Thursday, May 28, 2009

Phase 2

I just got my supplements organized again. It's been a year. When I stopped rolling I just didn't need them. The demand on my body had been extraordinary, so I had to take precautions. The relatively few minutes I do cf each week does not approximate the demand. But I've started bjj again. So I have to get organized.

Getting the purple belt is what did it, got me rolling again. It really truly would be embarrassing to me, to be a sucky purple belt. It is embarrassing. I have forgotten quite a bit. Recoverable though. It isn't vanity, it's pride. We have to be what we appear to be. I will not be a poser. I know I've made a joke of it, but I really do look pretty good, for lanky and middle aged, and I don't feel that I function as well as I look. I should be stronger. This bothers me. It's odd, because the guys I have rolled with say I'm strong, but when it comes to exercise movements, I don't think much of myself. It has to do with the focus of bjj. My whole body is involved, especially the core, and as I've said, jokingly -- but all my jokes are true -- I'm all abs.

So I joined up with an academy tonight. Much larger, in terms of space and students. Good selection of belts -- I was the only p belt, but there were probably 4 brown belts, 8 blue belts, some white. Only one guy, brown belt, was deadly. Just focused and serious and out to get me. He did. And W, the black belt who runs the place. He got me. But he wasn't out for blood, the way the brown belt was. When we switched partners, I told him, the brown belt, "This isn't over!" I just gotta be me.

I'm surprised at how normal I think I managed to appear. Charming, I believe. Friendly, conversational -- but I did after all spend some time on the stage in my college days. Of course, what I think was charming may have come off as that Jim Carey scene in Dumb and Dumber, where he lights his farts and whatnot in a fantasy about being the debonair life of the party. I'm charming the way Mickaeel Jackson is charming when he's in bed with young boys. Don't you just love my analogies? I have a gift.

W is not what I expected. All I know is that he has a reputation. I don't know what that reputation is, though. The publicity shots are pretty standard, aggressive, but he's quite approachable. I mean, I rolled with him.

Well. My persona in such venues is to be non-threatening. I know, it's fighting. But not really. I'm there to be challenged, but it's complicated. I like teaching, so with the lower belts I'll point out an error right then. Nobody does that. I don't even know if it's appropriate. But I do it. Because there is a mild side to me, and Uncle Jack is a role I do well. I do need to connect with the aggression, though. That was a problem where I used to roll. I couldn't often notch it up.

But I'm talking about this for a reason. There should be an obvious question. A comparison. Old place, new place. Well, that would just be details. The interesting thing is what I can't say. It has to do with loyalty, my idea of it. Old feelings don't become invalid because they are no longer operative, if you understand my usage of the word operative. They're still there, the bonds. They weren't false when they were made. The commitment of friendship is not nullified because various incidental circumstances have changed. It isn't only love that does not fail. Friendship, too, must last, or it wasn't friendship.

With R and K, the matter is clouded. I was asked once if I would go back there, roll there again. I side-stepped the issue by saying the chance would never come. I was banned, you see. But would I? It's complex. I'm pretty angry about it, I find. But I'm a forgiving guy. But who has the integrity to apologize -- by which I mean, clear the air. They were surely wrong, in their misunderstandings, and in their subsequent handling of the thing. And not all of my pride is entirely mature.

But the answer is, no, I wouldn't go back. I'd like to see the people I cared about, and I'd like to roll with them. But now I have a new place. Even without it though I wouldn't go back. I think I'm wrong, technically, here. I just don't see how the air could ever be cleared. Yeah: I see it as a betrayal, and I have a real problem with betrayal. I just wouldn't be able to trust them, their motives, their good will. They had a collection of rationalizations, you see. That means they'd been collecting them, ahead of time. It seems two-faced. Anyway, in terms of bjj, this new place seems to offer more of what I could benefit from, regarding gaining skill.

And the fact of the matter is that one group of guys is awfully like another group of similar guys. You know what I mean. Bjj requires courteous conduct. Guys who can't handle that don't generally last. It is true that an academy takes on the character of the guy who runs it. That's because he hires the instructors, whose style would be like his own. It's also because the people who train there are attracted to that particular energy. That's why they stay.

W is very much like R. Even physically. It was a little eerie. And he's calm and quietish. Humble is the word that's thrown around, and it seems appropriate. Well? I'm not actually as humble as I appear to be. No, I'm not humble here, but I'm talking about reality. Part of my down-playing myself is that I like hidden strength. Show it when it's needed, only. Part of it is that I don't want to draw unnecessary aggression against myself. I'd rather be underestimated. Part of it is that lower expectations are easier to deal with -- and I'm a little lazy, sometimes. But what I do not want to be around is some loudmouth brawler who's all about his ego. So, as I say, there's a lot of selecting going on, in these places.

No regrets. I may never see any of the old guys again. I know how to walk away, if not actually let go. This is phase two, perhaps. It's good to mix things up. I knew my training wasn't being optimized before. Here's a new stimulus. I still have the old limits, of inflexibility and over-caution and too much gentleness. And this troublesome and not very bright brain. You know which brain I'm talking about. Not my genius brain. Duh. My bjj brain. Just average. Like you. How I pity you.

Don't know how much I'll be able to train. Not as much as before, certainly. Even this hour and a half has summoned up the old stiffness. Hence, the supplements. They make a small difference. But I think I'll be tightening up my diet. You've noticed how I say it: take care of the nutrition first, then eat what you want. But you can't eat what you want if you have specific goals. It's not a weight thing with me, it's a performance thing, and that has to do with ache and recovery. So I can't eat what I want. I have been known to devour a whole box of granola bars, and they're practically candy. Well, I do need the calories. But it's not about calories with me, it's about inflammation. And the popcorn isn't really a lot of calories, but it's instant blood sugar, and null nutrients. So down on the grains.

But my major scheme is to increase the omega 3. I'll have to look at the ratios. I don't get much omega 6s, the vegetable oils that are the substrate of inflammatory hormones. You get 30 times more 6s than 3s. No wonder your a mess. I'm thinking of getting 3 times more 3s than 6s. Just made it up. I don't have any idea what the ratio is now, but I'm just imagining it's one to one. Threes thin the blood, but I coagulate very nicely, thank you. Anyway, the hope is that it will control the ache. We shall see. I'll have to start measuring these things.

Didn't mean to go on so much. Any questions?


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