Skater Profile: Stormy Waters
Every team, like a living organism, has a heart, muscles, lungs, kidneys, a liver and a brain. Those are the people that bring more than their skates to practices and bouts: the women that give up their evenings and weekends to do various chores to make a team function. If I were to describe Stormy Waters, she’d be ORD’s brain, the frontal lobe to be precise. And the cardiac muscle. And the liver. In fact, it is hard to place her because Stormy is everywhere and it’s really difficult to imagine our league without her.
On skates, Stormy Waters is, well, terrifying. Tall, strong and unforgiving she hits hard and precisely as she fluently moves across the track. Her uncanny grasp of strategy and rules makes her a pivot to recon with; I would dare any blocker not to follow her lead. I’ve always thought her skater name was very befitting, so when I ask the question how she chose her name, the answer surprises me. “Well, uhm… funny story… I went on lots of name generator sites and ended up on porn name generator, and Stormy Waters came up. Later, I discovered that there actually is a porn star called Stormy Waters!” Obviously, we have to google it and end up looking at pictures of enormous tits and much blondness. (Note to readers: please have safe search function ON if the curiosity gets better of you)
Stormy joined the team in its infancy, in 2011. “A guy in a tattoo parlour gave me a flyer and I came to a practice. I have been coming ever since -”. “Oh, I didn’t know you had tattoos,” I note casually. “I don’t. I just fancy people that do.” As she has been with ORD from the beginning, I’m curious how she views the team today. “Oh, it’s a completely different team! I remember our first bout – we had no clue what we were doing. When benching the Wiltshire game, I realised how much we have grown.” At this point, we both get a bit lyrical about the recent ORD win in the Heartlands series, one of the most exciting bouts I’ve seen so far. “The main difference is the communication on track. The girls don’t have to talk; they just know what needs to happen next,” adds Stormy. “And how do you want to see the team develop in 2013?” “I want more skaters to get involved in running the team and taking responsibility for its future. I can’t wait for the B-team to form!”
“What’s your personal target for 2013?” Her eyes glisten as she whispers, “To bout again…” The second half of 2012 was not an easy time for Stormy. Just as she recovered from a knee injury, she broke her ankle during a practice and was off skates for six months. “Coming to practices and not being able to skate was so hard. All I wanted was to put my skates on! I had to hide them because just a glimpse of the wheels would make me sad.” Obviously, the injuries didn’t prevent her from working for the team: NSOing and bench managing (still on crutches), leading strategy sessions for the newbies and running the treasury together with Celtic Tiger. “There was a point when I almost gave up and was thinking about leaving the team. But then I saw them play and realised it was just not an option: they are my family.”
“Apart from derby, what do you do in your spare time?” She looks at me confused, “Uhm-, I watch derby!” Yes, of course, silly me. “I read a lot”, she adds. “Anything apart from Harry Potter?” In case you didn’t know, ORD seems to be a conclave of Potter-worshipers; I’m certain there is a secret entrance to Diagonal Alley somewhere in our sports hall. “Yes! I love trashy romantic novels. You know, the ones you get with the newspaper. The trashier the better” I glance at her surprised. “My favourite is called Damsel in Distress…But they do have to have a plot!” She proceeds to describe an intricate love story between an abandoned house wife and a policeman. Or was it a fireman? Not sure, as my mind still attempts to reconcile the concept of Stormy the Romantic with Stormy the Hard-Nosed Roller Girl.
As we wrap up to watch some derby, Stormy pleads, “Please make me sound more interesting when you write this up”. More interesting?! I don’t think I can beat the reality. A fearless skater, ORD’s strategy guru, treasurer and secretary, named after a porn star, hanging around tattoo parlours and reading trashy romantic novels for fun. I couldn’t have invented it if I tried.