Today I got up, wide awake at five and spent the next hours catching up on mail, class registrations, sorting through all the literature we brought home from colleges and buying a big expanding folder to keep it in. I went to the grocery store (always my way to land) and made dinner. Eli has spent the day with Ashley and they been happily ensconced doing a little of this and a little of that all day. They’re watching a movie now and I’m waiting for it to be over to give her a ride to our designated meeting point with her parents–the barn at UCSC. These two live very far apart and neither one of them got their driver’s licenses when they could. Apparently, they’re not unusual. It’s a demographic trend–kids putting off getting their driver’s licenses. I can’t imagine it. I practically slept in the doorway of Motor Vehicle when I turned 17 in New Jersey.

I started reading my new copy of The Gatekeeper: Inside the Admissions Process of a Premier College by Jacques Steinberg, the book I started reading in the Wesleyan admissions office. It’s a way to keep my toe in the college admissions process while re-entering regular life.

Steinberg tracks one admissions officer, Ralph Figueroa, and cluster of college hopefuls through one year’s admission cycle. It’s a fascinating book. Of course, I’m invested in the subject matter right now, and this book gives a perspective on the inner workings of the process. I’ll report more on it as I get further into the book.

But the highlight of the day was going to see the Santa Cruz Derby Girls with Karyn and Lizzy tonight. We got turned on to Derby last summer, when Karyn’s niece Amanda came to town with her roller derby team from Tuscon. They had a match with our local team, the Broadway Bombshells. We’d never heard of derby and were completely smitten with the sport. It’s loud, it’s rowdy, it’s fun, it’s irreverent, it’s fast, and it features strong, passionate, athletic, bold sweating women competing on a fast track in the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. Costumes are a part of the fun. It’s as if Rocky Horror Picture Show became a dominant, aggressive, powerful, but still fun-loving sports team.

In Derby, two teams face off. Three of the team members from each team form a pack of Blockers, who try to keep the two Jammers, usually faster, more agile skaters from breaking through the pack to score points. There’s a good deal of fast skating, shoving, pushing, blocking and scoring (not to mention fouling). There’s loud music, crazy announcers, referees in black and white costumes on roller skates and a very loyal base of fans.

I always see lots of people I know at Roller Derby and I never know who will show up. Tonight’s bout was special because the Derby Groms, the junior team with girls from 7-16 played a exhibition bout at half time, and two of Lizzy’s friends are on the team. It was great to root for them.

If you haven’t been to roller derby, I highly suggest you give it a try. But get your tickets now, they are selling out well before the next bout. Next bout is May 15th–hope to see you there.


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