Book Report, September 2013

  • The Fires of Heaven, Robert Jordan. Book 5 of The Wheel of Time. Finally! 2 months to finish, and I’m not a slow reader. Took me most of the book to remember all the characters (seriously, so many). Then things seemed to be wrapping up to at least a point where everything wasn’t terrible — and then, the last 3 paragraphs. WTF??!! Now I have to read the next one! (Hopefully before I forget all the characters again…)

Still totally lame

Still sick. I reluctantly started an antibiotic yesterday, and that seems already to be helping a lot. So hopefully going to get this thing knocked out very soon. At least the network issues at work finally got fixed, and I can work from home now.

I did go in to work last week for just a few hours, but apparently I managed to infect nearly everyone there. Oops.

On the other hand, I’ve gotten lots of practice making an amazing homemade chicken zoodle (zucchini noodle) soup this week.

Totally lame

I’ve been attacked by a cold. Been sick since Saturday. Lame.

In other news — my parents used to own a sports nutrition franchise (kind of like GNC, that type). They recently got out of the franchise business, so the location went up for sale. A new business opened there yesterday: a cupcake shop.

I say that the two stores sell the same thing: weight gainers. Only theirs probably tastes better. 😉

Book Report, July 2013

I declared July to be “YA Novel Month”:

  • Princess Academy, Shannon Hale. I think I adore this even more every time I read it.
  • Goose Girl, Shannon Hale. This one, too.
  • The Tale of Despereaux, Kate DiCamillo.
  • A Wrinkle in Time, Madeleine L’Engle.
  • The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins. Honestly, I expected it to be terrible, but it’s actually really good. Now I need to buy the sequels!
  • A Wind in the Door, Madeleine L’Engle.
  • A Swiftly Tilting Planet, Madeleine L’Engle.
  • Many Waters, Madeleine L’Engle.

Yeah, I got on a bit of a Madeleine L’Engle kick there (though didn’t read the 5th one, as I really don’t like Zachary in any of the books he’s in [or Max, in the others; why’d she write such self-centered jerks? — and I seem to recall the girls being too nice to these guys, which made me mad, too]).

And between times, when my head needed a break:

  • You Can Farm, Joel Salatin.

Short Answers to Search Engine Terms, #2

The first was almost a year ago, so we’re due another, amirite?

Most common terms:

  1. “BJJ” + some version of “girl”/”woman”
  2. names of specific women who train (also Caio Terra, lol)
  3. a version of: “can jiu jitsu get you in shape?” — answer: Yes.

how can a girl get into jujitsu: Show up to a school. Ask to train.

I don’t mean to be flippant, but there’s not some secret way. Show up. Train. Advice: don’t wait on someone else to go with you. They will find excuses. Just go.

is bjj for women too: Yes.

is it ok for guy to practice jujitsu on girl: Yes.

is bjj for people not in shape: Yes.

normal to be scsred first day of bjj: Yes.

too scared to join bjj class: I understand. It’s intimidating to walk in to that room for the first time. I sat in my car for 5 or 10 minutes just freaking out before I first walked in. But that first day is the hardest. The guys in there seem scary and untouchable, but I promise you that they’re just normal guys.

do you have to be strong to train bjj: No.

i need to get big for jiu jitsu: No. Really, you don’t. There is jiu-jitsu that works for your size, right now. But you have to find it and learn it. Look for black belts that are built like you, and then emulate them. If you’re tall and lanky, look at Roy Dean’s videos. If you’re small and squirrelly, look at Caio Terra. Jiu-jitsu is already home to practitioners of many different body types and sizes.

thinking about trying jiu jitsu will i get hurt: It’s possible. BJJ is a sport, after all, and people get hurt playing sports — even pick-up games or Parks & Rec level — all the time. (Then again, people get hurt when they’re not playing sports, too.) But BJJ also has built-in safety features such as “tapping,” which tells your partner to let go. At least if you get hurt doing BJJ, you’ll likely get a good story out it. 😉

bjj should i tap early: Tap when you need to. That might seem “early” to your partner, but only you know when you need to tap. Tap when:

  • it hurts
  • it will hurt very soon
  • you’re trapped and don’t know how to get out
  • you’re trapped and can’t get out safely
  • you’re worried about getting hurt (or hurting your partner)
  • you’re protecting an injury

why do i get exhausted while rolling bjj: Because you’re trying to use sheer muscle strength to do everything. And you’re doing that because you’re out of position. And you’re out of position because you’re impatient. Techniques work when you’re in the right position and are using the structure of your body. Get in the right position first. Doing the wrong thing harder doesn’t suddenly make it work.

small and frustrated with jiu jitsu: Yeah, me, too. Being smaller means that you don’t get to rely on athleticism; instead, you must nail the technique perfectly, or it fails spectacularly. I also realized that I was frustrated because I was expecting to dominate large, athletic men (both with and without experience). So I refocused my attention — instead of comparing how I was doing against other people, I started focusing on what I was doing: was I doing it right? tighter? sooner? The frustration doesn’t entirely go away, but it does retreat to a safe distance.

how to get good at bjj fast: More mat time. Especially drilling. Repetition, repetition, repetition. “Practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect.”

started jiu jitsu and i suck: Sucking is a normal first step when starting something new. Look at the higher belts at your academy — do you think they suck at BJJ? They are what you will become with training. (Though if you ask them, they’re likely to tell you that they still suck at BJJ, too.)

bjj how do i tell a guy i don’t want to roll with him? I usually take the passive-aggressive approach — I scout out rolling partners ahead of time and know where the next one(s) I want is, so when we switch I know where to go. Minimizes eye contact and chances for asking from someone else. But if you want to be more direct a simple “No, thanks” should suffice. You don’t owe them an explanation why; just say “No.”

bjj female what do you do when a guy creepy: I tell my coach and/or other instructors. And I let them handle it. Generally their method is rather entertaining.

bjj white belt can’t beat blue: There’s a reason you’re still a white belt and she’s a blue belt….

what to say to a boy who lose a bjj match againt a girl: The same thing you say when he loses to another boy: “Protect your neck. Posture up. Elbows in. Get that underhook. We’ll drill that escape again next week.”

not and not woman another creature: Um… not?