Monday, October 24, 2005


Last night was the coolest and crappiest night I have had in class for quite a while. Thomas is an old school blackbelt. He was one of my first instructors when I went to the all adult class at the dojo. He is so serious and tough that both Ms. C & I have left class crying before when we were yellow or greenbelts. He's another one of those guys that believes in realism and doesn't let go unless you do it right and even then he still may ignore you. So when he showed up for class both Ms C & I were so totally excited. We were going to have a good class, a tough class and kick your arse class.

We went through our normal things, worked hard and towards the last twenty minutes of class, Thomas wanted us to work on basic breaks in a more real circumstance. With the monkey in the middle people attack you and you have to respond. Most folks were doing pretty well and seemed to be enjoying the fun. Then it comes to my turn, Thomas starts me off with a two man attack. I go to attack the man behind and shout "front first then back" and turn to back towards my front attacker and respond. I had no time to set up close my eyes before another attack comes, then a third. Thomas grabs me for the third attack and starts to pull me to the ground, I can't shake him off of me and my arms are pinned. As I start to go down his arms end up in my face so I "play bite" him. Most folks if you pretend will let go. He doesn't move his arm & continues to take me to the ground. I bite harder and he then moves enough for me to push him off, I land on my butt and then side kick from the ground towards his face. I just get stood up when someone grabs me from behind and lifts me off the ground. As I get swung around, I gently as possible kick the knees and shout "kick, kick, kick" in order for them to realize they need to let go. I then get hit from behind again, Thomas lifts me up, I kick, he sets me down but doesn't let go. In fact he starts to pull me backward, so I drop into a squat and attempt to push forward to get him to release. He holds on and finally gets my legs to collapse under me. So now we are at ground fighting which I haven't done in at least a year and a half. He's trying to pin my arms while he sits on my hips, pulls my hair and pokes me in the ribs – all the time laughing. He's waiting for me to get mad which isn't hard. I don't get mad as much as I get wild, not crazy but the adrenaline dumps and it all comes from instinct, from the repetitive actions we do in class, that muscle memory.

While I am being smacked about and poked, my mind clicks into gear just about the time he goes for his favourite choke. He loves to cross his arms using the right hand to grab the left collar of the gi and the left hand the right collar. Then you drop onto the chest of your opponent to get as low as possible, and flex your wrists. The flexing part is the choke and is doesn't take long for someone to tap out. I have two choices tap out or get out. So I pin in his right ankle, push up my hips as if I was doing a bridge without the arms and throw him off of me. We flip and I land in guard position – between his legs and automatically drop myself as low as I can, going right for the same choke he had me in. It's possible for him to throw me from here but I am so low its going to be hard, he will need to roll me, not throw me. We were told to release and I get one last attack again the grab from behind. I have sweat in my eyes, hair plastered to my face and I stomp like I should but my aim is off and I hit the guys foot. I turn to apologize and get attacked again mid apology. This is a double collar grab from behind so I do the standard catch up the arms and punch but the guys backing away like I am a crazy woman and I can't get near him.

Class finishes with a kicking drill and some stretches. T' whose foot I demolished comes up and gives me a hug. I feel so bad and look down to see that I actually drew blood. I can’t wear my glasses when I do these activities but with sweat, hair, poor vision and adrenaline pumping I screwed up and killed his foot. I feel horrid for that but he seems like it was okay. I didn’t mean to but my vision is poor aim wise without my glasses.

The guy who backed away with the fear in his eyes said I was looking "unplugged." I am not sure if that meant out of control crazy or that I wasn't backing down where most girls would have given in by then. I know that when I get angry folks have said my eyes turn black so maybe I looked scary but I can't help but worry what the hell unplugged was supposed to mean.

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