Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

The Ladies of NOtown: Pookie

Pookie Face.JPG

The ladies of NOtown Roller Derby are back in action Saturday night, hosting a bruising bash at the Fresno Fairgrounds vs. the OC Roller Girls.

It’s always fascinating to get to know the ladies off the track, so we’ve asked a few of the NOtown gals to slow their roll and answer some questions for The Beehive.

Our series started Monday with Rita Ville and continued Tuesday with Lucky Eddie. Today we get to know co-captain Pookie.

Free stuff alert: You can enter to win tickets to Saturday’s bout here.

Real Name:Christina Lewis
Age: 23
From: Fresno
Number: 49
Position: Pivot and Blocker

How did you get initially get involved in roller derby?
I was a competitive artistic skater for many years, and was looking for another skating outlet. I was originally going to start playing hardball hockey, but a friend asked me to check out a roller derby practice with her. I didn’t even know what roller derby was, but I have been playing ever since that first practice in April 2007.

Pookie Jammer Hit.jpg

What was about it about derby that drew you in?
The fact that I found a new and thrilling roller sport to play, and the teamwork. As a competitive artistic skater there was no team aspect, you compete as an individual against other individuals. The team aspect of roller derby was quite a change for me. Working together and relying on each other on the track was a new experience. I love executing new strategies with my teammates.

What’s been your proudest moment in a bout thus far?
I am always proud when skating with my teammates. If I had to choose one moment, it would be when I saw the statistics for my pack of blockers from a recent game, our defense was tight, and we only had 7 points scored against us for the entire game. Our team work and strategy was responsible for that, and it makes me proud.

What’s the scariest thing you’ve encountered while playing roller derby?
Injuries. One of the scariest moments was when I broke my ankle in three places in 2008 at a game and drove home six hours before going to the hospital. But I don’t really worry about myself getting injured anymore, I worry about my teammates. For me it is worse to see one of my girls get injured. That moment when you see them fall and not get up, that is one of the scariest moments for me.

In retrospect, was there a moment earlier in your life where you showed derby tendencies?
Not that I can think of, just skating. I have always been more comfortable skating than being on my own feet. Knowing how to skate is crucial to playing at a higher level in this sport.

It seems like most of the NoTown girls have their own style. What’s yours?
I am known for my outrageous and colorful booty shorts. I am always on the lookout for material in bright colors and crazy patterns. Some of my shorts have even earned nicknames, such as, “Stained Glass Church Windows on A…cid” or “Hypno-toad”. Many skaters covet my shorts, especially the ones made out of “vintage” lycra. Outside of derby you will usually find me in jeans and a t-shirt, still colorful of course.

It’s always fun to learn about the secret lives of derby girls. What’s your life like away from derby?
I am a recent Fresno State graduate. I just earned my B.A. in political science. Usually my days were filled with work and school, now they are filled with looking for a new career. Being a grown up is no fun! I also enjoy DIY home repairs and makeovers and I am currently working on a project.

How do people react when you tell them you play roller derby?
Most people are shocked and don’t believe me. They think I am just sweet and quiet and could never play such an aggressive sport. Then they start to ask questions about what it is like to play and get really excited that I play roller derby. I usually get them to come and see for themselves.

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The best thing about being a NoTown derby girl is … Playing such a fast-paced, strategic sport.
Other than derby, the sport you’re really good at it is … competitive roller skating.
What gets you pumped up before a bout is … the night before I listen to music and visualize the game and my skating, the music has to be something fast-paced
One thing people would be surprised to learn about you is … I am actually extremely shy
The No. 1 reason someone should come to a NoTown bout is … to see an amazing sport and great skating.

Tickets cost $10 in advance at SBI Boardshop, Twee Boutique, Heroes Sports Lounge or online at Brown Paper Tickets. They’ll cost $12 at the door. A portion of the proceeds benefit Fresno Bully Rescue. Here’s the flier for Saturday’s bout with more info. (Sidenote: “Wheel Housewives” is a pretty rad name, OC, well played.)


[photos: David Costa Photography]

Responses to "The Ladies of NOtown: Pookie"

confused maybe says:

WWE on skates.. Sports rules.

So true, with so much to learn and think of. Thanks !!!

Harmy says:

I <3 my Pookie Pie!