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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Skater Profile: a Klose Up with Kutthroat Kandie

Skater Name: Kutthroat Kandie

Number: 20
Signifies NASCAR Driver Tony Stewart, (now #14).

Team Affiliations: Nor Cal Roller Girls, Sac City Rollers

Derby Debut: February 7th 2006

Skating Background: Self Taught

Preferred Position: #3 Power Blocker

Accomplishments: Co-Captain of the undefeated VooDoo Dolls of NCRG’s inaugural season, Captain 
of the Messy Betties, skater in AllStar teams the NCRG Hustlers and NorCal Select, fresh meat coach for NCRG and Sac City, and voted league’s most dedicated player by the Nor Cal Roller Girls in 2006.

Long Term Derby Goals: To coach a WFTDA team and
"to share the love and passion of the sport and teach the Derby Gospel" 

Derby Wife: Rosie RamPage #1200, (formerly DJ Lois)
of NCRG/SCR/SCDG affiliations

Favorite Quote: “Derby Girls Roll in Packs!”

Derby Theme Song: The Dollyrots version of 
‘Brand New Key’ 

On a recent trip to Chico, where I went to college and joined my first team, I had the pleasure of meeting with one of my dearest friends and fellow derby sisters: Coach Kutthroat Kandie, AKA Ronda Reid. Kandie was the Co-Captain of my first team the VooDoo Dolls and the Captain of my second team the Messy Betties. After leaving NCRG, we made a 2 hour commute together from Chico to Sacramento to be a part of the Sac City Rollers. A coach and teacher, Kandie has been a personal mentor for me in derby. Much of what I know as a skater I learned directly from her, and she certainly taught me what a sisterhood could be. I learned how to play my first competitive sport with her and learned what a team was with her. I really value our friendship and feel incredibly lucky to have her in my life. I love you Kandie!

This is Kandie whipping me ahead by a finger. A single finger!

Kutthroat has been skating her entire life. Members of her family were big NY Chiefs fans and growing up every Saturday was derby night in her house. She says the four-jammer concept was difficult for her to grasp but after all, she was just a tot. An admirer of Ann Calvello from the start, Kandie’s grandmother gave her real metal skates with a key when she was just four. She hasn’t stopped skating since. She was drawn to the Nor Cal Roller Girls by an ad in Chico’s local paper The Synthesis, but has always loved roller derby. As a child Kandie wanted to be a derby skater when she grew up and emulated the styles of speed and figure skaters in order to become a “well rounded derby player”.

Kandie's First Skates

Back in the day Chico had a rink with a real wooden floor. It was small, dark, warped and with skaters going the wrong direction, but Kandie's skating talent grew over the years she spent on it’s floors. “I would skate down Laburnum Ave to 7th street and head to Spinning Wheels (Wooden floor .. clockwise skating) every weekend and skate… Speed skating back then was everyone at the same time: no age separation. I’d skate with them, goin’ into turn one I would biff it sometimes and fall HUGE, getting my fingers ran over every time. I learned to fall small and tuck my fingers by the time I was 5.” It was her family’s weekly derby nights around the television which gave Kandie a base foundation and strong understanding of game strategy. And when asked what she attributes her skating talent to Kandie replied “The dedication it takes to improve yourself, the desire to achieve something that as a child you were totally taken by, a mother that let me go to all night skates so I could watch the older kids and figure it out.” And of course, “The smooth streets in down town Chico that I skated up and down early in the morning and late at night building endurance and speed.”

Kandie's favorite Derby skaters of the past are:
Ann Calvello/Toughie Midge/Joan Weston/Gloria Mac/Judy Arnold/Cliff Butler/Carlos Ray.  Look their footage up on YouTube and you will understand why! 

Her picks for today's Up and Coming Derby stars are:
My Derby Wife Rosie Rampage NCRG/SCR/SCDG jams like she's threading a needle and blocks like she's a Sherman tank ... Slapjack from NCRG, Auntie Social (Mad Luv Gurl) Amazing Jammer AMAZING She has crazy control over her body and is able to avoid anyone and anything, Lil Punk from SCR .. just go to a Sac City Rollers bout and it will all be clear to ya ... FireCrotch/Scratcher in the eye, Blood Claudia and Rea Derange of Rose City Rollers  ..  Beatrix Slaughter/ Beyonslay/Suzy Hotrod/Donna Matrix of GGRD All these ladies are amazing to watch, their personal style/technique the way they flow with the pack it just amazes me and makes me want to bring that out in every derby girl I can have the pleasure of coaching.

On the flat track Kutthroat Kandie is an incredible skater with a thorough understanding of pack strategy. A powerhouse blocker who really knows how to give an assist, Kandie is an excellent skater to have on your side. As a jammer, I never feared entering any pack with Kandie up ahead looking over her shoulder: Complete Trust. In addition to being an amazing roller derby skater with a professional grade comprehension of the game on the track, Kutthroat Kandie has consummate coaching and teaching skills. Being a 5 star skater encompasses a broad range of talents. I was fortunate and roller derby seemed to come naturally to me. I picked up many things easily. I did a tomahawk probably the first time I tried it. But let me tell you: I suck at teaching. I fail completely when it comes to having to break it down and explain anything to anyone. I can’t even understand myself how I do things. How do I do crossovers? I don’t know.

But like skating comes naturally to me, teaching comes naturally to Kandie. She is a 5 star skater. Amazing on and off the track, Kandie is not only the one to go to for an assist- she’s your gal for all things derby. While hanging, we got to talking about skating. I explained to her a picture I had seen of derby play- where I thought a penalty was being committed.

(Here is the picture for reference).

I was asking Kandie: How is it legal to put your arms out like that? Aren’t they all practically linking arms? How can a jammer even break through that? She just got into the derby stance and said “stand up”, I stood up and she got beside me like a fellow blocker and started explaining the whole thing to me, demonstrating the entire play right there in her living room. When I expressed that I wasn’t sure how to properly teach T-Stops, she explained where my weight distribution should be and said “You have to tell them about the inner side of the skate and the outer side of the skate. Actually touch their skate where you want them to transfer their weight so they’ll remember” (all the while she is touching my shoe in demonstration).

For Example:
Inside                              Outside

Kandie will probably think it is funny how remarkable I think all this was, but she really is great with breaking it down. After my visit with Kandie I was telling Uncle Social about what great coaching advice I had gotten hanging out with Kandie but expressed to him my sadness: “I love having Kandie as a resource. She offers so much help and great advice and gives me a lot of confidence in how to teach others but what she doesn’t understand when she's encouraging me and says ‘it’ll be easy’ is: I’ll never be as good as her”. I mean, everyone is good at something, and Kandie is good at giving the gift of derby through her amazing coaching skills. We all have our niche. Kandie will teach me coaching skills but I can only hope to be as good as her some day, nothing can replace her tone, style and approach. You’ll just have to see her in action. Kandie has an amazing coaching manual she has thoughtfully and thoroughly composed and I’ve encouraged her to copyright it. She absolutely has the ability to coach on a national, professional level and I encourage any league to enlist her talents as a strategy and technical coach, (for a fee of course). I give her my full endorsement as a modern day derby star.

In addition to being an outstanding skater and coach, Kutthroat Kandie has limitless professional skills and talents. She has 10 years of radio experience as on-air personality Radio Ronda, (with one of the sexiest radio voices I’ve ever heard) and is an exceptional photographer. She says about being behind the camera: "[It's] a passion and hobby, so many untold stories to be discovered through my lens".

 This is one of my favorites:
You can view more of RawDawg photography here: www.myspace.com/rawdawgphotog

Irish and Native American, Kandie has an avid interest in genealogy and paranormal investigating and considers herself a “child of the olde world”. Seeing the connectedness in everything Kandie noted: “when we played the championship in 06' and won UNDEFEATED, it was on [Tony Stewart’s] birthday March 20th, and we were both #20, and he won the Shootout that night .. so, tell me positive waves aren’t real, lol!”

She is not impressed by fame and finds her personal heroes in everyday people. “To me, Role Models are those who have been to hell and dug themselves out to become stronger, positive, self made men & women. You can see in their face the trials and tribulations and see the strength they have built up and the better person they have become due to overcoming something in their lives. Those are my role models.” I’m right there with ya Kandie. I am forever indebted to her for the skating skills she has taught me over the years, (and coaching skills she will hopefully teach me in the future) but I feel more fortunate to have such a dynamic and amazing woman as a close friend. She is unquestioningly one of my role models.

Her desire to continue to pursue roller derby comes in an epic illustration of the awesomeness of derby, and Kutthroate Kandie herself. She says, “The Roar of the crowd when their favorite skater is victorious in the jam, the desire to belong to a group of people with the same curiosity to become a Bad Ass, and a second family that loves the sport as much as I do.”  

Let’s close this blog out with a music video from The Dollyrots
featuring Kandie’s roller derby theme song: ‘Brand New Key’


  1. Gurl ... Thanks for all the props! .. I <3 U Auntie and you know I'll always be there for you and your league!

  2. You Rock Kandie!!! Great story about one of my all time favorite people! Rock On Girl!