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In Character with Texine

by: TRIBUNE PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER ONSTOTT - Texine of the Rose City Rollers says her hips are registered weapons. Not really, but they can be dangerous.
By day she’s a gym fitness instructor, but by show time she’s Texine of the Rose City Rollers. More muscle than speed, Texine has been preparing for the Rollers’ Dec. 1 Veterans Memorial Coliseum exhibition bout against the derby team from Seattle. Keep in mind, when derby girls say they’re preparing to kick off their season, you might want to watch their footwork.

Portland Tribune: What’s the hardest you’ve been hit in your life?

Texine: It was roller derby. I was in a training program called Fresh Meat and one of the known villains, her name is Smackya Sideways, she was one of my coaches but she was also playing on one of the teams. We were in a scrimmage and she said, “Texine, I’m going to hit you as hard as I can.”

Tribune: Somebody has just told me they are going to hurt me, I don’t just stand there. What did you do?

Texine: She was smiling. So I said, “Bring it.” I knew what I was doing, what I was in for.

Tribune: Could you hit her back or did you just have to take it?

Texine: Hitting her back would have been the best move. Instead, she got the drop on me. I didn’t see it coming.

Tribune: Wait a minute. She’s just told you she’s going to smack you and you’re telling me you didn’t see it coming?

Texine: It didn’t happen immediately. I was brand new and I was focusing on staying upright on my skates. Jammers were jamming, blockers were blocking and I had forgotten about her promise to me.

Tribune: So we’re talking what, 20 minutes later?

Texine: Twenty seconds. Have you seen roller derby? A lot happens in 20 seconds. Smackya hit me so hard I felt my teeth rattle in my head.

Tribune: If we had met 10 years ago, would it have been predictable that someday you’d be smacking people in roller derby?

Texine: Probably. Roller derby has not introduced me to my aggressive side. Roller derby has given me direction for my aggressive side.

Tribune: Outside of roller derby, what are we talking about?

Texine: I haven’t gotten into a fist fight since college and I graduated in 2006, so I think that’s pretty good.

Tribune: What’s with this Gorgeous George you talk about on your bio page (the roller derby team’s online information page)?

Texine: George is a friend of mine from yoga class.

Tribune: Roller derby and yoga? That seems an unlikely mix.

Texine: It’s the perfect yin to my yang.

Tribune: But have you ever hauled off and smacked somebody in yoga class, or wanted to?

Texine: For professional reasons I cannot disclose that information.

Tribune: Weirdest thing you’ve seen at roller derby?

Texine: In 2010 I was captain of the Portland B String All Stars. We had a team visiting from California and we were handing them their asses. They never gave up, but at one point their jammer got hit three times in a row before hitting the ground and she threw up on the track.

Tribune: And this is your home track, right?

Texine: Right.

Tribune: This is your living room.

Texine: She had the nerve to throw up on our good carpet. Our events director immediately jumped out on to the track with a towel and sanitizing spray.

Tribune: Was the spray for her or the track?

Texine: Yes. Both. The crowd was rolling. With the three hits it started with “Oooh, ow, and then OHHH!” Then all of a sudden she pukes and the sound turns to “ugh.”

Tribune: Ever get recognized outside the rink?

Texine: Once I had a 10-year-old kid on a skateboard tell me he wasn’t impressed by my roller skating or roller derby — this is a snotty little kid — because skateboarding is harder and cooler.

Tribune: Did you hip-check him off his board?

Texine: That would be totally illegal. My hips are registered weapons.

Tribune: Funniest thing you’ve ever heard at a roller derby track?

Texine: There’s this one (male) skater who is notorious for crop dusting the track. That means he’s breaking wind as he’s skating by.

Tribune: On purpose?

Texine: Very purposely. It’s the poop joke of strategies.

Tribune: Vomit. Crop dusting. From what I’m hearing, when I take my daughter to your matches we shouldn’t stand too close to the track.

Texine: What are you protecting her from?