Showing posts from March, 2013

Storm Test

Last week Teacher told Storm if he showed up for three classes in a row that he'd test him for Brown Belt.  

Storm is in his mid to late 20's and had achieved his Black Belt in Tae Kwon Do in his mid to late teens.  He is mind-bendingly fast and tends to use his legs more than his hands.  He is refreshingly ego-less and appears to be here just to keep in shape.  However, his job hours make it very difficult to come to class regularly so he'll disappear from our group for a couple months at a time.  This makes it difficult for Teacher to progress him comfortably.  He absorbed our basic technique rapidly and had integrated most if not all of it with his TKD skills.  

He dropped some info that I'm finding a disturbing trend; he admitted that he's been going to the Judo class more frequently than our class.  This is something that two or three others have elected to do and mentioned in passing.  It's not without embarrassment I'm sure because I've been at our…


Cherub asked Teacher, "What's the difference between kicking with the top of your foot versus the ball of the foot?".

Teacher responded, "What's the difference between a slap and a punch?"

Normally I answer the question by saying, using the ball of the foot concentrates the same amount of energy into a smaller space.  His answer was better.  


We have a new group of girls in class.  Teenagers from all over the world!  One is near my height and I think from Korea.  Another is short and from South America.  The third is Teacher's adopted daughter (from Thailand) and the fourth is a girl from the kids class who's moving up.  She's got a laser focus and tough as nails.  The kids class bored her and she took off about a year before Teacher talked her into coming back.  

We have never been able to keep a youth that has graduated to the adult class.  Usually the kids are too small or too inexperienced to bridge the gap no matter what we do to ease their …

A Little Blood

My wife left on a rather exotic vacation so I ended up missing class both times last week.  Due to our rather busy schedules we have to plan time to hang out so beatings lost out in the mix.  She'll be gone for two weeks so I have to make an extra diligent attempt at regular exercise. 

The weekend went well in that I worked out on Friday and Saturday, but ate more than my share of calories.  I hadn't realized what a governor my wife was in terms of my drinking and eating.  I was determined to eat healthy while she was gone, but my first attempt at eggplant parmasean was marred by the fact that it's covered in cheese.  And I ate three pieces.  And I drank a lot of beer with it. 

Anyway we had seven in class tonight which is a nice number, but Sensei Slim showed up so things were  bound to get interesting.  A lot of shoulder locks and tough throws.  We don't have mats down so taking a fall has to be done just right or you lose skin.  For instance to take a fall low I hav…

The Most Metal Thing I Have Ever Uttered

I'm standing in a kitchen facing two fellows and surrounded by about 5 to 10 people.  We're at a party and by and large the folks there are younger than me.  The two guys appear to be in their late 20s to mid 30's, but I can't really tell. 

I don't remember what lead to the escalation in tension, but clearly fisticuffs became the answer to whatever was being said.  I'm mostly thinking how I've got one shot to make things count before I get the living shit beat of me while the bluster is increasing.  The lead guy's knee is obvious and if I can get closer I can drop a throat shot that'll let me to take care of number two. 

That's when I realize something else is going on. Why are these guys acting this way?  I haven't been that age in a long time and I was never very aggressive in the first place so their behavior didn't mean too much to me.  However, while gaming the attack I realized something; this was a primal performance.  It's a …

Frisson of Fear

Last night was my second class in a row for the first time in about four months.  I've been pretty excited about returning regularly.  The excitement is derived from fear and enthusiasm.  I'm 46 and I notice that I get anxious about potential injury.  I don't mind the little aches and pains, but the larger things are taking longer and longer to heal.  

About 6 months ago Teacher used me in a demo of an unusual throw.  Instead of taking the slap I reached out and jammed my shoulder painfully.  Three months of rehab and sporadic class attendance has me almost at 100%.  

So in the back of my mind I have a lurking concern that I have to be careful or I'll be laid up for some indeterminate time.  This concern was mirrored by one of the Blackbelts at my test.  He no longer comes because his training was to be full on all the time.  At his age it meant that he was getting more and more injured.  So now he avoids class and focuses on other endeavors.  

The other half is my excite…

Fair Haired Boy

Deep into the second hour of class I had a pleasant realization - I was the center of attention!  Teacher was explaining a complex move and Beard, as my partner, had all the focus on me.  

Jeeze, I'm pathetic.  Talk about low self-esteem problems.  I realize it, but it's still awesome to be the COA (Center Of Attention) every now and then.  Then I realized that poor Cherub was totally being ostracized; or being ignored.  I wonder how much of my style and questioning is secretly designed to enforce that?  Hmm.  

I think it's given me insight into the kids class (now up to 26!!!).  When one or two constantly seek me out for approval it's very disruptive.  I need to pull them aside and teach them how to be subtle, he he.