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It was my own fault. I play very aggressively. I forgot to organise suppressing fire and forgot about the element of suprise and so got well and truely lit up. I have twenty welts on me that are about one and a half inches across. So I was already limping from that when the second game started.
My second attack worked much better, I organised it futher back so that the enemy couldn't see me marshalling people for an attack, whispered my intentions to the people around me rather than yelling and organised pleanty of suppression fire.
Everything was going so well. I counted down "Three, two, one.....GO!" I lept up, everyone else went with me and we stormed forward the noise from the guys laying down fire for us was awesome, they were really laying it down. So I'm dashing up the field with my suicide squad, paint is flying around all over the place, we bunkered about 5 people on the way. I come dashing through the smoke (smoke grenades are a must in this kinda situation) a guy pops up from behind the bunker we were running for and he got lit up by the guys laying down suppression fire. I didn't see the other two guys get hit so I hit the deck slid into the bunker.
No, not into cover behind the bunker, INTO the bunker, car crash stylee. OMG does my knee hurt. Not that I cared, no, I just popped a grenade over the bunker, then crawled around. Then I rolled around in agony.
I think between paintball and Aikido I'm now largely indifferent to pain. Earlier in
I feel like Sensei's only student at the moment. For whatever reason there have been at least four classes recently where it's just been me and him. I feel like I'm in the Aikido fast lane now though. Who else gets one on one tuition around here?
Yesterday Sensei asked me if I was willing to put in some hard slog and go for the 1st kyu grading on the 19th. I can't resist a challenge like that so I agreed. They're going to fail me regardless of what I do, but I enjoy the odd couple of weeks of really intense practice where I'm putting in six days a week or so. I like that feeling of being ground down and just carrying on and of settling into a rhythm.
Plus a couple of personal projects I've been working on for the past seven months are, well, on hold for a while and the training is a useful distraction. You could say one set of intense training has been replaced by another.
I was having coffee with a friend of mine that occasionally practices Aikido and a man walked past that had very good posture and I remarked upon it. She agreed and I, jokingly, said, "It's almost as good as mine." "Your's is different" she says "Different, how?" "Your's is more centered and he's just walking as if he has a purpose. Your's is menacing, when you walk into a place people look at you and they get worried." "I probably get that from Sensei." "No, he's more of a stealth assasin, you're getting that way but you're not there yet. He doesn't look menacing and imposing, you do. You look like you're about to amush someone."
Saturday night was a watershed moment in my training. There wasn't a fight or anything like that. In seven years of training I've changed beyond all recognition. The shy, angry, ignorant, insecure person that walked into my Sensei's dojo seven years ago has died. The last vestiges of him slipped peacefully away about 12am on saturday night.
I feel this break with the past and the hours since then have been spent mulling over how I got here. The answer is budo. I am obsessed with it and it dominates my thinking. I'm hesitant to say Aikido though, I don't think it's O-Sensei's message that has got me here, not on it's own. For me budo is practical, it is how I live my life.
The attitudes I display towards uke is the attitude I take with me into life day to day and the attitude I have towards training is the attitude I have towards life as a continuing process.
In the face of uke you must act decisively, you must end the situation before it can get out of hand, nip it in the bud. He must not even be allowed to complete his attack. Half way through shomen he should hit the mat.
You must be filled with resolve and admit no doubt into your mind. No limiting thought can be allowed to dwell in your head, you must enter in boldly. You must embody "katana ore ya mo tsuki."
I always think of my mind as my spear, my physical Aikido as my sword, and my game as my yoroi doshi (cuz once the spear has got her where I want her I draw my yoroi doshi and I go up and under the ar
The two most important things Aikido has taught me:
1. If you're not dead, you can still win. In judo you get thrown you've lost, in Aikido getting thrown means nothing. You get up and fight until you can't fight any longer. Seven times down eight times up. Nine times up, one thousand times up, more, if need be. And what do you do when you get up? You get back into the fight.
2. Whatever the challenge, you can train yourself to deal with it. Someone else has probably found a way of dealing with it, copy them. "I can't do this" is a daft view point. "I don't know how" is a more productive and accurate one.
My particular area of interest is women, but it applies to everything. I hate it when guys are like "she's out of my league." Defeatist talk of any kind annoys me but this especially. To misquote Iida Harima no Kami "You should at least see the colour of the enemy's flags."
Now, admittedly, he did get shot in the head just after saying it, but still, I think that reinforces the point that one's helmet belongs on ones noggin at all times whilst on the battlefield rather than discrediting the general principle that it's better to have a go, fail and learn so that you can win next time than not try and never succeed.
It's also my feeling that in all situations one should put some atemi in to see what happens. You can't say "It's impossible" until you've put in atemi and gauged the reaction.
In paintball, one of my other passions, it is said that if you don'
Yesterday I got to teach. I was teaching n00bs so I tried to simplify things. For instance they were using their shoulders too much so I started teaching a variation of irimi nage which didn't use the shoulders. As in I chucked out half of the technique and stripped it down to essentials.
Then sensei insisted that I teach basics because what I was teaching was too advanced. Confusion reigned.
What a week. I've always had the feeling of applying technique to uke. This week has been quiet though, usually only myself and Bob training so Sensei has been fine tuning us, going though things slowly and stuff. Mainly we've done kokyu ho rather than technique.
Then on thursday both Bob and I found that the feeling of applying technique had gone and has been replaced by a feeling of pushing a hand through very warm butter.
We were doing tenchi nage and I was searching for the applying feeling and Sensei stopped me and asked what I was doing, told me to stop and corrected me back into the warm butter feeling.
Thing is the warm butter feeling was making me think that I wasn't doing anything and that therefore Bob was jumping. Bob told me it was just as powerful as before though, Then we swapped over and Bob, to me, felt just as powerful but again he had the warm butter feeling rather than the applying feeling. So, like me, he changes his technique back into the applying feeling and like me, get's told off and corrected.
Que ten minute discussion with Sensei. Then kokyu which was fun because both of us were quite excited about being able to casually belt each other up and down the mat with no effort.
I'm confused as hell about what I'm doing differently though, I really have no idea. I can't even describe the feeling, I get a headache just thinking about it because it just doesn't make sense.
So I go out to the garden to practice the 26 count kata. He (my bro who's like 42? He's an old person ) comes running out with a bokken raised in jodan. So I enter in, drop on one knee and make tsuki for his throat. Attack stopped. I try to go back to training. He attacks, I parry and again make tsuki for his throat. This degenerates into a fight with him cutting at me and me poking him in the knee, ribs, belly and throat.
My bro's up for the week. As usual he's driving me nuts by constantly laying into me. Even more annoying is that he attacks me 24/7 so I have to be on guard all the time I'm in the house. I can't make a cup of tea without risking a punch in the ribs.
I have found a solution though, atemi. It's amazing how much peace and quiet I've got since I started putting him off with atemi.
Today I had to squeeze past him in the hall, which usually get's me a poke in the ribs, c'ept this time I threw a punch at his face and darted through while he was distracted.
If a self defence system was created that was highly effective, quite easy to learn but required no physical contact I reckon it would be a highly unpopular art because it wouldn't involve beating someone up.