Sunday, December 18, 2016


  There comes a time when you know you aren't getting out alive anyway, you have nothing to lose, there is no way to survive and your brain shifts. You don't think about winning, you don't think about not losing, because death is a foregone conclusion. And something clicks and you decide to leave a mark. To leave so much forensic evidence, there is no way the threat will escape. To make this the worst day of his life. To cause as much pain and damage and horror as you can in the limited time you have left. This is hitting rock bottom and embracing rock bottom.
And it is one of the most powerful survivor mindsets there is. Very few people want to pay the price to stay engaged with a victim who has touched this level, the full-blown lizard brain.   -Rory Miller

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue: We worked on X guard and the tripod sweep. X guard is something I have worked very little of, but would like to persue more, as I need to develop a bottom game. Tripod sweep has been a nemesis. I clearly recall the first time I saw it as a white belt, I was nearly brought to tears of frustration with the multiple steps and the need to keep Left and Right straight. Still struggling with it some.

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue: all spars. I got a tripod sweep On Danny. He complimented me on it even before I told him that was the first tripod sweep I have ever gotten live.  I sparred with two of the female white belts that I had previously taught my favorite mount escape, and refreshed them on it. I mounted poor Jenna over and over and over till she was cursing me in frustration. I said, "You'll thank me for this someday. Not today. But someday." I also showed Camille and Mina how to force an armbar on someone who has their hands locked shut, even if he is much bigger and stronger than yourself.

The whole world is getting promoted: Dave and Casey and Kevin and Pat at black, Nelson and Gerrick and Dex at brown, An and Amy at purple.

Friday BJJ in Bellevue: Got there as the women's class was finishing up; they were doing some positional sparring from front mount. I called to Jenna, "Jenna- remember yesterday". Carlos shut me down. I almost never coach other people on the mat, but it seems like the very rare time I do it, he gets irritated with me... not sure why.  I'm pretty sure he didn't even know what I was referring to.

All positional KOTH.  I was doing pretty well. We had 4 profs on the mat tonight. Interesting situation wherein Prof A seems to feel that Prof B was going too hard. Prof A administered an educational beat-down. (Let me tell you, if I ever see an educational beat down coming at me from Prof A, I will wee all over the mat and expire from terror before he gets within 15 feet.) The next people in line were Chrisanne, Christy, and me in that order. Chrisanne (who has gotten really good at healthy boundary keeping and saying no to rolling with anyone she doesn't feel good about) turns to Christy and whispers, "You want to go with Prof B?" Christy, who is big and strong and technical and I figure can pretty well take care of herself, looked like a deer in headlights and tried to throw it back on Chrisanne. I decided that if they weren't comfortable, I didn't want either of them rolling with him, so I marched past them while they were conferring. My general impression of Prof B is a mild mannered guy, and I have never felt unsafe with him before... but Prof A knows him a lot better than I do. Also, he had just gotten an EBD in front of everybody, and that sort of thing doesn't tend to sit well with men's egoes. And you know what- he *DID* go too hard. But I am feeling pretty confident right now about being able to protect myself, even against scary guys. I may not *win*, but I can consistantly prevent them from damaging me. And if things start to go sideways, well, there's always Tappety Tap tap.

I got a handwritten letter from CN. It was so nice. I miss him. I wrote him back. Hope he keeps it up. It would be good to talk to him more.

Saturday BJJ in Seattle: all spars. Did okay. Decided not to tap to the girl who put her hand on my face 15 seconds in.... later she wiped her whole body down my face with all her weight while on top, and I thought she was gonna break my nose. So I pretended it was a comp, I didn't tap. It was a long, competitive match, but I did get one tap on her, which I was happy about. Tried the tripod sweep again on someone else, did not get it this time.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Christy is awesome

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom   -Anais Nin

Thursday lunchtime BJJ, in Bellevue, all spars. Nelson!!!! I love Nelson. Seriously, I would marry Nelson if he wasn't already happily married.   I taught my favorite almost-never-fail front mount escape to two different women. Note- remember to front mount them next time I roll with them and make sure they do it.

Friday women's class in Bellevue. All drills. Standing guard passes, SGP to KOB. Lying under partner and holding the belt, hiking butt up so that one knee is in hir crotch and the other foot is wrapped around hir hip. (oof!) This weird thing where you put one hand on your partner's knee and the other on the floor and hop from one side of hir guard to another. It was really easy and even somewhat fun (like a dance move) RIGHT UP UNTIL Carlos came over and stood right behind me so that I had to sidle instead of hop. THAT MADE IT A HUNDRED TIMES HARDER!!!!!  (Also.... even though he continues to look at me funny whenever I try to say anything to him in Portuguese, he did understand when I muttered, "Eu nao gosto voce,"  ("I don't like you"))

I was really impressed with Christy, who is just coming off a bout of food poisoning. Breakfast was the first meal she had eaten in three days. Then she went skiing. Then to the women's class. Then she ran into the bathroom to puke. Then she did the second class. I told her that she is one of my jiu jitsu idols. She laughed at me.

I could not do the second class. I e-mailed my doctor yesterday and told her that the insomnia meds have made me gain 20 pounds, I am tired all the time, and I want off. We are going to try something else. I am going on a diet. I think I am going to compete again next year, just because that forces me to eat healthy and stay at a reasonable weight. I just can't deal with being this heavy.  Dewey brought me a really awesome healthy roast soup tonight.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Takeoff, crash

People comfortable with high levels of violence have learned to skip steps in escalation. -Rory Miller

Thursday and Friday BJJ last week- I did it, but was too lazy to write it up.

This Thursday I had to take my dog to the vet- she had a cauliflower ear just like her mommy! So I only got to class on Friday (Kirkland). I only did drills because I just got tattooed the night before (shouldn't have been in there at all... it hurt.... but I just couldn't bear skipping).

Someone got on my case while ago for sticking my *bottom* knee in while trying to replace guard from under side control; I'm not sure why my brain wants to do that, but it does, so I have been trying to break myself of it. Tonight we did a technique wherein you *do* stick your bottom knee in first (HA!) and then swing the top one over the back of the opponent's neck, and attack that arm with a figure 4. Made them summersault, then go belly-down and lock the shoulder. I need to avoid getting so anxious about controlling the person that I can't deal with the figure 4, and I also need to cope with my instinctual reluctance to do *anything* beside let go of everything and try to jump on top once they summersault. You actually have to belly-crawl AWAY from them a bit to get that lock, and they really can't get out, even if my caveman brain is yammering that they are loose and flopping and getting ready to get up and smash me.

I know I have been bad about blogging lately. I had some kind of epiphany last month where I went down to the River and (metaphorically) threw away some burdensome life crap, and then I spent about a week and a half in a strange state of feeling too big for my physical boundaries. It was a very dramatic Kundalini-Awakening type of thing. I have touched it before, but never so strong or lasting that long.  I got really excited ("I'm Superwoman! I am going to do ALL OF THE THINGS now! I am a higher manifestation!"), then I got scared, then I set earnestly to work self-sabotaging (partly by stuffing myself with so much sugar and carbs that I feel exhausted and weak and am fatter than I ever imagined I'd be).  It is a recurrent pattern that I am well aware of, but this time it was happening in 3D, technicolor and Slo-mo. I'm frustated with my state of own-worst-enemy-ness. I remember that feeling, though. I want it back. Permanently.

In the meantime, I persevere in studying both Portuguese and ASL (see how I get in my manic state, LOL... I almost added Chinese on top of it, but decided that that was insane- will save that for later) and studying for the EMT course (which should be starting in February).

I commited to hosting a self-defence class at PSG next year (assuming it's approved, which I can't imagine it wouldn't be). It will be discusion only, focused mainly on how to spot and avoid trouble. I may do a Part 2 with some simple physical tricks if there seems to be enough interest. I asked onlist if there was anyone who would co-host so that we could get some different perspectives and experiences from different training backgrounds. Didn't get a response as of yet. I'll ask again when it gets closer.  I'm excited about it, even if I have to do it by myself. I have all sorts of ideas. I've been thinking of doing it for a few years , but now is the time. The Pagans, the gay folks, the trans folks and other fringe elements are scared and want to know how to stay safe.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Can we keep him?

The situation *isn't* over until everyone involved DEEMS it's over.   -Marc MacYoung

Thursday evening BJJ in Bellevue: Another brand new female student (I was able to inform Carlos IN PORTUGUESE that we had a new student!). I helped her as we drilled spider guard passes, then I lined up a safe partner for her for the next class- but it ended up not mattering because we did King Of the Hill all hour.  I might not have stayed for the 2nd class had I known that it would be a SECOND hour of spider guard. (oooo, grips!)

Thursday evening BJJ in Kirkland: My diet's been terrible and my energy level low, and I had to struggle hard to get through these warmups. Had to actually skip the frog-jump portion- I just couldn't- thought I was gonna have a heart attack.   More guard passes, upas, got to have a spar with Dave.

Friday evening BJJ in Bellevue, all King Of the Hill. We were all having so much fun that we extended the class an extra half hour.

We have a visiting Professor, Willas. I asked Amy to tell Carlos that we all like Willas and want to keep him.    ;)   He's really nice and has a lot of good little-guy tricks. Watched him take on this huge muscley (somewhat obnoxious) white belt guy... it was inspiring.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Esta quente.

Instead of thinking about conquering an art form, think instead about kissing it hello, wooing it, exploring it in small, enticing steps. –Julia Cameron

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue: Carlos was absent, and there was a brand new girl taking her first class- so I taught her how to shrimp and then did the drills with her (side control escapes). Then there were a few short spars, and I matched her up with safe people. Will was there- I have not seen him in forever- so I called him out after class and we had a really fun roll.

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue: Standing guard pass drills. Standing spider guard pass by pinning one knee to the floor and underhooking the other thigh. King of the hill, spider guard sweep vs pass. I did pretty horrible today for some reason.

I got to try out my beginning Portuguese on Carlos today. I informed him that he is a very tall Brazilian man. You should have seen his face. He made me repeat it, and made a minor correction. Later I told him that it was too hot in the gym. At the end, I tried to tell him that the class was great, but he didn't understand me.  I hope my pronunciation is not that bad. I will keep trying. I was able to read a comment today on one of his FB posts that was in Portuguese.

Saturday, October 8, 2016


The four lines people cross that take their actions out of the self-defense justification are:
1)The threat isn't physical
2)The threat isn't immediate
3)They cross into excessive force
4)They participate in the creation and escalation of the situation.
-Marc MacYoung

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue. I had a really good spar with Seth; asked him to not let me do any escapes so that I would be forced to try other things. He praised me for staying on the move.

Thursday BJJ in Bellevue.  A lot of King Of the Hill from back mount. As usual, I was doing well at escaping back mount and I was not doing well at keeping it.

Friday evening BJJ in Bellevue. All spars. Carlos left early, so Chrisanne wanted to spar with me for the first time in forever. I didn't injure her. Another good spar with Seth (no escapes allowed). Kevin.... OMG. Nobody rolls like this guy. Every BJJ artist on the planet should get a chance to roll with this guy once just to experience it.  That Brazilian purple belt woman that I have always found challenging- neither of us was able to tap the other tonight, and we spent a long time working standup... so nice to get to work standup with someone my own size. New girl: she stared at me wide-eyed after time was called and exclaimed, "That was..... so EYE-OPENING!"  

Chrisanne is competing next month for the first time. She has 4 stripes on her blue belt. I have spent a lot of time puzzling over our differing strategies. She has done everything possible to set herself up to win. Whereas anyone who has been reading my blog for a while well knows, I am self-sabotaging- I set things up so that if I lose, I have excuses. It seems like either Chrisanne or I have things fucked up- and I suspect it's me.