I checked out a Midcoast Roller Derby meeting this past weekend at Lincoln Street in Rockland. Unlike the rest of you taking MLK off, I’ve still got deadlines, so here’s my quick ‘n dirty rundown.
• It’s already a kick-ass homegirl bonanza. More than 40 women (ages 18-to over-40) showed up from all over the Midcoast. (I loved that we had to sign in by typing our names and phone numbers on an old manual typewriter.) From stay-at-home moms to artists to waitresses, bakers, teachers, and business people, you could see that the underlying thread to this meeting wasn’t just about donning skates and letting our inner “Whip It” personalities fly on the flat track, --it was about high energy, physicality, sisterhood, and FUN. This was is in the words of Hard Dash, the meeting's organizer, “A real, supportive encouraging environment. This is ours—we own this.”
• Some real work is needed before girls can think about what they’re going to have for a funky costume and a derby name. That’s like picking out the drapes to a house you haven’t built yet. We will be separate from the Portland League (I also hear there is a Bangor League starting too.) This will be a full on Midcoast Roller Derby League—an actual company with insurance, taxes, dues, infrastructure, a governing committee, and hard, physical training twice a week. In other words, we’re nowhere near announcing our next bout yet. We got some serious building, research and work to do. I hope that doesn’t separate the wheat from the chaff, but it just means those who are serious about getting this league together will need to put their time, energy and money in—and not just on a used pair of skates.
• We’ve had a lot of requests for “Waterboys” (Sully, we saw you peeking in the meeting!) and every guy I’ve talked to about it this weekend has been just as supportive as the women. We have almost 100 group members on Facebook. It’s just clear that this Roller Derby League is one more rad thing happening in Rockland that has slowly made this little town evolve into a mini Seattle or Portland (ME & OR) with every new creative venture. I can’t tell you how gratifying it feels to be part of it—As one member of the meeting said, “Girls on skates, come on! It’s gonna be so much fun!”
Stay tuned for more derby news on The Killer Convo.
There is something really creepy, yet mesmerizing about dollhouses and the miniatures that inhabit them. More fascinating, however, are the people who spend their time creating such teeny dioramas. It’s not like a familial, benign hobby like knitting or darning. People who create Tiny Worlds tend to have “inside-out” perspectives. When one sets out to create a three-dimensional scene out of found materials, as you’ll soon see with Carol Ann Pretzel’s “My Twig Fairy Houses” or the warped recycled shadow boxes from kitchi-kitchy, he or she creates a story of details. Each item in the Tiny World has been positioned to invite the viewer to sip on the “Drink Me” bottle in Alice In Wonderland and shrink into their mad little world.
My Twig Fairy Houses
Carol Ann Pretzel
“Once upon a time a fairy entered my life. She identified herself as Mystical Magical French Fairy Queen and eventually revealed her name as Lucinda or Lulu. I made this primitive shed roof hut and all the furniture from twigs—from small branches I found on the ground—cuttings from my lilac and forsythia branches and various natural items and other things I found and recycled. I saw many other beautiful, elaborate fairy houses online, but knowing that fairies are also attracted to nature, I knew a home made hut from nature’s materials would certainly please Lulu.”
Lacy Simons and Jared Paradee
These two shadow boxes are simple slide viewer worlds that developed over the course of about three years. They started with varying backgrounds according to new additions to our slide collection. Sometimes selections are made from a 1950s souvenir collection from Hong Kong, sometimes they originate from tiny paintings we’ve made ourselves on old Ecktagraphic write-on slides, or sometimes it comes from just pure blankness. Eventually the viewers were disassembled and small vintage toys were added, i.e. soldiers, cowboys, and Indians. Every part came from junk shops, antique barns, recycling centers, etc. They aren’t on display in our house as art with a capital A-R-T, per say, and the collaboration on them has been completely unspoken and without any particular direction or intention. They’re more a nod to the larger dioramas we want to create, and as a portal into weird and changeable little worlds.
The Killer Convo
This blog is a is a killer roundup of all arts, entertainment, brewery & distillery, food trucks, happy hour happenings in the Midcoast Maine. Feel free to email me anything about Midcoast arts, entertainment & the creative economy.