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A Brief Rant About the Fate of Pluto and How it Barely Relates to Derby At All

by Kasey Bomber, for #11, The Galactic Issue

pluto and friends

When I was in second grade I drew a diagram of the solar system on butcher paper for my science class. The sun was about the size of a medicine ball, artistically resembled at least half the tramp stamps in Texas, and wore sunglasses. Because, you know, the sun really needs to shield its eyes from its own awesomeness. All the other planets sort of had this half-ass quality to them that indicated that I really had no interest in Uranus, Mars, or Saturn and its jewelry, but Pluto my friends! Oh, Pluto was beautiful. Probably having something to do with the fact that “he’s really short” was my number one qualification for beauty at the time in the opposite sex, I was a big fan of the tiny little adorable underdogs. I pulled out my Periwinkle colored-crayon and I started coloring that sweet little chunk of galactic ice by making a bold little heart in the middle and coloring outward like a fucking radiation of love. Can you have a crush on a planet? Well, apparently there are people who try to fuck buildings, so I don’t see why not.

Though our love was not to be – long distance relationships are a real bitch – I still had a soft spot for the farthest of our planets when suddenly, in 2006, some goddamn motherfuckers met up in Prague and said, “Oh, yeah, we were totally just kidding, Pluto. You’re not a part of this club.” I’m sorry, what? Now, they say, it hasn’t met the committee’s new arbitrary conditions for what it takes to become a planet. Those who challenged the ruling of the interplanetary referees were told unceremoniously that the ruling stands (and we all know what that fucking feels like, now don’t we?). In order to be a planet, an object must: 1. Orbit around the sun (score one for Pluto), 2. Have enough gravity to pull itself into the shape of a sphere (hey-o Pluto!), and 3. “Clear the neighborhood” of its orbit (say what now?). Basically, the object has to be the dominant gravitational body in its orbit so that everything else around it either gets eaten alive or gets repelled into outer space. For those of you jocks out there who are wondering what the fuck I’m talking about – think of derby as a planet in the neighborhood of you. In your life it has the most gravity and everything can either join it or fuck right off.

Poor Pluto...

But the real pisser is that some dudes just sat around and VOTED Pluto out of the solar system. And, really, let’s just examine what this means for the sacristy of everything else. If a fucking planet isn’t safe from committee rule changes than what is? How can you possibly defend against something as cosmically trivial as the rules allowances for Slow Derby and counter-clockwise skating when officials could really just say “If scientists can decide that Pluto is not a planet, we can decide that it’s okay to skate counter-clockwise, illegal to hold up signs that say “Boo” using more than 8 o’s, and required that even the largest among us is only allowed to have a sliver of contrasting color down the side of our jerseys.” It’s the trump excuse forever, rivaling only “I can’t get my own beer because I’ve got a cat in my lap” for ultimate excuse world domination. But, just to be clear on the bright side of all this, we can totally use the Pluto example for good in derby, too. For the sake of this example, Oly will be our figurative Pluto. In re: Three new criteria for WFTDA league membership. 1. Team must be comprised of all women, (ok, Oly, you’re in), 2. Team must have coach who can be amusingly ridiculed (Sensitive Ponytail: check!), 3. Team must all reside in the city in which it is representing (wuah wuah wuahhhhhhh). By the “Pluto Rule,” Oly is no longer a planet. Perhaps we didn’t need Pluto after all.

HELLARAD ISSUE 11, THE GALACTIC ISSUE! To be released at the following events:
Wild West Showdown in Bremerton, WA March 2-4th
March Radness Training Camp in Los Angeles March 8-11th
Cruz Skate Shop 4 Year Anniversary in San Francisco March 8-11th

Contact Moxxxie at wearehellarad@gmail.com for advertising info!

2 comments to A Brief Rant About the Fate of Pluto and How it Barely Relates to Derby At All

  • Hooah!Girl

    This gave me a hard on. Awesome geekery!

  • Trixie D

    Holy fuck on a stick! That article is easily the funniest Hellarad article I have read since the last time I read a funny Hellarad article, which was probs wrote by Bomber. I don’t understand half of that sciencer-tific stuff, but you sound smart. I understand the part about the cat, but not the rest. The Gaylactic issue is totes going to rule!

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