DCRD's league spotlight member for the month of March is our beloved Pelvis Chestly! Pelvis Chestly is from right here in Albuquerque and has been a part of roller derby and DCRD for just over a year.
What brought you to roller derby?
I've always thought roller derby would be so cool, but I never did it. Then at Albuquerque ComicCon 2015, I talked to Kristin (Betty OOP) and Crystal Styles. They gave me a flier and shot down every excuse I had. "I don't know how to skate!" "We'll teach you!" " I don't have skates!" "We have some you can borrow!" I didn't have a reason not to try it. I went to newbie practice and had skates on for maybe ten minutes, total. I spent eight of those ten minutes making concrete angels, but it was enough for me to decide I really wanted to skate.
Tell us about your derby name.
I love Elvis Presley. I've always loved Elvis Presley. I knew I had to have a derby name that had to do with Elvis, and puns are the best! It also helps that I have a huge ass and, you know, a pretty decent rack.
What roles do you fill with the the league?
I'm the head of community relations. I find events in our community for the league to participate in, like Albuquerque Pride. I look for events that bring the community together, or that represent our league, like anything to do with athleticism. I also organize the Street Team. We distribute all of the posters and fliers for bouts and events.
Besides athleticism, what do you think are the values of Duke City Roller Derby?
Strength--it's amazing to be surrounded by so many strong women. And friendship--I have amazing derby friends who are uplifting and encouraging. Joining derby is probably the best thing I've ever done for myself.
Speaking of friendship--you won the 2015 awards for "Friendliest" and "Most League Spirit" at last year's awards ceremony and Derby Prom. What was that like?
It was awesome. I was surprised because I don't ever win anything! It was just nice to be recognized by my friends.
Did you cry?
Maybe a little.
Are you especially proud of any of your derby accomplishments?
It took forever for me to stand up on my skates after a fall--that was a small victory in itself. I'm proud of how I've been progressing in scrimmage. On Monday night, Sara (Scara Dee) was jamming and she just bounced right off my ass and fell on the ground! I was like, "Oh my god that was awesome, but are you okay?"
Scara Dee is your Derby Wife, right?
Yes. She's been my best friend for twelve years now. When she decided to join derby, and stay, was one of my happiest moments ever!
You two got derby married at the DCRD Ten-Year Anniversary bout last year.
Yup. Our dresses were amazing. Mine had cupcakes and hers had hamburgers and hot dogs. She was the main course, and I was dessert!
Who are your derby role models?
When I first joined, I wanted a skating buddy, so I asked the people who intimidated me the most: Kell's [Inferno] and [Death] Ro. I figured if they scared me, I could learn a lot from them. I did learn a lot, and I've become pretty good friends with Kell's. She's not really that scary. Don't tell anyone.
No way, that's totally going on the blog!
Okay, but also say that she's terrifying on the track!
What about Ro? Is she scary in real life?
Ro is always scary, on the track and off.
What are your derby goals?
I wanna be a Hobot! I would like to pass skills this year. Completing 27/5 is a big goal. I feel like everything else will fall into place the more I go to practice and the more I push myself. But I'm going to be off skates for a while.
Tell us about your injury--how did you twist your ankle?
We were scrimmaging Monday night. I was super excited because [Kap'n] Krush was on my team. I did a plow stop for the first time in my life. I was thinking, "Yes! I'm going to plow like a beast!" My foot did a really good job staying planted, but the rest of my body did not. I went down, and that's where I stayed. The doctor says I can skate with an ankle brace in three to four weeks. I probably won't do any contact drills until I build up my strength again. I'll just do a little bit at a time!
Lastly, what is your favorite thing about roller derby?
It has made me physically push myself more than I ever have. I'm discovering that I'm capable of things I never thought I could do. Overall, I've become healthier. I quit smoking, I've become more active--derby has improved my entire wellbeing. Skating is like my meditation.