Well, here I’m trying to write a whiny post, and reddit has a thread that put into words the things that my brain arguing with me about. (My brain, btw, is those guys with the advice.) On the one hand, objectively not a great night; on the other hand, I did expect a bad night to happen eventually (and soon); on the other other hand, my brain is still insisting that I did some things well.
I had to leave work early for an appointment and didn’t get my now-usual pre-class snack. (The pre-class snack seems to have coincided with the recent “holy cats I know jiu-jitsu!” feeling. Causation?) I still ended up at class ridiculously early and went inside to wait through the kids’ class, only to find that none of Andrew’s normal helpers had been able to make it. So I changed and helped him for the second half.
The cauliflower on my right ear got aggravated Monday night, so I pulled out the headgear again. With my hair getting so much longer, I need to get one of those hair slickers, too. (Writing that down so hopefully I’ll remember later.)
Our class started with a short warmup, then a few rolls. My legs are dead. Lovely. The other folks were full of energy; I tried to keep up. Mostly I was just so slow and waaaaay behind. My brain alternated between reprimanding and commiserating. Not helping…
Did roll with one new guy (here? later?) with possibly a wrestling background. He’d either try to run around my legs, try to bulldozer over me, or grab my neck & try to throw me around with that. I focused on framing against his neck (which he rarely tried to remove, even when that was clearly the thing that was stopping his forward progress) and on keeping him in front of my guard/active hooks. Even found a sweep or two, though he exploded immediately so I just moved back to my guard. I also somehow caught his gi and got it wrapped around both arms; although I couldn’t do much with it except trap his arms, the position didn’t require much strength on my part once I had the grip. On the other hand, he was going nuts trying to rip his arms out (he seemed really worried that I was going to do something to his arms, so was all “Must. Get. Arms. Out. NOW!”), but always pulling the wrong direction and becoming more frustrated the longer his Hulk-raging didn’t work. I did eventually partially get the sweep I was looking for there, so he wasn’t too wrong.
…The more I remember/write, the more it sounds like that wasn’t a disastrous round on my part. Of course, at the time, my brain was simultaneously replaying the “good” rolls from the weeks before, against which this one did not match up at all, and it always seemed as if I was on the brink of being destroyed. I’m telling ya, this brain is so weird right now. I tried to convince it I’d had a terrible night, and it just kind of shrugged and reminded me of the things that had gone well, including the defensive rolling against spazzy guys. Well, yeah, but… I mean… but… okay, fine, you’re right.
(Wrestler dude reminds me of an anecdote Janet told me the other day: She’d asked one of the brown belts, who has an extensive wrestling background [collegiate wrestler, even?], something about when to do the side control escape that comes up to a single leg, and she either said or implied that this was one of many side control escapes. He looked at her funny and said that that’s the only side control escape. Heh, one-track mind.)
Rolling with another white belt later, I was lazy and left myself open; he swept to mount and began attacking armbars & triangles. He’d done it all right, so I was letting him go for it while waiting for a mistake. He thought he’d set up the triangle right and rolled to his back to finish, and I rolled up with him and appeared, fully squared up, in his guard. The look of shock on his face was priceless. “How did you get that other arm in?!!”
Drilling started with the same choke from Monday night, but they block the choke, so you switch to a kneebar. Legs?! What are these strange things? And I can… attack them? Really funny that, although I had purposely tried to choose one of the smallest guys there, his leg was waaaaay longer than my torso and I could hardly get the kneebar on. Andrew showed me a way to do it (he’d learned this on Big Tommy, which is probably the same size difference), but still, guess what I won’t be doing live any time soon…
More rolling to finish up. Still not terribly brilliant. Then at the start of Open Mat, I wanted to go home (so tired!), but someone was calling out a general “Anyone wanna roll? Anyone? Free armbars…” — and Tyler just had to post about this yesterday — so, fine, I’ll do it. Which is how I found myself rolling with Monster at the end of a long, tiring night. Okay, now… now I’m done. Even though he lets me play, he’s still a lot to climb around on.
And then Andrew was working with a couple guys on a question they had, which was close enough to a situation I’d just been in with Monster that I figured out what I’d screwed up back there. It’s almost as if the universe is conspiring to tell me that I do know some jiu-jitsu.