opened my big mouth about my high-falootin' derby goals, my teammates and coaches all knew that I wanted to jam, they all encouraged me, they were all rooting for me - but I was terrified that I'd get out there and fail. And then I'd be mortified in front of everyone, and I'd have to admit that I'm just not meant to be a jammer, and I'd have to stick my big butt back on the inside line where it belongs, defeated.

At last week's scrimmage, I decided enough was enough, and made up my mind to jam. Really, it was all my decision. It had nothing to do with the fact that we'd lost three players to injury in the first half, and there were only three girls rotating through the jammer position - they looked like they were about to keel over from exhaustion, one of them was still recovering from a concussion, and the other had just slammed her head into the wall. I totally wasn't guilted into it. At all.

So, I manned up and jammed.

Up until now, I'd only jammed once. I don't really remember it (because it was so long ago) but I'm sure it was like a train wreck - a really, really slow, panting, red-faced, can't-even-catch-up-to-the-pack-let-alone-get-through-the pack, dry heaving train wreck; after which I probably collapsed on the bench and hung my head in shame.

This time, however, when I finished the jam, I felt exactly like this:
And yes, I absolutely made that face.

It was the most exhilarating feeling of my life. Or at least the most exhilarating feeling since I did my 25 laps in under five minutes. Definitely one of the top three exhilarating moments of the last year. When the jam started and people noticed that, what the hell, Bone is jamming?!? I could hear everyone screaming for me - I honestly thought Wicked and Liz were going to lose their voices. My blockers kept a slow pace, they knocked everyone out of the way for me, they made it so that not only did I get through the pack, but I actually scored points.

When it was over, I threw my arms in the air and let my arm fat flutter in the wind as I skated back to my bench. My face hurt from smiling, my lungs were on fire, and I wanted to cry because of the overwhelming support and encouragement I got from the Rockettes. Even if they were hugging me and patting my butt out of pure pity because of my noble effort, it didn't matter. Because right then, I had conquered another one of my fears, and for two minutes? I made jamming my bitch.

Now if only I could conquer my fear of Wanton Rebellion...


Anonymous said...

I found your blog after googling "panty jam." Totally not what I was looking for.

Bone Junior said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lindsey said...

As usual, you amaze me!!!! You time jamming was spectacular! You made me so proud!!!! I love you!

Josh and Gloriana said...

Awesome!!! So freakin proud!!!

IndyGo Wylde said...

You did great Bone. I watched the whole thing and I secretly cheered for you. Actually, I openly cheered for you, and Bruce gave me a dirty look.
If you ever figure out how to conquer that fear of our Mama, you let me know. She's half my size and scares the dickens out of me...

Andrea said...

I cannot stop laughing at that Rocky picture.