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Posts posted by Kishi

  1. Goal 1: 18/19


    Goal 2: 16/19


    Goal 3: 9/19


    Well, this week has been a write off for mat time.


    Wednesday I didn't hit the work quotas I needed to make mat time a good idea. I had to work OT instead to make up. Thursday, my writing friend decided that she wanted to get together, so that happened instead of martial arts. I have a feeling that I may have miscalculated in terms of whether or not my Thursday nights are free, given that my writing friend's life is starting to settle down and she's really dedicated to making this friendship work. Which is really cool of her. But it also means no training last night. And I can't really bank on that time for training going forward.


    I thought I'd try to make it out today but traffic was absolutely a nightmare and I didn't leave the apartment in time. Which I didn't know I was doing at that time, so I was in traffic when it became clear I wouldn't be able to make it. That was deeply frustrating.


    And I'm not going to make it out tomorrow either, since friends want to get together and I got outvoted on what time works best.


    I guess my social life and my martial arts life at least have this much in common: there's no off season. -_-


    It's frustrating. But it's been a frustrating week. Change has happened at a time that I really didn't want it to, but it's down to things I had no say in, and that's just how life is sometimes. I don't control my feelings, so they're going to rage and run as they do, but that fuel will be spent in time and when I'm on the other side of it, I'm going to have to recalculate how I get after my mat time.


    One major possibility going forward is a return to open mats. I've been avoiding them until I got clearance from my ortho, and now that I have that, it's about time to go back. The only hold up is that I'm waiting for my teeth to finish resetting, at which point I can remold my mouthguard in a more permanent way and go roll in a freer way without having to worry about amateur orthodontistry. :D So, that'll be in about 3 weeks. I owe it to myself in the meantime to make the most of my time such as it is. That should mean note-taking and study, but the OT, good as it is for my paycheck, has really interfered with that. The fact that I've been staying up later as a result to get some personal time for myself afterward isn't helping that any either.


    Things aren't going the way I want them to right now. But that doesn't mean they always will. There's a better way to comport myself now, and I know it. So best to be about it.


    Lifting, writing, and meditation on the docket. Let's get it done.

    • Like 5
  2. 14 hours ago, Mistr said:

    Dumbledore is now the proud owner of a 2015 Kia with 25,000 miles. We know it really was owned by a little old lady who just drove to the grocery store once a week and to get the New York Times on Sundays. It seems to be in good shape. Tomorrow we will get the oil changed before starting the 20 hour drive home.


    Nice! I drive a 2012 Kia myself; even with ~6.5 times the mileage, it still drives well. Good stuff, glad to hear. :)


    14 hours ago, Mistr said:

    Happily, I can report that the oatmilk ice cream bars with chocolate coating and crispies are even better than similar Haagen-Das bars.


    I believe it! I've also gotten into Ben and Jerry's non-dairy options; their Bananas Foster pints are proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

    • Like 2
  3. 13 hours ago, Scaly Freak said:

    I'm also, based on how much the extra meditation helped, thinking that I need to increase the amount of time set aside for meditation. I typically do 10-20 minutes. I may need to set 15 or 20 as the minimum and aim higher, until chaos no longer reigns.


    Mm. More time is good. I would advise, though, that if you can't make that time initially that you don't stop doing what you can do. I say this as someone who's done just that. -_-

    • Like 3
  4. Goal 1: 16/17


    Goal 2: 15/17


    Goal 3: 9/17


    Uf. What day is it? Oh, buddy. Better get this caught up. It's been a busy enough throuple of days that I've decided to break up how I tell this in a non-chronological way.


    OK, so, uh, Sunday was Easter. Mom didn't feel like cooking, so we went out to eat. Brother was along this time, which was a pleasant surprise. We thought maybe this would be the last time we saw him, as he's planning to move out of state, but it looks like he's gonna be around until sometime next month. There's a chance I'll be driving out with him to make sure he arrives safely as well as to help him get situated, which, gotta be frank, I have no idea how I'm going to make that work, but that's never stopped me before!


    After lunch, he took off, and I hung around with the folks as per the usual Sunday thing before headed back home.


    Monday was Sci Fi night. Couldn't get everyone together for the game we need to finish, so we wound up watching Chernobyl instead, Craig Mazin's first project which basically gave him the clearance to get Last of Us made. It's a rewatch for me. Very, very good. I can see how people wanted to work with him after he was done.


    Tuesday was a day at the office. Got the word from on high that I'm getting more cases starting next week. Of course, they aren't bumping my pay for it, and given that's on top of the paycut coming from our legislature (which wants to give us raises and adjustments, but the raises and adjustments don't match the consumer price index or the rate of inflation) the end result is less money for more work. The old anger is stirring again. Good. I was wondering where it'd gone.


    Had a couple dr's appts on Monday and Tuesday. Monday was the dentist, where I achieved the epic goal of not bleeding during or after an exam. :D Floss before you brush, kids. That's the trick. Tuesday I got to the orthopedist and was told that I'd healed as much as I was going to and that I was cleared for return to full sparring. Of course, gotta ease into this, but I'll get there. Looks like I'm back, although it looks like it's on me to prehab this thing and make sure it stays good. I prefer to think it could get better yet, but it's probably beyond whatever the orthopedist can do right now short of surgery or something.


    As far as the goals go, I've changed some things up as I'm wont to do. Although not for the reasons you might expect. I've basically lost access to GB's stuff through some kind of error on their site and when I reached out to them to see what I needed to do to fix it, they didn't respond back. So now I no longer have access to their progression schemes or anything like that, and while in the short term that would be fine, in the long term I would have stalled out without any real idea of where to go from where I'd have landed. Also, I'm not sure I want to use a product from a team/company that doesn't value my business.


    So I started puttering about and wound up getting a copy of Steven Low's Overcoming Gravity, which was a big hit here in the Rebellion some years ago. He'd released a 2nd edition since then with all kinds of useful information, enough for me to actually be overwhelmed by the options and flexibility, which was something I didn't expect. I wound up reaching out to their community and got a lot of good advice, even hearing from the author himself which was unexpected and very nice of him to do. And after all that, and based on his recommendations, I'm actually cutting back a lot on what I was doing before and just focusing on dips and pull ups in addition to the kettlebell swings and get ups. And that only one or two times a week. I'm working on putting all that together and I'll be starting up the new stuff tomorrow, but, uh, yeah. Should be fun, I think.


    And that brings me to today, where I'm working to get everything done and hopefully get out on time to make it to the mats. We'll see how it shakes out. Fingers crossed!

    • Like 4
  5. On 4/6/2023 at 5:45 PM, Mistr said:

    Yep, I am working on that. Dumbledore still drinks regular milk some of the time, even though he has known for years that dairy gives him problems. At least Elf, Cleo and I have shifted completely to oat milk and almond milk.


    I can relate to this. I don't really drink my dairy anymore, but I'll still eat it. Generally in its fermented forms, although sometimes I'll make room for ice cream such as the situation warrants. :P


    But yeah, the craziest part is how little I miss milk. I've had the obligation to finish off the odd quart here or there after having bought it for recipes, and I'm surprised at how little I care for it. So, there's something to the avoidance, I think.

  6. On 4/3/2023 at 1:20 PM, Machete said:

    I might be moving this month or next. Who knows? Stay mobile, travel light. Gruntstyle.


    Feeling this one in my soul these days. It's something that I aspire to rather than something I accomplish.


    Welcome back as always. And hey, if you need help or anything, feel free to DM me and I'll see what I can work out.

    • Like 1
  7. On 4/6/2023 at 4:46 PM, Mistr said:

    I think you are smart to go back to some of the intermediate steps in the progression until your leg stops protesting. Maybe a month beyond that as well.


    Yeah, I think you're right. Although I don't know how much more time I'll need to recover. Even if I was doing this at a relatively fast pace per GB's programming, I'd still be paying my dues at these deck squats for about 2.5 months. Doing it in my slower way bumps that up to probably 5 months or so. Maybe more than that, depending on how I want to approach the problem of going from elevated to non-elevated deck squatting.


    On 4/6/2023 at 4:46 PM, Mistr said:

    I would put my money on you accidentally pulling something while you were sparring in BJJ. You were concentrating on your moves and your partner, so you might not have even felt a twinge. Later it had time to stiffen up and get your attention.


    That might be a good bet. I for the life of me can't tell where or when it happened if it happened before the strength work on Wednesday, but I can tell you that it was talking to me when I went out to the mats on Thursday night. Kind of surprised me, actually.


    On 4/6/2023 at 7:37 PM, Scaly Freak said:


    Thank you for reminding me that I forgot to mediate in the unstructured habit-free chaos that was my morning.


    No worries! I'm here to help. :D




    Goal 1: 13/13


    Goal 2: 12/13


    Goal 3: 7/13


    Wound up being a mat-time kind of Thursday. Which is fine with me. :D Don't get me wrong, I like writing with my friend when she can make it out, but I like my mat time too. In case you couldn't tell.


    Prior to that was strength work. I did elevated push ups and hollow body tuck holds per GB's protocol... and I worked some elevated deck squats in, just to test. Because I have a squat-shaped hole in my soul, and the only way to fill it is to work my legs. I'm pleased to report that they were easy, although there's still technical stuff for me to watch and work on there; even though my feet stay planted, my knees have a tendency to track outward and I think that might be a sign/symptom of some kind of movement deficit. Totally correctable, no pain when done proper, and that tendon wasn't angry at me either doing this or doing the mobility work afterward, which tells me this is where I need to be right now. Still notable, though.


    BJJ was focused on takedown to mount and then running a mount series. All very simple but very effective stuff. No complaints from me. Can't spell fundamentals without "fun" and all that. Rolls as follows:

    1. 2-stripe White: my partner for class. I forgot my survival posture for mount and so I wound up giving up an armbar, I think? Switched positions, went on the attack, and couldn't get the crosscollar choke I wanted, but I couldn't force the Americana off of there either, so I wound up attacking and getting a modified Ezekiel choke, which I haven't hit in a while. Taught my partner about it, then we switched and he hit it on me. What a good teacher I am. :D
    2. 1-stripe White: started off being mounted and remembered my survival posture! He couldn't really do anything with it and somehow or other I recall recovering to guard. Probably what happened is that my survival posture got me in position to achieve a half-guard and I was able to brute-force a guard from there, because that's typically how it works out for me if I can make the recovery. This is how I learned that the tendon doesn't like guard very much, although it didn't hurt so much as it was just not comfy. Since it was considered a successful defense, we switched roles. Got in mount and hit modified Ezekiel again. I forgot how much fun that is.
    3. 2-stripe White: ah, now this is the roll I'm the most proud of. We were given permission to freeroll, but we had to "pick somebody cool and roshambo for starting positions." I lost and he elected to start with mount. Start the round and I go for survival posture: rolling onto my side for breathing room, one hand up by my neck, and the other buried under my body so that they can't do anything with it. He goes to attack the under arm and discovers he can't do anything with it, so he grabs my free hand for gift wrap and tries to pull me into a back take. I immediately scoot my butt out so that he can't get hooks in. We squabble over arms for a while before he gets a leg up and goes for armbar. I lock that down, getting leverage under his leg and pushing it open so I can get up into the space. It's too tight for me to try to pop that space open, so I Over-Under him and manage to sprawl out in side control. He tries to recover and can't. I go to attack Americana, but that doesn't work; I try to track the arm as he straightens it out, but it doesn't feel like it's going to work, so I transition to scarf hold. Bell goes off just as I get there.

    That last roll is the one I'm most proud of, because I've come to understand the survival postures from that position enough to predict what people will do in those situations, and to influence them into making certain decisions that I can capitalize on, sometimes. Doesn't always carry off with colored belts; they have a tendency to force situations on me instead and also they get around a lot of my survival postures, but that's to be expected for where we are in the journey.


    Came back home, ate dinner and went to bed.


    And man, I dunno what to tell you about Friday except that I must have a sleep deficit that needed to be made up. We had a cold snap down here - temps went from 80 and sunny to 47 and rainy - and I pretty much just hibernated all day. When I finally did wake up, it was late afternoon. I decided to honor my body and just take it easy the rest of the day, which seems to have paid off some today - leg feels no pain at all and even though I slept late again, it was along more normal lines and I woke up and shook off my drowsiness much faster than I normally do.


    No rolling the past couple of days as a result, and I'm wondering now if, given @Mistr's insight into my situation, if maybe what I need to be doing is less mat time and more study time. I've noticed lately that my elbow doesn't really like the sparring very much, and while it doesn't hurt like it used to, it feels like it's kind of at a sticking point in terms of its recovery. I do have plenty of notes and study to undertake. I dunno if I'm formally committed yet to the idea of intentional time off, but the past couple days of hard rest has made me thoughtful. My body generally doesn't push for that kind of thing unless I've really been failing to pay my dues somewhere, and that could be part of it.


    I dunno. Just thoughtful, lately. Anyway, today is today. I've got a lot of energy, so I'm going to get stuff done. But I feel like there are some lessons in the past few days for me to consider and do something with. Dunno what just yet. We will see.

    • Like 5
  8. Goal 1: 11/11


    Goal 2: 10/11


    Goal 3: 6/11


    So, I wasn't able to get to the mats. Didn't finish the job on time to get to striking, and with my clothes needing to be washed I couldn't make it to no-gi either. So no mat time. Boo.


    Did do strength work. A surprising mixed bag. I found that my elbow responded really well to a closed grip on the rings during my inverted rows, and also I was able to go from a pronated grip through neutral to a fully supinated grip at the top of the rep (so, going from palms facing out at the bottom to palms facing me at the top). Wild stuff, y'all. I didn't see it coming, and I'm not sure why that happened. Wild guess at this point is that closing the grip took some pressure off my pinky finger, which is the tendon that's feeding into the inflamed part of my elbow and lets it relax a bit. Combined with slow, intentional cadence, I'm maintaining my form without compensating through there. It's something to watch and be mindful of; I kind of expect that it's going to switch up a little next week and I'm going to have to be paying attention to it when it happens. Very interesting.


    Leg work on the other hand took a weird turn. Got a sudden burning pain on the outside of my right leg out of nowhere. No pops, no noises, no indications, just a sudden mild stabbing discomfort that made me think of the color red. I aborted the session at that point. I tried my scheduled core work but my leg didn't like it, so I stopped. Good news is, it responds to stretching, but holy crap did it feel tight when I went to do it.


    That's got me thoughtful. For those who might not remember, I skipped a couple steps on the progression to pistol squatting. GB wants me to go from full squatting to elevated deck squats to full deck squats and then to cossack squats, like I was doing. I'm not convinced I need deck squats in order to get to pistols, but something I didn't think about is that GB wants its trainees to do specific integrated mobility drills to build and rebuild the tendons and ligaments to support such movements. In skipping the big stuff, I skipped the small stuff too, and I could tell that I didn't really have the strength to do the integrated mobility for the cossacks. But I thought I could make do. I'm wondering now if I was wrong.


    The whole reason I'm reticent about deck squatting is that the method they want me to use involves equipment that I don't have and don't really have the space for. I'm lucky enough to have a deck out back of my place that I can use for the elevated deck squats, but it's a straight drop from there down to the floor for the next progression as opposed to the use of mats to gradually roll down on the ground.


    But maybe that's a silly thing to be worried about. After all, I'm doing the slowest possible progression and realistically if I went back to elevated deck squatting and spent my time paying my dues, the problem of height doesn't become relevant until, like, 9-18 weeks from the date I start. Surely I can clean up enough space to make the mats a good idea.


    Huh. Okay.


    Writing happened at least. Meditation did not, since I had to get to bed early for a dr's appt this morning. Which brings us to today. Strength work on the docket and either mat time or writing time with friend. Got tomorrow off, so mat time's a given.

    • Like 4
  9. Goal 1: 10/10


    Goal 2: 9/10


    Goal 3: 6/10


    Tuesday was a very productive day. I finished my job stuff early and instead of going on a walk found myself drawn to my writing. So I decided to honor that and focus on that. I've made a couple cuts to my cast of characters and added the main antagonist; once he's done, my cast should be in working shape and I'll move on to my next step.


    Mat time was more scarf hold, which was expected. Tuesday night fundamental classes tend to get a refined version of the Monday fundamentals. Unlike Monday, though, we actually worked on attacks and transitions, which was a welcome change of pace. Only a couple of rolls last night:

    • ???-stripe white belt: can't remember his stripes. Started from side control. I managed the transition to scarf hold and landed an armbar on him. When we switched positions, he got a hold of my elbow in scarf hold and did not let go, but he wasn't able to do anything with the position so he went for mount. I was able to reverse the mount and get "Trap-trap-and roll," which I can't recall the last time I hit that in sparring. Changed positions again and went for scarf hold again. This time he was almost able to escape but I was able to hold it through the end of the roll.
    • 2-stripe white belt: started off in his guard. We squabbled some for a bit before I was able to achieve base. Went to knee slide, but he got knee shield up in response and shot for triangle. It landed very badly, and I was able to manage some kind of an Over-Under pass, shucking his legs to the side and landing in side control. We reset and switched roles. He was able to stand up and break my guard open. Tried to go for double ankle sweep, but he stepped out of it, so I switched my legs and got one foot on his hip and the other under his far knee and managed a Tripod sweep. Couldn't establish control off of it, though, but I'll take it.

    Got back home, did some qigong and meditation and... just chilled. It was a good night, although I did drop the ball and forgot to get my stuff washed last night. Since we wear belts in no-gi, and since my belt is not clean, I'll be skipping out of that tonight. I do mean to make striking, though, although the job today has been unusually hairy, so it's not guaranteed.

    • Like 4
  10. 17 hours ago, Scaly Freak said:


    Could this have to do with boundaries...? Specifically yours, and SciFi friend not respecting them?


    More a sense of general disrespect rather than a particular matter of boundaries. Without getting into details, he's had a couple of isolated instances of saying/doing things that I would think he would know better than to do if he really valued my company.


    But these are isolated things, and I know that he's got a pretty profoundly stressful situation going on right now. I know if I was in his position, I wouldn't necessarily be as kind as I'd want to be either, and I wouldn't want to be defined by my shortcomings, especially if I'd worked as hard to facilitate this relationship as he has.


    Besides, the current kickboxing coach doesn't really have anything to teach me that I can't learn and study for myself. The value of the program is the sparring, and my attendance wouldn't have been affected by taking Monday night off the mats.




    Goal 1: 9/9


    Goal 2: 8/9


    Goal 3: 5/9


    Monday down! Was able to leverage my new hourlong lunch into noontime BJJ class where we went over more ways to deal with scarf hold. -_- Sigh. Coach. Stop, man.


    But I got that done and made it back home to get some work done and then lift heavy things per my schedule. Then went out to see the new D&D film, Honor Among Thieves. And, yo, this movie's actually good. Which is a huge thing to say given the history of D&D films. It's a fun film with a good balance between gravitas and levity. You could accuse it of being a little rote, painting by the numbers to get done what it wants to get done, but it's got enough charm to pull it off. I found it to be very enjoyable.


    Got back and got some writing done, but I didn't really manage meditation in any appreciable degree. Did take 10 breaths before going to sleep, though.


    Today is today. Finished my job stuff early and felt drawn to my writing, so I honored that. Still need to train and meditate, which I'd be surprised with myself if I don't accomplish.

    • Like 7
  11. Goal 1: 8/8


    Goal 2: 7/8


    Goal 3: 5/8


    Got everything done yesterday! A quiet Sunday. It was nice to be social and have a day to just rest and meander without any kind of intentional training. Kind of weird, if I'm being frank.


    But yeah, nothing done means nothing to report.


    Today is today. S&S and BJJ on the docket. Sci Fi friend initially said he was taking the night off of hosting duties because of the situation with his mom but then said he wanted to get together to see the D&D movie, and I wanted to see it too and I know I won't take the opportunity to do so unless someone invites me to do it, so guess I'm doing that tonight instead of kickboxing. I'm... kind of mad about it? Dunno if it's just my normal saltiness about making plans and having them be changed by my priorities and external circumstances or if it's something more. I have to admit that a sense of grievance has been developing in me lately toward my friend, and I'm working to understand it and let it run its course into background noise; this is just a data point for me to understand.


    Anyway. Time to be simple on my way to being sinister.

    • Like 5
  12. Goal 1: 7/7


    Goal 2: 6/7


    Goal 3: 4/7


    Quick update will be quick! Weather's good and I wanna go for a walk, so I'm gonna while I still got time.


    Training carried off well the past couple of days. I did S&S late at night Friday night because I fell down the rabbit hole of the job. I'm pretty close to getting my caseload reduced such that I could actually work from home 4 days a week instead of 3, and so I'm honed in on that pretty strongly. Could happen in as soon as a month, but it's not guaranteed by dint of a bunch of factors that I don't have any control over. I suspect what's going to happen is I'm going to miss cutoff by maybe one case or two when it's reviewed next month, but it's either that or worse if I don't try to do anything about it, so.


    Saturday I did hand and neck work, and also hit up the mats. Saturday is a drill-heavy class; most of what we worked on was Toreando passing, the armbar-triangle-omoplata sub series, and some De La Riva stuff. No sparring yet, since that would have been open stuff, although I probably could negotiate situational sparring with folks. I dunno how much I trust them, though. For that matter, I don't know how much I trust myself either.


    Writing and meditation happened on Friday. It was only writing on Saturday, though. I played and finished off another game from a Humble Bundle from a while ago called Celeste. It's a platformer game about a girl who's climbing a mountain who has a lot to prove to herself. Very, very good, but there's no way I could have beat that game without its Assist Mode (read: easy mode). Still a good game, though; pixel art is gorgeous, music is dope, story's affecting and effective. Good times.


    Today is today, and like I said, I'm going for a walk. No real training to plug into today. Got some of my writing done already. All that's left is to get meditational for a bit. I can do that.

    • Like 4
  13. On 3/30/2023 at 1:42 PM, The Most Loathed said:

    Not trollish at all. A perfectly legitimate defense and evidence that he wasn't quite in place. You're helping him improve.


    Right. I help him get better and he helps me get better. It's a both/and kind of thing.


    On 3/30/2023 at 1:42 PM, The Most Loathed said:

    We have a woman who I have never been able to Americana for this reason. She's known throughout the school for being hyper flexible. It's just and attribute we get to learn to work around


    Oh yeah. And I outplayed him for the most part on position - went from side control to scarf hold and then ran out of time. But you're right, it's a lesson in figuring out how to work around things.




    Goal 1: 5/5


    Goal 2: 4/5


    Goal 3: 3/5


    Thursday done! Writing with friends did not happen, so mat time did instead. Still got some writing done in terms of refining my "One Sentence Summary," which I'm sure I'll come back to again but it's still good to have done.


    Mat time was notable for being all about escaping scarf hold. Boooooooo. Scarf hold is my one happy place, and every time we run classes on how to get out of it, I feel like I'm being personally attacked. 🤣Situational sparring afterward:

    • One Stripe White: rolled with my class partner. Relatively new. Flails a lot in guard, but surprisingly he's a good hand-fighter (meaning that when I go to grab his hands or his arms or whatever, he's able to counter it) and has a tendency to find his way to good frames. Got a tripod sweep on him.
    • No-Stripe Blue: I've rolled with this one before. Successfully held him off this time; biggest win here was that I was able to slip a triangle when he went for it by posturing up and curling my endangered arm up to my head to block and give me some literal breathing room. He eventually loosened the lock and I was able to shuck his legs aside and land in side control. Think this might have been him playing with a weak position, but I was able to work with it, and that's not nothing.
    • One Stripe White: same one as the first time! Played a lot easier this time with each other, just trying to go with some stuff. Got an armbar in a non-resistant context, but I was trying to show him triangle and my muscle memory got confused. Oh well.
    • Two Stripe White: heavier gentleman. Nothing really memorable here. He got past my guard and I was able to recover to standing, which is better than nothing. I seem to recall that we got to a half guard position too, and I was able to get on to my side rather than lying on my back, which is good.

    Got back home. Worked on some qigong stuff. Worked some OT. No meditation since the world was just a bit too interesting for some reason. I don't really have anything else to attribute it to. 🤷‍♂️


    Today is today. I had hoped to make some mat time, but I wasn't able to get my stuff laundered in time last night on account of neighbors using the machines. It's just as well. Working OT has actually caused me to go to bed later than I'd like, and I'm kind of fried as a result. A little rest won't hurt me none. Beyond that, shouldn't really be anything today to stop me from getting after the goals.

    • Like 5
  14. On 3/29/2023 at 2:26 AM, Scaly Freak said:


    Ooo, I know about this game! Husband bought it last week and played through it, and has only good things to say about it. I might need to play it now.


    Yeah, I think so! I didn't expect to find some annual re-play material here between this and Disco Elysium, but here I am. What a fun year it's been so far. :D




    Goal 1: 4/4


    Goal 2: 3/4


    Goal 3: 3/4


    Ah, back to the regular update schedule. Feels nice. Like I'm recalling things or something.


    Tuesday mat time was... hard. I wrote down all the stuff we went over and I was pretty good at most of what we did. I dunno how to balance fundamental classes against the more advanced stuff - probably a side effect of karate training, which is All Basics All The Time - but I think maybe I'll be more comfortable going to regular classes when I can hit up fundamentals classes and feel mistakes as opposed to floundering. The hard part was the sparring.


    • 1-stripe White: situational sparring, open guard against a standing opponent. This is a weak place for me, so I needed to work on it. Got manhandled by the guy up until the last 30 seconds or so, when he popped a rib out of place. Still don't know how it happened. I didn't do anything; I had just toreando'd around his leg and was coming down on him without having any weight on him. He sat up hard into me and he just popped. So that ended that round pretty quickly; it's not my fault and nobody blames me, but it still feels bad because someone got injured rolling with me and I feel like I should have taken better care of him.
    • 2-strip White: same situation. This one was coming back from some time away. Managed to get to side control and land an Americana but couldn't get him to tap since he had gumby shoulders.
    • New Blue: an older gent who's wiry and athletic as hell. He's goals in some ways for me. Couldn't tap me, but almost got a rear naked choke and cranked me pretty hard for it. I was able to stymie him with the trollish move of turning my head to the side and replacing my airway with my carotids, and since he didn't really have a choke it worked, although my airway was a little sore after for all the pressure.
    • There's one more here that I don't remember all that well. Not really remarkable or memorable.

    Afterward, sat and chatted with folks for a while. One of the students who'd been there earlier said he was going to stay around for the regular class afterward, which is a no-no at our academy because of limited space. I didn't snitch on him because it's not my rule to enforce and I didn't really care what he did, but it did offend my sense of fair play. Got to carry that feeling that I was being penalized for doing the right thing, and that was a bummer.


    It hasn't persisted, though. I'm okay. :)


    Worked some OT afterward and that was that. Had to return to the office again yesterday and again managed my meditation and writing goals at the office. I've decided to be more generous with the writing goal and count research on planning methods toward it, and in this case, research has been about getting more detail about the Snowflake Method. So that's happened. Didn't make it to the mats last night, though; I'd missed morning training and I didn't get out of the office in time and I was actually kind of feeling rundown and like I needed some rest, and I thought that a couple hours of kickboxing and no-gi practice would be too much.


    did manage my strength work, though. And hey, my elbow's doing well enough for me to return to inverted rows in a limited capacity! I'm taking some BJJ strength-training advice and really slowing down my cadence - 3 seconds down, 3 seconds up - and while that's going to slow things down even further, it'll spare my joints, and that fits my priorities right now. I'm just glad to get this back. Right now I'm employing a hook grip on the rings rather than a closed grip, which I think is going to be the next progression once I hit standard.


    Did qigong work and drilling afterward. Found some good work for some knee pain I've been dealing with and experienced some immediate relief. Will be investing in this further when I get paid tomorrow.


    Anyway, that was all yesterday. Today is today. I'm back at home, and I think we're at the point now where the Writing Friend has fallen off, which I saw coming. Unless she decides to surprise me, which she might. Things will happen as they will today and tonight.

    • Like 6
  15. On 3/24/2023 at 5:22 PM, Sovalis said:

    Here for this! Enjoy the beach! 


    On 3/24/2023 at 9:04 PM, Everstorm said:

    Ooh, it's a nice weekend here for the beach.  Good call!


    On 3/25/2023 at 10:21 AM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

    Following. Watch out for seagulls. Don't let them poke you in the coconut.


    On 3/25/2023 at 2:07 PM, Mistr said:

    Following. Have a great weekend!


    Thanks, y'all!




    Goal 1: 3/3


    Goal 2: 2/3


    Goal 3: 2/3


    And with that, we are off to the races!


    Trip out to the coast was fun times. This trip was to celebrate one of my Sci Fi Friend's wife's birthday. And so we did! Because she wound up with a bunch of nerds under her roof, she decided that she wanted to play D&D, having never played it before. We were able to facilitate this; our DM wound up giving us a heist game whose plot is a crossover between Ocean's 11 and Jack and the Beanstalk.


    The game has proven to be a lot of fun to play. I'm presently playing as a Warforged Monk who is acting as a pickpocket/sneak thief for the group. I've had a really easy time with improvising lines and playing comic relief, which is good since comic/adventure is the tone we're going for.


    OTOH, everyone else is really, really new to the game and it shows. Remember, this is supposed to be a heist game played in the course of an afternoon, but instead of going with the flow of the story and letting it happen, we've spent the past 2 days planning this thing out instead of actually executing the thing. The other players are basically playing the game like it's a game to be won rather than a story to be told, which is a rookie thing to do (and I know I done it). Also, one player basically doesn't trust the DM to not smack us around with information that he might provide in asking questions, so he's really circumspect and oblique in communicating with us and it's proving to be really frustrating for everyone else.


    Sigh. We should have played Blades In The Dark. Simpler mechanics, session's done in an hour, and no need to waste time on the planning stage. But she wanted what she wanted, and so we got what we got. And TBH, it really has been fun, and I think everyone else is having a good time. Suppose it remains to be seen. I do think some of our players are going to bounce off the game, but I don't think it's anyone's fault. Frankly, FWIW, I've had fun; it's good to know that I can actually improvise with people when I'm paying attention and investing myself in their stories without an attachment to the end result.


    Anyway, that's the big news of the last couple of days. Beyond that, we basically came home on Sunday. Since I skipped out on hand and neck work on Saturday, I did Sunday instead after having got home. Would have got after the other goals except that a game I'd been wanting to play came up on Steam Sale, so I went and got that instead. Game in question was Citizen Sleeper; in it, you play as a piece of sapient corporate property on the run from your masters in a hard-science space opera setting. So, think a cyberpunk take on The Expanse. It was fun stuff. It's a text-heavy RPG and plays out more like a visual novel than it does anything else; the gameplay loop is about time and resource management as you're trying to make enough money to buy the food and meds that you need to keep yourself alive as you're trying to stay one step ahead of the corporation that's chasing you. I really enjoyed it; I think I'd like to replay the game on some kind of annual basis so that the story beats hit harder rather than frying myself out on it.


    Monday, I took the day off of the job because my Dad wanted some help working on the house. That meant going home and helping with removing a bush in front of our porch as well as putting up some fascia board to pretty up the tongue-in-groove board that my folks rebuilt the porch with. Hung out with them for the day before going back to hang out with Sci Fi friends again to continue D&D, which was just another night of planning (although we did manage to punch it up some with the use of a flashback mechanic that we borrowed from Blades In The Dark. Which I'd offer is proof that we should have played that game instead, but I digress). The labor at my folk's place was my training, and the writing and meditation got done; I actually found that I'm going to have to bump my time to 3 minutes since 10 deep breaths is longer than 2 minutes for me.


    Today, back in the office. Training goal was accomplished at home, and writing and meditation goals are completed here at the job, hence my offering numbers up to today. Gonna make it out to the mats tonight and follow up with some overtime work. Gonna try to get my laundry caught up as well so I can make mat time tomorrow, but I suppose that we'll just have to wait and see how it shakes out.

    • Like 6
  16. Good start! I've observed that, when it comes to food, you either spend money to save time, or spend time to save money. What is appropriate when is down to you.


    I'm glad to hear that the dog wound up in a good place, and I hope your work trip goes well!

    • Like 3
  17. Howdy, y'all!


    Getting in early on this one as I'm taking off to the beach in a couple hours and I don't know if I'm going to get the chance to post on time.


    In keeping with the last challenge, I made a point of redistributing my training tasks to win back some much needed time. I applied that the past week as follows:


    • Monday: Simple and Sinister, Farmer's Walks
    • Tuesday: Straddle Planche progression, Side Lever progression
    • Wednesday: Rope Climb progression, Single Leg Squat progression, Manna progression
    • Thursday: Hollow Back Press progression, Front Lever progression
    • Friday: Simple and Sinister, Farmer's Walks
    • Saturday: Handstand and Neck work
    • Sunday: ???


    It all sounds like a lot and very heavy until you realize that at this point it's just planks and push ups and inverted rows and super basic things at this point. But I tried it out and, uh, it worked like gangbusters! Everything's done really fast; nothing takes more than 20-30 minutes and I hit enough of my body to feel good for having done it. I've even been able to retain my qigong practice, although that too has changed some. Shi Yan Lei, whose work I'm following, wants like 5 different stances in addition to the qigong, as part of a combined program of qigong and kung fu. Well, I've already got enough leg work in my kung fu program as it is, and only 2 of the stances he provides show up in the qigong movements, so there's no real reason for me to faff about and waste more effort.


    And the thing is, the training workload as it was distributed last challenge had some substantial effects on my ability to get after the non-training portions - the meditation and the writing. So I want to attack those problems again, but this time with this new set up, just to see how it goes.


    For those who didn't follow along last time, it goes like this:


    Goal 1: Training

    Like it says on the tin. Qigong is going to happen as it does; I actually want to try to get to 3-4 times a week, which I think will be quite doable. This was another one of those things that suffered under the prior load, but really it's more a matter of being an opportunity than something I'm going to pursue aggressively.


    Goal 2: Meditation

    Gonna shift this goal a little bit and set a time of 2 minutes as my minimum. To be clear, even if I miss this goal, I'm still going to take my deep breaths at bed time and get some benefit. So it's not an either/or situation by any stretch. I just want to challenge myself to do more, and having a hard standard that I won't wiggle out of will help. Maybe. Or maybe I'll be lazy again. IDK.


    Goal 3: Writing

    I found a more detailed version of the Snowflake Method. I think I'm going to use this one, since it has a more integrated approach to character profiling and stuff like that. The old 6-step program on Reedsy that I referenced before was a good starting point, but it was also looser in a way that I had a hard time connecting with. I still think I can use their character profiler as a way to construct a dossier on my characters for reference, but it's hard to use for the planning stages, at least for me. My figuring at this point is, plan out -> write the damn thing -> fill out dossiers afterward with the information I develop. But we'll see. 1st step is to follow the plan.


    Those are my goals this time. It works out to being mostly a repeat of the last challenge. There is some stuff I want to do/get into, but I don't really have a realistic way of approaching that just yet, so that'll be something that hums along in the background. No worries.


    T-minus a couple days. See y'all when I do!

    • Like 6
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