Monday, March 01, 2010

Rantings of a Sprained Ego

So I am planning to do a little more revamping on this site since my focus in life is really changing. I haven't decided yet, but I will probably change the name of the blog, as well as spell-check and archive the older entries.

I ended up spraining my left wrist thanks to a kid who just started, and is already trouble. First off- he smells. No way around it. Part of martial arts, especially Japanese ones I think- is awareness of self. If this guy doesn't have enough awareness to use deodorant, I can't image the other areas in his life. Anyways, he twisted my wrist a bit too much, going too fast as most new aiki students do, and I thought it was fine until I started hurting hours later. That's par for the course when you have EDS. Sword Sensei joked that about what was gonna happen when I got older if thsi is how much I'm being hurt now. Seriously, this is the guy who has diabetes, gout, and is going blind and deaf.  I digress.

Anyways, I am making new plans for a future in a suburb of Chicago, as I am planning to return to serious schooling. I have been poking around to find various schools in the area, and where I will be there is certainly no shortage. No kobudo schools or sword schools, unfortunately. Lots of Tae Kwon Do schools. I looked at some of the websites and I was both in sticker-shock and laughter seizures. Some of them were MMA wannabe schools. Some were schools where all the kids were a third my age (and since I'm not even thirty yet, I consider that a bad thing). There is an excellent school of aikido about an hour away, but htat's too far to drive, since I'll probably be in school late. My guidelines are this: 1) decent program 2) not over $60 a month 3) short distance away 4) not in a shitty section of town. Although the choices get better in the city itself, I can neither afford nor get to those places. I am looking at a place that teaches art form of ju-jutsu and muay thai, since I don't plan on ever competing that focus would be good. They are very different arts than I am used to, but I think it'd be good for me.

Originally, I was planning to go to a school where there is one of maybe 4 other places in the whole US that teach Toyama Ryu. It would been great. But it was WAY too expensive. I don't know if things happen for a reason, but you have to make do with what you got

One more thing: I got a new oar! Just in time for an injury :*( 

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Never enough kata. Never enough cookies.

The past month of so has been a mess. With everyone about ready to rank and trying to prepare for tournament, Head Sensei is pulled in 400 directions. Everyone is training like they suddenly got a cattle prod up their butts. Normally about this time, I put up rankings of everyone so I can see what's progressed. What I have noticed is that people are dumping aiki and iai as if they don't need to actually practice these things. Head Sensei found this out recently, when he started testing people again. He was like "WTF" at the apathy.  Roo.

Snotshadow- brown, two stripes
Snotball- brown, one stripe
(what did I name this girl? Since I'm out of Dwarves, how about Apathy Bear...)- brown
Batta, boring kid, Goth Kid- purple
Pitbulls, Big T, Lil' Stein, some girl- green
Tiny T and Girl T- orange
A guy I'm gonna name Rubber Bear, two yellow belt kids... dunno them-yellow
One white belt guy.

Batta- ni-kyu
Pitbull 1 and 2, Brainy Smurf (I'm gonna re-name Freckle Bear)- yon-kyu
a guy I'll call Dr. Whiteshirt and Rubber Bear

Goth Kid- ikkyu
Things, Batta, um....Bald Short Bear, Snotshadow- sankyu
Pitbull 1 and 2- yonkyu
Rubber Bear, guy I'll find out a name for later (if he stays)- mu

There's some new peoples I haven't pegged yet (some I hope will quit), and some that haven't been to class in forever. I'll have to see what is up with half of our class, as January tends to thin out some souls. Wheezy Kid has not been in (which is just fine with me), and neither has Sarge or her kid. Goth Kid has been very sporadic, and Head Sensei has made it clear he wants him to be passed in rank. But nobody's close. Which essentially means I have to continue with the highest rank kyu duties until somebody gets their ass on straight.  Iai is a mess. Head Sensei has finally figured out that when he goes on "holiday" so does everyone else. I have kumitachi 10 good, and I only have 5 more. I'd like to get all of them before the end of summer, since I don't know where I will be by then. I found out something scary- Head Sensei wants to prep me for san-dan. Urgh.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Martial moogling.

Sometimes I feel like a moogle. In case you don't know what that is, is a video game character that is cute and gives you items. Except I feel like someone whose job it is to give techniques and kata and act all cute and cheery. These kids don't know how lucky they are learning some of this stuff. I remember when I started aiki class that Applebee's Guy was an ikkyu. He started when he was twelve (he was 19 when I started). I never appreciated it until we started getting some rat bastar- I'm sorry, I mention little angels- in our aiki class. We have this one kid who won't EVER shut up, and Snotshadow won't work with guys (98% of our class). It's rather funny. Somehow I became the- "hey, what's that move?" sensei. I guess it's a niche. Just don't touch my pompom, kupo.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Renew the Roo.

Other than being totally broke, nothing much has changed. Head Sensei has been going on a renovation spree, and so now we have a men's changing room and a new paint job. Next we will be revamping the downstairs so we could have a kobudo class, which we never had room for before. So, life is okay now.

I have been trying to pass the torch to my kohai, as my sempai have done for me, but nobody apparently wants it. Goth Kid is our next in line for sho-dan in Aiki, and he (along with everyone else) doesn't study at all nor come to class on time. As for karate, it's tournament time so everything is at a stand-still. I started learning Seipai, but ten other people want kata for the tourney. Ugh.

The hardest part about recent event is what is happening with my future. I have to put school ahead of all else, and even those plans aren't set in stone. And then there is Batta. That's another matter entirely for which I don't want to get into. I have been at this school for almost ten years, and yet, if I were to leave in May like I am planning, it wouldn't take long for my impression to be wiped away. That's the law of the land, really, but it does make me sad.

I can only take charge of what I have control of, so I am attempting to fight my depression with kata and P90X. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

January Slumps...and bumps

Training has been, strange? I have kept busy with kata and teaching. The attendance is starting to thin out again, which is good. Head sensei went on a refurbishing spree. He built up the male changing room, painted the dojo two different colors, and is making plans to build a studio space in the basement- all while class was in session. And he wonders how he ended up with stones?

I've been trying to nudge people back into being excited abou aiki and iai class. The aiki class suddenly has made the realization that two times a week is not enough for the class, and requested a third class, which Head sensei agreed upon. He also wants to have a weapons class. Wee. Other than that, people are starting to gear up for the tourney.

This is normally the time I make resolutions. I restarted P90X, and am already falling off the horse. I think I should stick to yoga and running.  I do need a job though. That's a good resolution.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Movies. Good Ones. Of the whole decade.

Batman Begins
V for Vendetta
Slumdog Millionaire
The Dark Knight
Iron Man
Kill Bill vol. 1
The Wrestler
Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl
Lost in Translation
Little Miss Sunshine
I am Legend
Where the Wild Things Are
Sin City
Spirited Away
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Everything is Illuminated

My taste is weird, I know. I like kick-ass adventure as much as thought-provoking movies. Hardly any good martial arts films this decade- lots of BAD ones.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Oar you happy the year is over?

I am so happy the year is almost at a close. What a rotten training year. I was hurt so friggin much. I was sick a lot too. I am looking for a better year next year. I'd like to compete a bit more too, if the money situation improves.

I already have plans for the school's tourney. I am doing the same oar kata I did last year- hopefully with a better oar. I am pissed, by the way, that the eku has become the weapon du jour at school. Last year it was tonfa. Foobar is starting a kata with it. It is so big on him that when he did an overhead block, he almost tipped over. Anyways, I will do that, and I am learning Chinto, though I am not all that impressed with it yet.

I have simpler resolutions this year- a) get buffer by working out more and eating less junk b) practicing more with my weapons c) devoting more time to sword.