BJJ Grrl

"Be gentle, kind and beautiful, yet firm and strong, both mentally and physically." ~Sensei Keiko Fukuda

Hulk Noodle Smash

Blake’s way with analogies (see “meatball grip”) met Justin’s love of clever phrases. Blake was explaining how to be heavy in side control, and likened it to making your body like a wet blanket, which morphed into being like a limp noodle — in contrast to being a steel beam — while still smashing their face away like the Hulk. So Justin turned that into Hulk Noodle Smash.

Promotions! Matt got his purple finally (we have a newly acquired purple belt, Todd, who had rolled with him earlier in the night and said, “Wait, how is this guy still a blue?!”), and Wayne got his blue. Double promotion, too, as they were rolling together when it happened, so there was definitely some cross-whipping.

Tim told me on Saturday that I need to stop “being so nice” with everyone. I’ve fallen back in that habit of letting everyone “work” on me, largely because we’ve had so many new ladies in the last few months and I’ve been working with them a lot. Then I forget to adjust my brain when I go with someone more experienced, and just let them do what they want to do. So that’s something to work on. (Though there have been some times where, for whatever reason, all I want to do is hunt submissions on everyone. But mostly, yeah, being too nice.)

I had realized for myself that I need to stop playing butterfly guard so much because I was just stalling out there. Also likely related to the “letting people work” mindset, as I can make people do a lot of work there without being terribly offensive myself. So I’ve decided to work on my guard game. I might also need to include a top game in that, though, as guard can also be a place where I just chill and make them work. 

Bunch of new people over the last month, including some women. Last Friday was about half new guys.

The weather has turned stupid hot and humid, so that walking outside feels like hitting a wall of warm water. Ew.

Leave a comment »

The Birthday Door

This is not a BJJ post, just a funny-ish story. (I’m training still. I’m much more consistent about going M/F/Sa. Even if I lie to myself that “I’ll just warmup” or “I’ll just watch” when I’m tired, I end up diving in anyway and feeling great by the time it’s over.)

So for my birthday this year, my mom announced she had no idea what to get me. (Not really true; she just didn’t like any of the options. If I liked shopping or dresses or buying furniture, she would have found something.) Apparently cash was not an option. She decided that my gift from them would be a new storm door for my house. She doesn’t like the old one; it has no screen but the sun hits that side of the house most of the day, so it gets hot between the doors (and this is the way she comes into my house). It was also, for reasons I never figured out, impossible to keep clean; it would get some kind of film on the inside that you could scrub off… and it would come right back in a short while. Did not matter what you used. So, new door! Sure, fine.

She has a friend who sells doors & windows; he got her a good deal on a door. His son, a friend of mine, is a general contractor and came to install it. First problem, they immediately found some wood issues around the door. (I kinda suspected that was there, but did not want to acknowledge the issue. Maybe it will just get better on its own. You know, just like ribs do…) So authorized him to address that. Second, the door install took four times longer than they expected. Everything was more complicated than it usually is. (In talks with folks later, he learned that it’s because my door is not set into the frame, but into a deal with windows on the sides. Not as cooperative as real frames.) Then they absolutely could not figure out how to get the handle installed; they worked on it for over 2 hours. He’s installed doors many, many times, and this one was somehow different than any other he’s ever done (even from the same manufacturer). They eventually had to leave the handle inside the house and went to order another handle, assuming the first was broken.

He came back today to install the handle before I went to work. First problem, the new handle was the wrong color (nickel instead of brass. Big difference.). Second problem, it’s exactly the same style as the first one. Wat. We had ordered a different style. So he decided to try the first handle again. This time he acted as if he’d never installed a door handle before and followed the instructions exactly. Installed in 5 minutes. The difference: every other door handle this company makes, you have to screw in the faceplates first and then attach the handles to each other. On this model, for “reasons,” you thread the handles through the faceplates but do not screw them in until the handles lock, because the faceplates need to spin a bit. 

So he left and I finished getting ready for work. As I left, I shut the front door. And heard, “Clunk.” Wat. I pulled the door opened, then slowly closed it, watching as the deadbolt keypad headed straight for the new door handle. Clunk. Oh, lovely. I had to push open the new storm door then shut the front door and deadbolt it, letting the storm door hit the deadbolt pad and prop itself open by about a half inch. I called my mom to explain the situation, as I had to go to work. She called both the father and son and explained the issue; they both agreed to meet her at my house to look at it.

They pulled out the old door handles to compare it to the new one. The old door, made by the same company as the new door, should also have handles that are equal on the inside and outside (so you can do a left-hand or right-hand door with the same hardware). Surprise, the old door handles were not equal; the inside one was shorter. The father was surprised, because he’s worked for them for years, and he knows they don’t sell a lower-profile handle like that — but it’s got their name on it. So apparently the original installation had this exact same issue. Rather than fix it properly then (readjust lock locations or something), the original installers decided to cut down the inside handle to make it a lower-profile handle, thus creating problems for anyone who ever wanted to replace the door. Alllllriiiiight. (I wonder if they did that to all the houses in the neighborhood, which were all built by the same company.)

The solution we chose was to reuse the old handles since they do fit in the new door. The hardware doesn’t quite match (new & shiny vs 10 years of wear), but at least the door latches now.

The kicker in all this was that, while my mom bought the door for my birthday, she didn’t pay for the installation or the extra work he did on the woodwork. So my birthday present cost me about $400. Thanks, Mom…

I think next year I’ll make the case for cash.

Leave a comment »

Adding to the Purple roster

On Saturday, Janet was promoted to purple belt at the end of the women’s class. (Tim had to steal a purple belt off one of the guys who was waiting for Open Mat, which she had to give back after pictures, so tonight she came beltless while her new belt ships.) So now there are 3 of us, a whole lot of blue belt women, and more white belt women joining. It’s great to see how much it’s grown. On Friday night, the class was evenly split between men and women (not counting instructors) at 6 each. 

My attendance has still been spotty recently, a combination of actual legitimate reasons and rather bad reasons (e.g., was dumb and left my contacts at home, or was just tired and lazy). Friday night in class, I did something to my rib and, oh, did it hurt. Saturday morning in class, too, though I pushed through it. Then all Saturday it hurt; some better on Sunday and today, but still talking to me. Rolling tonight, Brandon did a heavy knee-on-belly on that side, and I heard and felt a “pop!” I gasped or something, and he was concerned that he’d hurt me, but I said that he’d just put my rib back in place. So much better now.


Foiled again

Class last night. Guard breaking/passing king of the hill style. So exhausting. Robert has decided to work wrist locks, and they are apparently everywhere. Spent those rounds with my fists balled up and wrists locked out to try to avoid them, which then of course left me with no grips. Harrumph. Drilled a little guard-breaking goodness, and then some more rolls.

Today I packed up to go to class. Got to work and realized I’d left my contacts, rash guard, and sports bra at home. Oops, kinda all important things. I got the gi, though! So I went home between work and class as there’s plenty of time. Figured I needed to pop my contacts in at 6 and then head over. At 5:59pm — I kid you not — my little brother (he’s 30 now. Is that still little?) rang my doorbell. He’s been waiting for a good day to come over and do some promised yard work for me. Apparently today was a good day. And so I was roped in to assisting, which ate up all the time before class. So I’m opting for the fuzzy pajamas tonight instead of the white pajamas. 

Leave a comment »

“Humans are compressable.”

The quotable Justin.

I was teaching class on Saturday, so needed to get a key. And since allergy junk had kept me out of class last Saturday and Monday, I decided that I would actually go do class as well. (Although, tactical error: I went with some friends to Indian for lunch. That always comes back to bite me in training later…)

I have not done nogi in so long! This is weird! Why don’t you all have sleeves to grab?!
Justin also showed off the 4 moves he made up this week. One of them, a leg drag variant, I really like; my brain gets it, but my body still cannot quite figure out how to get in to it, as it involves a spin and my brain says, “Huh?”

In rolling that night, I caught one of the white belt women with a guillotine. (Actually I think I only caught guillotines that night, which is weird! I only seem to know how to guillotine in nogi! What happened to all my armbars?!) She said something about wanting to know how to do those and how to defend them. Good news: guillotines are the focus for tomorrow.

Saturday morning, three white belt women, including the one from Friday night. And we worked guillotines.

Open mat, got some good rolls. (And the very first thing I got caught with was a Von Flue choke, which I had just taught, and had just mentioned was kinda embarrassing to get caught with. Hello, karma. Thanks for nothing. Jerk.) One with Justin, and I suddenly realized he was running through his 4 new moves. Doh. He mentioned something about the rolling back take that he does, and I said that it still all seems like magic to me. So he showed me how to do it (and now I also see how I keep putting myself in position to get tossed around with it), and I practiced on Matt a few times. Maaaaaybe it will stick this time? Seems useful, anyway.

Then went home and weeded the front flower beds, which took 2 hours. Ugh. The weed eater string decided to break multiple times right at the start, until the entire thing was gone (ugh), which means now you can really see how badly the edging needs to be done, because the one corner it neat and nice, and now the rest of the border looks scraggly and overgrown in comparison.

Leave a comment »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 207 other followers