It is a historical constant that the strong rule the weak, and any shade of liberty enjoyed by the weak is nothing more than the benevolence of the strong. You need guns because the world is full of the strong, and not all of them are benevolent. -John Fogh

Seattle Open.

The scorekeeping situation actually looked complex enough that I think it would have really stressed me- with my math issues- out. So fortunately I ended up as a ring coordinator- which is a much bigger job, but used a lot of my best skills. (I used Herald Voice until my throat hurt and the low tones started to crack a little…. but by gosh everybody heard me!) THANK GOD, though, it was not double elimination. It was complicated enough as it was. If it had been double elimination, my head would have exploded in under 20 min. Also, my horrible memory blanks for names and faces gave me some problems, but I just kept asking people their names over and over and they just kept telling me. Even I didn’t have that flaw, it would have been a challenge with wrangling that many people. The women were easier. But the guys…. hundreds of identical short-haired, muscley dudes in white pajamas.

If I had expected to cut a smart authoritative-looking figure in my snazzy IBJJF blue vest and super-official clipboard, that went out the window immediately when I tripped over somebody’s water bottle and fell on my face in the bullpen right in front of about 700 people.

If that had not humbled me sufficiently, one of the two refs at my station greeted me with “Aren’t you the girl who had to fight CINDY HALES at that sub-only comp earlier this year??!?” Then went on to regale me with blow-by-blow lowlights of said match. Ah well… as I told him, it had been an honor just to stand on a tournament podium with Cindy Hales.

So, ten straight hours of work with one quick pee break and one rapidly-gobbled sandwich. I juggled up to five interweaving brackets at once, herded cats all day (It’s amazing how many people can’t follow an instruction as simple as “go to the table with the big SIX on it” or “STAY RIGHT HERE” and then you have to drop everything and chase them down again), I also had to do all my own ID checks, my own weigh-ins, report all the official results, no one was checking my work, and I did not fuck anything up although there was epic potential for fuckup at every turn. and I must say that I think I did a terrific job, especially for a virgin ring coordinator. Anyone who has read my blog for a while knows how self-critical I am, so if I say I did a terrific job, that means I did a DAMN FINE job.

Of course there was one staff member who was all up in my grill much of the day criticizing small things that yes, I would have fixed if I was perfect and flawless, but they were small things that should have been overlooked in light of aforementioned DAMN FINE job. Recognizing the dude as a fellow anal-retentive Type A control freak, of course I had to realize that this was the person who knew everything that was going on. So instead of having The Clash Of the Control Freaks (which I would have lost, being on his home turf), I instead started popping up in HIS grill every time I had an empty-mat moment and badgering him to give me some more brackets. It was an interesting exercise in consciously handling a problem in a way I would not normally have been moved to handle it.

Critical Guy (randomly popping up like an evil jack-in-the-box over my shoulder to stab an accusatory talon at my clipboard): Why did you do THIS?

Me: We already covered this. You told me ten minutes ago to do XYZ, so I did XYZ. See?

CG (after staring at clipboard for a few minutes and letting me sweat it out): Okay. I just wanted to hear you explain it.

Me (thinking): You asshole…
Me (saying, very flatly) Okay. You scared me. I thought I fucked something up.

I think the tone of my voice (along with the fact that he had been WRONG and didn’t want to cop to it and we both knew it) let him know it was time to back off me just a little.

(Snarky note: Why the fuck does anyone answer a question with “You don’t know how to do that?” or “Nobody told you how to do that?” DUMB-ASS, If I knew how to do it or someone had already told me how, WHY WOULD I BE ASKING YOU RIGHT NOW???? The only purpose of that question is to make the other person feel even worse about not magically already knowing everything about a job they’ve never done before.)

The worst moment of the day was having to explain to a guy that his single competitor had not shown up, and he had come here for nothing. I felt really bad. I also had to DQ a couple of people.

It felt weird being at a tournament and not competing. I kept feeling like I should be having nausea and tremors.

Unfortunately I was too busy to be able to watch matches.

In firearms news: I don’t want to sound callous or anything, but the timing of the local school shooting in regards to the two major gun control items on the current ballot is very unfortunate.


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