Wheeling and dealing with the walking dead

October 20, 2011

“They’re coming to get you, Barbara…” -Johnny, Night of the Living Dead

Three of my fellow derby girls will be participating in a bout at 8 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 22, at Christiana Skating Center in Newark.

Diamond State Rollergirls will host an interleague bout – the Monster Smash – between the Middletown Peach Zombies and the Wilmington City Ruff Roller Vamps.  Tickets are $12 at the door for anyone who wants to see roller derby in action.  Good luck to JoAnimal, Bloody GoreJess and Heidi Brutal!

Unfortunately, I will not be there to cheer them on.  I will be running from zombies without wheels on.

I decided to start running to improve my endurance on the track.  My new healthy hobby certainly helped me skate the “25 in five,” which I had dreaded for months.

Under the rules established by Women’s Flat Track Derby Association, skaters need to pass two levels of assessments to participate in an official bout, or competitive public match.  One of the challenges of Level II assessments is to skate 25 laps around the track in five minutes.

During a September practice run, I fell short by about one-quarter of a lap.  But on Oct. 13, I huffed and puffed my way through five minutes of crossovers to circle the track 25.5 times.

This weekend, I will find out if my new hobby helps me outrun a pack of zombies.  To coincide with my desire for greater endurance, my brother signed me up for my first race at 5 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 22, in Darlington, Md.  Run For Your Lives is a 5K obstacle course with a catch.  Besides racing against other participants, I will also be racing, climbing and crawling to avoid being eaten by zombies.

Similar to flag football, participants are given a belt prior to the race with flags hanging from it to symbolize health.  If zombies – or volunteers wearing lots of makeup and dirty clothes – manage to remove all health flags from the belt, the runner falls victim to the zombie virus and loses the race.

So, if I manage to finish the race while keeping at least one flag intact, I will sleep easy knowing that when the zombie apocalypse comes, I have what it takes to survive.  If I fail, at least I’ll transform into a zombie knowing a portion of my ticket sale will benefit the American Red Cross.

On Saturday, I will be rooting for the Wilmington City Ruff Roller Vamps from afar.  They too will up against the brain-hungry walking dead.