Featured Skater of the Month - May 2014
Bruise Springsteen #8055
Started Playing Derby: November 2012
Team: Shove City, South Jersey Derby All-Stars
How did you choose your derby name & number?
I do like The Boss, but I was actually trying to help a friend figure out her skate name and decided I would steal it for myself. The name was born in the USA, and I do wear it proudly through the streets of Philadelphia. As a Seinfeld fan, I’ve always wanted to be Buck Naked, but I dealt that a death blow. An unexpected result of the name is that people call me Bruise, which I do enjoy. I'm certain that plenty of people have no idea my name is Mike. Well, until now.
What led you to roller derby?
The whole thing was purely coincidental. My friend Erin was all about derby, so I went with her - dressed like a cockroach - to Halloween party full of derby people. I was introduced to our captain, who showed me the way. Now I’m MADE.
What was your biggest hurdle when you first started derby?
I think you really need to learn by playing in a game. You learn more in one game than 2 months of practice. Honestly, my biggest hurdle was figuring out the gear. There’s a wheel for every day of the week. Here a boot, there a plate, everywhere a new skate. The better you get, the more your gear updates. It’s been a while since I’ve had a full set of Poisons on these feet. In a more literal sense, my biggest hurdle was that chair we would jump on the banked track. Now there’s a moment when you really have to trust your own abilities.
What does being a South Jersey Derby member mean to you?
I think of being on SJRD as one giant family on wheels. There’s lots of positivity and camaraderie. I think half of my friends are from derby. It’s like a gang without the killing. Well, except that once you’re in, the only way out is in a box!
What would you recommend for a new rookie joining the league?
Ask questions. Where should I stand? Who should I hit? Who am I? Why am I here? What is the purpose of life? What’s this lump?
What is your derby goal?
I think everyone’s main goal is to play in a game and score points / smash someone in an epic manner. I was able to do that early on, so the rest is smooth gravy. My goal now is just to stay as injury-free as possible in order to play as much as I can before my body fades into dust like a character in a Mazzy Star song.
Any notes you'd like to share?
The deepest part of the ocean is about 36,000 feet deep. That is one of the deepest things I can say to you.I would definitely like to thank SJRD for being a bunch of cool cats. I'd like to thank the men's team (Shove City / Deviants) for being a bunch of lunatics who leave it all on the track every time.
What is a fun fact about yourself?
I can skate backwards like the miracle love child of Johnny Weir and Brian Boitano, but I cannot for the life of me skate with my feet in first position. It boggles my brain to no end. If you know how to do this, I'm jealous of you.