Published on September 25th, 2011 | by Eric RAWK0
Rawk by Masonite Burn
RAWK City: Did You Drive Here?
I like surprises. I especially like surprises that turn out really well…
Rolling into a normal Rat City Wednesday scrimmage practice I saw an unfamiliar face hanging out with a few of our spectacular NSOs, The Lightening Fists of Science. I didn’t really think much of it and went to stretch and get geared up for practice.
While I’m getting my skates on our practice guest comes over and introduces himself as Molotov Mike from Australia’s Victoria Roller Derby League. I’m instantly stoked as that’s my friend Harry Spot’er’s league and thus Molotov is a referee (at this point he’s got stripes and skates on) in his crew. As it turns out Molotov is also a solid referee, has great taste in music and is a good dude. He is also vegan but nobody is fuckin perfect.
Fast forward about two weeks, another Rat City scrimmage practice and an Oly scrimmage practice and Molotov and I are driving down to Portland for the Boston Massacre’s weekend versus Rose City, Rat City and Jet City that Rose CIty hosted. When I picked him up he’d just had a shitty interaction with a drunk guy; Australians are not familiar with small talk and I’ve noticed that at some point while they’re in the States it always leads to an awkward situation with a stranger. He was surprised I was listening to hip hop, BK-One’s Rádio Do Canibal, to which I explained that growing up in the 80s & 90s in the NYC area pretty much assured hip hop held at least a small place in my musical preferences.
The conversation bounced around from our distaste for the average people in each of our respective countries, mocking politics in our respective counties and those that took great interest in them, personalities in the derby officiating world, Taco Bell, his RollerCon experiences, officiating derby, how his adventures visiting music and movie landmarks in the Pacific Northwest, girls and by the time we got to music we’d hit Portland.
Excerpts/highlights from these conversations included someone asking Molotov if he’d driven from Australia, Molotov declaring the smoothie he got from Taco Bell as the best smoothie he’s ever had and me explaining that despite all of the times Americans make fun of Canada in movies and TV Canada is really awesome and kicked our assess in the War of 1812.
Portland has this awesome pizza place, Apizza Scholl, (yeah that’s right, there’s actually a pizza place outside of NY and Chicago that I greatly enjoy) that I’d been looking forward to hitting up before the bout. I tried to coordinate with Dolemout and his car of officials heading down for the bout that night to pickup dinner for everyone but when I got there the place was hella crowded.
I opted to nix that idea about 38 seconds after walking in the door and we just went right to the market around the block from Rose City’s hangar as we were headed there anyway to take care of Molotov’s meat & cheese hating stomach. Needless to say he was loving it as “vegan” is a foreign world in Australia but in Portland there are as many vegan options as there are strippers.
It was really great to see the Boston ladies!! I hadn’t seen them since I was out in Boston over a year ago when Oly went out to bout them. I missed Shattered, Fevs, Krush and the Massacre boyfriends but it was rad to see Bumpus back and meet some of the new (to me) skaters.
After the bout Rose City reminded us that they know how to throw an afterparty. They had 2 pies each of about 8 different pizzas; not from Apizza Scholl but they were edible. Molotov’s mind was blown as they had vegan pizza that didn’t taste like cardboard someone cut up a tomato on. There was also free PBR for anyone with a league-related wristband from the bout. Now I don’t drink beer but I do know how to order beers and hand them off to people that look like they need a beer.
(Aside: if it bums you out that I don’t drink beer please take a moment to accept the fact that I like things that taste good and you greatly enjoy a beverage that looks and taste like my morning piss when I take my vitamins & supplements before bed)
It was my buddy Scratcher in the Eye’s birthday so I drank some whiskey with her and got the fuck out of the outdoor are at the bar where everyone was hanging out in a cloud of cigarette smoke. (aside again: cigarettes are more gross than beer) Instead of suffering that I opted to order another Jameson neat and play pinball until we were ready to be out. (aside again again: I fuckin love pinball)
Besides derby, Portland means two other things I love, food and Randy Pan. I crashed at the Fortress of Solid Dude (Randy’s home) and kicked it with Randy all weekend. That was soopa awesome as always and not much more really needs to be said about it besides that we discovered the greatness that is the Avengers animated show from last year that’s not on Netflix (but stand warned that the theme song is miserable and will work it’s way into your brain like syphilis).
…Wait wasn’t I talking about food? I had plans for this weekend and though I did adjust them slightly my tummy won a lot over the 3 days. Saturday morning a crew of us hit Screen Door and I got to indulge in their chicken and waffles for the first time since my first time having them over 4 months ago. For those that don’t know I fuckin love chicken and waffles. Also for those that don’t know, Screen Door has a slew of amazing things on their menu but I’ve yet to resist their chicken and waffles. They had lemon ricotta griddle cakes that I probably would have gotten in addition but I had a 2 bouts to ref in a few hours. As it turns out I opted to save a chicken breast and 1/4 of a waffle to have for breakfast before Sunday’s bout.
Saturday’s bouts were rad and I’ll note that the Rat City vs Boston bout was a roller coaster. What does that mean you ask? It means whatever it fuckin well means to you cause I’m not getting into detail about it. After the bout I had my mind on one thing and one thing only, the duck fat seared burger that Reed D’Rulz was telling me about the night before at the Burnside Brewing Company.
Randy did not pass delicious and went directly to the afterparty while Molotov, Hangin Chad, BiPola Lola and myself made the right choice. The burger was everything I dreamed it would be and was complemented well by the plate of pickled goodies they also offered. Sprinkling hops on the fries is a cute idea being that it’s a brewery but big surprise I thought it was a negative, flavor-wise. However their amazing house-made catsup and locally brewed dark cherry soda quickly had me not caring about barley at all.
Sunday the leftover chicken and waffles made for a magical breakfast, the bout was over before noon and Rose City hosted a brunch that was free for officials and Boston, was yummy and came with a bloody mary (I like mine with gin. thanks for making that happen Mobi-wan Kenobi!). There was hangouts galore at brunch and then it was time for the drive home. Molotov and I dove right into the music conversation that was looming from the drive down and took turns showing one another bands and tossing on bands we both knew and dug.
This is already long enough so I’m going to close here. I’d like to say that I left Portland really happy that I escaped a 3 day hangout in the city without going to a single strip club. I don’t like strip clubs outside of Portland and I’m not really into them in general, but it seems like every time I’m in Portland I’m there with someone who hasn’t been and I feel obligated to show them the best strip clubs in the country (or so I assume, as they’re the only ones I’m not miserable at). So thanks to Molotov (and indirectly thanks to his girlfriend) who said, and I’m paraphrasing, I don’t want to go to strip clubs when I’ve got a great girlfriend who’s on the other side of the world. Ain’t that the cutest!!?
I’m all over the place so who the fuck knows where I’ll be writing from next.