Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

March 19, 2014 at 11:38am

Collective of Lady Arm Wrestlers forming in Olympia

Ladies get a grip in Olympia.

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Jaws clenched, muscles flexed - a furious battle of brawn ensues, until one woman's grip and strength pulls the other woman's arm down in a feat of victory - followed by a case of the giggles and high fives.

This was the scene as I arm wrestled Marueen Maples, a lady about town known for her creative sparks that have led to the formation of the first Oly Rollers derby team, to The Dragon Lady Bazaar, to Pistols and Petticoats, an all-female gun club.

Inspired by photos on Facebook, the next chapter in Maples' life is the national Collective of Lady Arm Wrestlers, or CLAW, which she's forming a chapter in Olympia.

The idea is to create a persona, explains Maples, to "put your own stamp on it" and have fun with characters and entertainment. It's less about who wins and more about the charities and a chance to have fun.

"Olympia has more creative talent than anywhere I've lived," explains Maples. "It's a place to showcase in a way that gets a lot of community involved."

In similar ways roller derby players come up with badass names and costumes, so will the ladies of CLAW. Maples has her eyes set on being a juggalo.

"I kinda want everyone to hate me," she laughs. "You need a villain."

Maples has reached out to other CLAW chapters around the nation. She has a clear outline of what to work toward. She says she needs 8 to 16 women to be contenders, each with their own entourage of supporters.

Based on the new Oly CLAW Facebook, which already has more than 30 members, this shouldn't be a problem.

"I encourage other people to join the group too," says Maples. "There is room for everyone. Not just arm wrestlers ... organizers, fundraisers, entourage, theater people. ..."

A meeting is scheduled at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 25 at Le Voyeur, 404 Fourth Ave., in downtown Olympia.

Filed under: Sports, Olympia,
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