Welcome back to the 2018 season! We're thrilled to learn more about the amazing people who make up our league, and to start us off, we're interviewing BAMPF! You've seen her jam for the all-stars Muñecas Muertas and our home teams. This year she is is our head of training, and we're all excited to hear more about her!
Let's start with the obvious: Where, when, and why did you start playing roller derby?
When I lived in Denver I had a few friends that played. I was always interested in trying but never had the time. It seems like a sport that had everything I was interested in; strong women, contact and high-intensity, and self-expression.
I moved to Los Alamos and found myself with a lot of free time, so when I was approached by a couple of women who wanted to start a league in Los Alamos, I jumped at the chance. A month later I bought my first skates and was hooked.
Can you tell us the origin of your derby name?
I was pretty interested in jamming and wanted a name that fit that position. I came up with several ideas but nothing felt right.
I am a bit of a nerd. One of my biggest nerdy interests is comics, and one of my earliest comic fandoms was X-men. Nightcrawler was one of my favorite characters, and BAMPF! is the sound effect made when he teleports. It came to mind and immediately clicked for me.
You are an incredibly talented and smart jammer. Is this a position you feel came naturally to you?
I really enjoyed jamming from the moment I started playing the game, so I am not sure if position came naturally or if it just felt that way because I focused so hard on that position during every practice. I do like to joke that the concerts I went to in my high school days were pre-derby jammer training. I was always trying to get close to the stage by dodging through the crowd. Plus, I used to love the mosh pits!
I recently had the pleasure of blocking with you at a scrimmage. How do you feel about that as a change of pace vs. jamming?
I have really come to enjoy blocking. It is definitely more complicated than jamming, but I love the team work aspect. When jamming there are times you work with your team but with blocking you have to work and support each other as a unit the entire time in order to succeed.
You're well known in our league as someone with mad costuming skills. Do you mind sharing your favorite cosplay?
This is an incredibly hard question to answer. I have several favorites for different reasons:
My April O'Neil is close to my heart because it was my first project that I sewed completely myself. (Like, first EVER! Even in high school, my dad had to finish my Home Ec project because I had a break down about my inability to sew).
Rocket or X-23 are probably my favorite characters.
Evil-lyn was the most complicated costume I ever made. She is the cosplay that makes me feel the most accomplished.
And finally, can you tell us a bit about what your life outside of derby and costuming looks like? In other words - what is your 'day job'?
I have worked as a small animal veterinary assistant for over 16 years. After spending several years switching between veterinary medicine and makeup artist, I finally decided vet med was my definite profession of choice. Since then I have gone through school to be fully certified as a veterinary technician, started working with large animals and taking any opportunity I can to work with any animal.
Long term, I would love to be somewhere that allows me to do medicine with wild animals as well as domesticated.