Friday, May 25, 2007

No Beatings

Our local festival kicked off yesterday and Sensei knows none of the kids are going to show even if it is raining and 43 degrees (F). So this is one time class is canceled, but I got roped into moving some friends in the rain. Sweating in the rain - yeah.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Sad Interlude

Quick notes for a bummer evening.

First we started with the oppposite hand grab and then a side kick in the ribs. Then a semi-complicated move that had us move out of the way of the punch, stand shoulder to shoulder and knuckles to the face, groin, throat. Very action movie.

Break.

Practice basic grabs and locks. Then advanced. Then out comes the fake sword they use in Kendo. We were practicing the baseball bat attack and counter. I have to say that I had an "aiki" moment because I was great. I got inside the swing did a couple of throws and was generally brilliant. My back is killing me and one of the disarm moves required a punch through the arms that beat the crap out of my bicep. I promised that would whine less, but that was too much so many times in a row. Ouch.

So Check shows up because she was feeling fat and out of shape. So it was nice to have her. She was originally going to move this summer, but things didn't work so we'll continue to have her around. The bad news was that Arms of Steel's Dad stopped by and told that AOS wouldn't being coming back. He's just signed up for the military and would be heading out for training shortly after graduation. He was obviously upset but wanted to be supportive. He's scared for his son and I have to admit that I think it's an odd choice for someone who was planning to go to college. We'll just think positive thoughts that he won't get shipped out right away.

You've also heard me complain in the past about Nilon (Nut) and I find myself feeling less anxious about him all the time. It's as though I can see him mature in the skills and I don't take anything personally anymore. He seems lonely and I feel like he has a hard life.

It's back to raining and being cold. Seems to fit the mood.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Zombie Class

Never have I seen such a lack luster, non-energetic, yawned filled evening. We actually ended class early because we were stumbling around so much. There was only four of us, Kid Speed, Nilon, me and Teacher.

One and Two-step drills and some Kata. I don't know about the others, but I felt absolutely beat to death after Tuesday. We actually have some sun now so I even sleep less. I gather everyone is in the same boat.

I felt bad for Nilon. We were working Pyung Ahn O Dan and Bassi and he's still struggling with the first Kata. He still smiled and tried his best.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Post Sick

After a week off I feel as week as a baby deer. Well maybe a bit stronger than that. I went to the gym and managed five minutes on the treadmill before my legs told me that was enough. Then tonight, even though I was very focused on breathing, I had to take frequent rest breaks to slow down my heart. Illness is terrible on morale.

Now that the summer has arrived Teacher's youth class is down to small numbers but it looks more difficult to me. I've never seen such a collection of unusual children. I can only guess ADHD for the lot of them, but maybe some developmental disability as well. Teacher is worn out by the time he gets to us. Yuck.

Simultaneous block and strike with a hip twist to give the punch some umph. My back was starting to protest after so much inactivity. Then on to multiple attacker drills and the after the break multiple attacker with knife (rubber). I sprained (light) my thumb again - same damn one I always tweak and took a kick to the elbow that has left some swelling. Not an auspicious start after a break. But then again, I say that all the time!

I received two corrections that were really insightful. The first was that I was having a stuttering attack. Where I make two really great strikes that are well placed and timed and then I hesitate and strike again in another flurry. It was pointed out that it was redundant. Stop at the first part and move on.

The second was that when confronted by attackers you aren't going to know if someone has a knife or a gun or what have you. Focus on doing the best and concerning you self about the knife as it arrives. Hard to do when you know it's there, but fun to work on.

Good to be back and get some exercise. It makes me feel alive.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Out sick

So Beard calls me Monday and let me know.

"I got third place in Kumite!"

I said, "Oh man, that's awesome - I knew you'd do great."

"Out of three people!"

I said, "...."

Thankfully he was laughing about it. It appears that our training regimine didn't work out the way we expected. We trained so that he had the cardiac fitness to go forever, but the matches were only two minutes! He needed to have a plan in place and execute immediately instead of waiting to see the weaknesses. Ah well, next time.

The cold I've been fighting off for the week finally found me. Running nose and stoned out of my gourd from Sudefed. Weeeeee.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Fat hips that haunt

I've never posted right after class before, but since I can't sleep I figured I might as well. I'm on the laptop sipping Old Overholt wondering if I run tomorrow because of the insane bruise on my foot. Out of the whole class we did only a few minutes of kumite with Beard and I still pick up a couple of lumps. I've never heard him complain about anything (I'm trying to quit) so he is either tough as nails (possible) or just doesn't see aches and pains as an issue to discuss (very cool).

So I was feeling extremely fit tonight after I hopped out of the shower. I was admiring myself in the mirror and sucking in my gut as guys do when I thought in a moment of vanity that I would take a picture of myself and share it with anyone who might chance upon the blog. Now anyone who knows about life in the far North realizes two things; you don't get a lot of sun and you wear a lot of clothes. To cure the first part my wife and I going to the tanning booth to get ready for our vacation down South next month. The second part I thought was going to go away because I exercise so much.

You'll notice that there is no photo today. I am definitely not as tan as I thought (think sour cream) and my physique in the lens made me look like an aging porn star. I was suddenly depressed and didn't want to make anyone gag. I'd already tortured you with my tie dye gi and I don't want to push my luck.

Class was a lot fun in the second hour. We learned a variation on a wrist lock take down and as usual I ended up slowing class up by making Teacher show a lot detail. I just need so much fine tuning. I ended up apologizing at one point, but realized that because I take the time I'm learning the moves very well and Teacher doesn't mind at all taking the time teaching. He loves it.

I was going to call the post hips, hips, hips because we practiced a ton of roundhouse and it was if I'd forgotten how to do them. Very frustrating. Something to bring up on the practice priority.

Teacher's sage words to the kids when they complained about wanting to learn something new. "So you want to learn something new, but don't want to continue to practice what you know. This mean that you'll learn the new stuff and have to practice it and the old stuff - oh wait, you don't want to practice any of that stuff. Get back to work."

To borrow a phrase from Mat - Persevere!

Late note.

Whoops, I forgot to post the other day.

In the big city the large Karate school is having a tournament this weekend. Teacher was encouraging me to go as usual, but my wife pretty much put a stop to that. She has attended the tournaments with me in the past and was pretty upset with beatings I took even though I got first place. I had to get examined by two EMTs after the kumite to make sure I didn't have a concussion. Needless to say she was incensed. I think she would have been alright with me going if she wasn't there, but I thought how much the trip would have cost and figured it'd it was for the best. I'd have to buy a airline ticket, get a car rental, and then a get a room. Ouch.

So Beard, Teacher and Teacher Slim have made plans to go. Although the Teacher's aren't competing Beard will get a full compliment of video for his Kumite. He's not doing any Kata or weapons, so he might have a relatively short day at the competition.

To prep him we've been doing kumite at class that vaguely resembles the rules of the Karate tourney. I've got thin little arm bones and when I woke up I realized that I did, indeed, stop a kick near my wrist. Ow.

Bassai in the park

Holy Cow!  So much time has passed since I've sat down and collected my thoughts for a quick update about my martial practice.  March wa...