Name: Rhapsody in Bruise
What is your skating position?
Where did you grow up?
What do you do for a living?
I wrangle 3 year olds and teach them music. Sometimes I get paid to play music at fancy parties.
What are your favorite hobbies (besides derby)?
Sleeping, making coffee, baking, knitting, having the personality of a grandma.
What are your pre-derby sports, if any?
I spent 9 years doing Tae Kwon Do. I'm actually a 3rd degree black belt.
Did you have any skating experience before joining derby?
No - I spent most of my first practice on the ground!
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
I also have a degree in computer science.
How and why did you get involved in roller derby?
I saw Whip It my sophomore year of college and just knew that derby was a place I needed to be. I went to an Ithaca League of Women Rollers bout my junior year and started fresh meat my senior year of college.
How long have you been involved with derby?
Since 2012, but I took a half year off to finish undergrad and a full year off to finish my Master's.
What’s the story behind your derby name? How did you pick yours?
I was originally Baroque'n Bones #A415, a play on the baroque period of classical music and the pitch of a baroque tuning note. When it came time to register, my name was too close to another, significantly less punny name! I had 24 hours to pick a new one. I sent a group text to my derby friends saying "Quick! Think of as many music puns as possible!" I could have been Strauss Fracture or Baby Got Bach, but Rhapsody in Bruise, after Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue, spoke to me. 1924 is the year Rhapsody in Blue was premiered.
Do you have a signature move?
Occasionally, I can get a jammer just stuck on my butt. I'm working on turning that into a signature move.
What was the easiest move for you to learn? What was the hardest?
Plow stops were the easiest. I couldn't do a T-stop to save my life when I first started, and plows saved me. They turned out to be the most useful thing I learned. Take that, T-stops!
What is your favorite derby event during the year?
Every bout. I get so much energy after bouts!
What is your favorite derby story so far?
You know, the fact that I'm still skating is my favorite derby story. I was told very early on that I would never pass minimum skills and would never play derby, and yet I'm still here. Derby is the ultimate "never say never" story for me, because it's something that's totally unnatural for my body. I was NOT meant to be on skates, but here I am, giving it all I have.
What do you wish you’d known about derby before you joined?
Derby is really, really hard, and it takes a long time to find your people. Finding the people you fit with is just as important as nailing your skills, because what's the point of doing this if you aren't having any fun!
In what ways has roller derby changed your life?
It's given me a group of girls as friends. It's made me so much more fit than I've ever been. It's made me more confident.
What advice do you have for someone thinking about joining derby?
Do it! I know everyone tells you this, but buy nice knee pads. Buy nice knee pads. Trust me on that.