Sunday, July 27, 2008

Q&A with Ginger Binger of the Heartless Heathers

Skater Name: Ginger Binger
Age: 27
Neighborhood: Vantucky
Beverage of choice: Beer (Guinness or Hamms)
Heartless Heather for 4 months

photo by Meghan Gilligan

You're one of the newer Heathers. What is your skating history, how did you get involved in the Rose City Rollers, and what finally brought you to the Heartless Heathers?

I used to couples-skate to 'Pour some Sugar on me' at Roller Towne in my hometown. I spent several years breaking myself on a skateboard. I've always been active and Roller Derby seemed like the sport for me. After repeatedly missing them, I finally made it to the January tryouts, made Fresh Meat and was drafted to the Heathers in April.

How has your role with the team evolved since you first
hit the track?

I was shocked that I was drafted after only 3 months on Fresh Meat. I thought I needed to learn so much more before I made a team, so I was nervous and uncertain of myself. Intense practices, phenomenal teamwork, and time have made me MUCH more comfortable skating with my team.

How do you see your team's prospects in the championship bout against the Betties?

It is going to be an intense game. I think the teams are a good skills match and we both have different techniques and strategies on the track. Of course I believe in our ability more because of our strength of teamwork, but it will not be a cakewalk.

How did you choose your derby name?

I couldn't decide between a bunch and a friend just walked into a party where I was, heard I played derby, and rattled Ginger Binger off. I'm a redhead who drinks a lot of beer. It fit and I couldn't stop thinking about it. It's a love/hate relationship. When I'm on the wagon I feel like a fraud.

Is there something you would like to stress to fans that you think we might be oblivious to?

I think some fans may not be aware of the sheer hours we put into training and the fact that we do it purely for the love of the sport. Also, some folks coming for the WWF style skating of the 70s may not understand the role of strategy their first few bouts. There is much more to derby than knocking people down. That said, knocking people down feels really good.

How do you find time for it all?

I don't always. I get burned out. Sometimes I have to step back and reassess. I try and keep my mister happy, I can't let derby jeopardize that relationship. I just joined Axles of Annihilation. It will be interesting to see how the extra committment works when I go back to work.

Did you grow up around here? If not, where, and how did you get here?

I grew up in California and moved here four years ago after finishing college. My mister and I were done with school and over our current situation. We wanted to stay in the Northwest and we liked Portland more than Seattle, for living at least.

What are you occupied with outside of derby?

Outside of derby? What do you mean? There is not life outside of derby!! Really though, I teach high school English, have a husband, two dogs and a cat. I swim, read, go to concerts.


Ringer said...

We were so excited to snag Ginger at the draft in April, and we couldn't be happier with her since. She's stepped up to the challenge and has continued to grow. I also am pretty sure that drafting her put us way over the top for the largest number of red heads/Gingers on an RCR team.


Miss Conduct PDX said...

I'll second that! We love having Ms. Ginger.


the_mad_nader said...

Nice Q&A, and it's VERY nice to have Ginger Binger as one of the newer Heathers; Welcome to the family!

About all the red heads - maybe the team can work up a special "Red Headed Step-children" lineup of all red heads. Fear the Gingers - they are relentless!!!

Funny note: when I first heard the Heathers had drafted Ginger someone (I won't name any names) referred to her as "Ginger Britches", which would have been a hilarious name. But after having a beer with Ginger, "Binger" just seems so much more appropriate.


sven said...

A good read. I hope we get to see her skate post-season with the Axles.