Be kind to your jam refs

Posted on October 15, 2013 by

8


Last night I jammed during scrimmage for the first time in a looooong time. It’s a credit to all the lovely people at LCD. I had built up such a fear of jamming – of being stuck behind a front wall and then blamed by my team for not scoring any points. Over time I just became more and more fearful until, finally, I gave it up and became a blocker only. Which is fine because I fricken love blocking and all my derby day dreams involve kick arse blocking.

must.chase.shiny.jammer

must.chase.shiny.jammer

The first thing I noticed when I joined LCD was that everyone was absolutely fine with my no jamming policy. The lack of pressure was the first thing that helped me to relax about jamming. Then, over time, I realised that they don’t diss their jammers. Everyone is congratulated on their efforts. Full stop. While I was quietly observing this ridiculously supportive environment, Smack started campaigning me to jam. I guess over time he sort of implanted the desire in my subconscious because during our girls vs boys scrimmage last night, VB gently goaded me into jamming and I found myself agreeing quite readily.

Union Smack

Union Smack

Victoria Bitter

Victoria Bitter

I jammed twice in the scrimmage. The first time was as expected – completely adrenalin fuelled and mindless. The second one was a slight improvement in that I was thinking “hmm, I should get lower when Dino is trying to hit me” but still shit in that I didn’t actually get lower. So, yeah, not so fun.

Dr Dinomight loves a good block at the front of the pack

Dr Dinomight loves a good block at the front of the pack

What I did like is having my jam ref back. I love that moment when you get out of the pack and sort of check in with your jam ref, even if it’s just a quick glance. I know they’re impartial but I always feel like the jam ref is on my side. They’ll call a penalty on me if I force them to but they want to see me achieve. That’s how it feels anyway.

Bear Grylled used to often be my jam ref

Bear Grylled used to often be my jam ref

Feeling that again reminded me of something that I overheard ages ago that really got me thinking. It was two jam refs chatting and one said “oh, I had to ref against [team name].” It was that word “against”. I felt protective and incensed that a team could be so hostile to the refs that they felt like jam reffing for them was an adversarial activity.

The reffing world lost Melody when she became a derby girl

The reffing world lost Melody when she became a derby girl

Be nice to your jam ref. In fact, be nice to all your refs. If you need more reason, check out this article that Devils shared with LCD. This one really made me stop and think about how I react to calls in the heat of the moment.

Devilspawn: is she the devil's pawn or devil spawn..?

Devilspawn: is she the devil’s pawn or devil spawn..?

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Posted in: LimboLand