So every basketball game has a theme, how do you pick them?
I figured that people don’t read emails if they are boring so I thought I might as well make them interesting or funny if I wanted anyone to come at all. Since every email was basically saying the same information every week, I started by just googling "dogs and basketball" images. Some weeks I’d find myself in a google image black hole looking up Jesus playing basketball as trophy sets, or finding pictures of the Jersey Shore cast playing basketball. I would try to mix up the text too by making up inspirational quotes, like "Failure is a team trusted together in yourself try."
How did the team start?
Most of my girlfriends are in transient places, moving out of New York, or back to New York. I wanted to see everyone together and thought that making a sporting event with NO BOYS, no pressure and no skills required would be a team I’d theoretically join- maybe others would too. I didn’t want there to be any competition or stress on performance, even if we are playing a “competitive sport.” So if you were cool with your teammates being bad that was pretty much the only requirement for anyone to join. It started with an email to just a few people. Now, through word of mouth, we have over 300 people on our email list.
I played basketball when I was younger and I was BY FAR the worst, (I literally made one basket, the whole season I think.) But I remember it was still so much fun. Basketball is also one of the most accessible sports in New York, with the amount of courts everywhere and the little equipment. It doesn’t take much commitment for people to join.
Other than basketball, what do you feel unites the team?
The first time we gathered some people brought a friend, or came on their own. Some had never played or even seen a basketball before. They still showed up and played. I think these girls are so brave to show up without knowing what it’s like. That bravery makes you instantly a part of the team. And at the end of the day we are all on the same team.
If you could retire right now, would basketball be a part of your ritual?
I think heaven is a place where all your friends are, even if it’s in Hell, Hell! I think I’d have fun in hell with friends.
What is the Downtown Girls Basketball party spot?
Beverly’s is our home base. We go there in our sports bras and jerseys after every game -- most times it turns into a party. We’ve also DJ-ed at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn. Wherever we are, we show up looking like Sporty Spice and take over the dance floor. We also have a Know-Wave Radio show every other Monday, we play 90s R&B and just gossip and make sound effects talk about our games.
What do you think about when you are balling?
I really don’t think about much, besides making sure everyone is having fun and not getting too upset about anything or getting too scrappy with one another. I think most of the other things I do, with jobs or projects I like to analyze and reason through but with basketball I JUST DO IT and try to have fun with it.
What inspires you?
Beyonce singing, those plastic grow in water things, BLESS, people who I want to be.
What do you do besides basketball?
I work as an artist, and designer. I make objects with humorous functional twists. My last show, “Heat Exchange”, was a collaboration with Raine Trainor, a fellow BBaller. I also started a store in Long Island that’s a revolving pop up show in an old Auto Body space in Bellport Long Island.