This post was originally featured at Derby News Network in November 2007.
Just for kicks, I decided to have a little fun with Google and see how many examples I could find of my favorite derby lede. I was not surprised that it was very easy:
Washington Post: “By day, the ladies of Scare Force One manage offices, direct fund drives and research neural functioning like typical Washingtonians. At night, they step into their alter egos and roll with the punches.”
NJ Monthly: “Annette Melillo doesn't look intimidating at 4 feet 9 inches and 95 pounds. But when she flexes her biceps, she puts Popeye to shame. By day, Melillo, 41, is a mild-mannered sales representative for a heating and air-conditioning company. She lives in North Plainfield, where she grows vegetables in her backyard. But three nights a week she changes her identity as surely as Clark Kent did ducking into phone booths.”
Los Angeles Downtown News: “Out of the suitcases came helmets, kneepads, short skirts and roller-skates. Soon, the women, who are mostly in their late 20s and early 30s, were whizzing around the rink at breakneck speeds. By day they are teachers, nurses, mothers and more. But at night they transform into the Los Angeles Derby Dolls, an all-female banked-track roller derby league.”
The Campus Chronicle (Savannah College of Art and Design): “By day, Savannah College of Art and Design graduate students Zelana Davis and Noelle Wedig can be found studying, attending classes and exploring Savannah, like many of their peers. But by night, they transform themselves into larger-than-life characters who skate fast, play hard and sport major attitude as members of the roller derby team the Savannah Derby Devils.”
The Spokesman Review: “The sport that once was billed as wrestling on wheels is making a comeback in cities across the U.S., giving teachers and attorneys and real estate agents the chance to adopt an alter ego and take out some of their frustrations from the 40-hours-and-then-some work week. ‘It’s kind of like being a rock star and superhero all at once,’ said Noel Christy, a third-grade teacher by day who transforms into ‘Violet Roshambo’ when she laces up the old-fashioned quad skates.”
Austin Mama: “By day, she's a network engineer for Broadwing Communications. By night, she's Dinah-Mite, jammer, pivot and blocker for The Hustlers, one of four teams in the Texas Rollergirls roller derby league.”
The News Observer: “By day, Rodi Steindl is a lab technician at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences. But on Saturday nights, she is Violet Femme, a Carolina Rollergirl.”
The Age: “BY DAY, Jeannie Polson, 27, works for a web design company in Fitzroy. But as Betty BamALam she’s found herself a full-time passion - president of the Victorian Roller Derby League.”
Myrollerskates.com: “By day, Sydney Kalnay is a librarian-type at the Rocky River Library where she's computer-bound all day as the library's ‘webmaster’. In school, she admits she was a bit of a ‘rebel’. But now, as ‘Vix’ as in ‘Vixen’ Smackey, Sydney is captain of the ‘Rolling Pin-Ups: Homicidal 50'ss Housewives on Roller Skates’.”
NPR: “Across America, hundreds of women are leading double lives. By day, they are teachers, mothers, waitresses, even reporters. But by night, they are performance athletes participating in a revival of one of America’s most violent sports: roller derby.”
The Olympian: “By day, they are teachers, state workers, students and mothers. In their skates, fishnet stockings and short skirts, they become ‘Knuckleberry Finn,’ ‘Mercyful Kate’ and ‘Surly Sioux.’”
Slam!: “The teams, with names such as the Hamilton Harlots and Gore-Gore Girls, consist of moms and managers, a bookkeeper, a realtor, waitresses, a musician. There is an astro-physicist by day. By night, they are mistresses of mayhem.”
C’mon journalism. I have faith in you. You can do it!