June 2016 Featured Official: Mauler E. Knocks
Name: Mauler E. Knocks
This is my 4th season (!!) with Gem City. I came to some derby fundraiser at Orbit, met Karma and decided on the spot that I had to join derby. I went to work the next day and told Jackie (Cyan Eyed) that she had to join derby with me. We both joined as skaters. I had to special order my skates because coach didn’t have any in my size, so I skated in the “brownies” for almost a month. The first day that I wore my own skates, I broke my ankle halfway through practice. I had surgery and now have a metal plate in my leg. After almost 3 years, the doctors have determined that in addition to a shortened achilles tendon in that leg I also have scar tissue, bone spurring, and traumatic arthritis. I am having surgery on the ankle again this summer. I was not (and still am not) ready to give up on derby, so I became a permanent NSO. I have strapped on skates a few times since the break, but knowing that I can’t afford to miss work due to another long recovery is what pushed me to NSO. Since I don’t plan on quitting derby any time soon, I’m also looking into becoming certified.
I spent my first season timing and doing other volunteer positions, one full season penalty timing, and one full season box managing. This season (so far) I have expanded to penalty tracking and I enjoyed it, even though I was surprised at how much louder it is on the inside versus the outside. I do enjoy box managing, but still get a bit anxious when I see 2 jammers coming to the box at the same time.
In my daily life I’m bit of a hot mess–2 time college dropout; twice divorced; single parent of 2 boys a year apart in age; delivering pizzas 30 hours a week; randomly taking interpreting jobs when I can fit them into my schedule; therapy, doctor’s appointments, meetings, and all the other things that go along with having kids and injuries.
Outside of derby: I collect Stephen King books and hope to see him when he comes to Dayton in June. I love all things horror, The Walking Dead, etc. It’s now late enough in the year that I will force my kids to make their final decision on Halloween costumes so that I have time to hand sew them before October. I collect bumper stickers.
Favorite foodstuff: No olives is pretty much my only request. I don’t do much in the way of sweets (because both my parents developed adult onset diabetes) but I always get my margaritas with sugar on the rim, not salt. Tequila is my top choice for liquor, specifically Patron Silver.
Why I derby: Because you guys are some of the greatest people that I’ve ever met. I have pushed myself after seeing others in a similar situation (or worse) get through the same obstacles. I have watched both the adults and the juniors make incredible improvements, not only in their skills and mentality, but also extending it to their personal lives. Derby is a great equalizer, with people from all across the spectrum. Family isn’t just who is related to you by blood or marriage. Family is the people who love and support you, and that is what our league is.