Be the Duck

Ducks secrete oil which they spread over their feathers. This keeps their feathers from getting water logged and causing them to sink. Derby players need to acquire a similar coat to keep their team and league drama free. I’ve hit on squashing the derby drama bug before, but since this is the off season for most teams, I think it’s a good time to delve further into this subject, so everyone can start the new season in a positive frame of mind.

Derby players are told not to go for the revenge hit during a game. When you let someone get to you, you stop paying attention to what you should be doing. It’s the same in every aspect of life, including other parts of derby. It’s very easy to dwell on things said at practice and overanalyze them. That girl said you were holding back during a hitting drill. You caught someone giving you a weird look. One player is throwing a party, and you aren’t invited. Be the duck. Let it slide right off.

fly together
Photo courtesy of Benny Yee

If you feel like you do need to say or do something, make it a positive statement. Compliment the person on a skill. Tell them they look nice today. Invite the entire team to a girls’ night out. Be creative. The more you concentrate on slights, or perceived slights, the more you lose sight on what’s important: the game.

Of course, there are some situations where this won’t work, but if you make the decision to be a positive force on your team, it will spread. Soon you’ll have a whole league of ducks. And what do ducks do? Ducks fly together.


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