O…..M………G. So tired I can barely lift my arms to type. So tired that I’m too tired to BREATHE.
Today had two themes:
Hunting The Kimura Day
I haven’t worked with kimuras much, and I need to. In fact, I need to put submissions in general on the front burner for the next three months.
Today’s first technique- bearhug defense to safe clinch to hip throw to armbar or kimura. I was the odd person out, but luckily John appeared a little late and paired up with me. He had gone to class yesterday, so he already knew the techniques. I did the armbar one several times, and then asked him to walk me through the kimura one, which he was kind enough to do. He was also being really nice about not slamming me on the mat during the throw, which I thanked him for. When it was my turn to throw, I bobbled the throw a bit because I tried to likewise set him down gently, and got reprimanded by Professor Carlos. Then the Prof. stood there and watched me, so I had to do a nice clean hard one- after which I apologized to John. After that, I tried to do the throw clean but to check his fall at about knee level- luckily my arms and core are strong enough to be able to do that (and only with someone as small as John).
Front mount to spinning armbar, then front mount to keylock. I’m fine with keylocks. Part of my problem with the spinning armbars and kimuras is that the grips are just not instinctual to me… especially during a spar when things are moving fast and my brain is doing that white-noise thing. I think I just need to drill the grips about a million times with the fabric training dummy. I think some part of my barely-conscious brain is also afraid to commit to those types of deep, twisty grips because I’m scared of getting my wrist locked/crunched/trapped. I don’t feel good about having any grip that I can’t let go and get my hand outta there quick if I need to. Probably a side effect of having to work with much bigger, stronger people who can crush my wrist to powder without even trying, and who hold all the control about which direction we are going to be rolling.
Well, this is all stuff that I need to get over. So I spent today chasing subs- especially kimuras. Whereever I was (even on the bottom, even in other people’s guard), I was always looking for- and grabbing for- any remote possibility of a sub. Even if I wasn’t sure what I was doing, and had no clear plan…. grope, grab, grip, and at least ACT like I did. I discovered that it distracted the white belts noticeably. The higher belts could mostly tell if I really had a decent shot at getting a sub, which many times I didn’t, so they were able to ignore my grabbings and reachings. The white belts weren’t entirely sure, so they felt a need to react to every attempt on my part…. which distracted them from setting up their own subs.
Positional sparring with John, then six min spars with Nate, Brandon, and Carlos. Then a few more with John. Brandon was muscling me today…. he’s fairly controlled, but still has enough residual Spazz to be a bit scary when he muscles. Prof Carlos actually came over and stopped us at one point, and told him to not do XYZ or he’d risk breaking my ankle. Thank you. Nate can do whatever he wants to me, but he was going light enough today to let me almost get a few controlling positions.
(Nate also, BTW, wins the grand prize trophy for Gnarliest Cauli Ear Ever. It looks like an overstuffed, over-risen perogie. It bobbles when he walks, that’s how full and heavy it is. I can’t stop staring.)
Pat, from the sidelines: "Turn to your right, Kitsune! Turn to your right!"
Pat: "I mean your left! Turn to your left!"
Me: "Thanks a lot, Pat!" At least I knew enough to not listen to that first instruction! It made no sense!
Carlos toyed with me while simultaneously keeping watch on all the other pairs rolling on the mat and also holding a conversation with Rodrigo in Portugese. John and I were pretty competitive. I think he tapped me twice- once when he had my arm over my head and crushing it against my skull, and I don’t recall the other. He tapped once to me, and I was like, Huh? Because I didn’t have anything set up at the time. Turns out his wrist was twisted up in his own gi. I think I tapped him once witht he armbar-of-the-day, too. I did accomplish the seatbelt-grip under-the-thighs stacking guard pass that JB always gets on me. I didn’t think it would work, but to my surprised delight, it did. He also told me afterward that I’d had a good Ezekiel on and that he’d thought he’d have to tap to it. I had spent a lot of time trying to work various chokes on him, but didn’t finish any. I may still be giving up too soon on the chokes.
I would have liked to have pounced on Pat when I was done with John, but I was too wiped. I had to lie on the mat for a while before I could get up to walk out to the car. When I got up, there was a perfect sweaty outline of my body left behind on the mat… you could see the patches, the folds in my jacket, everything.
Bree was on the bench… dislocated rib.
There was also a brown belt in class today whom I have never laid eyes on before. A LITTLE brown belt- like MY size little. I don’t know if he was a visitor or a transfer. That would be cool if he was a transfer, and he’s nice… most of the higher belts are big guys, and I want some little ones who can show me how a smaller person successfully claws their way to the top of the heap.
Kung Fu Tuesday. CK is supposed to be getting into town today, so I thought she might be there- but no go. I guess she didn’t get in early enough. No CN or JB, either.
SK went to BJJ on Monday night in Bellevue, and reported that he’d stayed for some open mat as I’d suggested he should. He got to roll with some blue belts, so that was a good thing. He reported that while he didn’t submit anybody, he didn’t feel like he was "being destroyed all night by everyone." I told him that that counted as progress.
Before class, I went though the short and long tai chi forms.
Warming up with two reps each of Little red Dragon, Bung Bo Kuen and the Northern Mantis Bo form. Then we were given about 20 min to review the Snake Dao stuff on our own. I started doing the walking/slashing pattern along the side of building, assuming that everyone else would work in the front, and that way nobody’s looking at me. Well, I’ll tell ya, this is an indecisive bunch of folks (and not a Libra among ’em, go figure), and they will lemming along after me just because I don’t waste time futzing around and get started first. So when I turned around, there they all were, working their way down the side of the building on my tail. So I crossed back over to the OPPOSITE end of the lawn and started working down the other side of the building. Before long they had all drifted back to the front. Nowhere to hide, unless I actually went around the corner. Sigh.
I had a couple of questions for SK on the Snake Dao things (all of which just confirmed what I’d already supposed the answers would be), but he had almost no corrections for me on any of it. Astonishing. Even that crazy twirling-slashing-flying-kick thing from last week- he looked at it and said, "Yeah." It seemed a heck of a lot easier than it had last week… enough so that I assumed I’d inadvertantly truncated it somehow into a simpler version. He assured me that it was fine. Okay, if you say so. Really, this Snake Dao is coming uncharacteristically easy to me. I wonder if this is because of Hurricane Hands, or because of the Chen Dao. Weird. Intriguing. It sure is hard on my bad knees, though.
Then we learned a new Snake Dao piece, which leads into the Twirling-Slashing-Flying-Kick. This has a little footwork thingie in it that is just like one that I have always struggled with in Leopard Fist. So I’m struggling, and SK says, "It’s just like the one in Leopard Fist." "I KNOW, and I’ve never been able to do that one either, that’s why I’m having trouble!" I can tell that the whole section is going to be really cool as soon as I can do it right, though.
A piece out of the Northern Mantis bo form seems to lend itself beautifully to a series of apps that work right along with this little Snake Dao chunk. So we worked in pairs, one with the bo and one with the dao. I found one spot that seemed to be absolutely begging for an inside roundhouse kick to the groin. That is the first time I have EVER seen a situation where that bizarre mutant kick seemed to make the slightest practical sense. So that was neat.
I asked one of my Raunchy Ridesharers to do the driving today. I considered inviting the other one to make out with me in the backseat… but decided that two wrongs don’t make a right, and all that.
Diet problem… I need to figure out some different situation for kung fu nights. By the time I get home around 10:15, I’m absolutely ravenous- and I have to feed/medicate the animals before I can fix food for myself. Not to mention I really shouldn’t be eating that late anyway- or if I do, a small amount. Anyway, I got home tonight feeling hungry enough to gobble the cat food as I was preparing it, and there was that gol-dern cookie jar sitting right there in front of my face, and…. well… yeah, okay, I totally ravaged the cookie jar. It wasn’t pretty.
From now on, I need to either pack something I can munch on in the car on the way home; or have something prepared and ready to go as soon as I walk in the door- that I can have at least a few bites of while I’m getting the cat food ready. I’m disgusted with myself because I was good all day, and then I went hog-wild (expression deliberately chosen) an hour before bed. Probably gonna be back up to 135 in the morning, maybe even more… and serves me right.