Back from St. Louis

Monday night BJJ in Seattle; JB came with me.

As soon as we started doing the warm-up pushups, I could feel the burn from not being in class for two weeks! It was an exhausting class. JB was tired too, so we wimped out before the sparring even though we both wanted to spar.

It was a good class, though- basic armbars and triangles, and a choke escape from standup. JB was having some of the same problems I have with triangles. We can’t get our initial leg positioned very well, and have a heck of a time reaching the shin to yank it into place. We are both very flexible, so it has to be a stubby-legs thing. I was able to grab my FOOT, but Rodrigo came by and reprimanded me for that. I did like practicing transitioning into the armbars when it didn’t work, though. I may be more willing to try it in sparring if I feel comfortable switching smoothly to plan B when it flubs. We were able to experiment with a few different grip options and a few different openings, which was great.

JB has made friends with Peter, and he is helping her quite a bit. In fact he has a key to the school and gave her a private on Sunday night. I didn’t say anything; JB is a big girl, but I hope she has told him that she has a serious boyfriend. I don’t know Peter very well; he seems like a nice enough guy, so I don’t see any pressing need RIGHT NOW to take him aside and inform him that I will smash every single one of his finger joints if anything inappropriate happens. But I will be keeping an eye on that lad.

JB showed me a cool reversal from half guard that Peter taught her- my brain was a little too fried to fully retain it, but I’ll ask her to work on it with me again next time. Her half guard is killer. Her closed guard is a B*%^$ to get out of, too. She’s getting pretty good. I noticed Rodrigo watching her and smiling while she pwn’ed me during the positional training. I told her that later, and she was thrilled…. she has been frustrated and disappointed at not getting much attention from DD, so she is really excited whenever she gets anything that looks like positive feedback from Rodrigo.

So I did get two kung fu workouts in during my camping trip, although it was just as hot as last year and impossible to exercise most of the day. I met a guy on day one down at the bonfire, and about five minutes into our chat, we figured out that he was the capoiera guy that I’d planned to meet up wth. What are the chances, out of 800 people? Anyway, I did not get to work with him, unfortunately. I came looking for him on Tues/Fri/Sat evenings after the sun went behind the trees and the temp got slightly more bearable, but I couldn’t find him any of those times. If he comes back next year, we must make some firm early evening dates so that we don’t miss each other again.

I also ran into someone I know slightly, who told me that she is training in White Eyebrow. She didn’t want to work together, though, because she’s not allowed to show anyone anything from her class.

Anyway, on Tues/Fri I went on to do a workout by myself after not being able to find the guy (On Saturday I had good intentions, but let myself get slurped into Herald Camp where time got away from me). Tuesday I did all of the Tiger stuff I know, except for Wood Monkey (too many bottle caps and other hazards to roll around on the ground). I know I was forgetting two of the Tiger drills (forgot to bring a printout with me). I’ll have to look those two drills up and review them the next time I do a solo practice. Anyway, the Tiger stuff was looking pretty good, although it was a poor day for mirror forms for some reason.

Friday: Mantis stuff, Wing Chun, and undifferentiated forms. I didn’t do the Northern Mantis bo form because I didn’t have a bo or bo analog (tried to do it empty-hands, but that wasn’t working very well). I also didn’t do Frolic because I forgot about it (I knew that there were one or two "undifferentiated forms" that I was missing, but I couldn’t for the life of me recall!). Next year I *really* need to bring a list. I also struggled a bit with the new piece of the Southern Mantis for that JoE taught me. I shall need a review from him this coming Thursday, if he is in class.

One of my friends who hasn’t seen me since last year remarked in a wondering voice how "cut" my upper body is looking. Mr. Green Yeah, fourteen months of BJJ is showing. Another friend- after day four of me wearing hats or scarves on my head all the time- said, "Your hair looks fine, you don’t have to keep hiding it!" Our Herald coordinating assistant told me that when my hair is flat, I look like Ellen Degeneres, and when it’s spiky, I look like Annie Lennox. She thinks it looks good, but since she **IS** in fact a butch dyke (and has almost the same haircut), her reassurance is not very reassuring!

The Sacred Hunt went fairly well- we seem to have gotten the job done although there were a few problems. One of which was a painted and fur-clad Hunter who almost took me out with a sharpened stick- very Lord Of the Flies. It was the longest and most grueling Hunt ever- we started drumming around 10:30 and didn’t finish drumming till after two. I think about an hour of that was heartbeat, the rest was uninterrupted thunder-drumming. It was one of the most physically and mentally challenging things I’ve ever done. I did notice that I seemed to be having an easier time keeping my shoulders relaxed than I have in past years. I think that helped.

I had fairly good Herald minions all week, so didn’t have to do too much of my own Heralding. between that and the extreme heat/humidity (which turns me into a major slug), I didn’t get as much good exercise as I wish I had. I also ate an obscene amount of junk food at the campground. Herald Camp had Hershey bars in the cooler, which didn’t help. Going to try to be good for the next few weeks, get back in the groove, try to cut a few calories.

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