Remember that game you played as a teenager where you take the name of your first pet and the name of the first street you lived on to create your stripper/drag queen name? (Mine is Cuddles Hayes.) Well after I rented Whip It, that Drew Barrymore-directed movie about a roller derby team, I totally wanted to come up with my own roller derby girl name. The girl skaters in the movie had such hilarious, memorable but appropriate names, like Bloody Holly, Smashley Simpson and Iron Maven. But unfortunately, a cool skate name is harder to come by than a drag queen name. So I asked a bunch of our own L.A. Derby Dolls for some guidance and how they came up with their noms de skate.
Here are their stories:
Agnus Die: “My own name is a Latin pun (Agnus Dei means Lamb of God [or Jesus], so Agnus Die is Lamb of Death). Not that many people get it — mostly Catholic school survivors and history students — but it works for me.”
Double D: “A lot of people think that I came up with my name based on my bra size (not accurate and yes — it is my bra size). I was nicknamed Double D after attending a party where, of course, I had a lotta fun. My real name’s initials are D.D. and one of the party’s attendees thought I was ‘dangerous’ (me? really?) and thus, the Double D name. Double D also can be interpreted for ‘double danger.’ Beware on the track!”
Felon D. Generous: “So obviously it’s a take off on Ellen, who I think is awesome but the back story is I do family mediation but I also do felony victim/offender cases. I believe that youth can learn from mistakes and become conscious adults, especially if the offense is non-violent and the offender is remorseful. I tend to be lenient in that I have the punishment fit the crime, as much as possible, with no permanent record and no jail time.”
Madam Bomb: “After making an actual physical list of over 70 names (ranging from the punnily brilliant to the cringe-worthy), ‘Madam Bomb’ came to me while I was sitting in traffic on the way to practice. It couples my femininity and status as the proprietress of a brothel with my desire to destroy and obliterate in a historically tragic manner. And it beats ‘Ernest Outtamyhemingway’ by a long shot.”
Raven Seaward: “Born from an obsessed Arrested Development fan. When the day came to submit my name, I was still lukewarm about another AD-centric name I had come up with. Posting one last time to Facebook, Trixie Biscuit, a team skater and trainer for LADD, said ‘I’ve always wanted someone to do a well worded Seaward reference, like Raven Seaward.” And I was sold. Granted, not everybody understands the true genius of this name the first time they read it, but the look on people’s faces when it finally comes together is priceless.”
Hit the jump for how to come up with your own roller derby name.
It’s pretty tough, huh? Fortunately, Agnus Dei gave me 5 things to think about when trying to create a skate name.
- “Derby names are really personal — they’re your stage name, superhero persona, and how you’ll be known for the rest of your derby days.”
- “How you define your derby persona — aspirational, bawdy, silly, bitchy, strong — is completely up to you.”
- “Some people choose names similar to their real names; some go as far in the opposite direction as possible.”
- “You want to make sure there’s a good short version for people to scream out on the track — mouthfuls don’t fly when you’re going full speed on the bank.”
- “There is an international registry of derby names — you can’t choose a name that someone else has. Other than that, pretty much anything goes.”
So with that in mind, “Caroline Crackinheads” now seems too long. But when I started thinking along the lines of cocktails it became a lot of fun.
Just make sure when you think up your own names you look on the roller derby registry first to verify that your name hasn’t already been taken, because it’s more fun and more of a challenge to come up with a unique name.
Anyway, here are my cocktail-inspired picks below. I’ll let you christen me. Which one is my new roller derby name? Hmm, they all make me want to strap on a helmet and kneepads, try and knock some girls down and have a cocktail.